Putin talks big, NATO responds

News Story

Not to any surprise at all, NATO doesn’t like Putin’s threat of aiming missiles at Europe on the condition of a defense program being installed there. This just looks like posturing on the part of Russia who is trying to assert a more dominant role in world affairs.

The proposed defense system is said to be a shield against threats from Iran and North Korea, but Russia says they are incapable of such an attack and that Russia was the target of such a defense system. First off, if that is the case, why reinforce the idea that Russia may be a threat with these statements? Second, the idea that Russia is the target may not completely far off.

Russia and Iran have an extensive arms trade that typically includes tanks, air-to-air missiles, surface-to-air systems and possible technology for torpedoes, along with major help building their nuclear reactor. The jump to ICBM’s would be huge, but not unexpected. Therefore, Iran could be a possible threat, if Russia decides to help them along a little more.

For North Korea, they are close to having functioning ICBM’s, depsite a failed test last year. It is not unreasonable to conclude that both North Korea and Iran may be threats, and now you can add Russia to that list with the way Putin is talking.

Russia is feeling bold. After being severely weakened and demoralized post-Soviet collapse, the economy is once against strongly on the rise, with an expected GDP growth of 6.7% in 20071. High oil prices are helping resource-rich Russia grow and become one of the stronger economies in the world. Now is the time to reassert influence across the world, but this defense shield would mantain the status quo: US and Western Europe dominance. This move is merely about power and Russia trying to gain a top spot among the nations of the world. Hopefully Putin and company realize that the way to do so is through cooperation, not military threats, evidenced strongly by recent US foreign policy that is only now showing signs of changing.



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