The Ukraine Crisis Reflections in the Speeches of USA and Russian Political Leaders

Open access

Abstract

This paper focuses on the rhetoric of USA and Russian political leaders during the Ukraine crisis by analyzing changes appearing in their speeches during the different stages of the crisis. The goal of the analysis is to investigate the speeches delivered by political leaders of the United States and Russia, being important actors in the Ukraine crisis, by identifying both countries’ attitudes to one another, further intentions regarding the management of the crisis and changes of topics in each stage. The speeches of the following most influential politicians in foreign policy formation in the USA and Russia are analyzed: President Barack Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry and Vice President Joe Biden, President Vladimir Putin, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev. The speeches were collected from the official websites of U.S. and Russian government institutions. The analysis revealed that from the beginning of the crisis the main tool in the Ukraine crisis was rhetoric. Western parties began to take real actions only later: sanctions on Russia were imposed, international organizations started to play more active role, ceasefire agreements were signed. In terms of communications strategies used by both countries, the USA rhetoric and its communication strategy as well as Russian leaders were using a combination of proactive and reactive strategies.

BELKIN, PAUL, D. E. MIX, S. WOEHREL. (2014). NATO: Response to the Crisis in Ukraine and Security Concerns in Central and Eastern Europe. Available at: https://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/row/R43478.pdf. p. 1-20.

BRECHER, M. (1993). Crises in World Politics: Theory and Reality. Oxford: Pergamon Press.

BUCHANAN, ELSA. (2015). Ukraine crisis timeline: From the highs of independence to a full-blown war. Available at: http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/ukraine-crisis-timeline-highs-independence-full-blown-war-1497629. Last accessed 02/11/2015.

CHERY, KENDRA. What Is a Freudian Slip? Available at: http://psychology.about.com/od/sigmundfreud/f/freudian-slip.htm. Last accessed 10/11/2015.

Chess Metaphors. Available at: /https://sites.google.com/site/sportingmetaphors/chess-metaphors. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

DAMEROW, H. (2009). Global actors. Available at: http://faculty.ucc.edu/egh-damerow/global_actors.htm. Last accessed 17/10/2014.

DAVID T. JONES (2016). The Ukraine: A Forgotten Foreign Affairs ‘Pin Up’. Available at: http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/2210882-the-ukraine-a-forgotten-foreign-affairs-pin-up/. Last accessed 02/02/2017.

FISHER, M. Everything You Need to Know About the Ukraine Crisis. (2014). Available at: http://www.vox.com/cards/ukraine-everything-you-need-to-know/what-is-the-ukraine-crisis. Last accessed 17/10/2014.

ISYAR, OMER G. (2008). Definition and Management of International Crises. Perceptions. Journal of International Affairs. p. 1-49.

KITCHEN, NICHOLAS (2010). Systemic pressures and domestic ideas: a neoclassical realist model of grand strategy formation. Review of international studies, 36 (1). p. 117-143. ISSN 0260-2105 DOI: 10.1017/S0260210509990532

LEHMANN, CAROLIN. (2012). A Rhetorical Analysis of President Barack Obama’s Speech Delivered in Prague, April 5 2009. In The Power of Speech. p. 1-6.

MOTYL, ALEXANDER J. (2014). War Comes to Ukraine. Available at: http://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/141645/alexander-j-motyl/war-comes-to-ukraine. Last accessed 22/04/2015.

Report on Preliminary Examination Activities, 2016. Available at: https://www.icc-cpi.int/iccdocs/otp/161114-otp-rep-PE_ENG.pdf. Last accessed 02/02/2017.

ROLLIE, STEPHEN. (2015). Forex - USD/RUB: Oil Prices and Sanctions Continue to Leave Ruble in Trough. Available at: http://wbponline.com/articles/view/54603/usd-rub-oil-prices-and-sanctions-continue-to-leave-ruble-in-trough. Last accessed 12/11/2015

The Situation in Ukraine and Crimea. (2014). Canisius College. Model United Nations. 36th Annual Conference. Available at: http://www3.canisius.edu/~diciccoj/MUN_2014_CSC_Ukraine.pdf. p. 1-20

TALIAFERRO, JEFFREY, STEVEN E. LOBELL, AND NORRIN M RIPSMAN (2009). Neoclassical Realism, the State and Foreign Policy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

The Ukraine Crisis Timeline. (2014). Available at: http://csis.org/ukraine/index.htm#128. Last accessed 01/12/2014.

Ukraine ceasefire agreement signed in Minsk. (2014). Available at: http://www.cctv-america.com/2014/09/05/ukraine-ceasefire-agreement-signed-in-minsk. Last accessed 04/11/2015.

VASQUEZ, JOHN A. (2000). What Do We Know about War? Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield. Found in Google Books.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, 20 February, 2014: Answer by the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, to the question from the mass media about the situation in Ukraine, during the press conference summarising the results of the negotiations with the Iraqi Foreign Minister, Hoshyar Zebari, Baghdad, 20 February 2014.// http://archive.mid.ru//bdomp/brp_4.nsf/e78a48070f128a7b43256999005bcbb3/9a57c89aa391da6444257c8900547b4b!OpenDocument. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Barack Obama, February 28, 2014: Statement by the President on Ukraine.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/02/28/statement-president-ukraine. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Secretary of State John Kerry, March 1, 2014: Remarks at a Press Availability.// http://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2015/03/238077.htm. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

President Vladimir Putin, March 4, 2014:Vladimir Putin answered journalists’ questions on the situation in Ukraine.// http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/20366. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Barack Obama, March 17, 2014: Statement by the President on Ukraine.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/03/17/statement-president-ukraine. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Barack Obama, March 20, 2014: Statement by the President on Ukraine.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/03/20/statement-president-ukraine Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, April 7, 2014: Article of the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov “It’s not Russia that is destabilising Ukraine” published in The Guardian on April 7, 2014.// http://archive.mid.ru//bdomp//brp_4.nsf/english/01101476BF4BD20C44257CB4001B48AE. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Vice President Joe Biden, April 22, 2014: Remarks to the Press by Vice President Joe Biden and Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/04/22/remarks-press-vice-president-joe-biden-and-ukrainian-prime-minister-arse

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, 14 May, 2014: Interview of the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov to “Bloomberg TV”, Moscow, 14th of May 2014.// http://archive.mid.ru//brp_4.nsf/0/FC216870BE040E3C44257CD900491440. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Prime Minister of Russia Dmitry Medvedev, 24 May 2014: Dmitry Medvedev’s interview with the Rossiya-1 TV channel.// http://government.ru/en/news/12590/. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Secretary of State John Kerry, May 26, 2014: 2014 Presidential Elections in Ukraine.// http://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2014/05/226543.htm. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, 28 May, 2014: Speech by the Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, at the protocol event on the occasion of Orthodox Easter, Moscow, 28 May 2014.// http://archive.mid.ru//bdomp/brp_4.nsf/e78a48070f128a7b43256999005bcbb3/579bb15378650a7d44257ce7005db10e!OpenDocument. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Vladimir Putin, June 4, 2014: Vladimir Putin’s interview with Radio Europe 1 and TF1 TV channel June 4, 2014.// http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/45832. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, 17 July, 2014: On sanctions against Russia and Russian companies.// http://government.ru/en/news/13800/. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Barack Obama, July 18, 2014: Statement by the President on Ukraine.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/07/18/statement-president-ukraine. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Barack Obama, July 29, 2014: Statement by the President on Ukraine.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/07/29/statement-president-ukraine. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Vladimir Putin, August 14, 2014: Meeting with members of political parties represented in the State Duma.// http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/46451. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, September 27, 2014: Interview by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov To Bloomberg TV, September 27, 2014.// http://archive.mid.ru//brp_4.nsf/0/E8469404DAB7C97C44257D6200258404. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, 27 October, 2014: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with Life News television and Izvestia daily, Moscow, 27 October 2014.// http://archive.mid.ru//brp_4.nsf/0/EF40A589BC597EE9C3257D7F00386A2C. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Vice President Joe Biden, December 02, 2014: Statement by the Vice President on the Formation of a New Ukrainian Government.//https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/12/02/statement-vice-president-formation-new-ukrainian-government. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

President Barack Obama, January 25, 2015: Statements by President Obama and Prime Minister Modi of the Republic of India.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/01/25/statements-president-obama-and-prime-minister-modi-republic-india. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin, March 26, 2015: Address by President of the Russian Federation.// http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/news/20603. Last accessed 11/04/2016.

President Barack Obama, April 17, 2015: Remarks by President Obama and Prime Minister Renzi of Italy in Joint Press Conference.//https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/04/17/remarks-president-obama-and-prime-minister-renzi-italy-joint-press-confe. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, April 22, 2015: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s live radio interview with Sputnik, Ekho Moskvy and Govorit Moskva, Moscow, April 22, 2015.// http://archive.mid.ru/bdomp/brp_4.nsf/e78a48070f128a7b43256999005bcbb3/0bca9a90832725fc43257e3000210820!OpenDocument. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, May 1, 2015: Foreign Ministry statement on the anniversary of the May 2, 2014, events in Odessa.//http://archive.mid.ru/bdomp/brp_4.nsf/e78a48070f128a7b43256999005bcbb3/0b0785c76d3b8e1443257e39002818d1!OpenDocument. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, May 20, 2015: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s remarks and answers to questions during Government Hour at the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly, Moscow, May 20, 2015.// http://archive.mid.ru/bdomp/brp_4.nsf/e78a48070f128a7b43256999005bcbb3/88ff7ad1c2f54dc643257e4c0022d5e8!OpenDocument. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, 29 May, 2015: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview to Mezhdunarodnoye Obozreniye programme on Rossiya 24 TV channel, Moscow, 29 May 2015.// http://archive.mid.ru/bdomp/brp_4.nsf/e78a48070f128a7b43256999005bcbb3/9a0879a31dd73a4943257e57004d3b4b!OpenDocument. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

President Barack Obama, June 08, 2015: Remarks by President Obama in Press Conference after G7 Summit.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/06/08/remarks-president-obama-press-conference-after-g7-summit. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, June 08, 2015: Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s statement and answers to media questions at a joint news conference following talks with Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei, Moscow, June 8, 2015.// http://archive.mid.ru/bdomp/brp_4.nsf/e78a48070f128a7b43256999005bcbb3/48fb1ea6ebdbfc1643257e5f003aa2d2!OpenDocument. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Secretary of State John Kery, June 16, 2015: Secretary Kerry’s Press Availability.// http://www.state.gov/secretary/remarks/2015/06/243892.htm. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin, June 16, 2015: Joint news conference with President of Finland Sauli Niinistö.// http://en.kremlin.ru/events/president/transcripts/49714. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

President of Russia Vladimir Putin, June 24, 2015: Meeting with Government members.// http://en.special.kremlin.ru/events/president/transcripts/49757. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Vice President Joe Biden, June 26, 2015: Remarks by the Vice President to the Truman National Security Project and Center for National Policy.// https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2015/06/26/remarks-vice-president-truman-national-security-project-and-center. Last accesed 15/11/2015.

Slovak Journal of Political Sciences

The Journal of University of Saint Cyril and Metodius in Trnava

Journal Information

Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 0 0 0
Full Text Views 361 253 11
PDF Downloads 172 139 4