Thursday, July 23, 2009

Biden in Ukraine

Condoleezza Rice and Arseniy Yatsenyuk.Image via Wikipedia

As reported in Hurriyet, V.P. Biden breezed through town yesterday and gave a speech at Ukrainian House where he pointed out the obvious to Ukrainians - that their politicians put personal gain ahead of the nation's interests.

Since about 2005, as the alliance among the Orange Revolution participants began to unravel, the personal political ambitions of the leaders, including opposition leader and perennial presidential hopeful Victor Yanukovych, have trumped Ukrainian national interests. The apathy in Ukraine as to their political leadership is palpable. So, V.P. Biden's correct observation and admonition to, essentially, grow up, may fall on deaf ears.

He also met with all the potential and declared presidential candidates, which, I assume, was to get a read on their positions regarding NATO, the EU, Russia and energy issues. The pity is that the newest and freshest candidate, Arseniy Yatsenyuk pictured here, probably has no chance. It will come down between Tymoshenko and Yanukovych. President Yushchenko is dead last in the polls and approaching negative support at 2%.

The Hurriyet article makes a strange statement at the end which is not supported by any facts that "Biden leaves Ukraine later today for Georgia, another post-Soviet country with strong NATO ambitions..." The vast majority of Ukrainians do not support NATO membership.

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