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Dear US.....Sincerely Vladimir Putin....his New York Times OP-ED..published today. Brilliant piece.

Posted by on Sep. 12, 2013 at 8:59 AM
  • 57 Replies

 

A Plea for Caution From Russia

What Putin Has to Say to Americans About Syria

By VLADIMIR V. PUTIN
Published: September 11, 2013 748 Comments
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MOSCOW - RECENT events surrounding Syria have prompted me to speak directly to the American people and their political leaders. It is important to do so at a time of insufficient communication between our societies.

Oliver Munday

 

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Relations between us have passed through different stages. We stood against each other during the cold war. But we were also allies once, and defeated the Nazis together. The universal international organization - the United Nations - was then established to prevent such devastation from ever happening again.

The United Nations' founders understood that decisions affecting war and peace should happen only by consensus, and with America's consent the veto by Security Council permanent members was enshrined in the United Nations Charter. The profound wisdom of this has underpinned the stability of international relations for decades.

No one wants the United Nations to suffer the fate of the League of Nations, which collapsed because it lacked real leverage. This is possible if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization.

The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria's borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.

Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world.

Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all.

From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today's complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.

No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack - this time against Israel - cannot be ignored.

It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America's long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan "you're either with us or against us."

But force has proved ineffective and pointless. Afghanistan is reeling, and no one can say what will happen after international forces withdraw. Libya is divided into tribes and clans. In Iraq the civil war continues, with dozens killed each day. In the United States, many draw an analogy between Iraq and Syria, and ask why their government would want to repeat recent mistakes.

No matter how targeted the strikes or how sophisticated the weapons, civilian casualties are inevitable, including the elderly and children, whom the strikes are meant to protect.

The world reacts by asking: if you cannot count on international law, then you must find other ways to ensure your security. Thus a growing number of countries seek to acquire weapons of mass destruction. This is logical: if you have the bomb, no one will touch you. We are left with talk of the need to strengthen nonproliferation, when in reality this is being eroded.

We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement.

A new opportunity to avoid military action has emerged in the past few days. The United States, Russia and all members of the international community must take advantage of the Syrian government's willingness to place its chemical arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction. Judging by the statements of President Obama, the United States sees this as an alternative to military action.

I welcome the president's interest in continuing the dialogue with Russia on Syria. We must work together to keep this hope alive, as we agreed to at the Group of 8 meeting in Lough Erne in Northern Ireland in June, and steer the discussion back toward negotiations.

If we can avoid force against Syria, this will improve the atmosphere in international affairs and strengthen mutual trust. It will be our shared success and open the door to cooperation on other critical issues.

My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States' policy is "what makes America different. It's what makes us exceptional." It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord's blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.

Vladimir V. Putin is the president of Russia.

by on Sep. 12, 2013 at 8:59 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Luvnlogic
by Silver Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:20 AM
2 moms liked this
I agree with this. We're not doing ourselves any favors by stepping in everywhere. This has been US policy for too long and it's taken a toll on our reputation. On the other hand, if the international community has grown weary of our intervention, then they should stop looking to us to help in every damn conflict. Pass the baton of school yard referee and body guard to the UN.
Carpy
by Ruby Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:24 AM
8 moms liked this
The death of America as a super power. Thanks, progressives.
yourspecialkid
by Platinum Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:43 AM
3 moms liked this

 

Quoting Carpy:

The death of America as a super power. Thanks, progressives.

 I think very few people will realize what a serious situation this is.  Russia is now on top.  They will spend at least the next 3 years mopping the floor with us.

 

Woodbabe
by Woodie on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:50 AM
8 moms liked this


Quoting yourspecialkid:

 

Quoting Carpy:

The death of America as a super power. Thanks, progressives.

 I think very few people will realize what a serious situation this is.  Russia is now on top.  They will spend at least the next 3 years mopping the floor with us.

 

Why does Russia have to be 'on top'. Why do WE have to be 'on top'? Why can't we co-exist as different countries, determined to get along amongst our differences? Just because Russian did something right doesn't mean either one of us is better, we don't have to be THE BIG DOG to still be a great country. Only in America is there this obsession with being number one to the point of hysteria.

 Sexy If its unladylike, fattening or fun, I'm in!
  

Sisteract
by Whoopie on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:56 AM

ITA-

I think it's because of the money associated with war- follow the trail and look at the folks who adovcate for such.

Quoting Woodbabe:


Quoting yourspecialkid:

 

Quoting Carpy:

The death of America as a super power. Thanks, progressives.

 I think very few people will realize what a serious situation this is.  Russia is now on top.  They will spend at least the next 3 years mopping the floor with us.

 

Why does Russia have to be 'on top'. Why do WE have to be 'on top'? Why can't we co-exist as different countries, determined to get along amongst our differences? Just because Russian did something right doesn't mean either one of us is better, we don't have to be THE BIG DOG to still be a great country. Only in America is there this obsession with being number one to the point of hysteria.


Woodbabe
by Woodie on Sep. 12, 2013 at 9:58 AM
1 mom liked this

Its totally pushed by those who profit from it...someone had Obama by the short hairs on this one. Wasn't he the one mocked for going around and apologizing for our war mongering at the beginning of his presidency?

Quoting Sisteract:

ITA-

I think it's because of the money associated with war- follow the trail and look at the folks who adovcate for such.

Quoting Woodbabe:


Quoting yourspecialkid:

 

Quoting Carpy:

The death of America as a super power. Thanks, progressives.

 I think very few people will realize what a serious situation this is.  Russia is now on top.  They will spend at least the next 3 years mopping the floor with us.

 

Why does Russia have to be 'on top'. Why do WE have to be 'on top'? Why can't we co-exist as different countries, determined to get along amongst our differences? Just because Russian did something right doesn't mean either one of us is better, we don't have to be THE BIG DOG to still be a great country. Only in America is there this obsession with being number one to the point of hysteria.



 Sexy If its unladylike, fattening or fun, I'm in!
  

snookyfritz
by Platinum Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 10:00 AM

I agree with what he has to say, but op, aren't you anti UN?

jaxTheMomm
by Platinum Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 10:02 AM
8 moms liked this

There's so much wrong with this.

He didn't seem to give a crap about the UN when he wrote an op-ed piece trying to justify his non-UN sanctioned attack on Chechnya.

And he's supplying weapons to Syria, thereby helping to create this very situation.

yourspecialkid
by Platinum Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 10:08 AM
2 moms liked this

 

Quoting Woodbabe:


Quoting yourspecialkid:

 

Quoting Carpy:

The death of America as a super power. Thanks, progressives.

 I think very few people will realize what a serious situation this is.  Russia is now on top.  They will spend at least the next 3 years mopping the floor with us.

 

Why does Russia have to be 'on top'. Why do WE have to be 'on top'? Why can't we co-exist as different countries, determined to get along amongst our differences? Just because Russian did something right doesn't mean either one of us is better, we don't have to be THE BIG DOG to still be a great country. Only in America is there this obsession with being number one to the point of hysteria.

 There has to be someone on top...and because of that it matters.  We don't want a country like Russia to hold that spot.  As the top superpower they have the leverage to help give everyone the bomb.  Putin even talked about this in the piece.

Considering where the UN stands now..the US has virtually zero support..and important councils such as the human rights one have countries with few human rights on them....it creates a very dangerous situation. 

If Obama doesn't do something fast we will see a world divided almost in 2...Russia, China, Venezuala, Iran, Syria, Cuba...oh geez, a host of small ME & SA countries...against the traditional Allies.  I would expect to see some of we consider allies..like Saudi Arabia bail on us.  Bad bad stuff.

 

yourspecialkid
by Platinum Member on Sep. 12, 2013 at 10:12 AM

 

Quoting snookyfritz:

I agree with what he has to say, but op, aren't you anti UN?

 Just because I think is brilliant doesn't mean I agree with it.  Putin is proving to be quite the strategist.  In the course of a week he has ripped BO's balls and fed them to his dogs.

I am not anti UN.  I am anti UN with their own political agenda.  A UN functioning as it should would have made a move against Syria when they first started using WMD's on their people.  They would have also made moves on numerous other countries where the people suffer atrocities at the hands of their leaders.  But they don't.  They do however spend billions of money meant to help people on themselves.

 

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