Author: Ekaterina Odarchenko, political consultant
I have been working in Washington for the last month, and I will briefly describe for you what I saw there, positive points as well as the points that need to be improved.
What I will say immediately that it should be noted that the perception of politicians and the average American is slightly different.
1. Average American (mostly middle- and high-income Americans): they follow the situation in Ukraine, but do not know about the details, about different Ukrainian regions. They know about the cruelty of the Russian Federation, they want to help, but do not have time to understand the situation in details.
What you should do is describe the situation, but without unnecessary details. Launch humanitarian projects, communicate constantly. It is these people who actively vote and have influence on politics.
2. Politicians. There are politicians who have historically worked with the issues of Ukraine (these are politicians from the Committee on Foreign Affairs, a group (caucus) of support for Ukraine, people with Ukrainian roots. Other politicians also support Ukraine, but often do not raise this issue in the first place. It is very important to understand that the more people (for example, from the state of Montana) write a letter, call, ask a question at meetings with politicians in THEIR state, the more actively the politicians will be engaged in the DETAILS of supporting Ukraine.
What to do? Work with the diaspora, work with active Americans in the subjects of the federation (states), and write sectoral analytics of Ukraine.
3. US Department of State, National Security Council. Employees of these departments quite deeply understand the situation in Ukraine, and the situation in the regions. In general, they are quite open to discussing problems and opportunities for cooperation.
Correctly conveying information, for example, about the weapons that are necessary in the opinion of the Association of Ukraine or the military themselves, can be of decisive importance. The conclusion is to participate in discussions, present analytics, and actively communicate.
4. Diaspora. People in the US and Canadian diaspora are extremely active both in active actions (for example, demonstrations, meetings) and in organizing humanitarian assistance for Ukraine.
The conclusion is that it is necessary to strengthen the communication of the diaspora with local politicians and Americans for more active influence.
In general, the adoption of Lend-Lease and the systemic relief packages taken in parts are extremely important in terms of supporting Ukraine. But we must continue to work. I described the situation in more detail in my video blogs on Facebook.