News / Europe

Roundup: Opinions on Ukraine from American and Foreign Media

Women with their mouths taped over and others participants attend a pro-Ukraine rally in Simferopol, March 13, 2014.
Women with their mouths taped over and others participants attend a pro-Ukraine rally in Simferopol, March 13, 2014.
The crisis in Ukraine has captured global attention and is generating a wide spectrum of opinion on its causes and solutions. Newspapers, blogs and other media are publishing a variety of commentaries and editorials on what’s to be done and who’s to blame.

Each day, VOA will curate a selection of these editorial opinions, highlight selections, and offer them for our readers’ consideration.

The opinions expressed below are, of course, those of the authors, not the Voice of America.

"Ukraine Crisis as a Poker Game" Editorial by USA Today.

"In that long game, the U.S., the European Union and NATO have many more cards to play – if they can agree on a strategy for playing them.


"The ace in the American arsenal is its rapidly growing energy supply, which is expected to make the U.S. a net exporter by about 2020. It can't be deployed quickly, but as Europe's – and particularly Ukraine's – dependency on Russian gas declines, Putin's leverage will fade.

"So, too, may his economy if rising supplies drive down prices for the oil and gas on which it depends. It turns the tables on Putin, who has repeatedly used energy as a weapon.


"Despite his fanciful perceptions that Ukrainians are natural allies of Russia, he might find that an attempt at takeover will buy him a rebellion – or that Western pressure will bring economic consequences he cannot afford.

"Crimea could be lost, which is disturbing given similar Russian behavior in Georgia in 2008, but the U.S., the EU and NATO can attain their longer-term goals if they can muster the kind of determination, unity and patience that won the Cold War."

"Vladimir Putin's Many Lies on Ukraine" Commentary by Haroon Siddiqui, Indian-Canadian journalist and political columnist, published in the Toronto Star.

"In Crimea’s rushed referendum, there’s no clear question and there won’t be a clear majority. The ballot choice is not between yes and no — it is either yes to joining Russia or yes to autonomy that would pave the way for Russian annexation.

"The peninsula’s minority Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars, more than a third of the population, are boycotting the vote. They rightly do not want to lend legitimacy to the ethnic Russian majority’s machinations being carried out at Moscow’s behest.

"This is a referendum being held at gunpoint after a Russian military takeover that is a violation of international law as well as bilateral treaties.


"Putin is lying when he says that he is “only answering the call for fraternal assistance by Russian citizens.” Ukraine’s eight million ethnic Russians who speak the Russian language are citizens of Ukraine.

"In handing out Russian citizenship papers to some of those ethnic Russians, especially in Crimea, Russia is violating Ukrainian law, which does not allow dual citizenship."

"For Putin, a Possible Pyrrhic Victory" Commentary by David Ignatius, Washington Post columnist, published in the Washington Post.

"Will the Ukraine crisis prove a major turning point, tipping the world toward a new Cold War? Despite the obvious dangers of confrontation, many analysts say that’s unlikely.

"Should Crimeans endorse independence as expected, the Russian parliament may raise the ante by voting to annex the region. But what may follow is a period in which the region’s status is legally undefined and the United States continues to seek a compromise between Kiev and Moscow.

"Putin could disrupt that by encouraging unrest in Russian-speaking cities of eastern Ukraine, such as Donetsk and Kharkiv — and threatening further intervention. But that risky course is unlikely.


U.S. officials also doubt that Russia will sabotage the chemical-weapons disposal agreement in Syria or the international negotiations to limit Iran’s nuclear program.

"Putin has a personal stake in both, and they are symbols of Russia’s influence. If he were to scuttle such diplomacy, it would deepen Russia’s isolation.

"Putin must also be careful about the domestic consequences of his Crimea putsch.Yes, it has brought him popularity in Russia as a tough, nationalistic leader. But it may also encourage secessionists in Dagestan, Chechnya and other potential breakaway regions."

"Ukraine Crisis Resonates in Taiwan" Editorial by the Taipei Times.

"These incidents and claims bear a startling resemblance to what Taiwan faces. Echoing the tug-of-war of opposing allegiances in Ukraine, Taiwan is divided between those who advocate Taiwanese independence and others who support unification with China.


"Also, China, which makes no secret of its ambition to annex Taiwan, has long worked to sabotage Taiwan’s sovereignty with its “united front” tactics.

"The cross-strait Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement has pushed Taiwan’s economic dependence on China to historic highs, not to mention the sociopolitical costs that came along with the agreement, which helped China’s strategy of inserting itself “into the island, into households and into the brains” of Taiwanese.


"Despite its independence and international recognition, Ukraine still displays such helplessness against Russia’s blatant aggression and brazen disregard of its sovereignty.

"One can only imagine how the predicament facing Taiwan could be even more treacherous, as this nation lacks UN membership and still struggles for international recognition."


You May Like

Video Debt-ridden Refugees Await Onslaught of Lebanese Winter

Aid agencies are attempting to reduce potentially devastating consequences of freezing conditions and snowstorms that killed eight last year, including three Syrian refugees

Photogallery Belgian Security Measures Foreshadow New Normal for Europe

Rising threat of terrorism, disaffected Muslim populations and open borders, along with refugee, migrant crisis, are creating perfect storm for Europe, which some analysts fear continent is ill-suited to weather

Americans Think About Strange Stuff at Thanksgiving

Tattoos, hookah bars and doughnuts? Google Maps lays out what people really have on their minds during the holiday

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against ISi
November 24, 2015 3:04 AM
The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against IS

The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Americans Sharpen Focus on Terrorism

Washington will be quieter than usual this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday, even as Americans across the nation register heightened concerns over possible terrorist threats. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports new polling data from ABC News and the Washington Post newspaper show an electorate increasingly focused on security issues after the deadly Islamic State attacks in Paris.

Video World Leaders Head to Paris for Climate Deal

Heads of state from nearly 80 countries are heading to Paris (November 30-December 11) to craft a global climate change agreement. The new accord will replace the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change that expired in 2012.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

Video Creating Physical Virtual Reality With Tiny Drones

As many computer gamers know, virtual reality is a three-dimensional picture, projected inside special googles. It can fool your brain into thinking the computer world is the real world. But If you try to touch it, it’s not there. Now Canadian researchers say it may be possible to create a physical virtual reality using tiny drones. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Video New American Indian Village Takes Visitors Back in Time

There is precious little opportunity to experience what life was like in the United States before its colonization by European settlers. Now, an American Indian village built in a park outside Washington is taking visitors back in time to experience the way of life of America's indigenous people. Carol Pearson narrates this report from VOA's June Soh.

Video Even With Hometown Liberated, Yazidi Refugees Fear Return

While the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar has been liberated from Islamic State forces, it's not clear whether Yazidi residents who fled the militants will now return home. VOA’s Mahmut Bozarslan talked with Yazidis, a religious and ethnic minority, at a Turkish refugee camp in Diyarbakır. Robert Raffaele narrates his report.

Video Nairobi Tailors Make Pope Francis’ Vestments

To ensure the pope is properly attired during his visit, the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops asked the Dolly Craft Sewing Project in the Nairobi slum of Kangemi to make the pope's vestments, the garments he will wear during the various ceremonies. Jill Craig reports.

Video Cross-Border Terrorism Puts Europe’s Passport-Free Travel in Doubt

The fallout from the Islamic State terror attacks in Paris has put the future of Europe’s passport-free travel area, known as the "Schengen Zone," in doubt. Several of the perpetrators were known to intelligence agencies, but were not intercepted. Henry Ridgwell reports from London European ministers are to hold an emergency meeting Friday in Brussels to look at ways of improving security.

Video El Niño Brings Unexpected Fish From Mexico to California

Fish in an unexpected spectrum of sizes, shapes and colors are moving north, through El Niño's warm currents from Mexican waters to the Pacific Ocean off California’s coast. El Nino is the periodic warming of the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this phenomenon thrills scientists and gives anglers the chance of a once-in-a-lifetime big catch. Faith Lapidus narrates.

Video Terrorism in Many Forms Continues to Plague Africa

While the world's attention is on Paris in the wake of Friday night's deadly attacks, terrorism from various sides remains a looming threat in many African countries. Nigerian cities have been targeted this week by attacks many believe were staged by the violent Islamist group Boko Haram. In addition, residents in many regions are forced to flee their homes as they are terrorized by armed militias. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Study: Underage Marriage Rate Higher for Females in Pakistan

While attitudes about the societal role of females in Pakistan are evolving, research by child advocacy group Plan International suggests that underage marriage of girls remains a particularly big issue in the country. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports how such marriages leads to further social problems.

VOA Blogs