There are two structural problems with signing arms deals with Russia.
1. The Russians always cheat, before or after the fall of Communism. The Trump administration was the first time since Reagan that the Russians were called out for it and told to take a hike.
2. The real threat is coming from China and from Islamic nuclear powered states.
To whatever extent arms deals even make sense, they make no sense if they don’t include China.
So the death of our one-sided accord with Russia is something to celebrate, not mourn.
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Friday made a new offer to extend the last remaining nuclear arms treaty with the U.S. before it expires in February, but President Donald Trump’s top security adviser called it a “non-starter” unless Moscow also agrees to a temporary freeze on all nuclear weapons in return.
Putin, speaking at a meeting of his Security Council in Moscow, called for extending the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty for one year without conditions, saying “it would be extremely sad if the treaty ceases to exist without being replaced by another fundamental document of the kind.”
Extremely sad for Russia.
Meanwhile the Democrats will do whatever Moscow wants. And maybe someone ought to ask Biden how he claim to be tough on Russia when he’s willing to let Moscow go back to playing us.
In Washington, national security adviser Robert O’Brien told a forum that the Trump administration agrees on the timeline for an extension but renewed its demand Moscow also agree to a one-year freeze of its entire stockpile, including classes of nuclear weapons that are not covered by the treaty.
But he also acknowledged that Russia may be biding its time to see who wins the presidential election before accepting any American demands.
Former Vice President Joe Biden has said he would be willing to extend New START the full five years permitted under the treaty, without preconditions, and begin work on a follow-on pact.
No preconditions. Five years.
The Russians haven’t seen a negotiator this tough since another Democrat went down to Yalta. And Moscow can’t wait.
“The Democratic Party is traditionally closer to the so-called liberal values, closer to social democratic ideas,” Putin said. “And it was from the social democratic environment that the Communist Party evolved.”
“After all, I was a member of the Soviet Communist Party for nearly 20 years” Putin added. “I was a rank-and-file member, but it can be said that I believed in the party’s ideas. I still like many of these left-wing values. Equality and fraternity. What is bad about them? In fact, they are akin to Christian values.”
“Yes, they are difficult to implement, but they are very attractive, nevertheless. In other words, this can be seen as an ideological basis for developing contacts with the Democratic representative.”