Petro Poroshenko is demonstrating an unexpected gift for making foolish proclamations. That pattern first revealed itself six weeks ago when the newly elected president promised that the uprising in the east would be over "in hours, not weeks or months".
That is no doubt the kind of bombastic rhetoric his American sponsors want to hear.
After the rebels who had been holed up in Sloviansk for several months withdrew towards Luhansk and Donetsk, he promised them "a nasty surprise".
Instead, it was the government forces who got a nasty surprise when one of their convoys was hit with a rocket attack that killed dozens and injured many more. That prompted Poroshenko to proclaim that "for each death of a Ukrainian serviceman the militants will pay with ten or a hundred of their own".
If that sounds familiar, it's because that exact language was frequently employed by the Nazi's in occupied areas during the WWII.
Instead of amping up the rhetoric and pursuing a campaign of destroying the east in order to save it, Mr. Poroshenko really should give statesmanship a try. Unfortunately, whenever he seems about to make a move in that direction, he gets a call from Joe Biden reminding him who's the boss.