by Zoltan Grossman abridged from Common Dreams Feb 28, 2022
As a geographer who has studied and taught about interethnic conflict around the world, and as a U.S. citi-zen with family roots in East-Central Europe, I’ve always read the stories told in the maps.
These two maps show how Putin got it wrong, and miscalculated in launching his war against Ukraine.
In Ukraine’s past presidential elections, the electoral map would almost perfectly match the language map. Pro-Russian politicians would win the red region, Ukrain-ian nationalists would win the yellow region, and they’d split the difference in the orange region.
But in the 2019 election, something different hap-pened, shown on the bottom map. Fed up with corrupt politicians of both ethnic groups, voters overwhelm-ingly chose Russian-speaking Jewish candidate Volodymyr Zelensky as president, in a rebuke to both Ukrainian and Russian ultranationalists.
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