Ukraine divide

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No doubt “sanctioning Russia is still fraught with problems” as Martin Flanagan points out (Business comment, 8 April).

Isn’t there, however, a fundamental issue underlying the ­current confrontation between Russia, the United States and western Europe?

This is the ­historically fraught relationship between Russia and Ukraine ­exacerbated by the break-up of the Soviet Union.

Surely, the US and the West were aware Russia one day would want Ukraine “back within its orbit”.

While not condoning ­Russia’s foreign policy stance on Crimea and Ukraine it is at least understandable.

Noticeably, the US has increased its military presence in Central Asia as well as in Georgia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland and Romania.

What the dispute with Russia shows is how foreign and domestic policies are inescapably intertwined.

Arguably, the expansion of the European Union eastwards is giving political leaders a ­domestic headache over immigration as well as a dangerous foreign policy dilemma.

Ellis Thorpe

Old Chapel Walk