Why the West has failed to understand Russia


For three decades, the West has not learned to understand Russia, having failed all attempts, writes the Belgian edition of Modern Diplomacy.


The fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 set off a domino chain reaction in Eastern Europe. As a result, the USSR was destroyed. In 1991, Mikhail Gorbachev's reforms failed and the giant superpower ceased to exist, breaking up into a dozen states.

The Russian Federation declared itself the legal successor of the USSR. Relations between Moscow and Washington during Boris Yeltsin's rule were warm but strange. The United States perceived Russia, as it struggled to recover from the collapse of communism, as a weak country. The bombing of Yugoslavia in 1999 opened the eyes of many in Russia.

After that, Vladimir Putin came to power in the Russian Federation and another era began. However, the West continued to make mistakes. He did not regard Russia as a country that got rid of communism, i.e. as to other post-Soviet countries, but with a share of hostility. NATO's rapid expansion to the East was proof of this. Russia sensed the danger and finally realized that the United States would not treat it as an equal power.

During two presidential terms, Putin managed to stabilize the situation in the country, to establish work economics and start defending Russia's interests in the international arena. In 2012, he was re-elected for a third term. The West was frightened by the rapid revival of Russia and the strengthening of its position in the world. This created distrust. In turn, Russia painfully perceived Western interference in its internal affairs and issues of the post-Soviet space.

In 2013-2016, i.e. under Barack Obama, with Joe Biden as vice president, three events took place between Moscow and Washington that destabilized relations. The first is the "Edward Snowden case." He released secret documents, and Moscow granted him asylum. The second is the events in Ukraine in 2014. The reunification of Crimea with Russia led to the fact that Moscow was expelled from the GXNUMX. Third, the beginning of the Russian military campaign in Syria and the rescue of the "Assad regime".

During the presidency of Donald Trump, Washington and Moscow showed a desire to improve relations, but the matter never came to specifics. Trump's clumsy attempt to bring Russia back to the G2 has ended in vain. The sanctions against the Nord Stream XNUMX gas pipeline most eloquently point to the real state of affairs.

Biden is a familiar face to the Kremlin, but lukewarm relations exist between him and Putin. It was Biden who met with the leaders of the Russian opposition and said that Putin should not run for president in 2012. The new US administration is expected to be tougher policy in relation to Moscow. Nonetheless, US-Russian relations under Biden may be more pragmatic than under Trump. Admiral James Stavridis once wrote - "read Russian classics and you will understand Russia."
  • Photos used: Ekaterina Arutyunova / wikimedia.org
Ad
We are open to cooperation with authors in the news and analytical departments. A prerequisite is the ability to quickly analyze the text and check the facts, to write concisely and interestingly on political and economic topics. We offer flexible working hours and regular payments. Please send your responses with examples of work to [email protected]
50 comments
Information
Dear reader, to leave comments on the publication, you must sign in.
  1. _AMUHb_ Offline _AMUHb_
    _AMUHb_ (_AMUHb_) 26 January 2021 21: 13
    +4
    just rephrase the question and you get the answer.
    "why did the west fail attempts to" bend "Russia?
    1. Vladest Offline Vladest
      Vladest (Vladimir) 26 January 2021 22: 39
      +1
      Quote: _AMUHb_
      why did the west fail to "bend" Russia

      How was this supposed to be expressed?
  2. Vladest Offline Vladest
    Vladest (Vladimir) 26 January 2021 22: 33
    -1
    Why the West has failed to understand Russia

    The West has not yet understood it, even after "Reunification with Crimea". The US has already understood.
  3. boriz Offline boriz
    boriz (boriz) 27 January 2021 01: 45
    +1
    The mentality is too different. Russians have lived on their land for thousands of years, have a rich history, even if you mean the official history. And how much is erased, left behind the scenes.
    And the United States is a territory and a crowd without history. A rabble of adventurers, ex-slaves, murderers and other criminals. What mentality might they have? The talented people who come there are processed in this boiler and become the same in the next generations.
    1. Cyril Offline Cyril
      Cyril (Kirill) 27 January 2021 12: 46
      0
      A rabble of adventurers, ex-slaves, murderers and other criminals.

      This is not true.

      We also have convicts to the Urals, to Siberia, to the North and the Far East. Runaway peasants, deserters and other "dashing people" themselves fled there. What, now there is a "nation of murderers, former slaves and other criminals" living there?

      The only thing we can agree with is adventurism. Indeed, to swim across the ocean, to conquer unknown lands, including the peoples inhabiting them - you need to have a certain courage.
      1. Ulysses Offline Ulysses
        Ulysses (Alexey) 27 January 2021 21: 55
        0
        to swim across the ocean, to conquer unknown lands, including the peoples inhabiting them - you need to have a certain courage.

        Conquering Siberia is a real courage.
        1. Cyril Offline Cyril
          Cyril (Kirill) 27 January 2021 21: 56
          0
          As well as conquering the American continent, Australia, Africa and any other unknown territory.
      2. isofat Offline isofat
        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 10: 06
        -1
        Quote: Cyril
        This is not true.

        ... to swim across the ocean, conquer unknown lands, including the peoples inhabiting them - you need to have a certain courage.

        Cyril... True.
        And to get into someone else's pocket, you also need a certain courage. smile
        1. Cyril Offline Cyril
          Cyril (Kirill) 28 January 2021 13: 56
          0
          True.

          To a very small extent. The bulk of the population of the North American colonies were not criminals.

          And to get into someone else's pocket, you also need a certain courage.

          Certainly. But it's not about getting into someone else's pocket.
          1. isofat Offline isofat
            isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 14: 24
            -1
            Quote: Cyril
            To a very small extent. The bulk of the population of the North American colonies were not criminals.

            Certainly. But it's not about getting into someone else's pocket.


            You take into account only those who have already come to America as criminals, and you do not consider those who became them by killing and deceiving the Indians.

            We are talking about the murder and robbery of peaceful people, for this you do not need courage.
            1. Cyril Offline Cyril
              Cyril (Kirill) 28 January 2021 14: 29
              0
              You take into account only those who have already come to America as criminals, and you do not consider those who became them by killing and deceiving the Indians.

              Then the colonizers of the Caucasus, the Urals, Siberia, the Far East are also considered criminals? After all, they also killed, and deceived, and robbed local residents.

              We are talking about the murder and robbery of peaceful people, for this you do not need courage.

              But the Indians were by no means peaceful birds.
              1. isofat Offline isofat
                isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 14: 40
                -1
                Quote: Cyril
                Then the colonizers of the Caucasus, the Urals, Siberia, the Far East are also considered criminals?

                But the Indians were by no means peaceful birds.

                Cyril... Why did you jump from one to the other? The United States committed genocide of the country's indigenous population.

                Indians are not birds, you are wrong. They are people whom the colonialists killed and expelled from their lands.
                1. Cyril Offline Cyril
                  Cyril (Kirill) 28 January 2021 14: 52
                  -1
                  Why did you jump from one to the other? The United States committed genocide of the country's indigenous population.

                  Because in both cases - both during the colonization of the distant lands of Russia and during the colonization of America - there were murders, and robberies, and deception, and other violence.
                  Russian troops and colonialists also used similar methods - in particular, massacres, robbery, eviction from fertile lands, killing livestock, spoiling crops to create artificial starvation, etc.

                  This is again an analogy with which you are not friends.

                  Accordingly, there are 2 following options:

                  - to recognize the Russian colonialists as criminals, but in this case my opponent and you lose the moral right to blame other peoples for this (British, French, Spaniards, etc.);
                  - do not use the legal term "criminal" to all colonialists in both cases.

                  They are people whom the colonialists killed and expelled from their lands.

                  To the same extent as the Caucasians, the inhabitants of Siberia and the Far East, who were oppressed and killed in the same way, expelled from fertile lands, killed cattle to cause famine, etc.

                  All this I mean is that banal hypocrisy is hidden in your supposedly highly moral reasoning.
                  1. isofat Offline isofat
                    isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 15: 06
                    -1
                    Cyril... With some black pages of US historyI think we're done.

                    The crimes committed by this country cannot be justified by other crimes.

                    You could not object to anything.
                    1. Cyril Offline Cyril
                      Cyril (Kirill) 28 January 2021 15: 12
                      -1
                      You could not object to anything.

                      And I did not object to the very fact of the violent colonization of America.

                      My objection was that Americans are a society of criminals, ex-slaves and convicts.

                      The crimes committed by this country cannot be justified by other crimes.

                      That's just not for you, the descendants of the same invaders, murderers, etc., to talk about these crimes.
                      1. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 15: 24
                        0
                        Quote: Cyril
                        And I did not object to the very fact of the violent colonization of America.

                        Cyril... And I didn't speak. I say that the colonialists committed a crime, namely the genocide of the country's indigenous population.

                        This crime, today, is a crime without a statute of limitations.

                        The USA is a country built on the genocide of the indigenous population, the Indians.
                      2. Cyril Offline Cyril
                        Cyril (Kirill) 28 January 2021 15: 27
                        -1
                        This crime, today, is a crime without a statute of limitations.

                        Then the crimes against Caucasians, residents of Siberia, the Far East also have no statute of limitations?

                        And then this expression:

                        The USA is a country built on genocide.

                        Can it be applied to Russia?

                        And then we again return to the fact that it is not for us, the Russians, to reproach the Americans for the fact that they once killed the Indians there?
                      3. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 15: 30
                        -1
                        Cyril. You cannot justify one crime with another.

                        You jump off and move the arrows to discuss another topic.
                      4. Cyril Offline Cyril
                        Cyril (Kirill) 28 January 2021 15: 47
                        -1
                        You jump off and move the arrows to discuss another topic.

                        No, I'm talking about how generally the term "criminal" is applicable in the topic under discussion.

                        Initially there was a statement that:

                        And the United States is a territory and a crowd without history. A rabble of adventurers former slaves, murderers and other criminals.

                        This does not correspond to historical reality. Most of the settlers were not criminals and murderers. And even more so, it is impossible to extrapolate the actions committed in the distant past to modern society.

                        Then you stuck in and really changed thesis, calling all immigrants criminals, because they committed violence against the indigenous population in the process of colonization.

                        By analogy with the Russian colonialists, I showed you the inconsistency of such a substitution of the thesis, that's all. War is a war, violence, robbery, etc. are inevitable. And then we must either recognize any colonialists as criminals, or not use this word at all.
                      5. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 16: 00
                        +1
                        Quote: Cyril
                        Most of the settlers were not criminals and murderers.

                        Cyril... The USA has many black pages in its history. We have touched on only one of them - the genocide of the population in America. hi

                        Colonists robbed and killed! The last Indian uprising was suppressed in our time, in 1973.
                      6. Alexander K_2 Offline Alexander K_2
                        Alexander K_2 (Alexander K) 28 January 2021 17: 54
                        -1
                        I will get into your dispute, "black pages", if desired, will be found in every country! And it is NOT possible to measure and blame supernaturally.
                      7. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 18: 05
                        0
                        The dispute is over, and the opponent's defense of the United States is far from convincing.
                      8. Alexander K_2 Offline Alexander K_2
                        Alexander K_2 (Alexander K) 28 January 2021 20: 01
                        0
                        Does the USA need protection?
                      9. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 20: 05
                        0
                        Quote: Alexander K_2
                        Does the USA need protection?

                        Of course, you've probably heard that the United States has a missile defense system?
                      10. Alexander K_2 Offline Alexander K_2
                        Alexander K_2 (Alexander K) 28 January 2021 20: 07
                        0
                        Who should they defend against, is there still a superpower on Earth?
                      11. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 20: 14
                        0
                        There is someone, otherwise they would not spend so much money on defense on Earth and in Space. Maybe you think that they are stupid and are afraid in vain?
                      12. Alexander K_2 Offline Alexander K_2
                        Alexander K_2 (Alexander K) 28 January 2021 20: 17
                        0
                        The United States has such a military budget, in order to ALWAYS and EVERYWHERE be able to protect the interests of the United States! And the threats as for the US country - from whom?
                      13. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 20: 32
                        0
                        Duc, and I'm about the same, dear! Clearly, the US must defend itself if something happens. What an example to go far, you know how terrible the Japanese are?

                        They had to spend as many as two atomic bombs on them, and they cost money. There are only enemies around. Take the underdeveloped countries, they are underdeveloped today, but how will they begin to develop.

                        This cannot be allowed for savages to develop. How much money has to be spent on defense, how much money ... a lot! sad
                      14. Alexander K_2 Offline Alexander K_2
                        Alexander K_2 (Alexander K) 28 January 2021 20: 36
                        0
                        I agree that if America is profitable, it will find the strength to understand Russia, they understood in 1941-1945!
          2. Cyril Offline Cyril
            Cyril (Kirill) 29 January 2021 12: 48
            -1
            The dispute is over, and the opponent's defense of the United States is far from convincing.

            Not convincing, of course. What can be opposed to your substitution of theses?
      3. Cyril Offline Cyril
        Cyril (Kirill) 29 January 2021 12: 47
        -2
        Colonists robbed and killed! The last Indian uprising was suppressed in our time, in 1973.

        Russian colonists also robbed and killed, and the last "uprising of the Caucasians" was suppressed in the late 90s and early 2000s :)
  • amateur Offline amateur
    amateur (Victor) 27 January 2021 06: 32
    -1
    Mind does not understand Russia,
    No yardstick to measure:
    She has a special become -
    You can only believe in Russia.


    (F. Tyutchev)
  • Bulanov Offline Bulanov
    Bulanov (Vladimir) 27 January 2021 09: 54
    +1
    To understand Russia, it is enough not to lie to her! Russia has strength in truth. And those who deceive Russia are then surprised at the bad attitude towards them.
    1. Alexander K_2 Offline Alexander K_2
      Alexander K_2 (Alexander K) 28 January 2021 17: 55
      -1
      Lying is not desirable, not only in relation to countries!
  • stepet Offline stepet
    stepet 27 January 2021 13: 34
    -8
    For three decades, the West has not learned to understand Russia, having failed all attempts,

    And even there were no attempts.
    The West wanted to sneeze at Russia, as they did at the USSR before.
    Too much honor for her (RF) in his opinion.
    18th economy in the world, 0,85% of the world economic system.
    Russia in the world, no one can call her.
    Yes, yes, it must be understood once.
    And do not blow your cheeks and make a stern face. Causing the laughter of opponents.
    13 Taiwan (Chinese Taipei) 133.08%
    14 Switzerland 127.01%
    15 Netherlands 121.83%
    16 Brazil 115.79%
    17 Hong Kong SAR 100.45%
    18 Russia 100.00%
    19 Mexico 88.48%
    20 Belgium 71.87%
    21 Sweden 67.11%
    22 Austria 63.87%
    23 Indonesia 59.73%
    1. Miffer Offline Miffer
      Miffer (Sam Miffers) 27 January 2021 14: 03
      0
      Where did these numbers come from? A source?
      1. stepet Offline stepet
        stepet 27 January 2021 15: 03
        -7
        Quote: Miffer
        Where did these numbers come from? A source?

        Credit Suisse
        1. Miffer Offline Miffer
          Miffer (Sam Miffers) 27 January 2021 16: 05
          0
          This is the name of the bank. Or rather, you can?
          1. stepet Offline stepet
            stepet 27 January 2021 16: 26
            -7
            This is the name of the bank. Or rather, you can?

            This is the name of the organization that conducted the research.
            Yes, this is Credit Suisse Bank.
            The data is publicly available on the Credit Suisse website.
            You can see for yourself.
            1. Ulysses Offline Ulysses
              Ulysses (Alexey) 27 January 2021 22: 04
              0
              This is the name of the organization that conducted the research.
              Yes, this is Credit Suisse Bank.

              The Swiss were simply sent to Russia.
              Like an unreliable bank.
              1. stepet Offline stepet
                stepet 27 January 2021 22: 20
                -4
                Quote: Ulysses
                The Swiss were simply sent to Russia.

                The study was conducted in 171 countries of the world.
                It is actually held every year.
                And for many years.
                1. Ulysses Offline Ulysses
                  Ulysses (Alexey) 27 January 2021 22: 30
                  0
                  The study was conducted in 171 countries of the world.
                  It is actually held every year.
                  And for many years.

                  It is high time to give up on all this "research".
                  They are as valuable as a penny on a market day.
                  1. stepet Offline stepet
                    stepet 28 January 2021 00: 45
                    -3
                    Quote: Ulysses
                    It is high time to give up on all this "research".
                    They are as valuable as a penny on a market day.

                    Of course of course.
                    All the numbers that you don't like should be scored.
                    So hammer it.
                    Nobody bothers you personally.
                    1. isofat Offline isofat
                      isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 01: 46
                      0
                      Quote: stepet
                      All the numbers that you don't like should be scored.
                      So hammer it.

                      stepet, what are you thinking? We need numbers to write numbers. But the research, as presented by you, is questionable. We only know about these studies from you. From the list that you showed it is clearly visible Russia was taken as the standard - 100,00%, and in the list it is at number 18.

                      It seems to me that this presentation of material indicates fraud. wink
                      1. stepet Offline stepet
                        stepet 28 January 2021 10: 35
                        -4
                        We only know about these studies from you.

                        So head over to Credit Suisse's website and find out everything from the source.
                        This is not classified information.

                        It seems to me that this presentation of material indicates fraud.

                        Will it be more convenient for you?
                        13 Taiwan (Chinese Taipei) 4 062.290
                        14 Switzerland 3 876.907
                        15 Netherlands 3 718.980
                        16 Brazil 3 534.596
                        17 Hong Kong SAR 3 066.180
                        18 Russia 3 052.543
                        19 Mexico 2 700.747
                        20 Belgium 2 193.801
                        21 Sweden 2 048.603
                        22 Austria 1 949.726
                        23 Indonesia 1
                        This is the net worth of states with all their guts in trillion. dollars.
                        In this case, calculate the interest yourself.
                      2. isofat Offline isofat
                        isofat (isofat) 28 January 2021 11: 18
                        0
                        stepet... There are still no links, and the plate, after the remark made, has been edited. sad

                        Quote: stepet
                        In this case, calculate the interest yourself.

                        They would immediately say that the percentage was calculated by a person who does not understand the difference between a number and a number. wink

                        You, or a crook, or not smart enough.
                      3. stepet Offline stepet
                        stepet 28 January 2021 11: 45
                        -3
                        Quote: isofat
                        There are still no links,

                        You are told where to look.
                        Look here.

                        Quote: isofat
                        You, or a crook, or not smart enough.

                        Not me, but Credit Suisse specialists.
                        And the fact that the Internet is full of unrecognized geniuses, like you, next to whom everyone is "not smart enough", I am aware of this.
                        Usually special doctors deal with such "geniuses".
                        So I will not take their bread from them.
                2. Cyril Offline Cyril
                  Cyril (Kirill) 28 January 2021 14: 03
                  +1
                  All the numbers that you don't like should be scored.

                  They always have this level of counterargumentation, there's nothing you can do about it.
  • Alexander K_2 Offline Alexander K_2
    Alexander K_2 (Alexander K) 28 January 2021 17: 58
    -1
    Well, you have gone too far, as long as Russia has something to offer the West it will be needed, equally applies to any country!
    1. stepet Offline stepet
      stepet 28 January 2021 20: 16
      -5
      Quote: Alexander K_2
      as long as Russia has something to offer the West it will be needed,

      Russia today can offer the West only oil and gas and cannon fodder.