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Obama Presses Reset Button With Russia

Obama Presses Reset Button With Russia

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Published by Om Prakash Yadav

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Published by: Om Prakash Yadav on Sep 15, 2009
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09/28/2009

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OBAMA PRESSES RESET BUTTONS WITH RUSSIA
In a significant development regarding reductions of ‘NuclearArmament’, USA and Russia agreed to cut down their nuclearwarheads by 1/3
rd
of the existing stockpiles. Pact to this effectwas signed by Dmitry Medvedev and Barrack Obama in Kremlinon Monday. Obama’s maiden visit to Russia, the once staunchenemy of USA, is viewed as corollary of US administration’svow to end hostilities and undo grotesque legacy of George W.Bush. Both leaders signed an agreement which would pave wayfor reduction of nuclear warheads by one third of existingstockpiles. This agreement would culminate in signing of a Treaty, said Obama and Medvedev, which will be formallyprepared by the end of this year. This Treaty will replace START,1991 (strategic arms reduction treaty) which is scheduled toexpire in December 2009. This Summit marked the pressing of Reset Buttons, asignificant change in American foreign policy of which Joe Bidenhad elaborated upon in Berlin conference early this year.Obama emphatically said ‘we resolve to reset US-Russianrelations so that we can cooperate more effectively in areas of common interest’. It is a ‘reversal of drift’, the drift which hadstarted during Bush regime. This tente will help createcongenial atmosphere in the region, they claimed.Sources say that USA currently has 2,200 operationalnuclear war heads whereas Russia has 2,790 such warheads. Itis pertinent to mention here that US-Russia combine constitute90% of global nuclear arsenals. Therefore one third reductionsis a substantial one and ‘Operationalisation’ of this treaty wouldmean huge reduction in this stockpile. This would probablypave way for similar gestures by other nuclear powers acrossworld. This Summit is also important for this region becauserelation between these two powers had sunk all time low inpost cold war era on Georgian issue. The Georgian invasion onOssetia and Abkhazia was supported by USA and other NATOcountries were viewed by Russia as an invasion on itself.Russian military built-up in Black sea followed by NATO’s opensupport to Mikhail Saakashvilli, the Georgian president, hasmade US Russia confrontation somewhat imminent, thanks to
 
good sense prevailing that the situation was saved from goingto all out war. This Summit of Obama and Medvedev wouldcertainly instill confidence in the region and help returnnormalcy restored.However only signing of this agreement does not guaranteesuccess of this resolution. In 2002 also Bush and Putin hadsinged such agreement which was sacrificed at the altar of mistrust and clash of interests. This Summit was different fromthat of George Bush and Putin in the sense that it meantbusiness only and lacked jokes and personality clash. Obamaand Medvedev were straight forward and meeting ran for 5hours only. Obama oratory skill is widely acknowledgedespecially after his Cairo speech. He is not hector in his speech,a departure for Bush’s style.Obama choose to meet Putin also, because like many others,Obama too share the view that it is Putin who runs the country,a gesture though seems apparently related to courtesy andetiquettes, blended with hardcore diplomacy and reality.Obama ecstatically said that this pact would lead them to holda ‘Global Summit on Nuclear Arms reduction’ next year.Apart from international media hype on this Pact, both leadersfailed to reach to an agreement on
‘Missile Defense System’
of Eastern Europe. They remained at loggerheads on this, anissue on which USA has been rigorously pursuing and Russiapersistently opposing.
Obama’s hidden Agenda
- This summit was not given thekind of coverage in State (Russia) controlled media, whichgenerally such meetings get. TV channel one, the statecontrolled electronic media, did not show Obama’s visit inheadlines. It is naïve to believe that the channel might haveskipped it. This may be a calculated and calibrated telecast.Russia deliberately wanted to keep this visit at low pitch.Obama’s visit, according to Russia, might be aimed at killingtwo birds with one single stone. Obama knows it well thatAmerican success in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq, Israel andPalestine largely depends on Russia’s stand on these issues.Bygone are days when US had the ability to dictate terms. Nowthere is ‘no room on the chess board’ and US can no longer‘play with the pawns’ as Paul Bracken has put it in his book ‘Firein the East’. Obama has to undo Bush’s legacy which wascharacterized by
‘with us or against us’
. America can no

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