Is Eastern Europe doomed to remain a powder keg, the victim of its own internal problems, and, most importantly, torn between Russian hegemonic pretensions and the uncertain European neighbourhood policy? That is the impression one gets from this latest European Column focused on Ukraine (243,000 square miles and a population of 44 million), a country whose proverbial wealth currently lies devastated. Jean-François Drevet reminds us of the tragic history of the country from the turn of the 20th century onward, then shows how, since the annexation of Crimea, it has become caught in a vice between the Kremlin’s desire to bring it back under Russian control and Europe’s (and NATO’s) inability to oppose that desire with sufficient vigour. What are the forces at work here? And what possible ways out are there for Ukraine?
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