Not Cold, just processing a politically bankrupt state

Courtesy of Tom, this great news on US outreach to see what Muslim troubles Saudi Arabia can stir up within the decaying Russian Federation. Really, this is great news, and one of the countermeasures I suggested earlier. It seems that the Bush Administration is ably playing a double game, on one hand saying crazy things in an attempt for the Russians to save their own face, while at the same time decoupling our efforts from Putin’s petrothugs.

U.S., Saudi Arabia: Holding the Chechen Card | Stratfor
But after watching Russia’s recent power surge in Georgdia, the Saudis now share a common interest with Washington in keeping the Russians at bay. And with the Saudis now making roughly $1 billion a day on oil revenues, Riyadh has ample cash to spare to revive its links with Islamist militants in the Russian Federation.

Saudi support is not only limited to Chechnya, however. The republic of Tatarstan also is a prime candidate for a covert strategy that aims to inflame Russia’s Muslim minorities. This Muslim belt is key because it separates the ethnically Russian portions of Russia from sparsely populated Siberia and runs through all of Russia’s transport networks (road, rail and pipeline). If Tatarstan, which has become more independent in developing its vast oil wealth, revved up a resistance movement against Moscow, Russia would have no choice but to focus its efforts on quashing the rebellion at home rather than spreading its influence abroad.

There is no chance of a renewed Cold War with Russia, simply because Russia is unable to sustain a Cold War. People who believe in a new Cold War with Russia are guilty of legacy thinking. We are not dealing with the politically bankrupt Empire built on the blood of peasants on workers: rather, we are dealing with a politically bankrupt state that reminds us of nothing so much as a nuclear version of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.

Some may object to helping Chechen, Dagestani, and Tartari “freedom fighters” because of the trouble it may cause in our war against terrorism in Afghanistan-Pakistan. However, we cannot let Pakistan’s civil war dictate our foreign policy. To do so would be to put the Pakistani ISI in charge of the State Department. The battle for the leadership of Pakistan between the army, the ISI, Islamists, socialists, and al Qaedais of no concern for us, except for making sure that al Qaeda loses.

Indeed, supporting Islamists parties in Chechnya, Dagestan, Tartarstan, and elsewhere in Russia may well help is in our battle to punish + destroy al Qaeda, by allowing us to more convincingly partner with “moderate” Islamists elsewhere in the world.

5 thoughts on “Not Cold, just processing a politically bankrupt state”

  1. Uhhgggg…a Moslem Russia is not my idea of a good solution.

    I am okay using them to distract, disorient and redirect Russia. However, a growing Islam is a bigger long-term threat to globalization and US security.

  2. I would imagine these moves would be for harassment, rather than roll-back…

    But think of it this way. If you support a Christian Russia, is it wise or not for Russia to hold on to fast-growing majority-Muslim territory?

    (Similarly, those that support a Jewish Israel must ask themselves about the long-term wisdom of controlling the West Bank and the Gaza Strip).

  3. dude, you are seriously wacked. When are you going to realize that this enemy-of-my-enemy stuff just backfires on you.

    “Islamic” means you are funding people who self-definition, is as Muslims. The problem with that it 1) it attracks crazy types like al-queda; 2) it encourages those muslims to think like a ground and 3) you sideline the real opposition in those countries.

    If you want Saudi to do something to combat Russia, ask them to boost production by 5X again and destroy Russian oil revenue — like they did in the 1980s. Don’t ask them to fund the crazies.

  4. “Indeed, supporting Islamists parties in Chechnya, Dagestan, Tartarstan, and elsewhere in Russia may well help is in our battle to punish + destroy al Qaeda, by allowing us to more convincingly partner with “moderate” Islamists elsewhere in the world.”

    – This is not calling for the support of “Islamist parties,” this is calling for the support of militants and insurgents in the region. They are anything but moderate. A region which is already plagued with violence. Look at Ingushetia. Why would the US get involved in an area already plagued with violence just to make it worse, if it means hurting relations with a country we could use on our side? Why push Russia away with things such as the Missile Shield deal with Poland? Why not use the fact that Russia is politically bankrupt (which you rightly noted) as leverage in talks to incorporate the Russian Federation?

    https://caucasus.wikispaces.com/

  5. RAWilliams

    Why not use the fact that Russia is politically bankrupt (which you rightly noted) as leverage in talks to incorporate the Russian Federation?

    Typically, we do not reward such disasterous behavior — at least not if we are wise.

    If someone is bankrupt, only a foolish cash lender would provide that person with a $100,000 limit.

    If a state is bankrupt, only a foolish lender of power would enable that behavior.

    Serbia in 1998 was politically bankrupt. We did not offer Milosevic membership in the G7. Iraq in 2002 was bankrupt. We did not invite Saddam to join NATO.

    Wishful thinking is fun for daydreaming, but it makes for awful strategy.

    Charlie,

    I’m not sure what your point is. Your comment appears to be a collection of statements, both obvious and highly questionable.

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