Obama and Medvedev: Good Mood Music that Skirted the Central Issues – Gazeta of Russia
Most American commentators and columnists were impressed with President Obama’s first face-to-face meeting with Russian President Dmitry Medvedev at the G20 Summit. So how do the Russians see the event?
Fyodor Lukyanov of the Russian newspaper Gazeta writes that both men and their nations have failed to come to grips with their diminished stature, and that in any case, no mention of the more difficult issues that stand between them was made.
Of Obama and Medvedev and the reason there may be hope of progress, Lukyanov writes in part:
“Both appear to be pragmatists who aspire to deal rationally with the difficult legacy of previous years. Vladimir Putin and George Bush Jr. were no longer capable of a new vision. Too many hopes turned to great disappointment. Their personal attitudes toward one another and the key issues on the table weighed too heavily on matters of state.”
Then after examining areas where agreement could occur and where it has no chance of occurring, Lukyanov writes of the real problem both men need to confront:
“It’s not just the era of Russia’s status as a superpower that has come to an end, but the era of American hegemony. Neither side has yet to fully recognize this. … But the revelation will inevitably come, and with it, perhaps, another lens through which Russia and America will look at one another.”
By Fyodor Lukyanov*
Translated By Yekaterina Blinova
April 2, 2009
Russia – Gazeta – Original Article (Russian)
The first meeting between Dimitry Medvedev and Barack Obama in London didn’t bring a breakthrough in relations, but was, no doubt, a positive event. The confidence the meeting inspired wasn’t due to the results achieved – there weren’t and couldn’t have been results achieved that quickly – but rather to the attitude of the two sides.
Both of them appear to be pragmatists who aspire to deal rationally with the difficult legacy of previous years. Vladimir Putin and George Bush Jr. were no longer capable of a new vision. Too many hopes turned to great disappointment. Their personal attitudes toward one another and the key issues on the table weighed too heavily on matters of state.
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