Putin's Policy Towards America is Working, and That Could be a Good Thing
I think it safe to say that Vladimir Putin is a Russian nationalist and longs to return, at least partially, to the days of the old Russian and Soviet empires in terms of global influence. A career KGB man, I think it also safe to say he has studied both Russian and American history and American political history in particular. He’s also a good politician, if a corrupt one in some ways, enjoys the high life and wants to stay in power until he is good and ready to leave.
His policy towards dealing with the United States stems from all of the above, IMO. Putin has to hate the NATO encroachment into what he regards as countries where Russia used to have predominant influence, especially the Baltic countries, Poland, and Ukraine. He has every right to be alarmed at the presence of American troops and corporate interests in Afghanistan, Iraq, and in some of the former Soviet republics that are now independent nations with names ending in “stan.” Clearly, one of his objectives is to restore Russian influence in those places, and the only way to do it is to reduce the American influence that was made possible by the collapse of the Soviet Union and American neoconservative adventurism. He also quite naturally wants to have American sanctions against some Russian enterprises lifted.
So, how to do this? Putin’s ex-KGB. He knows as well as any of us do the long, dirty history of American interference in foreign elections and American manipulation of foreign government officials that has gone on in a big way in the Eastern Hemisphere ever since the end of World War II. He knows, and probably resents, American meddling in the Russian elections of the 1990’s designed to keep Boris Yeltsin in power, because the latter was very open to allowing American corporations into Russia. He is keenly aware of the German-American putsch to install a neo-fascist, pro-Western and rabidly anti-Russian government in Ukraine not all that long ago.
So why not turn the tables? But how to do this? Well, watch Russia Today(RT), and it’s not terribly hard to figure out.
There are really two RTs that Americans can see, the RT based out of Moscow, and RT America. Neither one ever utters a word critical of Putin or the Kremlin, but RT Moscow is very favorably disposed towards Donald Trump and says very little about American corporatism, while RT America is extremely critical of both Trump and the Democratic Party establishment, excoriates corporate abuses of power, and goes on and on about the growing inequality of wealth, police brutality, and is on the whole very progressive and quite supportive of people like Bernie Sanders.
Putin’s at least as smart as I am, therefore he knows that Donald Trump and most of his inner circle, especially his family, are spoiled rich idiots who can be easily bribed or manipulated. He’s bound to know Trump is a crazy narcissist who thrives on flattery. Therefore, Putin knows he can easily sway Trump’s foreign policy decisions by telling The Donald how great he is while dangling the promise of billions in profits for the latter and his family in Russia if only America would just get along and make deals with Putin’s oligarchs.
At the recent G20 summit, Putin got everything, and I mean everything, he wanted at the time from Trump. But his longterm objective isn’t just the lifting of sanctions(which I’m sure he didn’t directly bring up at the time), but a pullback of the American and Western European military and influence from eastern Europe and what used to be Soviet Central Asia, where there’s all those wonderful natural gas and mineral deposits. How to do that? Simple. Promote a political awareness in America, by Americans themselves, that they have absolutely nothing to gain by pushing hard at Russia and escalating tensions with it. That is certainly the viewpoint RT America is advocating.
The thing is, that has been my own viewpoint for most of my life! It really isn’t in the interests of the American people to risk a military confrontation with a nuclear power over Syria or Ukraine. It really isn’t in the interests of the American people to pay and bleed for an imperial military presence anywhere in Asia just so a few American corporations and their investors can make billions in profits. The withdrawal of American troops and financial influence from that part of the world saves the Treasury money and makes more resources available for improving the standard of living for We The People.
Such a withdrawal may hurt a few governments on the Russian borders, but it hurts neither America nor Western Europe, which is perfectly capable of standing on its own. Besides, I don’t think Germans and Russians really want to have another go at each other.
Besides, all this RussiaRussiaRussia meme is paralyzing official Washington. And all the hoopla over whether Trump or his family did anything treasonous just paralyzes our government even more, which makes it less likely to do anything against Russia’s interests in its own front and back yards. The wishes of certain corporations are at least temporarily shelved. A huge political scandal, whether it brings Trump down or not doesn’t matter, is actually in Russia’s interests because all of America’s political energy will be focused inwards. A strong progressive and peace movement in America is also beneficial to immediate Russian national interests, for the same reasons.
Successful progressive and peace movements are also beneficial to the interests of me and mine, the American working and middle classes, and at least 90% of the American people. If they also help out old Vladimir’s nationalistic objectives for awhile, I really don’t care.
So, nostrovia, Uncle Vlad! Keep funding RT America. I might even send you a Christmas card.7wo7rees, Wood, canoeist52 and 14 othersPopulist Prole, Spanish Devil, Silver Witch, LaaDeeDaaVA, GZeusH, jwirr, Iwalani88, Marym625, Grey, RadicleFantast, broiles, djean111, ZimInSeattle, Mom Cat like this"Identity politics is the last refuge of the politically incompetent." --Me, with a hat tip to Isaac Asimov
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