Reality: The public doesn’t know what Russia offered or didn’t offer, and there are conflicting versions of whether a deal was struck. But it wasn’t all about the money. President Viktor Yanukovych also didn’t meet EU conditions for democracy and human rights. Those include revamping Ukraine’s draconian and unjust legal system and ending selective prosecution, symbolized by the imprisonment of Yanukovych’s political enemy, ex-Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, in 2011. He could have done all these things, regardless of the prospect of an association agreement or money.
Myth:The government’s Nov. 21 rejection of the EU deal shows that it wants to be closer to Russia.
Reality: Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt may have said it best about Ukraine. “They are not going West. I don’t think they are going East. I feel they are going down.”