Original source: http://www.bunews.com.ua
The Ukrainian diaspora divide
North America’s two Ukrainian communities may have less in common than many in Kyiv assume
William Schreiber Volume 4, issue 12, December 2010
The Ukrainian diaspora and President Yanukovych share a long history of mutual distaste. Since becoming president Yanukovych has had to overcome something of a long-held grudge against the diaspora, who he has traditionally regarded as political opponents – a view that is not entirely groundless. Both the Canadian and US diasporas wedded themselves to the Orange Revolution, supporting pro-democracy protests and sending thousands of observers to the 2004 elections that cost Yanukovych the presidency. Even Viktor Yushchenko’s wife Kateryna, who was born in Chicago, was a proud Ukrainian-American until her husband assumed the presidency and she renounced her US citizenship. However, reconciliation with the diaspora has now become a bitter but necessary pill for President Yanukovych to swallow. This should not be too difficult for a man who prides himself on pragmatism and knows the importance of trade cooperation with this particular continent. As President Yanukovych builds bridges with the diaspora he would do well to acknowledge the different positions occupied by the Ukrainian communities in the US and Canada.