Prime Minister Vladmir Putin is known for his aggressive words and actions, but he went out of his way in recent interviews with the Russian people to extend a hand of friendship to newly elected president Barack Obama. Putin, like most Russian leaders, is furious at the Bush administration policy of building missile bases on the border of Russia for the ostensible reason of being prepared to thwart non-existant missiles from Iran or from North Korea. He referred to comments made by Obama and said: “We hear that one should build relations with Russia taking into account its interests. If these are not just words, if they get transformed into a practical policy, than of course our reaction will be appropriate and our American partners will feel this at once.”
It is time for America to recognize Russian history of being invaded by outside forces. In 1962, America reacted with fury at the thought of Russian missile bases in Cuba. Hopefully, a new president will study history and learn from the past how to function in the present.