Thursday, December 16, 2004

Why Ukraine Matters

The courage of the "Orange" revolutionaries in Ukraine has been inspiring to watch, and it is clear that the US has a general interest in the spread of liberty throughout the world. But the (somewhat meandering) article below explains why we have a very direct interest in Ukraine: it is the lynch-pin for thwarting Russia's neo-imperial ambitions, denying Vladimir Putin "the resources to regain superpower status."

"The United States Stake in Ukraine," William R. Hawkins, Washington Times, 12/16/04

"For the United States, it is important that the Ukrainian patriots win the redo election set for Dec. 26. Ukraine is as large and populous as France. It was the largest and most developed part of the Soviet empire to break away. In doing so, it insured post-Soviet Russia would lack the resources to regain superpower status. The National Endowment for Democracy, USAID, Freedom House, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and other American groups have worked in Ukraine in progressive ways helpful to Mr. Yushchenko. These efforts need to be redoubled to ensure a favorable outcome in the next vote and offset what the Kuchma regime and its Russian backers do to reproduce the rigged vote of Nov. 21."