Friday, May 30, 2014

Cold War 2.0? Cold War Concerns Gain Credibility

Concerns about reigniting a Cold War gain credibility as President Putin continues his militarism in Ukraine and draws his country into the on-going crisis in Egypt.  Thus, it is time to look back at the Reagan administration’s strategy that helped end the Cold War by breaking with long-held policies enshrined in US-Soviet d├ętente of the 1970s.
President Reagan was joined by Secretary of State Alexander Haig, Secretary of State George Shultz, Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger, and six national security advisors, among others, in crafting a grand strategy that contributed to the demise of the Soviet Union in December 1991. For his part, William Patrick “Judge” Clark, Jr., national security advisor (January 1982-October 1983), oversaw the drafting of numerous National Security Decision Directives (NSDDs) that articulated the president’s principles and provided guidance to the bureaucracy in formulating foreign policy.


With heavily armed Russian-speaking troops patrolling the streets, the Crimean Parliament voted Thursday to join Russia and put its decision to a referendum. The all-but-inevitable annexation of Crimea is moving forward, despite protests, warnings and threats from the U.S. and its allies.
We have entered a new Cold War. 
The clash between Vladimir Putin's Russia and the forces arrayed in support of Ukraine's independence-minded leaders has crashed the vaunted "reset," ending hopes that Moscow and the West would smooth relations and work hand-in-hand toward common objectives.
Nobody can predict with certainty how this conflict will end. But the world can already glean important lessons. Unfortunately, most of those lessons are cause for deep concern. Here are five clear messages from the crisis in Ukraine. 

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