After eight years of George Bush, relations between the United States and Russia have deteriorated to the point where the two nations have been unable to cooperate in dealing with many issues such as towards Iran. American Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov exchanged greetings, but there is an opportunity aside from formal greetings to engage Russia in assisting the world. Russia has as much to be concerned about the emergence of a powerful nuclear Iran as does the United States. Russia has a large Muslim population and it would damage Russian interests for Iran to become a powerful nation that might appeal to disgruntled Muslims inside Russia. The government of Vladmir Putin does not like terrorists anymore than does the United States. The authoritarian tendencies of Putin and Medvedev feel threatened by the presence of terrorist groups within its borders
Step one in any American and Russian move toward friendly relations must entail ending the Bush plans to construct missile bases in Poland and the Czech Republic as well as furthering NATO’s thrust into east Europe. The United States must pay attention to the national interests and concerns of Russia by ending Bush provocation and enlisting Russian support in dealing with Iran and the Middle East. Russia can be an ally once Bush views toward the world cease to be the face of America.