Reuters reported on December 30 that President Putin, in a letter to US President Donald Trump, expressed the fact that Moscow is ready for dialogue on many topics.
Russian President Vladimir Putin told his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump in a New Year letter on Sunday that Moscow was ready for dialogue on a “wide-ranging agenda”, the Kremlin said following a series of failed attempts to hold a new summit.
These failed attempts in Argentina in November, following the Kerch Strait Incident, and in Paris, have held up attempts by the two leaders to talk. The expressed wishes of President Trump to meet with Putin have been thwarted by political perceptions that he struggles with in his own country, as an extremely adversarial press and Cold War-minded military strategists have managed to keep President Trump on the sidelines.
However, the US President’s recent order to withdraw American forces from Syria and Afghanistan, while castigated by the press and the US establishment, appear to be genuine efforts to steer American policy away from the last fifty or so years of virtually unlimited war, and the more intensive period of military-backed globalism that has entangled the United States in many places around the world.
One way of knowing that the President is changing things in the US is observing the howls and screams of the press. Both liberal and hawkish conservatives have been upset about this recent move, which suggests it is very real, indeed.
President Putin’s letter is politically risky for the American president, in a time where the Russiagate investigation shows no qualified sign of concluding, and with an incoming Democrat-led House, the Democrats are acting very confident, as though they believe they can destroy the President’s agenda and maybe even remove him from office.
However, the flip side to this was shown by Mr. Trump’s refusals to play “establishment politics” both in terms of foreign policy moves as noted before, and at home, with his insistence that a border wall must be funded before he will allow the government to fully reopen.
Seen in this light, there is perhaps little to lose.
The US was not the only country to receive overtures from the Russian President. Reuters continues:
Putin also sent New Year greetings to other world leaders including prime ministers Theresa May of Britain and Shinzo Abe of Japan, as well as Chinese President Xi Jinping.
Putin wished “well-being and prosperity to the British people”, the Kremlin said.
Russia’s embassy in London said on Friday Moscow and London had agreed to return some staff to their respective embassies after they expelled dozens of diplomats early this year.
Britain expelled 23 Russian diplomats over accusations the Kremlin was behind a nerve toxin attack in March on former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the English city of Salisbury.
Russia, which denies any involvement in the poisoning, sent home the same number of British embassy workers in retaliation.
2019 looks like it will be a very turbulent and interesting year on many fronts.