The Monitor's View Why Ukraine speaks of civilization to Americans

In his speech to Congress, Ukrainian leader Petro Poroshenko asked for arms to defend 'civilization' against Russian 'barbarity.' Yet Putin speaks of defending 'Russian civilization.' Why this conflict on 'civilizations'?

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Ukraine’s crisis is almost a year old, first triggered by its drive for close economic ties with Europe. After a democratic revolution in Kiev, a war that has left thousands dead, and now an uneasy truce, it is more evident why Russian leader Vladimir Putin reacted so harshly.