IMPACT: PUTIN IS DANGEGROUS
RUSSIA UNDER PUTIN SEEKS TO RECONSTITUTE ITS "GLORIOUS" SOVIET PAST
Michael McFaul, assistant professor and Hoover fellow at Stanford University, January 23, 2001, The Washington Post SECTION: EDITORIAL; Pg. A17 HEADLINE: Moscow, Misreading Bush //VT2002acsln
A wave of Soviet nostalgia is sweeping Russia. A former KGB official now runs the country. His comrades still in the KGB (now called the FSB) have revived old Soviet practices of harassing and arresting journalists, academics, human rights activists and nonofficial religious leaders. When President Putin called for the reinstatement of the Soviet hymn as the Russian national anthem, the parliament endorsed his idea without pause.
Now Putin's team is waiting for the final piece of the Soviet era to fall into place -- a more realpolitik relationship with the United States. Putin supporters have even coined a term for it -- neo-Nixonism.
Russia's state media openly championed the benefits of a George W. Bush victory for Russia. Under Bush, so Putin's people believe, the United States will no longer care about domestic politics in Russia, such as human rights, independent media or the war in Chechnya. With Bush in power, so the thinking goes in Moscow, the Kremlin will have a free hand to roll back democracy in the name of restoring law and order.
They also believe that Russia once again will be treated like a great power. They are nostalgic for the good old days of detente -- superpower summits, arms control and discussions about balancing American and Russian power in regional conflicts.
RUSSIA UNDER PUTIN IS INCREASING ITS NUCLEAR CAPABILITIES
FINIAN CUNNINGHAM January 27, 2001 The Irish Times SECTION: CITY EDITION; WORLD NEWS; WORLD VIEW; Pg. 13 HEADLINE: A not-so-new world order designed to serve Western economic imperatives //VT2002acsln
This together with his tougher diplomatic stance towards Russia is predictably leading to a deteriorating international climate, fuelling insecurity and a new phase of the arms race.
Russia was reported earlier this month to have reintroduced nuclear weapons into the Baltic region, after having removed them from eastern Europe when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991.
Observers note that due to the dilapidated state of its conventional armed forces, Russia is now relying even more on its huge nuclear arsenal as a deterrent.
President Vladimir Putin is also making overtures to China for a new military alliance as a counterweight to the Star Wars initiative and the expansion of NATO in Europe.
RUSSIAN IMPERIALIST ACTION HAS PROPELLED THE WRONG PEOPLE TO POWER -- PUTIN
Georgie Anne Geyer, Universal Press Syndicate The Columbus Dispatch November 17, 1999, SECTION: EDITORIAL & COMMENT, Pg. 13A HEADLINE: WAR IN CHECHNYA SHOWS MOSCOW IS ON THE OLD SOVIET PATH // ln-acs 12/18/99
What is happening in Moscow has all the earmarks of the traditional court intrigues of Kremlin life. Today, like the sick czars of old, Russian President Boris Yeltsin has retreated to the sanitarium, having effectively named as his heir (when he made him his prime minister earlier this year) the surprise choice of Vladimir Putin. This former spy chief with the pinched KGB/Stasi face and the frozen eyes -- often called "Ice Head'' in Moscow -- quickly seized upon the simmering rebellion in the southern Caucasus republic. He would conduct a war that would carry him to power as Yeltsin's successor, perhaps even as early as next year.
Indeed, so far the ploy is working. In the last few months, as Chechnya was being ravished by the Russian army's "new military doctrine'' of indiscriminate bombing, Putin's popularity ratings have soared, showing how much the Russian people admire his much-noted determination.
RUSSIA UNDER PUTIN SEEKS TO RESTORE AN AGGRESSIVE SOVIET PAST
JAMES RISEN February 8, 2001, The New York Times SECTION: Section A; Page 11; HEADLINE: C.I.A. Chief Sees Russia Trying to Revive Its Challenge to U.S. //VT2002acsln
Russia is using international trade in weapons and technology to improve relations with China, India and Iran while trying to revive its status as a great power and challenge United States influence, the director of central intelligence, George J. Tenet, said today.
In blunt testimony to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Mr. Tenet indicated that the United States intelligence community was increasingly concerned by the direction of Moscow's foreign policy under President Vladimir V. Putin.
"There can be little doubt that President Putin wants to restore some aspects of the Soviet past -- status as a great power, strong central authority and a stable and predictable society -- sometimes at the expense of neighboring states or the civil rights of individual Russians," Mr. Tenet said.