November 24, 2016


“…Most of [Donald] Trump’s statements during the campaign suggested that he can conduct business with Russian President Vladimir Putin, has little interest in Moscow’s aggression in Ukraine, and is ambivalent about NATO’s role in today’s world. But we do not know if he would develop policies based on these statements. In the president-elect’s entourage, only Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn is reputed to have ‘dovish’ views on Russia. But Vice-President-Elect Mike Pence, Sen. Bob Corker, Newt Gingrich and John Bolton all understand the dangers of Kremlin revisionism and have backed stronger U.S. support for Ukraine. They should provide at least a moderating voice, if not a decisive one, in the formulation of the Trump administration’s policies toward Moscow and Kyiv.

“Even if Trump wanted to pursue a policy of rapprochement with the Kremlin, he would have trouble bringing Congress along if Moscow continues its war in Ukraine’s east and its indiscriminate bombing in Syria. Both Democrats and Republicans in Congress are deeply suspicious of the Kremlin and supportive of Ukraine. …”

Former U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine John Herbst, director of the Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center at the Atlantic Council, as posted by the council on November 9.

“Ukraine has now carried out radical economic reforms. In a single year, the government cut its budget deficit by eight percent of GDP. … The next big tasks are to reform prosecution and the judiciary to establish reasonable rule of law and property rights, to implement the civil service reform and carry out a pension reform. The West has engaged intensely with Ukraine in its reforms since February 2014. While Western advice has been economically sound, Western financing has been quite limited. The West should boost Ukraine through substantial investment funding to offer the nation a reasonable chance of success.”

– Anders Aslund, resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, in his brief, “Does Ukraine get the aid it deserves?” published on November 15 by the Center for International Governance Innovation, an Ontario-based think tank.