Nataliya Gorodnia, Dr. habil. (History), Professor, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv

Vladyslav Chubara, Master of History

Abstract

The paper studies D.Trump’s public position on Russia and Ukraine from February 2014, when Russia’s aggression against Ukraine has started, to November 2016 U.S. presidential election.

We argue that D.Trump’s presidential campaign was featured with a pronounced Russian-friendly rhetoric and his high assessments of V.Putin. Only in March 2014, he defined Russia as the U.S.’ geopolitical foe, condemned its policies, and suggested imposing sanction on it. However, in April 2014, D.Trump’s position radically changed. Since then, he did not define Russia’s actions in Ukraine as “incursion”, and talked about “Ukraine problem”, which he considered a result of Barack Obama’s weak foreign policy. He believed that addressing the problem was Germany and other European nations’ responsibility, and tried to consider it separately from relations with Russia. Since June 2015, improving relations with Russia and “getting along with Putin”, first of all, to defeat ISIS, were the major themes of his campaign. In response to strong public criticism of his pro-Russia’s rhetoric, in 2016, D.Trump emphasized approach to negotiations with Russia from a position of strength. We do not believe that D.Trump’s position has changed. It leaves a lot of space for bargaining with Russia at the expense of Ukraine.

Key words: Donald Trump, the United States, Russia, Ukraine, 2016 presidential campaign

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DOI http://doi.org/10.17721/2521-1706.2018.05.35-49