Wednesday, January 28, 2009

The Unclenching Fist?

Russia appears to be testing President Obama on his rhetoric. First on accommodating NATO supplies reaching Afghanistan via Russia (and Presidents Medvedev and Karimov of Uzbekistan met and apparently coordinated their stance on this "northern route") and now a report that Russia will not deploy Iskander missiles to Kaliningrad as a counter to the missile defense plans for Poland and the Czech Republic.

What response might they be looking for from Washington? More importantly, how does this play out in the triangular U.S.-Russia-Europe relationship?

These gestures are indeed a test, to see if the USG can possibly break the long-established habit of pocketing Russian gestures while ignoring, when not opposing outright, Russian interests.

Much depends on how the USG responds.
Thank you, rkka. Well said!
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