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Posts Tagged ‘Vladimir Putin’

Vladimir Putin Calls Out American Exceptionalism In Intense NYT Op Ed

By Joe Weisenthal
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This is a surprise. Russian President Vladimir Putin is the author of a new op-ed in the New York Times titled: “A Plea For Caution From Russia.”
The piece urges against a strike in Syria, saying that an attack would only escalate the situation, and that the world is against it.

He also says he believes the gas attack was not done by Assad, but by rebels hoping to provoke an intervention.

No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored.

The claim may persuade some, but it certainly won’t sway the Obama administration. Secretary of State John Kerry and President Obama have repeatedly claimed the U.S. has evidence linking sarin gas to the Assad regime. That includes panicked phone calls intercepted from the Syrian Defense Ministry to a chemical weapons unit demanding answers after the strike on Aug. 21 in addition to video and physical evidence.

The final paragraph of the op-ed is actually the most intense, as it directly responds to Obama’s Tuesday night speech, and really one of America’s core beliefs:

My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American Exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.
A Plea for Caution From Russia
What Putin Has to Say to Americans About Syria

By VLADIMIR V. PUTIN
Published: September 11, 2013 1343 Comments

MOSCOW — RECENT events surrounding Syria have prompted me to speak directly to the American people and their political leaders. It is important to do so at a time of insufficient communication between our societies.

Relations between us have passed through different stages. We stood against each other during the cold war. But we were also allies once, and defeated the Nazis together. The universal international organization — the United Nations — was then established to prevent such devastation from ever happening again.

The United Nations’ founders understood that decisions affecting war and peace should happen only by consensus, and with America’s consent the veto by Security Council permanent members was enshrined in the United Nations Charter. The profound wisdom of this has underpinned the stability of international relations for decades.

No one wants the United Nations to suffer the fate of the League of Nations, which collapsed because it lacked real leverage. This is possible if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization.

The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria’s borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.

Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world.

Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all.

From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today’s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.

No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored.

It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan “you’re either with us or against us.”

But force has proved ineffective and pointless. Afghanistan is reeling, and no one can say what will happen after international forces withdraw. Libya is divided into tribes and clans. In Iraq the civil war continues, with dozens killed each day. In the United States, many draw an analogy between Iraq and Syria, and ask why their government would want to repeat recent mistakes.

No matter how targeted the strikes or how sophisticated the weapons, civilian casualties are inevitable, including the elderly and children, whom the strikes are meant to protect.

The world reacts by asking: if you cannot count on international law, then you must find other ways to ensure your security. Thus a growing number of countries seek to acquire weapons of mass destruction. This is logical: if you have the bomb, no one will touch you. We are left with talk of the need to strengthen nonproliferation, when in reality this is being eroded.

We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement.

A new opportunity to avoid military action has emerged in the past few days. The United States, Russia and all members of the international community must take advantage of the Syrian government’s willingness to place its chemical arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction. Judging by the statements of President Obama, the United States sees this as an alternative to military action.

I welcome the president’s interest in continuing the dialogue with Russia on Syria. We must work together to keep this hope alive, as we agreed to at the Group of 8 meeting in Lough Erne in Northern Ireland in June, and steer the discussion back toward negotiations.

If we can avoid force against Syria, this will improve the atmosphere in international affairs and strengthen mutual trust. It will be our shared success and open the door to cooperation on other critical issues.

My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.

Vladimir V. Putin is the president of Russia.

Putin Sends A Letter To Americans!

Russian President Vladimir Putin has sent an open letter to Americans and what it says might make you look at him in an entirely different light. In fact, in reading his letter, I can only wish that Barack Obama thought much the same way as him on the most pertinent issues. Why is it that Barack Obama is supporting these same Unholy, Unruly, Jihadi Muslims that Vladimir Putin is hoping to crush? In fact, Putin’s interview below is quite thought provoking, especially when he admits that his good friend and ally Bashar Al-Assad IS capable of possible launching such an attack upon his own people. Putin also has called the US government ‘outlaws’ if they strike out at Syria as shared in the video at the bottom of the story. The first two sentences of Putin’s letter makes it plainly clear Putin is aiming much of his talk to the ‘sheeple’.
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How do I put this politely? You Americans are dumb. Today, Russia and America are fighting each other over fighting the Muslim radicals. Instead, we should be uniting to crush these violent Islamists, once and for all.

You Americans want to remove my ally, the Syrian leader Bashar Al-Assad. To borrow a phrase from your John F. Kennedy, Assad may be a son-of-a-bitch, but he’s my son-of-a-bitch.

So if you want to destroy him, what are you going to give me in return? If your answer is, “We will give you nothing,” well, why would I ever agree to that? That’s not negotiation, that’s dictation; it’s a return to the bad Yeltsin days, when Holy Mother Russia was pushed into the mud like a used whore.

Look, I’ll be the first to say that Obama’s “red line” comment was dumb. It’s obvious he hadn’t thought it through; one can see it in the words he used to express his policy. He said that the “red line” would be crossed if “a whole bunch” of chemical weapons were used. What kind of language is that? How does one quantify a “whole bunch”? This is the President of the High-and-Mighty United States, and he’s talking like a schoolboy? All for this silliness over sarin in Syria?

Do I think that Assad did it? Gassed those people? I don’t know; I’ve never asked him. He’s certainly capable of it, and yet only the Americans think that the case against Assad is a “slam dunk.” Everyone else agrees that the case is murky. Everyone else follows the first rule of intelligence-gathering: Consider the source–namely, the pro-rebel media. In this instance, the rebels were losing, and then they got “gassed”–and now Uncle Sam is rushing to their side. How convenient.

So, even Putin thinks that Assad is capable of launching chemical weapons attacks against his own people; however, at least he would prefer to wait until the United Nations report is released before launching attacks against him. So, does Putin even have a solution or is he all just talk, talk, talk? He ends his letter to the American people with a few suggestions.:

So those are the real evil empires: Iran and Pakistan. Bringing them to heel won’t be easy, of course, but we Russians have never shied away from strong measures. The Americans could learn a lot from us.

So that’s my vision. Let’s stop worrying about silly little niceties about the right and the wrong way to fight a war. Let’s stop trying to bring democracy to barbarians. Instead, let’s bring them the only thing they understand–force.

Let’s all of us–Moscow, Washington, London, Paris, Brussels, Jerusalem, Lagos, Addis Ababa, Beijing, New Delhi–come together in a new Holy Alliance, similar to that which kept Europe safe from radicalism in the early 19th century. Let’s join one another to crush the unholy, unruly, jihadi Muslims. The good Muslims will thank us for it. And if they don’t–too bad.

Admit it: You, too, think it’s a good idea.

AMEN VLADIMIR PUTIN AMEN

China, Russia quit dollar

By Su Qiang and Li Xiaokun (China Daily)
Updated: 2010-11-24 08:02

Premier Wen Jiabao shakes hands with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin on a visit to St. Petersburg on Tuesday.ALEXEY DRUZHININ / AFP

St. Petersburg, Russia – China and Russia have decided to renounce the US dollar and resort to using their own currencies for bilateral trade, Premier Wen Jiabao and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin announced late on Tuesday.

Chinese experts said the move reflected closer relations between Beijing and Moscow and is not aimed at challenging the dollar, but to protect their domestic economies.

“About trade settlement, we have decided to use our own currencies,” Putin said at a joint news conference with Wen in St. Petersburg.

The two countries were accustomed to using other currencies, especially the dollar, for bilateral trade. Since the financial crisis, however, high-ranking officials on both sides began to explore other possibilities.

The yuan has now started trading against the Russian rouble in the Chinese interbank market, while the renminbi will soon be allowed to trade against the rouble in Russia, Putin said.

“That has forged an important step in bilateral trade and it is a result of the consolidated financial systems of world countries,” he said.

Putin made his remarks after a meeting with Wen. They also officiated at a signing ceremony for 12 documents, including energy cooperation.

The documents covered cooperation on aviation, railroad construction, customs, protecting intellectual property, culture and a joint communiqu. Details of the documents have yet to be released.

Putin said one of the pacts between the two countries is about the purchase of two nuclear reactors from Russia by China’s Tianwan nuclear power plant, the most advanced nuclear power complex in China.

Putin has called for boosting sales of natural resources – Russia’s main export – to China, but price has proven to be a sticking point.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Sechin, who holds sway over Russia’s energy sector, said following a meeting with Chinese representatives that Moscow and Beijing are unlikely to agree on the price of Russian gas supplies to China before the middle of next year.

Russia is looking for China to pay prices similar to those Russian gas giant Gazprom charges its European customers, but Beijing wants a discount. The two sides were about $100 per 1,000 cubic meters apart, according to Chinese officials last week.

Wen’s trip follows Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s three-day visit to China in September, during which he and President Hu Jintao launched a cross-border pipeline linking the world’s biggest energy producer with the largest energy consumer.

Wen said at the press conference that the partnership between Beijing and Moscow has “reached an unprecedented level” and pledged the two countries will “never become each other’s enemy”.

Over the past year, “our strategic cooperative partnership endured strenuous tests and reached an unprecedented level,” Wen said, adding the two nations are now more confident and determined to defend their mutual interests.

“China will firmly follow the path of peaceful development and support the renaissance of Russia as a great power,” he said.

“The modernization of China will not affect other countries’ interests, while a solid and strong Sino-Russian relationship is in line with the fundamental interests of both countries.”

Wen said Beijing is willing to boost cooperation with Moscow in Northeast Asia, Central Asia and the Asia-Pacific region, as well as in major international organizations and on mechanisms in pursuit of a “fair and reasonable new order” in international politics and the economy.

Sun Zhuangzhi, a senior researcher in Central Asian studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the new mode of trade settlement between China and Russia follows a global trend after the financial crisis exposed the faults of a dollar-dominated world financial system.

Pang Zhongying, who specializes in international politics at Renmin University of China, said the proposal is not challenging the dollar, but aimed at avoiding the risks the dollar represents.

Wen arrived in the northern Russian city on Monday evening for a regular meeting between Chinese and Russian heads of government.

He left St. Petersburg for Moscow late on Tuesday and is set to meet with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev on Wednesday.

Agencies and Zhou Wa contributed to this story.

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