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Ukraine

A Tale of Two Cities: Kiev and Washington

In Kiev:

Violent protestors last month occupied three cabinet ministry buildings as they sought to overthrow the Ukrainian government. Protestors physically blocked the speaker of the Ukrainian parliament from taking his seat at the speaker's podium for weeks. Then they blockaded the speaker of parliament in his own office, forcing him to escape out the window.

As the Ukrainian authorities attempted to restore order and evict protestors from government buildings, the US government threatened sanctions and more if the legally-elected government of Ukraine moved against those occupying government buildings.
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US 'Ukraine-gate' Threatens to Blow Up Into Major Conflagration

US Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and US Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt were caught in a phone conversation leaked yesterday actively plotting over which of the Ukrainian opposition figures should take which position in a post-coup Ukraine government. In the call, they were furious that the EU was not as quick to move from words to action as the US, and decided to bring in the UN to "glue" the "deal" together instead.

This is a scandal of major international proportions, and the implications of this clear evidence of direct US involvement in civil unrest in Ukraine are much more serious than most in the US and EU realize. As is to be expected, however, the US mainstream press is focused not on this evidence of extreme US recklessness and deception, but rather on whether the Russians leaked the call or not. They are ignoring the real core of the scandal to focus on salacious aspects, real or imagined.
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McAdams' Year-End Chat With Jay Taylor

RPI's Daniel McAdams looks back over the year in foreign policy and civil liberties with VoiceAmerica Radio's Jay Taylor. What does the rest of the world think of US spying, the ugly underside of an otherwise legitimate US intelligence community, ruling against NSA bulk collection, Peter King, the military interventionists and the great riches they reap, in Syria: Assad must stay, European Union is a sick puppy, China/Japan dispute, and more...
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RPI's McAdams and Tom Woods: Iran, Japan, Ukraine, and More...

RPI Director Daniel McAdams is on the Tom Woods Show on 13 December to discuss the latest foreign policy hot spots. Ukraine -- is the mob in the street a democratic movement? Why must the US military get in the middle of the China/Japan dispute? Will the neocons keep pushing for war on Iran? For this and more, join McAdams and Woods for a half hour roundup:



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Join the EU? Are You Crazy?

Ten years ago Hungary joined the European Union. After a miserable 40 years under the  Soviet boot, EU membership was seen by Left and Right alike in Hungary as a watershed event demonstrating that the past had truly passed, and the country had retaken its historic position in the center of European cultural, economic, and political life.

After manipulation in Hungary's domestic politics, most infamously the "salami tactics" of the 1947-1948 period where Soviet agents saw to it that each non-communist party was sliced off into oblivion one by one until the Hungarian Communist Party remained the last party standing -- as well as the 1956 revolt against the Soviet occupiers -- Hungarians upon joining the European Union felt that they had finally emerged from the post-communist period as a sovereign nation.

One by one, the former communist countries of central Europe fell for the temptations of EU membership.
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Ukraine: Bullied and Blackmailed?

It has been called the most important news you may have missed. After a long consideration Ukraine has turned against a European Union offer of associated membership, refusing to sign an agreement that would have brought the former Soviet Republic into the EU political orbit.

As one might expect, the Western mainstream media has portrayed Ukraine's rejection of an "Eastern partnership" as a turn away from civilized democracy and toward the "autocracy" of Russia's Putin. In fact, one reads the Russian president's name in such articles more often than that of his Ukrainian counterpart. It was only Russian bullying and blackmail, they write, that has frightened Ukraine away from the EU's kind and generous offer.
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Ukraine Rejects The Brussels Club, Opts For Trade Over Empty Promises

On Thursday the Ukrainian parliament reject a final set of laws designed to pave the way for  Ukraine to join the EU's "Eastern Partnership" program as an associate EU member. The surprise move cast a shadow on the Eastern Partnership signing ceremony scheduled to take place in Vilnius, Lithuania next week.

With this move, Ukraine has signaled an end to its interest in further formal association with the European Union and a preference for participation in the Customs Union of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Russia.

Perhaps sensing that a relationship with the EU would also involve endless meddling in internal Ukrainian affairs, the last straw for the Ukrainian parliament was a package of Brussels-demanded legislation which would have released from custody former prime minister Yulia "Gas Princess" Timoshenko, serving time on corruption charges.
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