Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Does The Kremlin Think They Are Already At War?

Russia's President Vladimir Putin (C) attends a conference at the main operation centre of the Russian armed forces, with Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu (L) and armed forces Chief-of-Staff Valery Gerasimov (R) in Moscow, June 6, 2013. Credit: Reuters/Michael Klimentyev/RIA Novosti/Kremlin

Oscar Jonsson/Thomas E. Ricks, Foreign Policy: Gen. McChrystal is right — in fact, Russian leaders think they already are at war

General Stanley McChrystal perhaps shocked many when he spoke out on the chance of a war in Europe — aside from the continuing conflict in Ukraine. He stated that “A European war is not unthinkable. People who want to believe a war in Europe is not possible might be in for a surprise.” He is absolutely correct, and it is with Russia.

The common idea on how this will happen is that increased activity can lead to incidents and unintentional escalation. That is, however, only focusing on the direct issues. The underlying issue is that Russia believes itself to be in a war with the West, albeit, for now, a non-military one (coincidentally the topic of my PhD).

The economic sanctions imposed on Russia following the invasion of Ukraine are not perceived as a moderate response from the West to a breach of international law. Rather, as the Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov stated, they are seen as an attempt to provoke regime change in Russia. Moreover, this perception has a longer story than economic sanctions.

Read more ....

WNU Editor: From my vantage point .... for much of 2016 I sensed that there was a growing unease in the Kremlin that they were entering into a new Cold War with the West. But with the election of Donald Trump .... I can now say that this worry has disappeared.


Unknown said...

So was uber liberal Obama sleeping walking, bumbling, or running toward war?

Unknown said...
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Anonymous said...

At this rate, sanity should return in four years. Then Russia will be back were they were before. Probably just weaker, and economically more depressed. However, Trump is unpredictable. Even by any rational American standards. Putin, is one perceived slight away from being back in the American crosshairs. I don't know where all this tough talk from Russia comes from, they probably couldn't stand up to Western European military forces. And they are not anywhere near the same league with United States. But nucular umbrella, prevent all military conflicts.