The US has failed to arrange a sit-down talk between Ukrainian and Russian officials but has announced sanctions (including visa bans) while Russia has threatened counter-sanctions.

No casualties have been reported yet, but members of Ukrainian parliament say their phones are being attacked, perhaps by the Russian army:

"I confirm that an... attack is under way on mobile phones of members of the Ukrainian parliament for the second day in a row," Ukrainian security chief Valentyn Nalivaichenko told journalists.

"At the entrance to [telecoms firm] Ukrtelecom in Crimea, illegally and in violation of all commercial contracts, was installed equipment that blocks my phone as well as the phones of other deputies, regardless of their political affiliation."

In addition, Ukrtelecom said its premises were raided last week by armed men, and fibre optic cabling was tampered with, causing loss of service for some users.

Smaller-scale attacks have seen news websites and social media defaced with propaganda messages.

Cyber attacks—particularly distributed denial of service attacks (DDoS)—figured heavily in Russia's 2008 conflict with Georgia.

As the local Crimean parliament asked to become part of Russia, pro-Russian protesters outside sang about "fascist bands" in Kiev while members of the feminist protest group FEMEN made a brief scene:

The proceedings were interrupted by two topless demonstrators from the protest group Femen, who charged the stage with "Stop Putin's War" written on their torsos. They were beaten and screamed at by a crowd of elderly women before being dragged off by Cossack irregulars and taken away in a police van.

Meanwhile, the interim Ukrainian government has been cutting state-funded programs and projects, perhaps to show the austerity-loving EU that it knows how to tighten a belt. The EU, for its part, has pledged $15 billion in grants and loans to help stabilize Ukraine's economy.

Besides the Crimean parliament, at least one self-proclaimed governor in east Ukraine announced his separatist aims and was arrested an hour later for crimes including "encroachment on the territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine."

And here is a video of Russian soldiers seizing an anarchist squat/community center in Sevastopol—which may be what much of the quiet Russian takeovers are looking like these days:

Chris Collison, who has been writing dispatches from Kiev, is planning a trip to Crimea and says he'll report back what he can.