Hidden by the American media's sudden discovery of the country's racial divide, our generals are inching us closer than we have ever been to World War III. With the Republican Convention only days away, and as if American civilians had never been shot before, the race war only leaves the headlines because of a terrorist attack in France, while US troops train Europeans to attack Russia. Repeating the same details about the French attack, the US media pays no attention to US-led NATO forces sealing off Russia's Western borders, from the Baltic to the Black Sea, in a grim repeat of Hitler's strategy. https://www.thenation.com/article/the-united-states-and-nato-are-preparing-for-a-major-war-with-russia /, but not just on the battlefield.
According to a recent article by Russia analyst F. William Engdahl in New Eastern Outlook, Russia has failed to definitively rid itself of the plague of the Yeltsin years, when Geoffrey Sachs was helping it unload precious national resources to eager oligarchs. It would seem that the NATO exercises are intended to send a signal to Vladimir Putin, that he should not interfere as Dmitry Medvedev and the head of the Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina continue the neo-liberal policies dictated by Wall St.
According to Engdahl:
"What I experienced in my discussions at the (St.Petersburg) conference--this year with record attendance of more than 12,000 business people and others from around the world--was a sense that there coexist two Russian governments, each the polar opposite of the other. Every key economic and finance post is firmly occupied at present by monetarist free-market liberal economists who might be called "Gaidar's Kindergarten." Yegor Gaidar was the architect, along with Harvard's Jeffrey Sachs, a Soros-backed economist, of the radical "shock therapy" that was responsible for the economic hardships that plagued the country in the 1990s resulting in mass poverty and hyperinflation." http://journal-neo.org/2016/07/02/russia-s-achilles-heel-reflections-from-st-petersburg/
It seems that Nabiullina first imposed a ridiculously high central bank interest rate of 17% for a year, after the fall in the oil price, finally only bringing it down to 10.5%, when the price of oil rose by 60%. This makes "the job virtually impossible of reviving credit flows to fuel genuine real investment in urgently needed infrastructure across the vast land expanse of Russia," which is what President Putin is calling for.
The key to this disconnect is the Russian constitution, drafted during the Yeltsin years, under which "economic policy is the portfolio responsibility of the Prime Minister and his various ministers of Economics, Finance and so forth. The Russian President is responsible for defense and foreign policy."
This division of labor explains why many Russians sense the existence of a fifth column inside the government: Wall St dictates economic policy to Dmitry Medvedev, while NATO keeps Vladimir Putin busy responding to military encroachment. The plan is similar to the one the US used to bring down the USSR: bogging it down in Afghanistan and simultaneously forcing it to keep up with an expensive arms race. We must all hope that this time it will fail.