Faculty in the News In the News

May 9, 2014 at 1:41 pm

Canada’s CTV News Interviews Miner on Biden’s Visit to Ukraine

Dr. Steve Miner, Professor of History and Director of the Contemporary History Institute at Ohio University, was interviewed by Canada’s CTV News Today on April 21 as Vice President Joe Biden was in Kiev for the highest-level visit yet from a U.S. official since the start of the crisis in ukraine.

Dr. Steven Miner

Dr. Steven Miner

Asked if the visit was meant to send a signal and be seen as technical support for the Ukrainian government and energy sector, Miner replied, “I think it is. Although in terms of energy, if the United States tries to replace Russian sources either through its own resources or other, that would be a big step in assisting the Ukrainians in being able to become independent. It will have to take place over a long time because would you have to build liquefied natural gas terminals and right now, the Russians, these demonstrations … are, in fact, occurring at key rail junks and ports and the idea is to cut off Ukraine from the outside world.”

Miner was asked if the large amount of U.S. debt owed to China was preventing the United States from additional action, given Russia’s close alliance with China.

“I think it cuts both ways,” he said. “You’re right about the Chinese…. But the United States uses Russian airspace to resupply forces in Afghanistan, and in a sense, they’re holding us hostage. That in the long-term, though, the United States could collapse the Russian banking system if it chose to do so? I just don’t think it’s going to choose to do so because it has too many other irons in the fire with the Russians.”

Asked about the Geneva agreement, Miner replied, “Well, it’s characteristic of these kind of things that even if the uprisings are centrally directed by Russia, they don’t necessarily control everything once the dies are cast. It could go on for a very long time.”

Miner also noted that Russian President Putin “is also trying to throw roadblocks in the way of any kind of elections Ukraine is going to hold later in May for the presidency because if that happen, it will confer a sort of legitimacy on the Kiev government that the Russians can pretend it doesn’t have right now.”


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