Get Bent, Ivan


Hardly a surprise.

Russia has been making noise over the past few years like they are still a world power. So far, it is tough to take them seriously.

The Russian economy is doing pretty well right now due to oil exports to Europe, but only if one compares the present situation to what happened at the end of The Cold War. Russia is still having a great many problems, and more than a few pundits have suggested that it is pretty much a 3rd world country. They’re making a big deal about increasing their defense spending to around $40 billion USD per year, but the US spends about $500 billion a year. There isn’t much reason to take Russia seriously.

In fact, the last link will take you to an article that describes the only real card Russia has left to play in order to get any respect.

“Russian weapons are still considered second rate, and it’s the nuclear arsenal that provides Russia with whatever military power it really has.”

Oh, so that’s why they don’t like the idea of a missile shield! If we install the system in European countries friendly to the US, then even Poland would ignore Russia!

For Russia it is sort of like being the schoolyard bully, and then one day the geekiest nerd on the playground announces that he has taken some karate classes and can kick your butt any time he feels like it. If your parents can’t afford to buy you lessons of your own, then you are forever going to be the red headed stepchild of the school.

If you want to understand Russian foreign policy, just assume that everything they do is a desperate attempt to avoid getting a wedgie.