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Why Biden Was Named ‘Top Foe’ in a Famously Pro-Biden Country

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At the end of July, the front page of Ukraine’s English-language newspaper The Kyiv Post read: “Betrayal. Global powers U.S. and Germany turn their backs on Ukraine and undermine European security as they strike a deal allowing the completion of Nord Stream 2, Russia’s controversial gas pipeline project.” The publication declared Angela Merkel Ukraine’s foe of the week and Joe Biden “a close second.”

The shift was abrupt. Biden has long been considered Ukraine’s “big friend,” with Brian Bonner, the editor of The Kyiv Post, saying that prior to the 2020 U.S. elections, Ukrainians were “holding their breath and hoping that Biden wins” after the trauma of Trump’s inexplicable affinity for Russia. But now, Biden’s soft approach to Nord Stream 2 is delighting the Kremlin, and catching Ukrainians off-guard.

The bitter “betrayal” headline came after the United States and Germany reached an agreement on July 21 that allows for the completion of the pipeline, which will deliver gas from Russia to Germany. The deal will hike up Germany’s dependence on Russia for its energy needs, while circumventing Ukraine and depriving it of billions of dollars in lost gas transit fees per year. Russia’s current transit agreement with Ukraine expires at the end of 2024.

Germany promised to send an envoy to “facilitate an extension of up to 10 years” on Ukraine’s gas transit agreement with Russia, but Putin’s commentary about the prospect of an extension was utterly cynical. The Russian president declared that the decision would hinge on Ukraine demonstrating “good will.”

Meanwhile, Moscow........

© The Daily Beast

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