The Largest Security-Cleared Career Network for Defense and Intelligence Jobs - JOIN NOW


Russia without Ukraine is a country;
Russia with Ukraine is an empire.

Ukraine Politics


Leonid M. Kravchuk 01 Dec 1991 19 Jul 1994Social Democratic Party
Leonid Kuchma19 Jul 199423 Jan 2005People's Democratic Party
Viktor Yushchenko23 Jan 200525 Feb 2010Our Ukraine
Viktor Yanukovich 25 Feb 2010 22 Feb 2014 Party of Regions
Oleksandr Turchynov23 Feb 2014 07 Jun 2014 Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc
Petro Poroshenko07 Jun 2014 Jun 2019 Proshenko Bloc
Volodymyr Zelenskiy Jun 2019 Jun 2024 Servant of the People

Prime Minister

Vitold Fokin23 Oct 199002 Oct 1992KPU/Non-party
Leonid Kuchma13 Oct 199222 Sep 1993Non-party
Yukhim Zvyahilsky22 Sep 199316 Jun 1994Non-party
Vitalii Masol16 Jun 199401 Mar 1995Non-party
Yevhen Marchuk01 Mar 199528 May 1996Non-party
Pavlo Lazarenko28 May 199602 Jul 1997Hormada
Valerii Pustovoitenko16 Jul 199722 Dec 1999NDP
Viktor Yushchenko22 Dec 199929 May 2001Non-party
Anatolii Kinakh29 May 200121 Nov 2002PPPU
Viktor Yanukovich21 Nov 200205 Jan 2005 Party of Regions
Mykola Azarov07 Dec 200424 Jan 2005Party of Regions
Yuliya Tymoshenko24 Jan 200508 Sep 2005Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc + VOB
Yurii Yekhanurov08 Sep 200504 Aug 2006NU
Viktor Yanukovich 04 Aug 2006 18 Dec 2007 Party of Regions
Yuliya Tymoshenko18 Dec 2007 11 Mar 2010 Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc + VOB
Mykola Azarov11 Mar 201028 Jan 2014Party of Regions
Sergei Arbuzov 05 Feb 2014 Mar 2014Party of Regions
Arseniy YatsenyukMar 201430 Mar 2016 VOB
Volodymyr Groysman 30 Mar 201622 May 2019
Oleksiy Honcharuk29 Aug 201920?? Servant of the People
excludes brief acting PMs
Ethno-LiungisticAll East European nations experienced a traumatic twentieth century, but Ukraine's trials were particularly tragic - millions were killed in the Great War, Stalin's genocidal famine, and Hitler's invasion. The trauma's of this period echo down generation upon generation to the present. Corruption is a significant problem. The Ukrainian Government openly acknowledges that corruption remains a major issue in society. Their efforts to fight corruption effectively are hampered by the general public's widespread tolerance and apathetic response.

Ukraine is two nations in one country. Eastern Ukraine looks to Russia, and Western Ukraine looks to Europe. The population of Ukraine is over 45 million. Ethnic Ukrainians make up approximately 78% of the total; ethnic Russians number about 17%, ethnic Belarusians number about 0.6%. The industrial regions in the east and southeast are the most heavily populated, and the population is about 69% urban. Ukrainian and Russian are the principal languages. Although Russian is very widely spoken, in the 2001 census (the latest official figures) 85.2% of the ethnic Ukrainian population identified Ukrainian as their native language. While members of the three Orthodox churches comprise a majority of believers in the western part of the country overall, the Greek Catholic communities constitute a majority in three of the eight western oblasts: Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, and Ternopil.

The entrepreneurial dynamism and pro-European sentiment is palpable in western Ukraine, with construction visible in the cities and countryside, coffee houses full of students, and European Union flags proudly displayed and dreams of NATO accession unabashedly uttered. But overt Russian-affiliated intervention into internal Ukrainian politics includes both advocacy of a Ukrainian political force and via participation of a handful of Kremlin sponsored or tolerated fringe groups and NGOs.

Conventional wisdom divides Ukraine into the Orange provinces in the West, the center of support for politicians leaning towards Europe, and the Blue provinces in the South and East, the center of support for pro-Russian politicians. At times it seems that Ukraine's emerging two-party system could be dangerous for Ukrainian unity, leading to a possible East/West split of the country. Some speculate that Ukraine could be divided into three parts, with the east/south annexed by Russia, a Russian-controlled central region, and a European-oriented rump Ukraine in the west. But nothing in Ukraine is so simple. While Prime Minister, Orange leader Yuliya Tymoshenko made deals favorable to Moscow, and the Blue Party of Regions includes pro-European factions.

A controversial 2016documentary produced by US director Oliver Stone and broadcast on Russian television presented the Ukrainian revolutions of 2004 and 2014 as organized uprisings instigated from outside and planned with US participation. Posted on YouTube and screened by nationwide Russian TV channel REN TV on 21 November 2016, the film, titled Ukraine on Fire, features Ukraine's ousted former president Viktor Yanukovych, Russian President Vladimir Putin, and Vitaly Zakharchenko, who served as Ukrainian interior minister under Yanukovych, discussing the events leading up to and following the "Maidan" revolution of 2014.

The film reports that the CIA closely collaborated with Ukrainian nationalistic organizations against the USSR as far back as 1946, using them as counterintelligence sources. In 2004 Ukraine became a battlefield between Russia and the West. The pro-Russian candidate Viktor Yanukovych won the presidential election, though the process was tainted by widespread allegations of intimidation and massive vote-rigging, as well as the poisoning of the pro-Western candidate, Viktor Yushchenko.

In the end, Yushchenko, whose wife had been an employee of the US State Department during the Reagan administration) gained the presidency thanks to a peaceful protest that the film claims was inspired from outside the country, resulting in a re-vote.

Shortly before Yanukovych was due to sign the agreement at an EU Eastern Partnership summit (in Lithuania in late November 2013) public organizations financed by NED, journalists receiving US grants and the TV channels created on the eve of the Maidan uprising played an important role in the protests.

In the Minsk Agreement, the framework to settle the conflict in Donbass was laid out in February 2015, with German and French mediation. Political, legal and military statements of intent broken into 13 points. As "Minsk" doesn't contain a timetable, it doesn't say what should happen first, or second.

Kyiv and Moscow entrenched themselves behind their own priorities. The Ukrainians want to deal with questions of security first, and then get into the politics. The Russians see it exactly the other way around: they want Kyiv to firstly fulfill its political obligations - and any military talk can come after that. In Kyiv, any political concessions are seen as betrayal and surrender. The Russian leadership, on the other hand, with its shrill rhetoric, has positioned itself on the side of the separatists.

In March 2020, Ukrainian President Zelenskiy fired his prime minister and reshuffled his cabinet, the parliament was torn between confronting COVID-19 and completing preconditions for the next IMF program, and controversy flared over the Donbas.

By 2021 public support for The Peoples Servant Party of Ukrainian President Zelenskiy had collapsed, according to a poll released by Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) on 26 January 2021. About 11.2% of voters that have decided said they would vote for Zelenskiys party, which won election to Parliament in July 2019 with an overwhelming 43% result. This poll confirms the primary trends in Ukrainian politics: (1) Zelenskiy and his party are losing votes to the pro-Russian forces, largely because they are incapable of solving any major problem facing the country; (2) the pro-Russian forces are already taking a consistent lead in the polls, largely because they are capable of resolving the war in Donbas (through capitulation), and (3) Poroshenko and his party have hit their ceiling and are incapable of widening their support. With its hybrid war in Ukraine, the Kremlin is succeeding in infiltrating many critical governing structures. Besides the Presidents Office and the Prosecutor Generals Office, the Kremlin is now positioning itself for major gains in the next national elections, Zenon Zawada of Concorde Capital said in a note.

Join the mailing list

One Billion Americans: The Case for Thinking Bigger - by Matthew Yglesias

Page last modified: 06-05-2021 17:08:14 ZULU