By KAREL JANICEK
MICHALOVCE, Slovakia (AP) — A populist former prime minister whose party is favored to win Slovakia’s early parliamentary election plans to reverse the country’s military and political support for neighboring Ukraine if he returns to power. It’s a direct challenge to the European Union and NATO. Robert Fico and his left-wing Direction party have campaigned on a clear pro-Russian and anti-American message, part of a wider trend across Europe. Analysts say his return to power could lead Slovakia to abandon its democratic course in other ways, following the path of Hungary under Viktor Orban and, to a lesser extent, the Law and Justice Party in Poland.