The recording of a telephone conversation of Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland who used an F-word when describing the EU policy in Ukraine is breaking records on YouTube. In less than a day the video was viewed over 40 thousand times.
Washington is not arguing the authenticity of the recording, but Nuland has already apologized to the the U.S. European allies.
The recording of a telephone conversation between Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt where they discussed the events in Ukraine was posted on YouTube.
The conversation took place after President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych suggested Arseniy Yatsenyuk (Yats, as Nuland and Pyatt called him) and Vitali Klitschko to join the government. According to the diplomats, Yatsenyuk could become a good Prime Minister. They also said that it was not a good time for Klitschko to get involved and he should stay out of the government.
The diplomats also discussed that "the problem is going to be Tyahnybok [nationalist leader] and his guys and ... that's part of what [President Viktor] Yanukovych is calculating on all this."
The EU had a special mention in the discussion. According to Nuland, the Europeans should not interfere in the Ukrainian crisis. "OK. He's now gotten both Serry and [UN Secretary General] Ban Ki-moon to agree that Serry could come in Monday or Tuesday. So that would be great, I think, to help glue this thing and to have the UN help glue it and, you know, F... the EU."
Nuland's frankness was a great success. The Assistant Secretary of State tasked with supervising Ukraine is not trying too hard to be diplomatic.
Incidentally, Washington believes that the recording was leaked by the Russian special services. Allegedly, the first reference to it was twitted by Dmitry Loskutov, an Assistant to Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin.
Secretary of State spokesperson Jen Psaki said that if the Russians leaked a private phone conversation between two diplomats, "this is a new low in Russian tradecraft."
Russia, obviously, denies its involvement in the wiretapping of the conversation. In any event, U.S. officials should be more careful in choosing words, especially after the NSA wiretapping scandal.
What about the EU? European officials are pretending that nothing much has happened and the F-bomb was not a big deal. Anything can happen in a private conversation. ... Yet, this still might be offensive. EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Catherine Ashton has nearly moved to Kiev, and the State Department official still does not appreciate the efforts of European diplomacy and even swears.
But it is not about Nuland swearing. The way the American diplomats talk about Ukrainian politicians is much more interesting. This one will be a good Prime Minister, therefore he should stay out of it before the election, and that one is short of a provocateur.
Generally speaking, there is nothing unusual in this situation. This is a private conversation, albeit between the people directly involved in the events in Ukraine. Yet, after this the statement of Washington and Brussels about "interference of Russia," without a doubt, will have a new tone.
President of the American University in Moscow Eduard Lozinski believes that the incident indicates the diplomats' lack of professionalism.
"After such statements any self-respecting official, especially a high-ranking diplomat, should resign immediately," he told Pravda.Ru.
According to Lozinski, "the problem is that her boss, John Kerry, shares roughly the same views." "This is a disappointment for me, too, because everyone expected that after he replaced Hillary Clinton, the U.S. policy would be more pragmatic. But I think it became even more aggressive," he said.
Edward Lozinski also commented on the statement by the representative of the State Department about the possible involvement of Russian secret services in leaking the conversation.
"When there are no arguments, people start looking for someone to blame. They do not blame those who say such things. This is silly and frivolous. The State Department lacks highly professional diplomats," said the expert.