According to Russian President Putin, the installation of defensive missiles in Europe is an aggressive measure somehow threatening Russia’s natural resources.
Russian diplomacy and her relations with neighboring states evidently naturally exist in a state of affairs in which Russia has the strategic arms equivalent of a loaded gun, cocked, and aimed at those neighboring states’ cities and civilian populations. Russia possesses a natural right in her relations with other states to all the advantages possessed by the armed mugger pointing a pistol at his unarmed interlocutor’s head.
If the United States was proposing to install a new system of offensive weapons in Poland, whose location could facilitate a rationally imaginable new Western invasion of the Russian motherland, clearly he would have cause to protest and declare a new arms race underway, but these violent protestations about defensive missiles, missiles clearly specifically intended as a defense against impending Middle Eastern threats resemble nothing so much as the burglar complaining bitterly about the householder buying a gun.
President Vladimir Putin declared the onset of a “new arms race” yesterday and vowed to expand Russia’s military strength to ward off predatory foreign powers.
In a televised address to the State Council in Moscow, Mr Putin delivered the belligerent rhetoric which has become his hallmark.
Appraising global events, the president said: “It is already clear that a new phase in the arms race is unfolding in the world.”
He added that “no steps towards compromise” had yet been made on America’s plan to station a missile defence shield in Europe.
“There has been no constructive response to our well-founded concerns,” said Mr Putin. Consequently, he has vowed to modernise Russia’s armed forces.
“We are being forced to take retaliatory steps. Russia has and always will have a response to these new challenges. In the near future, Russia will start production of new weapons systems that will not be inferior and in some cases excel those held by other countries.”
This was necessary to defend Russia from unnamed foreign powers who, he claimed, were bent on controlling the world’s natural resources.
“Foreign policy actions and diplomatic moves smell of oil and gas,” said Mr Putin.