A person inexperienced in foreign policy hardly could follow the quickly changing world situation. Russian demarches in Europe, Asia and especially in Africa prepare us for Russia’s return to places, it should leave because of USSR destruction. European vector of Russian policy is OSCE. The task Russia has set up for itself is to create a European variant of NATO, where it will play one of dominating roles. It is the more actual at the moment, because after recent announcement about US withdrawal from ABM, many US allies from North Atlantic Treaty Organization felt the US would decide all questions taking into account only its own interests. Therefore, growth of OSCE importance in European countries is on one hand a king of backheel for US interests in Europe, while on the other hand – it is a real possibility for many European countries that earlier had to enter NATO to realize their political ambitions over and above the alliance. Russia’s plans are much wider, than many European countries could imagine. Geographically, Russia is partly situated in Europe, while partly in Asia, that also should play its role. Russia has a real chance to become a bridge between the East and the West. Namely Russia will close economical and political contracts between the parts of the world. So, it is too early to write off the Euroasian theory. Russia also does not forget about its interests in the Middle East. The positive dynamics are to be observed in Moscow’s relations with Teheran, Baghdad and Damask which allows to say that Russia gradually returns to its lost positions. Africa is a mysterious continent, known to us after Jules Verne novels. In Soviet times, more than a half of African continent was more or less controlled by the USSR. After USSR destruction, Russia left the African continent as if forever. Let us not speak what happened later with the USSR-backed countries. Afterwards, Americans tried to enter the continent, though they soon left it. Now Africa is quickly degrading to Paleolit Epoch. After settling relations with more or less stable countries, for example with Namibia and Angola, Russia will get a double economical and geopolitical advantage. From economical point of view, there would be a new market for Russian goods and technologies. From political point of view, there would be a good military co-operation. What is also very important, that these countries are ready to pay for what Russia will supply to them. Therefore, the question is not about charity, as it was in Soviet times. Apropos, they have nothing against paying off what the USSR once invested in them. Russian relations with China and India are another topic.
Dmitry Litvinovich PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://www.pravda.ru/main/2001/12/14/34823.html