Relations between Washington and Moscow are at their worst since pre Reagan years. Much has water has passed under the bridge since Bush looked into Putins eyes and liked what he saw.
Things started to go south when Putin clamped down on the antics of the Russian oil oligarchs, driving all of them, but one out of the country.
Justin Raimondo writes that the West is working overtime to hype any questionable policy decision by Putin as a sign that Russia is headed towards a dictatorship. In particular, he points to the hyperbole in the media over the small demonstration that took place in Moscow recently.
A sign carried in the Nashi demonstration read: “American mothers, stop the fanatics from the State Department” – a remonstrance that many Americans, and not just mothers, can sympathize with.
The irony is that the charges of hooliganism aimed at Nashi are more properly directed at Putin’s opponents, who, out of frustration at their complete inability to make a dent in the Russian president’s popularity, have taken to showy – and often violent – displays of “dissent,” such as the one that attracted a few thousand participants in St. Petersburg on Sunday. Headlines proclaimed the arrest of Gary Kasparov, the former chess champion, who heads up his own small political movement, but by far the biggest and certainly the most visible presence in this menagerie of malcontents was the National Bolshevik Party (NBP), an ultra-nationalist and racialist organization whose Fuehrer, Eduard Limonov, is a megalomaniac and a loon.
It’s no accident that the name of the “dissident” coalition that organized the St. Petersburg march – and a prior conference – is called “the Other Russia,” also the title of Limonov’s political manifesto. NBP ideology is an eclectic mix of extreme nationalism, outright neo-Nazism, Stalinist nostalgia, trendy punkish nihilism, and an almost stylized authoritarianism, spiced up with a pan-Slavic “Eurasianism,” which, if it ever came to power, would turn Russia into a giant North Korea. The NBP symbol – a black hammer-and-sickle in a white circle against a red background – is particularly loathsome, conjuring as it does two of the most murderous regimes in human history. Video and still photos of the April 15 demonstration show this disgusting symbol dominating the display of “dissent.” As the main activist organization inside the anti-Putin Popular Front, the NBP is a truly sinister outfit.
One has to wonder if this demonstration had any connection to the much celebrated Orange Revolution that put a US friendly government into power in the Ukraine. Even though that exercise has resulted in failure, we have seen that the Busn Administration is not dissuaded by failure.
The fact is that while the US has gradually descended into international irrelevance, Russia and much of it’s Asian neighbors have been getting on with business, not only without the US, but in defiance of Washington’s disapproval.
Putin, has been the driving force behind this trend.
The campaign to demonize Russia, and target Putin in particular, is motivated by the Russian president’s angular stance against American hegemony, expressed forcefully in a speech to the Munich conference of European nations in February. Russia has opposed U.S. attempts to further destabilize the Middle East, selling defensive weapons to Syria and trying to mediate between the Iranians and the UN Security Council over the nuclear issue. Putin, in short, has failed to know – or keep – his place: this alone puts him in the cross hair of the War Party.