Obama: Ukraine is slipping away from Russia's orbit

During his eighth and final State of the Union Address, US President Barack Obama made two brief mentions of Ukraine, a topic that had been an integral part of his foreign policy assessment during his annual address last year.

One comment addressed the ailing Russian economy and the Kremlin's inisistence on providing military aid to separatists in eastern Ukraine and President Bashar al-Assad's regime in Syria.

"Even as their economy contracts, Russia is pouring resources to prop up Ukraine and Syria – states they see slipping away from their orbit," Obama stated.

The second mention was about the US's role in the Ukrainian conflict, stating "when we help Ukraine defend its democracy, or Colombia resolve a decades-long war, that strengthens the international order we depend upon."

While the US has supplied non-lethal equipment and training to the Ukrainian Government, the Obama administration has faced criticism as many consider these contributions to be acutely insufficient.

While Ukraine may have earned just two mentions during Obama's annual speech, it is important to understand that the conflict in the Donbas region has by no means ended, as hostilities have resumed after a two month lull and ceasefire violations are reported almost daily. With the US presidential election just 9 months away, the Ukrainian conflict will undoubtedly be addressed, and the candidates will be forced to solidify their positions on the topic.

  Barack Obama, Ukraine, Russia, War in Ukraine