`Nationalism and Nukes' in Ukraine

I read with some dismay how Ukraine is allegedly involved in nuclear "blackmail." This simply is not true. The author writes on a country "whose president - supported by an Army infiltrated by officers loyal to the current regime - maintains an iron grip on the government and the economy." To whom is the army of a country supposed to be loyal? No international scholar of any repute has accused the Ukrainian Army of "having an iron grip on the government and the economy."

The author states, without any basis, that the Ukrainian government demands $5 billion to $6 billion for the enriched uranium in the warheads. I have been following the international and Ukrainian press, radio, and television daily and can assure you that this is pure disinformation.

The Ukrainians stated that they need financial help in dismantling the warheads but argue that if these dismantled warheads are given to Russia to sell the enriched uranium and keep all of the proceeds, the Ukrainians are being cheated.

The situation in Ukraine is complex. There is not a trained political and economic elite, and nation-building is difficult. But this article does little to clarify and much to disorient the current debate on US policy to this troubled region. Roman Kupchinsky, Munich, Germany, Director, Ukrainian Broadcast Department of Radio Liberty

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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