Date: 09 July, 2012
Time: 02:10 Emirate time
A prominent Western experts on Russia, Anders Aslund, senior fellow at Peterson Institute for International Economics, told in his article in Foreign Policy that Putin had recognized that he didn't not belong at the G-8 summit in Camp David on May 18-19. So the G8 is to take the Putin's' step according to its merits and kick Russia out of it, he writes.
Mr. Aslund advices the pro-Russian US President Obama the Resetter "to reconsider his "reset", as the situation has changed".
While Medvedev, when he was Russia's president, "improved Russian relations with virtually everybody", Putin announced as his major foreign policy goal was the creation of the Eurasian Union. "This is a sign of insecurity and isolation", indicates the expert. Putin announced that he would not attend the G8 summit. Mr. Aslund notes that Putin's "explanation" is "implausible."
"Putin has systematically transformed Russia from a semi-democracy to an authoritarian state. Tales of his gross personal corruption are abundant. In diplomacy, you have to deal with all kinds of people, but that doesn't mean the West should invite Putin to every forum".
Mr. Aslund also recommends to abolish the NATO-Russia Council and the G8: "Russia is no longer a democracy by any stretch of the word, the basis for Russia's membership in the G-8 has evaporated". All Putin's friends among the leaders of G8 - Berlusconi, Chirac and Schroeder - "have gone and are duly discredited".
He also recalled that the last time Putin visited a NATO summit was the Bucharest meeting in April 2008. After that, the encouraged Putin attacked Georgia.
Obama needs to stand up against the illegitimate Putin's "presidency". To begin with, Obama is to notify Putin that he would not meet him until he stops abusing the US Moscow Ambassador McFaul, the expert recommends.
In the case of the G8 summit, Obama "allowed himself to be humiliated", says the expert. "Obama should have suggested instead that he understood Putin's disinterest because Russia is no longer a democracy and the G-7 and has no reason to invite Russia to this democratic club".
In contrast, Russia should be most welcomed in international economic organizations - G20 and the WTO. "Benefiting from trade with Russia is in America's interests. But it's also very much in US interests to put Russia's leader in his place", says Mr. Aslund, and suggests that Obama treats Putin as an American slave treats his Russian master, which can only damage healthy US-Russian relations.
"Because of the democratic endeavors by earlier Russian presidents Mikhail Gorbachev and Boris Yeltsin, the G-7 welcomed Russia in 1997. But because Russia is no longer a democracy by any stretch of the word, the basis for Russia's membership in the G-8 has evaporated", concludes Anders Aslund.
Department of Monitoring
 photo from article