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Russia vs. the West
Voice of Sanity in Russia?

There is dissent in Putin’s inner circle. Alexei Kudrin, a close associate of the Russian President and a member of his presidential economic council, issued a warning that Russia is going in the wrong direction in an interview with Itar-Tass, a state-run news agency. The FT reports:

Mr Kudrin said conservative forces had seized upon the Ukraine crisis to push the country towards an isolationist course, and this ran counter to the interests of Russian business, which depends on global funds and markets. […]

“The political landscape in our country has changed seriously, and the socio-political one fundamentally. We have become the west’s adversary again,” Mr Kudrin said.

“There are forces in the country who have long wanted to distance us, who wanted isolation, maybe a certain self-sufficiency. Today this has all fallen on fertile ground, and I’m really surprised at the extent of anti-western rhetoric that has emerged.”

Westerners who are seriously interested in moving toward a sustainable relationship with Russia need to pay careful attention to the thinking of the people who are around the current leadership but who have held back from its recent excesses.

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  • PKCasimir

    Oh come off of it. Enough naiveté when it comes to Russia and Putin. This interview is a carful plant by the hardliners to make the West think that there is an alternative to Putin and all the West needs to do is to encourage them by not going too far with sanctions. It’s an old Soviet tactic straight out of the Cold War. Or does the American Interest actually have any bloggers who were alive during the Cold War/ Judging by some of the posts, I doubt it.

    • Boritz

      You are right.

      “There is dissent in Putin’s inner circle.”
      Over what to order for dessert, maybe.

    • Corlyss

      “Can you spell ‘disinformation,’ boys and girls?”

      Agree. The children writing for AI/VM are way too young to know about such things.

  • John Tyler

    Yep, sure.
    There was probably “dissent” in Moscow in 1920 too; how did that work out?
    Dissent is meaningless if those in power are willing to use ALL means- including murder, terror, etc., – and have the means to ruthlessly employ these means because, frankly, they have the guns. Further, murderous regimes ALWAYS, ALWAYS, find enough supporters to do the necessary dirty work.
    Look here in our former constitutional republic where Obama has no problem whatsoever finding folks EVERYWHERE that will lie, deceive, cheat and violate the law on his behalf.
    Now multiply that by 500 and you have Putin’s Russia.
    Power devolves NOT to the majority, but to the most ruthless, organized, persistent groups that WILL use any and all means to achieve and maintain power.
    Russia has been a Czarist nation for 1000 years; that should tell you all you need to know about the Russian love for the most powerful and ruthless.

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