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“Medvedevgate” will be forgotten quickly, however, an after-effect will remain, if only because this story revealed the political and economic workings of Russia’s current elite. It provided an inside look at how money and luxury serve as the lifeblood animating Russia’s body politic.
The Reykjavik summit from thirty years ago shows what can be done when two leaders, whose states are supposedly implacable enemies, take responsibility and act to enhance the world’s strategic stability and safety.
If explained in details and promoted by the Russian and Bangladeshi authorities, solutions about water supply, spent nuclear fuel, and security could end some concerns and fears about the Rooppur NPP and help create a friendly environment around this project.
Rather than forging an alliance against the third corner of the triangle, China and Russia should join forces in building a new regional system at the time when the global order is in transition.
Trump’s arrival in the White House has put the worsening U.S.-Russian confrontation on hold, for now.
Media reports about a rapprochement between Russia and the Taliban are not even close to reality. Moscow, however, has opened communication channels with the Afghan group, with an eye on protecting its own interests in the country.
Russia faces bleak economic prospects for the next few years. It may be a case of managed decline in which the government appeases social and political demands by tapping the big reserves it accumulated during the boom years with oil and gas exports. But there is also a smaller possibility of a more serious economic breakdown or collapse.
Even if Moscow wisely avoids a bid for the mediator role in South Asia, behind the scenes it could facilitate dialogue between India and Pakistan on bilateral issues.
If Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump are able to find a common language of respective national interests, then in spite of the fundamental differences and the unavoidable rivalry, Russian-US adversity may become more manageable. Under the current circumstances, one could call this an achievement.
Recent developments in Russia-Pakistan relations seem to create a false impression of solid cooperation, which simultaneously irritates a few third countries. This is why Russia needs to rethink not only its policy towards Islamabad, but the region as a whole.