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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Annals of Cold War II: This time it's literal

Once again, crazed and barbaric Russia has shown itself incapable of serving as the reliable partner of any civilized nation.

In the West, Russia is locked in a standoff with Belarus and has refused to deliver oil through the Belarussian transit pipeline after Belarus imposed a tariff upon the line, even though Russia had previously imposed a monumental surcharge on the price of oil and gas delivered to Belarus itself, seriously diminishing energy flows to Hungary, Slovakia and Czech Republic.

In the East, Russia is at loggerheads with Georgia, refusing to allow the import of tangerines and causing a massive protest by Georgian truckers, closing border transit points.

Just as in Soviet times, Russia couldn't care less if it alienates the entire world and destroys itself utterly in the process. And it doesn't care how ridiculously hypocritical it appears before the world; even as Russia is imposing these sanctions, it is screaming to high heaven about the outrage of the U.S. daring to sanction Russian firms for providing military support to Iran. We see Russia going right back down exactly the same failed road that led to the disintegration of the USSR. What will replace Russia as it replaced the USSR? A desert?

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