Vail Symposium hosts program on relations between Russia, Ukraine and the United States |

Vail Symposium invites Dr. Alina Polyakova to explain relations between Russia, Ukraine and the United States

Russia annexed Crimea in 2014 – since then, relations between Russia and Ukraine have been particularly tense.
Special to the Daily

Since Russia annexed Ukraine in 2014, Ukraine has become a key concern for U.S. policy makers, sometimes in unexpected ways. To explore why Ukraine, the second largest European country by area, remains at the forefront of U.S. debate, Dr. Alina Polyakova will speak at a Vail Symposium program on Thursday, March 12.

The program, Bad Blood: Ukraine, Russia and the United States, begins at 6 p.m. in the Donovan Pavilion in Vail. Polyakova is the president and CEO of the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) and founding director of the Project on Global Democracy and Emerging Technology.

“Ukraine has struggled against Russian aggression and sought U.S. assistance to combat it. While it is not exactly a love triangle, it is a triangle that has drawn each country into a web of money, diplomacy and conflict,” said Claire Noble, Vail Symposium program manager.

Ukraine has been an independent country since 1991. However, this status is not entirely accepted by Russia, which views Ukraine as part of its sphere of influence. Initially cordial, relations between Ukraine and Russia unraveled as Ukraine sought closer military and economic ties with the West.

Russian military intervention in Ukraine began in 2014 with Russia’s annexation of Crimea. Then, demonstrations by pro-Russian groups in the Donbass area of Ukraine escalated into an armed conflict between the Ukrainian government and the Russia-backed separatist forces. Shortly thereafter, Russian military vehicles crossed the border in several locations of Donetsk state, referred to in Ukrainian and Russian as an oblast. The incursion by the Russian military was seen as responsible for the defeat of Ukrainian forces in late 2014; this low-intensity conflict continues to the present.

Polyakova will discuss Russia’s intentions toward Ukraine and why the U.S. should be concerned, making sense of this thorny issue which now figures prominently not just in foreign policy, but domestic politics as well.

If you go …

What: Bad Blood: Ukraine, Russia and the United States

When: Thursday, March 12, doors at 5:30 p.m., program from 6 -7:30 p.m.

Where: Donovan Pavilion, Vail

Cost: $25 in advance plus ticket fees; $35 plus ticket fees at midnight the night before the event and at the door.

More information: Visit for more information and to purchase tickets.

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