«Probably, Ukraine 20 January scares me more than the rest of the country. It may lose the support of the United States, allows her to stay afloat in the face of Russian hostility and economic disaster, says Leonid Bershidsky in BloombergView. In response, the Ukrainian elite was divided into two camps that support two competing strategies. One, almost never mentioned in public, implies concessions to Russia and return to the previous policy of trying to establish relations with Russia and the West. Another target approach to the new American administration or at least the continued support of the Republican traditionalists in Congress and the Senate.»
The first strategy is reflected in article Viktor Pinchuk — «one of the richest Ukrainians and the leading philanthropists of the country,» published in The Wall Street Journal in late December. It offers Pinchuk Ukraine to abandon aspirations to join the EU and NATO, to stop «beating the drum about the annexation of Crimea by Russia» and to hold elections in the East before Kiev will regain control over these territories. The article caused an uproar in Ukraine (Pinchuk even apologized, blaming the rigid editing and a provocative title). In an official response to the article Pinchuk, Deputy head of the presidential administration Poroshenko Konstantin Eliseev wrote: «Compromises for Russian conditions is the wrong policy. (…) One of the heavyweights of the new American administration (elected Vice-President Mike Pence. — Approx. ed.) once said: «History teaches that weakness begets evil». This approach never led to sustainable peace or saving lives. Rather, this approach always feeds more aggression and calls new human suffering.»
«While the policy of «no compromise with Russia» remains the official line that Kiev must seek allies in the US who will support her in these conditions,» said Bershidsky. He writes that U.S. support is so important for Kiev that he agreed every month to pay 55 thousand dollars for services of the Washington lobbying firm BGR Government Affairs. «Perhaps, [Ukraine] will have an uphill battle with the administration of the tramp, but she has a grateful audience among Republicans, traditionalists like John McCain and Marco Rubio. They are already involved in a bipartisan effort to turn the sanctions imposed on Russia by Obama, in the law,» the article says.
«The position of the Ukrainian leader is not hopeless. It is a convenient tool for politicians wishing to strengthen their reputation as defenders of freedom and democracy. Poroshenko can also cause more sympathy from European leaders, angered by the contempt trump to the EU — indicates Bershidsky. Poroshenko hopes that Putin will hardly be able to offer Trump, and focused on the transaction approach of the elected President will fail. Then these allies will help Ukraine to regain the particular position which it once occupied in the agenda much more friendly U.S. administration. If any major deal between Russia and the United States will still be achieved, Pinchuk and those Ukrainians who silently agrees with him, will suddenly become much more match time than now.»
BloombergView. Survival strategy of Ukraine in the era of trump 18.01.2017