Russia's new Cold War... could it turn hot?

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Mootoo
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16 Jul 2015, 8:02 am

Some weeks ago they were readying even WMDs, weren't they? Is there any real possibly of their being used, though? I'm assuming they know of mutually-assured destruction, right? If Russia itself isn't attacked then there's no way his government will survive, right?



kraftiekortie
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16 Jul 2015, 8:47 am

Putin has become very Soviet-like, screwing it up for people who want to visit Russia, a beautiful country in many ways.

I don't think the "New Cold War" will turn hot, though



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16 Jul 2015, 8:51 am

No. Russia is reactive, if we leave them alone then they are no threat to us and can actually be an ally.



Marky9
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16 Jul 2015, 10:58 am

I find that Commerce can often have an important moderating effect on potential violent conflicts. Occasional sabre-rattling is an integral part of the Hobbesian game of mutually assured destruction, so I'm not too concerned.

Putin, though, is increasingly behaving like the Soviet-era fossil that he is. It may take a top-level regime change to calm things down. Unfortunately, he is young and seemingly in good health.


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Jacoby
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16 Jul 2015, 11:40 am

Putin is probably the greatest Russian leader in their history, think about who came before him. There is a reason why he has an 80% approval rating, look at where Russia was under Yeltsin and look at them now. Russia's democracy is very young, they've been ruled by iron fisted tyrants thru out their history so you can't compare Putin to an American politician or hold him to the same standards because he isn't one.



ASPartOfMe
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16 Jul 2015, 2:58 pm

Sure, there is always the possibility of miscalculation ending the world as we know it. I don't think it is likely for the same Mutual Assured Destruction reasons it did not happen when. U.S-Soviet relations were pure hostility. Probably a somewhat better chance but still unlikely U.S.-China, U.S.-North Korea, India -Pakistan and as I mentioned in another thread Israel, Saudi-Arabia-Iran would be the best chance.


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The_Walrus
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16 Jul 2015, 4:19 pm

Jacoby wrote:
Putin is probably the greatest Russian leader in their history, think about who came before him. There is a reason why he has an 80% approval rating, look at where Russia was under Yeltsin and look at them now. Russia's democracy is very young, they've been ruled by iron fisted tyrants thru out their history so you can't compare Putin to an American politician or hold him to the same standards because he isn't one.

Strongly disagree. Morality is not relative. Putin is an iron fisted tyrant and consequently a poor leader.

(Also, Gorbachev and Khrushchev. Men who showed bravery and pulled Russia forward kicking and screaming. You could also probably make a case for Brezhnev)



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16 Jul 2015, 4:29 pm

The new cold war huh? I've heard rumor that the last one never actually 'ended' so maybe the not so new cold war. But no I did not hear anything of them specifically arming WMDs any time recently but I don't follow all the news. But either way I do not think they are going to instigate a WW3 by setting off a bunch of nukes or something at least not now. Perhaps they just want to make sure they're just as armed as say the U.S due to some mistrust that from what I understand goes back quite a ways.


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Jacoby
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16 Jul 2015, 4:56 pm

The_Walrus wrote:
Jacoby wrote:
Putin is probably the greatest Russian leader in their history, think about who came before him. There is a reason why he has an 80% approval rating, look at where Russia was under Yeltsin and look at them now. Russia's democracy is very young, they've been ruled by iron fisted tyrants thru out their history so you can't compare Putin to an American politician or hold him to the same standards because he isn't one.

Strongly disagree. Morality is not relative. Putin is an iron fisted tyrant and consequently a poor leader.

(Also, Gorbachev and Khrushchev. Men who showed bravery and pulled Russia forward kicking and screaming. You could also probably make a case for Brezhnev)

I don't think you could say those Soviet dictators were any less iron fisted tyrants especially Khrushcev and Brezhnev, Gorbachev is not well thought of in Russia but I believe other two are still held in some esteem. Gorbachev is blamed for destroying a superpower, perestroika and glasnost were failures. Yeltsin is held in even lower regard, Gorbachev probably loses just for proceeding Yeltsin. Yeltsin was a drunk who is blamed for driving the Russian economy into the ground and he also shelled his own parliament and declared a self coup.

If you look at Russia in 1998 and compare it to now, its easy to see why Russians believe in Putin, their lives are exponentially better and he's restored prestige to country which before he took office was dying in a depression and were humiliated over and over again.. To hate him and to call him a tyrant makes no sense given who the US allies with, Russia is a very traditional country and has not gotten on board with gay rights but they're not beheading anybody like our dear friends the Saudis. Russia is more free now than it was under any of the Soviet leaders, would you dispute that? I just don't really understand how you can single Putin out as so much worse the previous Russian/Soviet leaders, anything bad he does they did too.

I think the US president having good relationship with the Russian president should be one of the bigger priorities we should have choose a president, working together to achieve our shared foreign goals(they don't like ISIS either) and engaging each other economically(which gives a motivation to not go to war with each other.) Sanctions are an act of war, sanctions have never solved anything and almost always make situations worse. Why would we want to fight the Russians?



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16 Jul 2015, 5:03 pm

the new cold war won't even include the US

it will be the Saudis vs the Iranians, an arms race has already started. If you don't want the Iranians to have the bomb then you REALLY don't want the Saudis to have it. At this point we have to tell the Saudis that they're under our nuclear umbrella to try to convince them not to pursue them on their own.

The reality is that this technology is out there, the knowledge and materials aren't secret. We can't hope to contain nuclear technology forever, its impossible. We survived the Cold War, we can survive now, the Soviets had I believe more than 20k warheads pointed at us ready to launch at a moments notice, when you look at where we've been its not that scary.



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19 Jul 2015, 4:38 am

Putin is the worst leader in Russian modern history. For one he runs it like a mafia state. He has siphoned over 80 billion dollars for his personal wealth, from the Russian people under their nose. Russia also has the highest wealth disparity in the world more than than China or India. What head of state can you say it that wealthy? Not even the Saltan of Brunei.

He supports the system of corruption that has blighted the country. No person who does that cares about the economic development of his country would do that. Russia is struggling economically, despite having massive resources.

Russian people are that aware of what is goign on. No news is good news sort of thing, but descent is massively played down by supporters. Opposition is suppressed. There is not true plurality, only stooges for United Russia.

Putin's Russia is a black swan event in the making, and it will come from within.



Last edited by 0_equals_true on 19 Jul 2015, 4:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

0_equals_true
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Jacoby
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19 Jul 2015, 10:13 am

There is no reliable sources that say that, I very much doubt Putin is the richest man in the world. There is a propaganda war being waged against Russia(as well as an economic one), our media loves to portray Putin as some sort of Bond villain. Putin has more of a mandate from his people than any Western leader, there really is no credible opposition just one filled with extremists and soft power astroturfing. Anybody connected to the dissolution of the Soviet Union or Yeltsin's shock therapy are irrelevant and which should explain why all these liberal western backed opposition figures are so unpopular. The real opposition in Russia are communists and not the snuggly the European kind as well as batshit ultranationalists like Vladimir Zhirinovsky but obviously when the US says opposition anywhere they only want you to think about pro-western liberals and students. The US portrayed the opposition in the Arab Spring particularly in Syria the same way, we're still searching for those elusive moderates as ISIS has set up a legitimate terrorist state that threatens the security of everyone in the region.



0_equals_true
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19 Jul 2015, 2:51 pm

Jacoby wrote:
There is no reliable sources that say that, I very much doubt Putin is the richest man in the world. There is a propaganda war being waged against Russia(as well as an economic one), our media loves to portray Putin as some sort of Bond villain. Putin has more of a mandate from his people than any Western leader, there really is no credible opposition just one filled with extremists and soft power astroturfing.


You can estimate his wealth, though his financial assets (shares), his tangible assets (planes, houses, etc) and salary. It is not rocket science. 80 billion is an underestimate. More up to date estimates place it higher than that. You are willing to accept less credible claims from Russian state media so what is the issue?

I also didn't say he was the richest person in the world, although that could be true. He is certainly the richest leader in the modern world.

You are so wrong and delusional if you think they no credible opposition. This simply isn't reflective of human nature, or my experience talking to Russians, and the rather risky investigative journalism that uncovers this. The only reason why there is no credible opposition as you put it, is becuase it is not allowed. He has banned several candidate from running before, or usually ties them up in legal cases so they can't run.

There is no independent judiciary at all.

You talk of the soft power "astroturfing" of the west, but totally ignore the same sort of thing coming from the Russians. "Ceci n'est pas une pipe" is pretty much the approach.



0_equals_true
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19 Jul 2015, 2:53 pm

Also it is interesting the report I cited about wealth disparity was covered by none other than RT, one of your favorites :)



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19 Jul 2015, 5:01 pm

0_equals_true wrote:
Jacoby wrote:
There is no reliable sources that say that, I very much doubt Putin is the richest man in the world. There is a propaganda war being waged against Russia(as well as an economic one), our media loves to portray Putin as some sort of Bond villain. Putin has more of a mandate from his people than any Western leader, there really is no credible opposition just one filled with extremists and soft power astroturfing.


You can estimate his wealth, though his financial assets (shares), his tangible assets (planes, houses, etc) and salary. It is not rocket science. 80 billion is an underestimate. More up to date estimates place it higher than that. You are willing to accept less credible claims from Russian state media so what is the issue?

I also didn't say he was the richest person in the world, although that could be true. He is certainly the richest leader in the modern world.

You are so wrong and delusional if you think they no credible opposition. This simply isn't reflective of human nature, or my experience talking to Russians, and the rather risky investigative journalism that uncovers this. The only reason why there is no credible opposition as you put it, is becuase it is not allowed. He has banned several candidate from running before, or usually ties them up in legal cases so they can't run.

There is no independent judiciary at all.

You talk of the soft power "astroturfing" of the west, but totally ignore the same sort of thing coming from the Russians. "Ceci n'est pas une pipe" is pretty much the approach.


There is so much nonsense said about Putin it is impossible to tell what is propaganda and what is not, I do not automatically believe things because they appear in print. According to international and American polling companies, Putin has overwhelming support at home not comparable to any western leader as far as I know. I do not believe that Putin is worth $200 billion but lets say he has enriched himself to some degree, do you think he's the only one? I'd rather take a look some members of our own political classes before casting stones at Putin.

Who is the credible opposition? If 85% of the population supports Putin then the remaining 15% do not constitute a credible opposition it would be foolish to think that 15% are in any way united in their beliefs. The pro-western opposition figures poll in the low low single digits.

Putin isn't Hitler, we should work together