Saturday, February 1, 2014

Ukraine: Between Russia and the EU, University of Illinois Institute of the Humanities, January 31, 2014

Ukraine: Between Russia and the European Union (EU) hosted by University of Illinois at Chicago Institute for the Humanities.

Present were 20-25 audience members, four presenters and a UIC moderator. An overview of the situation was given.

The four panelists, each respected in their departments on history were from Northwestern University and University of Illinois at Chicago. Marina Mogilner, Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern, Tetyana Dzyadevych, Anna Golash, and moderator Colleen McQuillen

Viewpoints raised were economic situation in Ukraine considering the proposed trade agreement between Ukraine and EU and Ukraine and Russia. They spoke of the political effectiveness of Euromaidan. Panelists discussed meaning and importance of Euromaidan. Euromaidan was discussed as diverse heterogeneous movement.

Panelists spoke of Ukraine being considered more powerful now after learning lessons from Orange Revolution. Maidan could be understood as an evolution as much as revolution. Maidan's concerns include human rights and dignity. The subject of east vs west Ukraine was discussed. The governance and future of Ukraine was considered to be inclusive and of concern to all Ukrainians.
 It was considered that Ukraine Maidan was the most important regional geopolitical transformation since the fall of the Soviet Union.

One visiting student from eastern Ukraine who identified herself as anti-Putin, anti-Yanukovych but ethnically Russian-Ukrainian, voiced concern about anti-Russian sentiment in Ukraine.