Cheney reassures Ukraine

GG says Cheney's message was well received in Ukraine, sort of: it depends on which politicians you talk to. The President would support it heavily, but the prime minister, who has a more nuanced view of Russia, would be cooler on Cheney's message. (The Ukrainian President has said that the only way to be sure of territorial integrity is to join NATO. Of course Moscow is dead set against having Ukraine in NATO. Could Moscow be overruled?) Cheney has said this isn't to Russia, it's up to the people of Ukraine and the NATO members to decide this. There are complicating factors here, and polls suggest the majority of Ukrainian people would veto NATO membership if a referendum were held tomorrow. Russia can keep fanning those flames as well in Ukraine as well by giving negative coverage of NATO in Ukraine. (The President and Prime Minister of Ukraine are deeply divided on this matter. What interest does the U.S. have in reconciling those differences?) Washington doesn't want to see a falling out of Ukraine and have it slip back to Moscow's influence. They want to keep Ukraine on its pro-Western path of the past four years. (What was Cheney's reception?) It was very cordial from both the President and Prime Minister. But his reception was not broadcast live, which is a norm, and I'm not sure if we should read too much into that or not.

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