Cold War Politics Heats Up
Washington demands Russia surrender its sovereignty to America.
by Stephen Lendman
Previous articles discussed how Washington reinvented the "evil empire." On March 8, 1983, Ronald Reagan coined the term. He addressed the National Association of Evangelicals.
He called communism "the focus of evil in the modern world." He said don't "ignore the facts of history and the aggressive impulses of an evil empire".and thereby remove yourself from the struggle between right and wrong and good and evil."
That was then. This is now. Cold War politics returned. Vladimir Putin is prime target. Boris Yeltsin was Russia's first president. He played Washington's game. He instituted neoliberal shock therapy.
He ignored essential human needs. He let corruption and other criminality flourish. He surrounded himself with likeminded apparachiks. He institutionalized pro-Western free market rapaciousness.
He let Russia's oligarch class accumulate enormous wealth at the expense of suffering millions. Decades may be needed to recoup the enormous damage he caused.
Putin and former President Dmitry Medvedev haven't done much to change things. Modernizing Russia's economy inflicts horrendous harm. Creating a favorable investment climate makes ordinary people suffer.
At the same time, Putin asserts state sovereignty. He's less compromising toward Washington than Medvedev. Russia under him is back. It's proud and reassertive. He's not about to roll over for America.
He wants greater Moscow influence. He wants rule of law principles respected. He wants Western meddling in the internal affairs of Russia, Syria, and other nations stopped.
He stresses Moscow's "independent foreign policy." He affirms the "inalienable right to security for all states, the inadmissibility of excessive force, and unconditional observance of international law."
He and Obama disagree on fundamental geopolitical issues. Key is national sovereignty. So are war and peace. America claims a divine right to fight. Putin prioritizes conflict resolution.
Disagreements between both countries play out in dueling agendas. Russia's gone all-out to prevent full-scale war on Syria. It's valued regional interests are too important to sacrifice.
Washington notoriously plays hard ball. It retaliates different ways. For decades, Jackson-Vanik legislation remained a Cold War relic.