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Former attache to U.S. Embassy provides perspective on Ukraine at SDSU

BROOKINGS, SD (KELO-AM) Retired U.S. Army Col. D. Lee Gabel, a former attaché to the U.S. Embassy in Kiev, will provide his perspectives on the recent unrest in Ukraine March 27 at 7 p.m. in the Cooper Room at the Brookings Public Library. The South Dakota World Affairs Council is sponsoring Gabel's talk."Since Ukraine became independent in 1991, its people have been exposed and receptive to values we see as 'Western.' These freedoms include the ability to elect leaders, freedom of speech, religion and assembly," said Gabel. Exposure has come from the Internet, tourism and limited commerce as well as through more formal means that include Western government and nongovernmental organization international programs.Gabel said Russia considers the current unrest as a continuation of the Cold War. Ukraine has its own internal pitfalls that include old-world, zero-sum thinking and integral nationalism.An experienced researcher and analyst, Gabel's 27-year history in the Army put him in numerous international and military cooperation partnerships. Since 1996, most of those efforts were in the Ukraine with brief service in Germany, the Pentagon and the United Kingdom. His most recent publication is titled "Hope in Hidden Potential: The Human Factor in Reforming the Armed Forces in Ukraine."Gabel, who has a master's degree in Russian, East European and Eurasian studies from the University of Kansas, recently retired and now lives with his family in Watertown.SDWAC is one of a network of nonpartisan, nonprofit grassroots groups dedicated to educating and engaging the public on critical global issues. A governing board of 23 citizens sets policy, programs and activities for the organization. SDWAC, the only group in the upper Plains states affiliated with the World Affairs Councils of America, provides education and discussion of world people, cultures and critical global issues.For more information on SDWAC, contact Jeanne Jones Manzer, executive director, at 605-688-5416 or email. Information is also available atwww.southdakotaworldaffairscouncil.org or facebook.com/SWWorldAffairsCouncil.