Shevchenko is still awaiting a proper reception in English – and a translation of the bulk of his work that would match the brilliance of his poetic genius. Yet if we are to understand what is at the heart of Ukrainian identity, the Ukrainian people’s continuous strife for justice, and their courage to face brutal force when defending human rights and dignity, we ought to discover Shevchenko.
In Sikorski’s view, Poland and Ukraine demonstrate two diverging trajectories of development after the fall of communism: that of success and of failure respectively. At the beginning of the 1990s the two countries had almost equal starting positions (and Ukraine had an even better one), but then their paths diverged. Sikorski states that the main reason is the behavior of their elites.
We should see absolutely clearly that today Putin aims at the destruction of Ukraine’s project of statehood to a maximum degree; Crimea is merely a starting point for a full-scale plan of action. Rational arguments about the legitimacy of Ukraine’s authorities, the absence of objective threats to the free self-expression of any ethnic groups in Ukraine, etc., don't work here.