US MAINSTREAM MEDIA continues to give a partial, and dangerously misleading view of events in Ukraine.
The latest misrepresentation is in the reporting of the recent election for a new President.
Western media has presented the results as an "overwhelming victory" for chocolate billionaire oligarch Petro Poroshenko, with more than 54% of the vote.
This seems to be an impressive endorsement in the bid to give the coup-government some legitimacy. Until the turnout figures are examined.
The US media, in particular, has almost universally ignored turnout.
But figures from the Central Election Commission of Ukraine report an overall turnout of just 60.3%.
On that basis Poroshenko can claim the overall support of fewer than one in three Ukrainians.
In only ten of the 24 primary administration units — oblasts — was the turnout greater than that in the last two US presidential elections, about 64%. The highest turnout was in Lviv and Ternopil in the far west of the country. In Lviv 70% voted for Poroshenko on a 78.2% turnout.
In the far east of the country turnout was as low as 6.8% in some voting districts. The interactive map published at ft.com by John Burn-Murdoch illustrates the range of turnout dropping sharply mostly from east to west, though the most western oblas Zakarpattia had a turnout of just 51%.
In Donetsk, in the east, the turnout overall was 15.4%, and much lower in some voting areas. That means fewer than 6% Ukrainians in Donetsk voted for the new figurehead.
Even in Kiev, the seat of the US-backed coup, turnout was 62.7%. With 63.6% of that turnout voting for Poroshenko, fewer than four out of ten Kiev residents voted for Poroshenko.
The fact that Ukraine is a deeply divided country is not a revelation. At the last legitimate election in 2010 Viktor Yanukovych won 49% of the popular vote against 45.5% for the former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko. That was on a turnout of 69%, eight clear points higher than for the election of Peroshenko.
On that basis Yanukovych in 2010 could claim the support of one in three Ukrainians. But it was still more support — albeit only marginally more — than Poroshenko with his "overwhelming victory".
In 2010 and in 2014, maps of the voting show the country to be sharply divided regionally. Maps of the cultural and linguistic breakdown of the country mirror the voting maps… or, rather politics in Ukraine mirror the cultural and linguistic quilt (right).
There is no tiny minority, nor massive majority in Ukraine. This was and remains a divided, but finally balanced country.