The poisonous fall-out from Russian meddling in the U.S. presidential elections of 2016 continues. It also underlines the fact that the United States no longer has a unitary foreign policy but several: that of the deep state, that of President Trump and that of the Congress. An innovation in the conduct of international relations that … Continue reading Yet Another American Attack to Cripple the Russian Economy
Yesterday's Nezavisimaya gazeta appeared with a piece on Syria's fuel crisis. Entitled "British Marines Have Left the Syrian Army Without Fuel", Vladimir Mukhin points out that the seizure at Gibraltar on 4 July of the Iranian supertanker Grace 1 carrying 2 million barrels of oil by the British authorities was surreptitiously planned from London and Washington. … Continue reading The West Puts the Squeeze on Iran and Syria. Russia Wants Talks.
In the old days of the Soviet Union, the taxi driver was one of the few that could be counted on to say what he thought. It always seemed that foreign intelligence services would wisely employ them along with barmen and hairdressers as useful sources of information. Prostitutes have of course always been recruited. It … Continue reading Russians Expect a War
It is a saw in international relations that states should not make threats against others that they are incapable of carrying out. If international credibility is a currency, then it is rapidly devalued by trying to fight above one's weight and gaining the reputation of being a blow hard, which the U.S. President's new National … Continue reading Russia and U.S. Threats to Iran
At a time when the Russian economy is heading for a severe recession, not least because of the heavy burden of NATO sanctions; after vast sums of money have been squandered on a failed foreign policy focused on prestige in Ukraine and Syria, with precious lives lost and ill-afforded outlays of military expenditure wasted; and … Continue reading The Russian Military Goes into the Movie Business
Economics was once reputed to be the dismal science. To the Kremlin it must indeed seem so. President Putin's troubles abroad, the payback for militarising foreign policy, are to be compounded by a slowdown in the economy to a degree not experienced for a decade. Gross domestic product in the last quarter grew at an … Continue reading Russia Faces a Slump
It is an old English joke that a traveller in Ireland asks someone on the road how to reach his destination and the Irishman responds "I wouldn't start from here." Well, generally speaking, one has no choice. And this is certainly the case with a statesman who has been in power long enough so that … Continue reading Putin’s Predicament