Maybe the Bush Administration, with their pre G-8 meeting moves to give Russia Nuclear fuel recycling business and WTO membership, is in reaction to this article’s sobering analysis of Moscow’s new alliance with Iran & China -“OPEC with nuclear weapons,”
As a Eurasian state with 20-25 million Muslim citizens of its own and with Iran one of its few neighbors not being recruited by NATO, for example, Russia can ill afford to be drawn into Washington’s expanding conflict with the Islamic world, whether in Iran or Iraq. Similarly, by demanding that Moscow vacate its traditional political and military positions in former Soviet republics so the United States and NATO can occupy them–and even subsidize Ukraine’s defection with cheap gas–Washington is saying that Russia not only has no Monroe Doctrine-like rights in its own neighborhood but no legitimate security rights at all.
Economically, the Kremlin could cripple nearly destitute Georgia and Moldova by banning their products and otherwise unemployed migrant workers from Russia and by charging Georgia and Ukraine full “free-market” prices for essential energy. Politically, Moscow could truncate tiny Georgia and Moldova, and big Ukraine, by welcoming their large, pro-Russian territories into the Russian Federation or supporting their demands for independent statehood (as the West has been doing for Kosovo and Montenegro in Serbia). Militarily, Moscow could take further steps toward turning the Shanghai Cooperation Organization–now composed of Russia, China and four Central Asian states, with Iran and India possible members–into an anti-NATO defensive alliance, an “OPEC with nuclear weapons,” a Western analyst warned.
That is not all. In the US-Russian struggle in Central Asia over Caspian oil and gas, Washington, as even the triumphalist Thomas Friedman admits, “is at a severe disadvantage.” The United States has already lost its military base in Uzbekistan and may soon lose the only remaining one in the region, in Kyrgyzstan; the new pipeline it backed to bypass Russia runs through Georgia, whose stability depends considerably on Moscow; Washington’s new friend in oil-rich Azerbaijan is an anachronistic dynastic ruler; and Kazakhstan, whose enormous energy reserves make it a particular US target, has its own large Russian population and is moving back toward Moscow.
2 thoughts on “The New American Cold War”
The United States of America(Oxymoron) is a population that resembles a drunken teenager still reeling from too many drinks at a bar in Cancun. The economic stabilty enjoyed in the mid- eighties and early nineties by the population once more gave Americans a taste of material excess analogous to the post WW2 era. Like a junkie taking a final hit before facing cold turkey, they lapped it up.
Now the country faces an unprecedented level of social change.This will involve hot political issues like health care, minimum wage and organized labor and the most dreaded of all….mass transit(higher taxes). All of these are antithetical to a strong Republican and even Democrat (centre) oligarchigal agenda.
The tragic war in Iraq is the final step in this process and Haliburton’s fleecing of the US tax dollars(ie. 46$= 24 cokes for troops)represents this insatiable thirst for dollars by warmongering profiteers. The fact that vice- president Cheney was the CEO of this company says it all.
The recent immigrant issues signal that this country will have to and inevitably become more internationally aware and socially responsible- if we are to avoid crime at record levels, race riots, and feeble, inept responses to national disasters(Hurr.katrina- International disasters like an inadvertant nuclear war also apply).
To observe how Republican spin docters will work this nascent reality to fit a new angle for the GOP will be the most interesting one to note.
Perhaps they will learn something from their old Kremlin counterparts who acted under the guise of ‘Soviet Comradeship’ while letting their people starve to death as they feasted on baltic caviar.
It’s really a shame. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, there was every reason to expect a growing friendship and cooperation with Russia and the Russian people.
Instead, the omni-antagonistic attitude of the Bush administration has sent Russia too drifting away from us and toward enemy status once again.
While Bush has given this same destructive treatment to all parts of the world, Russia presents more potential danger than most.
Had we a foreign policy centered on goals all humanity could support, like averting climate instability, advancing science, eliminating poverty, retiring the nuclear arsenals, and achieving a new level of cooperation and understanding among the peoples of the earth, we wouldn’t be making enemies left and right.
Instead our foreign policy is centered on the maintenance of our military superiority over the rest of the world. A formula for conflict.