Why Ukraine Isn't 'The Ukraine,' And Why That Matters Now

Townhall.com Staff
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Posted: Dec 09, 2013 12:36 PM
Chances are if you find yourself talking about the ongoing protests in Kiev, you'll slip up and refer to the country in which Kiev is situated as "the Ukraine." It's an understandable mistake, perhaps — until its independence in 1991, when Ukrainian leaders formally asked the world to drop the "the" and just refer to their country as "Ukraine," "the Ukraine" was commonly used in English. And many people still default to it — but, to be blunt, it's totally wrong. The Ukrainian Declaration of Independence and Constitution quite clearly states the country's name as "Ukraine," with no article — in fact, no articles exist in the Ukrainian language, and the style guides for places like the Associated Press and The Guardian quite clearly say the "the" should not be included.