The Ukraine is a nation caught between pressure from Russia and the United States regarding its future in Europe. America and some European nations want the Ukraine to enter NATO and become an important political and military base for the west. Russia is concerned that the Ukraine could be used by potential aggressors to launch attacks. President Victor Yushchenko has been cautious in his approach to recent events in Georgia which has resulted in a clash with Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. The president’s own chief of staff, Victor Baloha denounced his boss for failing to take a more aggressive stand in defense of Georgia against Russia. Within days charges and counter charges were expressed by various members of parliament and the ruling coalition.
There never has been a solid majority government in the Ukraine which allows issues of control and power between the president and prime minister to become the center of conflict. A reality is that the Ukraine must walk gently in dealing with the large bear on its border.