JRL NEWSWATCH: “Russia cannot afford another 15 years at war with the west” – Financial Times/ Philip Stephens

File Photo of Kremlin Tower, St. Basil's, Red Square at Night

“Vladimir Putin should brush off the cold war cobwebs in pursuit of a hard-headed look at national interests.”

“… Putin is proposing … the option of another 15 years in office. He could … continu[e] to shake his fist at the west. Alternatively, he could brush away the cobwebs of the cold war and begin to recognise the challenge to Russian power from its friend and ally China. So far … Putin’s foreign policy has been tactical rather than strategic. … to keep up appearances. … [He] heads a nation in decline … one unwilling to cede its place at the top table of global affairs. … At some point … the pretence becomes unsustainable. … File Photo of Beijing Temple, adapted from image at lbl.govThe Kremlin[] … has … sacrifice[d] strategic interests to appearances. The unspoken price has been the acceptance of the role of junior partner in Beijing. …”

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