News / Europe

Analysts: US, Russia Relations Are Good Despite Differences

Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev (R) gives U.S. President Barack Obama a thumbs up as they meet at the first plenary meeting during the APEC Summit in Honolulu, Hawaii November 13, 2011.
Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev (R) gives U.S. President Barack Obama a thumbs up as they meet at the first plenary meeting during the APEC Summit in Honolulu, Hawaii November 13, 2011.

Most experts agree relations between the United States and Russia are good. The two countries still have differences, but they increasingly work together on a wide range of issues.  

President Barack Obama has made better relations with Russia a cornerstone of his foreign policy. Experts say the so-called “reset” in relations that Obama launched shortly after coming into office almost three years ago has generated important achievements.

Angela Stent, a Russia expert at Georgetown University, said the highlight was the ratification by both countries of the New START treaty reducing long-range nuclear weapons.

“We can still destroy each other - it makes no sense to have all those warheads. The Cold War is over, so we’ve drastically cut down the number of warheads and we are going to cut them down further. So I think it was very important to accomplish that,” said Stent.

Stent and others say another achievement was the agreement allowing U.S. military transports to transit through Russia into Afghanistan.  Given the frayed relationship between the United States and Pakistan, Stent says that supply route is crucial for the conduct of the war.

Moscow also has supported stronger United Nations sanctions against Iran and has canceled the delivery of S-300 anti-aircraft missiles to Tehran. In addition, the Russian government did not oppose a no-fly zone over Libya.

But Stent says the two sides still disagree on U.S. plans for a missile defense system in Europe.

“We have explained to them - our government [has], many, many times - this system has to do with concerns about the Iranians acquiring nuclear weapons, about the North Koreans, about countries that could threaten us all. It’s not aimed at Russia,” said Stent.

She said the “reset” in relations has been built on the relationship between President Obama and his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev.

“They’ve met many times, they’ve talked much more. They spent a lot time together either virtually or really. President Obama met with Prime Minister [Vladimir] Putin once in July 2009 and it was a difficult meeting. Putin has a lot of resentment against the United States, against what he sees as failed promises from the Bush administration, and he certainly discussed those.”

Former National Security Adviser General Brent Scowcroft looks at Putin’s criticism.

“Putin’s basic complaint was at the end of the Cold War, 'When we - the Russians - were flat on our backs, you took advantage of it. You pushed the borders of NATO right up to include parts of the old Soviet Union. You denounced the ABM [Anti-Ballistic Missile] treaty. You did a lot of things because we were weak. And now we are strong and you can’t do that anymore,'” said Scowcroft.

In a few months, Russian citizens go to the polls to elect a new president to succeed Medvedev. The odds-on favorite to win is Putin. Many experts wonder whether the good relationship between Washington and Moscow will continue, or whether there will be a harsher tone from the Kremlin, given Putin’s previous history.

You May Like

IS Militants Release 49 Turkish Hostages

Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency reports that no ransom was paid and no conditions accepted for the hostages' release; few details of the release are known More

Photogallery IS Attacks Send Thousands of Syrian Kurds Fleeing to Turkey

Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says more than 300 Kurdish fighters crossed into Syria from Turkey to defend a Kurdish area from attack by the Islamic militants More

Video Sierra Leone's Ebola Lockdown Continues

Thousands of health workers are going door to door in the West African country of 6 million, informing people of how to avoid Ebola, handing out soap More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Fears Ebola Outbreak ‘Beyond Our Capability to Contain’i
X
Jeff Seldin
September 20, 2014 10:28 PM
Each day brings with it new warnings about the deadly Ebola outbreak already blamed for killing more than 2,600 people across West Africa. And while countries and international organizations like the United Nations are starting to come through on promises of help for those most affected, the unprecedented speed with which the virus has spread is raising questions about the international response. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from Washington.
Video

Video Fears Ebola Outbreak ‘Beyond Our Capability to Contain’

Each day brings with it new warnings about the deadly Ebola outbreak already blamed for killing more than 2,600 people across West Africa. And while countries and international organizations like the United Nations are starting to come through on promises of help for those most affected, the unprecedented speed with which the virus has spread is raising questions about the international response. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from Washington.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid