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Trump’s Ukrainian Blunder: Geopolitical Deja Vu

US President Donald Trump speaks at this inauguration on January 20. Analysts on Ukraine actively discuss the possibility of a deal between the new US administration and the Kremlin to establish new spheres of influence, under which Trump would give Russian leader Vladimir Putin a free hand in places like Syria and Ukraine, in exchange for Moscow’s withdrawal of support for Iran. (Photo: Whitehouse.gov)

US President Donald Trump is poised to make one of the gravest errors a statesman can make – disregarding history.
 
Back in 1991, then-president George H. W. Bush visited Ukraine, where he committed arguably the most serious geopolitical blunder of the late Cold War era. In a speech to the Ukrainian parliament, Bush had an opportunity to lay out a vision for a new kind of Marshall Plan for Ukraine and other Soviet republics seeking to break free of Kremlin control. Instead, he urged Ukraine to abandon its independence aspirations and remain in a revamped Soviet Union.

Bush’s remarks in Kiev – delivered only a few weeks before a failed coup attempt would go on to spark the disintegration of the Soviet Union – were derided by one American political commentator as “the Chicken Kiev speech.” It helped doom the chances for the stable development of democracy and a genuine market-based economic system in Ukraine and elsewhere in Eurasia.

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Trump’s Ukrainian Blunder: Geopolitical Deja Vu

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