Today's 'Segodnya' again writes about PM Yulia Tymoshenko's most uncharacteristic current purdah.
LEvko can inform them that Ms Tymoshenko has been speaking to the "F.T." over a cup of tea. They will be running the interview in tomorrow's edition..
The question now is, have the events of the last few days in Georgia make it more likely, or less likely that Ukrainians would support membership into NATO in any referendum.
On March 11, 2008 I posted this:
"Couple of interesting O.P.'s from today's "Segodnya"
The majority of Ukrainians - 75,1%, approve of neutral status for Ukraine; 9,8% are against, 15,2% had difficulty answering.
62,3% of respondents are in favor of conducting a referendum on the entry of Ukraine into NATO, 24,9% against such a referendum, 12,8% had difficulty answering."
The O.P. indicated that overall, 56% of Ukraine's citizens would be against the entrance of Ukraine in NATO, 21,6% for the enty into the alliance, 8,3% would not participate in any referendum on this question."
Many Ukrainians think Georgians, Ossetians, and other Caucasian nations are, stereotypically, hot-headed cut-throats - I believe sympathy for any of them is limited. Stalin and Beria were Georgians. However, the Kremlin's heavy-handed behaviour in recent days will be a source of great anxiety..The majority may consider that the best guarantee of security for their country would be modern, well-equipped Ukrainian armed forces.
PS A few moments ago the 'Batkivshchyna' website have just posted an official statement from the BYuT VR fraction on the Georgia crisis. It is totally non judgemental - the only criticism is directed at the President's Secretariat.
E.g. "Ukraine's parliament should do everything possible to ensure that our country is not dragged into conflict on any of the sides. The effectiveness of the peacekeeping activities of Ukraine will depend on this.."
This statement is in clear contrast to those being made by the President and his Secretariat. Maybe more on this later.
PS In order to realize Ukraine's dilemma over its stance on NATO and the Georgia crisis, check out this video of BBC Newsnight discussion tonight, paying particular notice of the comments of Aleksander Nekrasov, a normally a level-headed Russian commentator. Take it from 24 minutes into the clip onward..The response from the lady leading the discussion is priceless..