No Change in US Hostility Toward Russia
by Stephen Lendman
Whatever Trump intended toward Russia before entering office was dashed by ousting Michael Flynn, his key geopolitical strategist, the lynchpin of any possible improvement in bilateral relations - a major disappointment but no surprise.
With Flynn gone, along with relentless congressional and scoundrel media opposition to better relations, we're back to square one.
Cold War 2.0 continues. The risk of it turning hot remains real, a deplorable situation, madness if unthinkable conflict between the world's dominant nuclear powers erupts.
According to Vladimir Putin, it's possible, saying Russia's relations with US-dominated NATO haven't improved. "(O)n the contrary, many existing threats have only become more serious."
NATO's mission is to deter a nonexistent Russian threat. That's the goal behind its relentless expansion since the 1990s.
Pretexts are invented to justify policies. US-led NATO members "are constantly provoking us, trying to drag us into confrontation," Putin explained.
They continue efforts to interfere in our domestic affairs with the goal of destabilizing social and political order in Russia proper."
"In the past year, 53 foreign intelligence operatives and 386 agents of foreign intelligence services have been busted."
Instead of responsible dialogue to resolve bilateral differences in the interest of world peace and stability, US hostile policies toward Russia continue.
Nothing is likely from Trump to change things based on what's occurred so far. Though admittedly less than a month, hostile actions and rhetoric indicate likely more of the same to come.
Russia won't be pressured, its Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu explained. It deserves respect. It wants even-handed relations with all countries, not one trying to dominate or undermine another.
He responded to Defense Secretary James Mattis, indicating America intends negotiating from a position of strength.
Separately in Brussels, he called NATO his "second home," saying the "alliance remains a fundamental bedrock for the United States," adding "it is freedom that we defend here at NATO.
World peace and stability are endangered as long as the alliance exists. The same holds for the Pentagon and US-led intelligence community in its present form.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled "Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III."
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.