A Cold-War Chill? US-Russia Relations Falter over Libya and Syria

By LaFranchi, Howard | The Christian Science Monitor, March 3, 2012 | Go to article overview

A Cold-War Chill? US-Russia Relations Falter over Libya and Syria


LaFranchi, Howard, The Christian Science Monitor


Stormy days lie ahead for US-Russia relations, many say. Progress on issues like missile defense and NATO-Russia relations could suffer serious setbacks if the Syria and Iran crises deteriorate further.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton doffed her diplomatic gloves after Russia vetoed a United Nations Security Council resolution on Syria. Calling the February veto "despicable," she laid at Moscow's feet the "murders" of Syrian "women, children, [and] brave young men."

Not to be outdone, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin railed against the United States for indulging its "bellicose itch" to get involved in other countries' internal affairs. And he vowed that Russia will thwart American designs in the Middle East.

Whatever happened to the "reset," President Obama's ballyhooed reorientation of US-Russia relations to a more cooperative path focused on common interests?

RECOMMENDED: Defying Putin: 7 Russians to watch

Russia would say Libya happened - the conflict where the West and the US in particular demonstrated a zeal for intervention that struck at Russia's sense of sovereignty and of what the UN should and shouldn't do. The US would say Syria happened - revealing Russia's revived obstructionist tendencies on the Security Council and demonstrating Russia's determination to protect an old ally at the expense of the Syrian people.

Both countries might say that what happened is this: The common interests that the "reset" was meant to emphasize - arms control, counterterrorism, the global economy - have taken a back seat to awakened geopolitical rivalries and diverging international visions.

Add to this the fact that Mr. Putin is expected to return to Russia's presidency in elections Sunday, bringing with him a blame- the-west perspective for explaining many of Russia's ills.

The result is that stormy days lie ahead for US-Russia relations, many say. Progress on issues like missile defense and NATO-Russia relations is likely to remain stalled - and could suffer serious setbacks if the Syria and Iran crises deteriorate further.

"I foresee a tough year for US-Russia relations," says Andrew Weiss, a former director for Russian affairs on the National Security Council under President Clinton who is now a Russia analyst at the RAND Corp. in Arlington, Va. With little prospect for advances, he adds, the Obama administration is likely to focus on preventing backsliding. "The emphasis will be on ensuring that these fast-moving conflicts don't put the remaining areas of cooperation at risk," he says.

Others say the current frictions demonstrate how relations, despite the efforts of three administrations, have never overcome cold-war mistrusts to progress to a deeper level.

"Under both Clinton and Bush, the US made it look like things were moving forward with Russia by focusing on things that were easier to do and that didn't require sacrifice from either side," says Paul Saunders, executive director of the Center for the National Interest in Washington.

"But in both cases, they ran out of ideas on how to work together before crossing a threshold in relations that would have allowed them to weather the differences that remained," he adds.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

A Cold-War Chill? US-Russia Relations Falter over Libya and Syria
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.