Pretty adequate article. But the author gathered together all the facts he ever has known on Russian history, economics and geography. What for did he mention Dagestani and Ingushetian Islamic terrorists?
The ‘Star Wars’ issue is an old and forgotten Mr. Reagan's joke. It’s well known that there was no real ‘Star Wars’ program. It was merely a competition of US and USSR intelligence agencies. And bankruptcy of the USSR was the result not of arms race, but of interior reasons – it was the bankruptcy of communist ideology all the USSR people had to live under. Arms race (at least in rocket technologies) was not lost by Russians – until today they’re leading in major fields of outer space research: Russian-made engines are being bought for US and European rockets, and only Russians currently deliver astronauts to ISS…
To my mind the issue of Russian post-WWII occupation of the former German and Japanese territories is very much biased in the article. USSR won this war. As the winner it took Kaliningrad area (former East Prussia) and Kuril islands – (in the same way US occupied Northern Marianna and other Pacific islands previously controlled by Japan). Japanese army capitulated not only to the US, but also to the USSR in 1945 in Mongolia and China, so as a loser Japan had lost all its Kuril islands... As far as I know Russia now isn’t gonna even discuss the issue with 2 Kuril islands, because ALL of them are Russian in fact. I’m sure they’ll never give a single island back for quite a lot of reasons. First – the important strategic location (all the Russian Kuril islands surround Okhotsk sea, and this converts the sea into an inner Russian basin in which Japan can use only its 200 mile zone north-west of Hokkaido island. This fact is crucial since namely this sea is one of the world’s richest in terms of fishery). Second – 2 islands claimed by Japan are military stations, now being substantially modernized by Russia, and I don’t believe anybody expect they will be ever given away to anybody). Third – already mentioned oil and gas in this area. And the fourth – all the Kuril islands are a symbol of Russia’s revenge after its fleet lost battles with Japanese Empire in 1905.
“Russian state controlled media blames outsiders for the violence in Syria” – the author writes. And what ‘bout German, French and Egyptian media that also write about British instructors and commandos from Lybia/Qatar among “peaceful protesters”. Why does France demand to release more than 100 of its military officers captured in Syria by the governmental forces? Do you want me to give corresponding links? Is this also a Russian media campaign? Who has any doubt that Syrian upheaval is being financed by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, US and UK?.. Oh, c’mon! Let’s speak seriously!
“This [veto at UN and support to Assad] will cost Russia (arms sales and business opportunities) in the future” in its relations with the Arab League, – the author foresee. But I don’t think so. ‘AL’ is an organization with no principles. It has a lot of conflicts and contradictions within itself. It even doesn’t have any unified policy towards Israel. I think traditional users of Russian arms (like countries of northern Africa or Iraq) will go on buying them (firstly because of favorable price-quality ratio of Russian weapons, and secondly because of further radical islamization of all the Arab countries after the most of them got rid of relatively mundane regimes, and due to their further more and more anti-West policy).
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