Originally posted by googlefudge to stellspalfie
yet we are the country who actually actively goes into illegal wars
We are A country that has gone into illegal wars, something I am pretty pissed about,
[hence the whole vowing never ever to vote labour thing I mentioned] and something
that should get politicians unelected [if not imprisoned].
However the idea th ...[text shortened]... wever, as bad as our recent actions have been...
[b]YES we can be trusted with our nukes.[/b]
Googlefudge apparently has completely swallowed the popular Western demonization of
Vladimir Putin. While I am critical of Putin in many ways (which would make it very hard
for me to work in Russia now), I reject Googlefudge's opinion of him as a 'paranoid madman'.
Putin's not close to being as bellicose or tyrannical as Stalin (who really was paranoid).
I think that Putin's neither 'paranoid' nor a 'madman' in terms of foreign policy.
Stephen Cohen, an American scholar of the USSR and Russia, would concur with me.
Unlike Googlefudge, apparently, few Russians regard NATO's relentless expansion
eastward (evidently violating a promise made by the US government to Russia after
the break-up of the USSR) as benign. So Putin has enjoyed overwhelming approval
from Russians for standing up to a perceived threat from NATO. And most Russians
also approve of the Crimea (with a clear ethnic Russian majority) returning to Russia.
(Crimea belonged to Russian SSR before Khrushchev transferred it to Ukrainian SSR.)
It's also a reasonable, though not necessarily ideal, decision for Putin to pursue closer
ties with China and some other non-Western countries (e.g. Iran) than with the West.
While Putin may be criticized for backing Assad (a Russian client, who's fighting ISIS)
in Syria, he's not worse than the US governments that strongly supported brutal
right-wing dictators because they were dependent US clients in the Cold War.
I also think that Googlefudge's paranoid if he seriously believes that Russia's likely to
launch an unprovoked nuclear strike against the UK, even if the UK decided to get rid
of its nuclear arsenal. Germany (a historical enemy of Russia) has no nuclear weapons,
yet most Germans don't seem obsessed by the fear of an unprovoked Russian attack.