Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Why the Fate of Ukraine Matters

People of Influence

Thomas L. Friedman, NYT
JULY 1, 2014

You can’t make this up. The Guardian reported on Sunday that Ukrainians have crowdfunded the first “people’s drone” to help their army stem infiltration by Russian-supported rebels in Ukraine’s eastern provinces that border Russia. “Last week, Ukraine’s crowdfunding site ‘The People’s Project’ said that it had received enough donations to fund a drone,” The Guardian reported. “The organizers had originally hoped to buy a state-of-the-art Israeli drone — for $165,000 — or a cheaper American one costing $120,000. In the end, however, they managed to build the drone for just $35,000. A designer and other volunteers built the airframe, with a Ukrainian military institute chipping in technical equipment.”

Good for them. The fate of Ukraine matters — as much, if not more, as Syria and Iraq. We don’t have to search for “moderates” in Ukraine. Millions there have already both fought for and voted to align their country with the free markets and free people of the European Union.

In Brussels, on Friday, the newly elected Ukrainian president, Petro Poroshenko, signed a trade pact with the European Union that will lower tariffs on Ukrainian exports to the 28-nation E.U. market in return for Ukraine implementing anti-corruption, transparency and quality-control reforms designed to bring its economy up to Western standards. It was the same deal that Poroshenko’s predecessor, Viktor Yanukovych, refused to sign last November under pressure from President Vladimir Putin of Russia. That set off the revolution in Kiev’s main square that eventually toppled Yanukovych and ignited a rebellion by Putin-directed separatists in eastern Ukraine. Which is why only hours after the deal was signed, Russia’s deputy foreign minister, Grigory Karasin, was quoted by the Interfax news agency as ominously warning that the E.U.-Ukraine accord would have “serious consequences.”

(More here.)

0 Comments:

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home