December 15, Putin sent a telegram to Biden, congratulating him on his election as the new president of the United States. When the U.S. media reported the news, almost all said that “Putin finally congratulated Biden”. The implication is that I have been waiting for a long time.
It doesn’t matter to congratulate you for being a little late. Putin made it very clear in the telegram that he hopes Biden will succeed in all aspects and is confident that Russia-US relations will improve, because the two countries have a special responsibility for global security and stability, and cooperation with each other can help solve many of the problems facing the world.
This is also a normal statement. As for the new changes in the relationship between the United States and Russia after Biden takes office, it also depends on the understanding and concept of Biden and his team.
The American media basically believe that Biden will be tougher and harder against Russia after taking office. An article published in Foreign Policy magazine last month represented this position.
The article believes that Russia is a real threat to the United States and the West, as well as its neighbors. Under Putin’s rule, Russia invaded neighboring countries, suppressed domestic civil rights movements, confronted the United States in the Middle East and Venezuela, interfered with U.S. elections, and split the American-European alliance, etc. Biden should take Russia and Putin seriously.
The article believes that Russia is now in trouble due to falling oil prices and the coronavirus epidemic. Biden can deal with Russia and Putin from three aspects:
First, strengthen the US-Europe alliance, especially NATO unity and repair the cracks created during the Trump era. Second, don’t rush to “restart” US-Russia relations and reach an agreement with Russia. The article said that George W. Bush wanted to improve the relationship between the United States and Russia, and Russia invaded Georgia. Obama wanted to improve the relationship between the United States and Russia, and Russia invaded Crimea. So Biden should be patient. Third, Biden should support the civil rights movement in Russia and expose Russia’s “corruption”.
An article in the Financial Times also believes that Biden does not need to rush to improve the relationship between the United States and Russia after taking office. The premise of improving the relationship between the United States and Russia is that “Putin changes his behavior”.
Compared with the aggressiveness of the Western media, the analysis of an article in the Moscow Times on November 19 is calmer and more comprehensive. The article believes that Biden, 78, is a diplomatic veteran, and the Cold War is not “paper-made” knowledge for him, but personal experience. He has also served as the chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the United States Senate for a long time. He has been vice president for eight years. He has visited Russia many times and knows Russia and Putin very well.
In his view, the U.S.-Russian confrontation is the “elogue” of the Cold War, and the United States must win.
The author believes that Biden calls China the “greatest competitor” and Russia the “greatest threat”, which shows Biden’s view of Russia.
However, the article believes that Biden also understands that Russia cannot be treated to the Soviet Union as it did during the Cold War. Therefore, Biden will not exert excessive pressure on Russia for fear of provoking Russian disgust; Biden will strengthen the US-European alliance, but because European countries, including France and Germany, want to ease relations with Russia (the Financial Times said that many European countries are ready to “bow to Putin”), Biden will not be too much. Close to the allies.
For example, he will let Germany decide whether to strengthen energy cooperation with Russia; the Biden administration will strengthen its ties with the Russian opposition and the civil movements in neighboring countries, hoping to weaken Putin’s position; the Biden government may also strengthen Russia’s information war and fight by exposing Russia’s corruption and other issues. Attack the international image of Putin and the Russian government.
The article mentioned that in Russia’s view, the problem why Russia’s relations with the West became more and more rigid after the Cold War is not Russia, but that the West still expanded NATO after the Cold War, posing a threat to Russia.
The author also believes that while Biden knows Putin and Russia, Putin also knows Biden and the United States. An example is that George W. Bush and Putin had a good impression of him after their meeting in 2001, saying, “I look in his eyes and see his soul”. Later, the United States and Russia exchanged evil, which also became a laughingstock.
In 2011, Biden pretended to be in contrast, “I look at him [Putin] in the eyes, but I can’t see the soul.” Putin’s response is “everyone is each other”. It can be seen that Putin will not be too worried about the tough policies that the Biden administration may implement.
However, the vast majority of analysis also points out that although the relationship between the United States and Russia will not improve, the two countries will re-sign the expiring New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty. As Putin said in the congratulatory telegram, this treaty dating back to the Cold War may become the “foundation of Russian-American cooperation”.