U.S. President Barack Obama (L) meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin during the G8 Summit at Lough Erne in Enniskillen, Northern Ireland, in this June 17, 2013 file picture. Credit: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque/Files
Cool War Rising -- James Stavridis, Foreign Policy
With Washington and Moscow caught in a deteriorating relationship, is conflict inevitable?
Rising tensions in the relationship between the United States and Russia are beginning to cause a "Cool War" -- a sort of Cold War-lite -- that threatens both Washington and the entire global geopolitical system. Without a functioning relationship between Washington and Moscow, the chances of solving major challenges -- from Iran to Syria, the Arctic to Afghanistan -- decreases dramatically. Rather than accept the arc of a deteriorating relationship, the United States should actively seek every possible zone of cooperation we can find with Russia, despite the frustrations and setbacks.
The list of key disagreements is long: One of the more nettlesome challenges is Syria, where the United States believes in an international solution with intervention as an option and the removal of Russia's ally Bashar al-Assad. Syria represents Russia's strongest link to the region and access to the strategically important Eastern Mediterranean, as well as a market for arms and intelligence cooperation.
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My Comment: My nationality is Russian, and I know that in Russia no one .... and I mean no one .... sees any REAL possibility of a armed conflict between Russia and the West. Political differences will always be there .... economic and military moves that will antagonize one side or the other will always be happening .... but an armed conflict .... absolutely not. Ditto for the West.