Conditions attached to the offer could place Ukraine once again at the center of tug-a-war between the West and Russia.
As protests escalate in Ukraine, they must be seen as a plea to save the West's idea of civic rights as irreversible when once obtained. The West cannot let the regime's violence against peaceful demonstrators go unpunished.
Ukrainian protesters seized an administrative building in Kiev Friday, before President Viktor Yanukovych appeared to offer concessions to ease growing unrest. Ukraine's energy challenges – dependent on fickle Russia for natural gas and unable to yet develop its own resources – make a difficult situation worse.