The Discerning Texan
-- Edmund Burke
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Remember the Words? Is that all they were??
It does not take a rocket scientist to see where Putin's Russia falls in that continuum:
Condi talking tough today, but it is also becoming clear that mere talk isn't going to cut it anymore...
I am not a Russia expert and defer to Robert Kagan and others to paint the macro picture of what Russia's incursion into Georgia means.
But there are several issues, outside of these, that need to be looked at in terms of Russia in the greater world, and our relationship to Russia, particularly in counter-terrorism and weapons proliferation issues.
What is clear is that Russia is set on selling weapons to those who want very badly to hurt us, and who buy their weapons with the stated purpose of using them for that.
Everyone sells weapons, and yes, the United States plays in the game. But Russia's willingness to arm non-state actors and states that are facing international sanction is qualitatively different.
The three clearest examples are the arming Hezbollah in the summer 2006 conflict (courtesy of their favorite delivery person with almost-plausible deniability, Viktor Bout); Venezuela, which recently purchased an additional $2 billion worth of weapons from Russia, in addition to the $4.4 billion already purchased in the past four years-including two AK-47 factories; and Iran, receiving advanced missile systems.
As noted above, Chavez's pitch for purchasing the weapons was the formation of an anti-US coalition with strategic interests in Latin America. My full blog is here.