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U.S.-Russia Crosstalk

The Washington Times and the Kommersant newspaper in Moscow have launched a joint project known as US-Russia Crosstalk to foster constructive dialog on issues where the two countries can share common ground in an era of global tension. Each month, one American and one Russian figure will debate a single issue and their pieces will be jointly published in both newspapers.

On the edge of the abyss

Former Sen. Sam Nunn coined the phrase “sleepwalking into nuclear catastrophe” long before the current crisis.

Another failed summit? Here’s a better choice

Despite the rather dismal and disappointing results of this year’s Group of Seven, Group of 20 and COP26 summits, President Biden is getting ready for another one.

The roots of Europe’s gas crisis

The gas crisis in Europe has added yet another dimension to a global crisis, with many well-known experts predicting that the worst is still to come.

Ukraine on my mind

During his recent visit to Washington, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with President Biden and a few members of Congress.

Volodymyr the Invincible

Soon after the spectacle of woke America’s self-humiliation in Afghanistan, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy was getting an “‘ironclad commitment” to Ukraine’s security from President Biden.

Biden’s pivot from nuclear war to civil war — danke!

The timing was poetic: President Biden’s Philadelphia speech comparing states curtailing election fraud to the Confederacy was delivered the same week he hosted outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel, a kindred spirit.

Exploring a U.S.-Russian summit agenda

News of the Biden-Putin summit is a rare positive signal amid an otherwise doom and gloom atmosphere as U.S.-Russian relations have sunk to historic lows.

CROSSTALK: Fool’s Russian

It is a fateful congruence that our countrymen’s intentions for us rational folks, the non-woke, have been laid bare just in time for the potentially nuclear war that their president has escalated by sending two warships to the Black Sea last week to confront Russia over Ukraine.

CROSSTALK: How to avoid WWIII

When President Biden called Russian President Vladimir Putin and invited him for a summit, I felt a relief almost like back in 1962, when I heard on the news that John Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev had made a deal to resolve the Cuban missile crisis and avoid nuclear war.

CROSSTALK: U.S. house divided could leave the planet whole

Earlier this month, in his first speech as secretary of state, Antony Blinken underscored that “the president has promised diplomacy — not military action — will always come first.” He was building on a sentence from a moment earlier: “More than at any other time in my career — maybe in my lifetime — distinctions between domestic and foreign policy have simply fallen away.”

CROSSTALK: Our house divided could leave the planet whole

Earlier this month, in his first speech as secretary of State, Antony J. Blinken underscored that “the President has promised diplomacy — not military action — will always come first.” He was building on a sentence from a moment earlier: “More than at any other time in my career — maybe in my lifetime — distinctions between domestic and foreign policy have simply fallen away.”

CROSSTALK: Leading not by force but by example - really, Antony Blinken?

In his recent speech outlining the new U.S. foreign policy vision Secretary of State Antony Blinken made a really sensational statement: “We will not promote democracy through costly military interventions or by attempting to overthrow authoritarian regimes by force. We have tried these tactics in the past. However well intentioned, they haven’t worked.”

CROSSTALK: How to avoid nuclear war

Let us review President Biden’s “America is back,” return to “normal” foreign policy that will be infused with “American values.”

CROSSTALK: Biden presidency makes Balkanites of us all

One could say the Jan. 6 incident at the U.S. Capitol and resulting impeachment and acquittal of Donald Trump were the culmination of the tumultuous year that was 2020 — chaotic by definition as a Year of the Rat. In the previous rat year of 2008, something similar happened in a country that was the proving ground for much of what’s been happening here, not incidentally because of our meddling in its affairs.

CROSSTALK: Can the CIA resuscitate U.S.-Russian relations?

Nowadays, when something bad happens in America, the popular game in Washington is to make bets on how fast Russia and Vladimir Putin will be accused of being responsible. Therefore, it was no surprise to hear exactly that about the Jan. 6 events on Capitol Hill.

CROSSTALK: America through the looking glass

So agape was the world at the Jan. 6 spectacle of conservatives setting themselves up for moral equivalence with the left that everyone forgot to invoke the invisible hand of Russia-Putin.

CROSSTALK: Russia and the Hunter-gatherers Biden

Real geopolitical challenges are facing the next American president: North Korea, Turkey, Iran and China, for example. One hopes that this is where a Biden-Harris-led focus will be, rather than on convenient distractions and comfort zones called Russia.

CROSSTALK: Trump-Biden-Putin trading places

Being shared among the Russian diaspora on Facebook the week after the U.S. election was a reaction video by 10 or so octogenarians in Russia. Their spokeswoman delivered a tongue-lashing.

CROSSTALK: U.S.-Russia relations after the inauguration

It is an undeniable fact that presently America is experiencing serious challenges on both domestic and foreign fronts. The dramatic polarization of society, the largest number of pandemic victims and major disputes between the nuclear powers require strong leadership and social unity.

CROSSTALK: Solutions to Nagorno-Karabakh conflict

In recent weeks, the danger of war between neighboring Azerbaijan and Armenia has caused many to ask how this chaos might be resolved before it directly drags in other powerful players.

CROSSTALK: Joe Biden is deceptive

In the three weeks since Vice President Mike Pence’s Republican National Convention speech, right-leaning broadcasters have given much play to his quoting of Robert Gates, the Obama-Biden secretary of defense who wrote in his 2014 memoir that then-Vice President Joseph R. Biden “has been wrong on nearly every major foreign policy and national security issue over the past four decades.”

CROSSTALK: U.S. should eyeball Russia reset button - now

Within the context of a speedily devolving geopolitical roller coaster ride shaped by renewed Cold War era hostilities, an Aug. 5 Politico open letter authored by 103 American foreign policy experts calling for a reset to U.S.-Russia relations appeared to be just what the doctors of reason prescribed.

CROSSTALK: U.S. is its own Russian boogeyman

Last month saw a duo of “news” stories making the rounds about this or that Russia-based hacker group that’s “almost certainly linked” to Russian state intelligence. Bloomberg.com and USA Today were among those running with “Russia Accused of Vaccine Hacking,” while the AP had a second go at “Russia Behind Spread of Virus Disinformation,” which originally surfaced in April.

CROSSTALK: The West is ‘balkanizing’

Amid the intermittent riots and looting; the disbanding of police departments; the increase in armed disagreements between citizens; a four-year coup; an economy in turmoil; and talk of a geographic separation between Americans who have a race-based view of the human condition and those who don’t, one would think our country’s current upheavals — unyielding even to a plague (itself partisan) — would see us wanting to reduce our headaches, perhaps by making nice at least in the international sphere.

CROSSTALK: Trump can earn points with right foreign policy

Looking at today’s America, one would be hard pressed to say that the gods were not interested in destroying this great country. For who can argue that this once proud and noble nation has not fallen into the depths of madness in recent years? After all, what is madness but a self-delusion run amok, far removed from any semblance of reality?

CROSSTALK: Did COVID-19 prevent World War III? Or did the virus prepare us for it?

For months after the attacks of 9/11, when people would be asked, “What did you learn?” they invariably responded, “Spend more time with family.” That answer has reverberated in my mind throughout these two months of idyllic scenes of parents and children jumping on trampolines, riding bicycles and walking dogs.

CROSSTALK: The world after coronavirus

The coronavirus pandemic is in the full swing around the globe and no one can predict when it will be over or at least largely contained. We can only hope and pray that this happens sooner rather than later.

CROSSTALK: Russia delivers coronavirus equipment to U.S.

When the Antonov cargo jet departed from Reno on April 1st, it kicked up such a cloud of dust that locals called the fire department reporting a wildfire. While there’s no official confirmation, it’s possible the Russian AN124 carried a delivery similar to the ventilators, masks and respirators that landed the same day in the same kind of plane at JFK International, an offer accepted days earlier by President Trump from President Putin. Or, as U.S. media call it, “a public relations coup for the Kremlin.”

CROSSTALK: The duality of fever

One side effect of the SARS Coronavirus-2 appears to be a diminished appetite among Americans for war with Russia. Given the overreaction by my fellow Americans, thanks to whom I may have to go back to Soviet toilet paper (newspaper) — and am once again getting into any line I see — one would hate to see how they’d react in a real crisis

Needed: U.S.-Russia collusion 2.0 in 2020

It would take desperation to find something heartening in the Russian portion of National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien’s comments last week at the Meridian International Center, which were replete with the typical projections and inversions between us and them. But amid Washington’s unhinged nonseriousness (President Trump selling Alaska to Russia as a bargaining chip, Rep. Adam Schiff?), a desperate grab for sanity is better than none at all.

Start full scale U.S.-Russia dialogue

Now that President Trump has been acquitted after the three-year-long impeachment ordeal, some of us expect him to start this dialogue that he pledged to initiate during the past electoral campaign and kept repeating many times over without following up.

CROSSTALK: Year of the Rat foresight, please

Not to add to apocalyptic associations with the year 2020, but we now find ourselves officially in the Year of the Rat, according to the Chinese calendar — characterized by chaos. Thanks only to my obscure interest in the Balkans, sparked in 1999 by the shock that a war could be started by the world’s superhero nation and my family’s refuge from inhumanity, I learned the Serbian word for war: rat.

CROSSTALK: Can Russia be key in fighting climate change?

While U.S.-Russian relations keep sinking in a seemingly bottomless ditch, optimists aren’t ready to give up and wonder whether there is anything to reverse or at least to stop this process before Armageddon.

CROSSTALK: Building trust between U.S. and Russia

At a time of one of the greatest political upheavals in American history that could spill over into foreign affairs, especially U.S.-Russian relations with unpredictable and devastating results, I thought Christmas might offer a chance for all of us to take a pause and search for an exit from the megacrisis.

CROSSTALK: Can Russia trust the wily, wily West?

On a recent episode of “Life, Liberty and Levin,” Hoover Institution fellow Niall Ferguson told host Mark Levin, “The problem at the moment is partly that we are on a kind of permanent war footing with respect to Moscow … It’s also partly that President Putin simply cannot bring himself to trust the United States.”

CROSSTALK: Is Ukraine vital to U.S. security?

The ongoing impeachment inquiry of President Trump can certainly compete with Hollywood’s most successful drama or comedy shows. However, when we deal with national security issues one expects the actors, in this case members of Congress and witnesses, to tell the truth. In this case, some do, but some regrettably do not.

CROSSTALK: Ukraine isn’t vital to U.S. security

We all heard former Ukraine Ambassador William B. Taylor at the impeachment hearings say — as so many do daily — that “Ukraine is on the front line in the conflict with a newly aggressive Russia.”

CROSSTALK: Washington turmoil affects U.S.-Russia relations

As the political temperature in Washington rapidly rises to unprecedented boiling levels, when accusations of attempted coup and state treason are exchanged between the president and the speaker of the House, what’s the danger of spillover into the foreign policy arena?