There is a “deep mistrust” between the administration of US President Joe Biden and Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, a New York Times columnist claimed in an article published on Monday.
The US has so far been the strongest backer of Ukraine in its conflict with Russia, providing billions of dollars in military aid along with intelligence, but according to the paper’s foreign affairs columnist Thomas L. Friedman, relations between Washington and Kiev are not as they seem.
“Privately, US officials are a lot more concerned about Ukraine’s leadership than they are letting on,” Friedman, a three-time Pulitzer Prize winner, wrote. “There is deep mistrust between the White House and Ukraine President Vladimir Zelensky — considerably more than has been reported.”
The NYT writer described Zelensky’s decision to fire Prosecutor General Irina Venediktova and the head of the State Security Service (SBU), Ivan Bakanov, in mid-July as “funny business going on in Kiev.”
Friedman noted that he hasn’t yet seen any reporting in the US media that “convincingly explains” the reasons behind the largest shakeup in the Kiev government since the launch of the Russian military operation on February 24.
“It is as if we don’t want to look too closely under the hood in Kiev for fear of what corruption or antics we might see, when we have invested so much there,” he wrote.