Global Politics

Ukraine pursues NATO membership

(George Bush wants Ukraine to be a member of NATO, is that Ukrainians want?) Well most Ukrainians don't even really understand what NATO is. So according to the last polls, 30% are against NATO, 15-20% are adamantly pro-NATO, and 55% who say they need to know more. (What is Bush saying about the benefits to Ukrainians and what are Russians saying about the deficits and even punishments if they do join?) at this point, nobody is offering Ukraine NATO membership, just a membership action plan. Bush says it would provide greater security and economic stability, because international investment would be more attractive. Russia would lose some strategic bases in Ukraine, but Russians also can't imagine themselves without Ukraine, because historically it's been a part of Russia's larger empire. (So do Ukrainians feel caught in a bigger tug of war between the US and Russia?) No, Ukrainians feel as though they have a big choice to make and not feeling informed enough. (How would Ukrainians feel about their young people being deployed as part of NATO troops?) There's been a lot of talk about that and it's a huge argument for the anti-NATO forces, but also nobody is going to force Ukrainian soldiers into any war. (Do Ukrainians feel Bush's visit is applying pressure or offering something constructive?) The average Ukrainian does not see this visit as earth-shattering. It's a visit, it's important, but it's not the biggest deal.

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