The Eagle and the Trident: U.S.-Ukraine Relations in Turbulent Times by Steven PiferThe Eagle and the Trident: U.S.-Ukraine Relations in Turbulent Times by Steven Pifer

The Eagle and the Trident: U.S.-Ukraine Relations in Turbulent Times

bySteven Pifer

Paper over Board | July 11, 2017

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An insider's account of the complex relations between the United States and post-Soviet Ukraine

The Eagle and the Trident provides the first comprehensive account of the development of U.S. diplomatic relations with an independent Ukraine, covering the years 1992 through 2004 following the collapse of the Soviet Union. The United States devoted greater attention to Ukraine than any other post-Soviet state (except Russia) after the breakup of the Soviet Union. Steven Pifer, a career Foreign Service officer, worked on U.S.-Ukraine relations at the State Department and the White House during that period and also served as ambassador to Ukraine. With this volume he has written the definitive narrative of the ups and downs in the relationship between Washington and newly independent Ukraine.

The relationship between the two countries moved from heady days in the mid- 1990s, when they declared a strategic partnership, to troubled times after 2002. During the period covered by the book, the United States generally succeeded in its major goals in Ukraine, notably the safe transfer of nearly 2,000 strategic nuclear weapons left there after the Soviet collapse. Washington also provided robust support for Ukraine's effort to develop into a modern, democratic, market-oriented state. But these efforts aimed at reforming the state proved only modestly successful, leaving a nation that was not resilient enough to stand up to Russian aggression in Crimea in 2014.

The author reflects on what worked and what did not work in the various U.S. approaches toward Ukraine. He also offers a practitioner's recommendations for current U.S. policies in the context of ongoing uncertainty about the political stability of Ukraine and Russia's long-term intentions toward its smaller but important neighbor.

Steven Pifer is a senior fellow in the Foreign Policy program at the Brookings Institution, where he specializes in Ukraine, Russia, and arms control. A retired career Foreign Service officer, he served as U.S. ambassador to Ukraine from 1998 to 2000.
Title:The Eagle and the Trident: U.S.-Ukraine Relations in Turbulent TimesFormat:Paper over BoardDimensions:366 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.98 inPublished:July 11, 2017Publisher:Brookings Institution PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0815730403

ISBN - 13:9780815730408


Table of Contents



1. Establishing Relations

2. Dealing with Nuclear Weapons

3. The Relationship Blossoms

4. The Relationship Matures . . . but Problems Appear

5. Coping with Downturn

6. Election and Revolution

7. History Didn't End with the Orange Revolution

8. Lessons and Policy Recommendations


Abbreviations and Acronyms



Editorial Reviews

This is the first book-length study of U.S. relations with Ukraine following its independence in 1991, and it is extremely well done: clearly written, deeply informed, and balanced.-Robert Legvold, Foreign Affairs