On Rumsfeld's recent trip to the Ukraine, he held a press conference... but not with Kuchma, but with Ukraine's Prime Minister of Defense, a man of far lesser importance in Ukraine's government. That was, infact, the only Western press conference / photo op on the trip, even though Rumsfeld *DID* meet with Kuchma on his trip and was photographed by Kuchma's people -- apparently, unlike our government, Kuchma's people wanted to emphasize their close ties to our leaders, as it gives them more legitimacy.
The Western media wasn't invited to take any photos at that meeting though, nor was there a press conference afterwards, and only one picture of the meeting is available on the DoD's website, taken by a military photographer and released several days after the meeting, too late for the press to use. If you search Google, it's almost like the meeting never happened. Truth is, Kuchma is a pariah and an embarassing coalition partner. He deserves to burn for what he's done, and it's no wonder our leaders are so ashamed to be seen with him... but we'll still kiss his ass anyway.
"Democracy" for Iraq's 25 million people... but what about Ukraine's 48 million? If something happens and Kuchma's party steals the next presidential election like they tried to do in another recent Ukranian election, then the blame should fall squarely on the Bush administration if democracy fails and post-election violence breaks out. They will have sold out the Ukranian people and our country's principals for 1,600 additional soldiers in Iraq.
Aren't these kind of deals how we got into this mess in the first place?