Apr 7, 2009

Meet the "Ukrainian Obama"

Financial Times:If recent polls are right, an increasing number of them see 34-year-old Arseniy Yatseniuk as an alternative to 3 leaders whose mud-slinging power struggle has dominated Kyiv’s politics since 2004.

Some people are calling him Ukraine’s Barack Obama. Yatseniuk is young, yet experienced. Since 2004 he has served as central bank chief, economy and foreign affairs minister – and, most recently, parliament’s speaker until he was ousted last year.

Parliament has called early presidential elections for October 25, although Viktor Yushchenko, the president, wants the vote held in January 2010.

“It is clear that Yatseniuk is trying to position himself as a Ukrainian Obama,” says Olexiy Haran, a political science professor in Kyiv.

Obvious question: shouldn't it be easy to find a young socialist spewing propaganda to run for office in a former socialist republic?

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