Connect with us

Latest

Analysis

News

PUTIN: Master statesman with Turkey and Japan – and now Trump

Vladimir Putin has developed close relations with the leaders of Turkey and Japan in spite of continued policy differences and historic difficulties. This is the key to understanding how Putin’s relationship with Donald Trump could develop.

Published

on

1,728 Views

Over the years, Russia has fought more wars against Turkey than any other country, even more than Poland. Likewise, between 1904 and 1905 Russia fought a war with Japan whose devastating outcome for Russia lead to a destabilising revolution at home. Russia’s relations with Japan did not get much better as the century rolled on. The Soviet Union was on the opposite side of the Second World War vis-a-vis Japan and territorial disputes over the Kuril Islands remain unresolved into the 21st century.

Turkey and Japan’s policies have not suddenly become pro-Russian in recent years. In respect of Turkey, there is a strong case to be made that while Turkish political leadership has moved closer to Russia, Turkey’s policies have if anything become more contrary to Russian interests.

This is why the strong personal relationship between Vladimir Putin and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as well as that with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are important case studies if one is to try and ascertain what might become of the relationship between Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been the leading political figure in Turkey since 2003, first as Prime Minister and then after 2014 as a strong President. During this time he has developed a close relationship with Vladimir Putin, one based on personal respect, something Erdogan seems to have little of for many other leaders.

This did not stop Turkey from shooting down a Russia jet in 2015 when it allegedly strayed into Turkey airspace for seconds although many independent observers note that it was almost certainly in friendly Syria airspace the entire time.

This was a situation that could have realistically led to war, but because of Putin’s patience, it led to Erdogan personally apologising to Russia for the incident after which he called Russia a “friend and strategic partner”. This is even more astounding as it came from a man who remains among the most unapologetic world leaders in recent history.

In many ways, the personal relationship between Putin and Erdogan has grown stronger since then. Even as Turkey continues to back jihadist groups in Syria, the personal relationship between Putin and Erdogan has allowed Russo-Turkish relations to strengthen in many other areas. This close relationship has also helped to draw Turkey closer to Iran. The door which first opened this was Russia inviting both Iran and Turkey to form the Astana Group for peace in Syria.

Likewise, the Kuril Islands dispute between Russia and Japan has long been a barrier to good bilateral relations between Moscow and Tokyo.

However, under Prime Minister Abe who has been in power since 2012 (after a brief period in power from 2006 to 2007), Japan and Russia have agreed to work cooperatively and through dialogue over the dispute with both sides renouncing violence and unilateralism.

Japan still views many issues totally differently from Russia, including the situation on the Korean peninsula, but Abe and Putin’s close personal relationship has led to an unexpected turn for the better in Russo-Japanese relations. Indeed, Abe was among the first world leaders to visit with a newly elected President Trump and he told his American ally that having good relations with Russia and its President is both essential and a desirable thing.

Vladimir Putin is capable of fostering good personal relations with leaders whose official policies often remain at odds with Russian interests, something which is something of a masterful achievement in bilateral diplomacy.

Russia is unique in that it has close allies (China, Belarus), traditional allies and partners (India, Syria, Vietnam, Cuba, Serbia, Palestine, Greece, Cyprus, newly consecrated partners re-established partnerships (Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Egypt, Venezuela, Philippines) and nations that Russia speaks to with ease in spite of apparent ideological differences (Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Israel, Germany).

In reality, Russia has only one declared enemy in the world and that happens to be the world’s most violent, unstable, illegitimate and at times comical regime, that in Kiev. This shouldn’t be a surprise as this regime was created for the purpose of being Russia’s enemy.

For all the troubles the EU and US have caused Russia, Russia still refers to them as ‘partners’ and this patience seems to be paying off. Germany and her allies have said no to sanctions from the US which would hurt Russo-German cooperation on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline and under Donald Trump, the US is no longer led by a leader with a pathological hatred of Russia as Obama appeared to have.

During the G20, Putin remarked that while US policy has not changed dramatically under the leadership of Donald Trump, that nevertheless, he is a person Putin can work with.

The Russian President stated,

“As regards personal relations, I believe that they have been established. This is how I see it: Mr Trump’s television image is very different from the real person; he is a very down to earth and direct person, and he has an absolutely adequate attitude towards the person he is talking with; he analyses things pretty fast and answers the questions he is asked or new ones that arise in the course of the discussion. So I think that if we build our relations in the vein of our yesterday’s meeting, there are good reasons to believe that we will be able to revive, at least partially, the level of interaction that we need”.

This is official confirmation that because of Donald Trump, the US has been moved from Russia’s basket of disagreeables into something that could realistically approach Russia’s relationship with Erdogan’s Turkey and Abe’s Japan. This is a giant step in a positive direction. Donald Trump offers even more hope because unlike any Turkish or Japanese leader who would necessarily carry some historically anti-Russian baggage, Trump seems not only unmoved by the recent trend of Russophobia, but he seems to admire much about Russia’s conservative outlook, Christian heritage and strong leadership, three things Trump is keen to associate himself with in the US.

Putin once admitted that the “men in black suits” run America, a euphemism for the deep state, but it increasingly seems that Trump will at least sometimes put up a fight with them meaning that there is a small but crucial potential for the US under Trump to become slightly more elevated in terms of relations with Russia vis-a-vis that of Erodgan’s Turkey and Abe’s Japan.

The deep state sees controlling and meddling in Russia’s natural sphere of influence as a crucial American ‘red line’, but Donald Trump seems to see things differently.  Even if Trump remains compromised in this respect for the foreseeable future, the world is still in better shape than it was under Obama, let alone better than it would be under Hillary Clinton whose perverse combination of avarice and fanaticism could have easily covered the world in blood and perhaps also nuclear fallout.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of

Latest

What Lies Behind the Malaise of the West?

Prime Minister Theresa May was just forced to pledge that she would not lead her party in the next election — to survive a no-confidence vote in Parliament.

Patrick J. Buchanan

Published

on

Authored by Patrick Buchanan via Buchanan.org:


Is it coincidence or contagion, this malady that seems to have suddenly induced paralysis in the leading nations of the West?

With lawyer-fixer Michael Cohen’s confession that he colluded with Donald Trump in making hush money payoffs to Stormy Daniels and Karen McDougal, America’s stage is set for a play that will run two years.

As Democrats test the waters for a presidential run by savaging Trump, the establishment Trump detests and defeated in 2016 will use every weapon in its considerable arsenal to break and bring him down, as it did half a century ago to Richard Nixon.

By spring 2019, Americans will be unable to escape the vitriol on cable and social media. And the outside world will see America again as a house divided. Our politics will be even more poisonous than now, and it is not easy to see what would bring our warring tribes together again.

Consider, then, the situation of our old ally Great Britain.

Prime Minister Theresa May was just forced to pledge that she would not lead her party in the next election — to survive a no-confidence vote in Parliament. A third of all Tory members voted to throw her out.

The no-confidence vote was called after May had to cancel a vote on the Brexit plan she had negotiated with the EU, when it was evident that a coalition of Tories and Labor would vote to kill her plan.

May has been humiliated. Yet her humiliation solves nothing. The clock is running toward a March deadline for concluding a Brexit deal. And no plan acceptable to both Parliament and the EU is on the table.

The possibility exists that Britain could simply crash out of the EU, causing severe economic damage to both.

Realizing this, Brussels has left the door open if Britain should vote in a second referendum to remain in the EU. But calling and carrying out that referendum would be a betrayal of the 52 percent of the British people that voted to restore full national independence.

While London wanted to stay in the EU in 2016, England voted to leave. Northern Ireland wanted to stay, as did Scotland, though 45 percent of Scots had earlier voted to declare their own independence from Great Britain.

In France, after four Saturdays of anarchy, arson, looting and vandalism of her national monuments, President Emmanuel Macron capitulated to the rioters. He withdrew the fuel tax that triggered the uprisings. He agreed to have his government add $113 a month to those earning the minimum wage, and to let workers get overtime pay and Christmas bonuses tax-free, and to revoke higher social charges on modest pensions.

The cost of Macron’s retreat is estimated at $11 billion, 0.4 percent of France’s GDP. Saturday will tell us if his appeasement bought peace.

The political collapse of Macron has been extraordinary.

In 2017, he won almost two-thirds of the national vote, and his La Republique en Marche! won an absolute majority of the National Assembly.

Today, one poll puts Macron’s approval at 21 percent. The idea that he can replace Angela Merkel as the recognized leader of the EU seems ridiculous.

As for Merkel herself, hailed as leader of the West in the time of Trump, her party and coalition lost so much support in the recent election that she stepped down as leader of the CDU and pledged not to run for another term as chancellor.

Europe’s fourth-largest economy, Italy, is now led by a coalition of the populist-left Five Star Movement and populist-right Lega party. The coalition seeks greater freedom on spending than Brussels is willing to allow, and a halt to migration from across the Med.

With Poland and Hungary at odds with Brussels over alterations in their political systems, the EU has never seemed less united.

What are the underlying causes of these 21st-century crises of Western democracies?

Certainly, globalization, with its creation of ties among transnational elites at the expense of nation-states and their indigenous peoples is one. Capitals — Washington, London, Paris, Berlin — seem ever more distant from the countries they rule.

Then there is demography. The native-born of almost all Western nations are aging, shrinking and dying. Death rates exceed birth rates. While peoples of the West are living longer, they are producing fewer children to replace them.

At the same time, Western elites have welcomed foreign workers and left borders unsecured against mass migration. And the people coming in, almost all now from the Third World, are not assimilating as the children of 19th- and 20th-century European immigrants to the USA had largely done by 1960.

A consequence and related cause is the rise of tribalism, or ethno-nationalism, the search for identity and community with one’s own. Loyalties to family, tribe, neighborhood, culture and country appear paramount, rising above intellectual and political alignments.

The heart has reasons of which reason knows nothing, said Pascal. And so it does.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Continue Reading

Latest

Petro Poroshenko and Theresa May: failed leaders on the same disastrous trajectory (Video)

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 37.

Alex Christoforou

Published

on

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris take a quick look how UK PM Theresa May and Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko are willing to destroy their country in the pursuit of pleasing their globalist masters, while retaining what little power they still hold.

Remember to Please Subscribe to The Duran’s YouTube Channel.

Follow The Duran Audio Podcast on Soundcloud.

https://soundcloud.com/user-901836666/petro-poroshenko-and-theresa-may-failed-leaders-on-the-same-disastrous-trajectory

Via Zerohedge


Ukraine’s president has recently warned Russian tanks are amassing along the border between the two countries amid increasing tensions. The comments came late last month after three Ukrainian naval boats were seized in the Kerch Strait by Russia.

President Petro Poroshenko has allegedly shown images of what he claims to be hundreds of tanks preparing for an invasion.

He told Sky News:

“This is the tank base just 18km from our border, this was happening in September, October, and now.”

“This is 18km from my border, this is the same warehouse where they have their ammunition, the same where they have multi-rocket launch systems, we should be prepared to protect my country.”

Satellite imagery from Google Earth taken sometime in November from the Defense Blog has verified Poroshenko claims. Photos show hundreds of Russian main battle tanks at a new military installation in the Kamensk-Shakhtinsky region.

The Russian base is about 18 kilometers (11.1 miles) away from the rebel-held territory in eastern Ukraine. Images show hundreds of main battle tanks, with thousands of military trucks, support systems, artillery pieces, tankers, and troop transport vehicles.

Russia has been quietly building up its forces near the border with Ukraine since late summer and now has a military force greater than 2014, the year Moscow annexed Crimea, Viktor Muzhenko, the commander of Ukrainian armed forces, told Reuters in an interview last week.

In front of us is an aggressor who has no legal, moral or any other limits,” he said. “It is very difficult to predict when it will occur to him to begin active combat actions against Ukraine.”

“This (the Kerch Strait incident) was an act of aggression from regular forces, the border service (of the Russian Federation) in relation to the Ukrainian armed forces,” Muzhenko added.

Eric Zuesse via The Strategic Culture Foundation, made a great point in October that Washington is now treating Ukraine as if it were a NATO member, donating warships and military equipment to the country for use against Russia. This is the latest indication that America’s military-industrial complex is shifting to Ukraine as the epicenter to start World War III, and from which the nuclear war is to be sparked against Russia.

There is a reason why Russia is amassing hundreds of main battle tanks on the Ukranian border, that is because the next geopolitical flare-up is right around the corner, likely to occur during the next global recession.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Continue Reading

Latest

Canada PM Justin Trudeau in way over his head with Huawei CFO arrest

The Duran Quick Take: Episode 36.

Alex Christoforou

Published

on

The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Editor-in-Chief Alexander Mercouris take a quick look at Justin Trudeau’s response to U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese officials over of stories around the arrest of Huawei’s CFO in Vancouver and the detention of a former Canadian diplomat in China.

Remember to Please Subscribe to The Duran’s YouTube Channel.

Follow The Duran Audio Podcast on Soundcloud.

Via Zerohedge


China Arrests Former Canadian Diplomat As Government Fears Reprisal For Huawei CFO
Is this one of the “severe” reprisals threatened by Beijing when it summoned Canada’s ambassador to Beijing for a meeting over the weekend?

According to Reuters, former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig has been detained in China. Kovrig’s employer, International Crisis Group, is working to secure his “safe” release.

The reason for Kovrig’s detention wasn’t immediately clear, and Beijing has refused to comment on his detention. However, Reuters noted that the arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou has “stoked fears of reprisals.”

“International Crisis Group is aware of reports that its North East Asia Senior Adviser, Michael Kovrig, has been detained in China,” the think-tank said in a statement.

“We are doing everything possible to secure additional information on Michael’s whereabouts as well as his prompt and safe release,” it added.

China’s Foreign Ministry and Ministry of Public Security did not respond immediately to questions faxed earlier about Kovrig’s detention.

The exact reason for the detention was not immediately clear. The Canadian embassy declined to comment, referring queries to Ottawa.

Kovrig, a Mandarin speaker, has been working for the ICG as an in-house “expert” since February 2017. Prior to that, he served as a diplomat for the Canadian government between 2003 and 2016, with stints in Hong Kong and Beijing.

And while it’s possible that the timing of Kovrig’s arrest is purely coincidental, the timing is certainly suspicious.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!
Continue Reading

JOIN OUR YOUTUBE CHANNEL

Your donations make all the difference. Together we can expose fake news lies and deliver truth.

Amount to donate in USD$:

5 100

Validating payment information...
Waiting for PayPal...
Validating payment information...
Waiting for PayPal...
Advertisement

Advertisement

Quick Donate

The Duran
EURO
DONATE
Donate a quick 10 spot!
Advertisement
Advertisement

Advertisement

The Duran Newsletter

Trending