Press TV has conducted an interview with William Beeman, professor at the University of Minnesota from San Jose, about Russia’s President Vladimir Putin admitting that relations between Russia and US are on the downside and that trust between Moscow and Washington has significantly decreased.
What follows is an approximate transcription of the interview.
Press TV: Is it fair to say that the crisis in Ukraine brought out the sentiments of the United States that they did have over Russia out into the open and at this point Russia coming out and saying that trust has diminished?
Beeman: Well I think the trust between the United States and Russia over Ukraine had been diminished for a long time. The government that was just recently overthrown in Ukraine was put into place through one of the so-called color revolutions or velvet revolutions that Russia and actually other people in the region felt was somehow supported and instigated by the United States.
So the Russians felt that Ukraine had been essentially annexed by Europe at the instigation of the United States and now bringing back these parts of the Ukraine under the aegis of the Russian Federation has been part of the goal of Russia.
The United States of course did not like to see Ukraine moving away from the European Union and back into the Russian’s sphere. So it is a proxy war between the United States and Russia that echoes the Cold War between the United States and the Soviet Union of several generations past.
Unfortunately the feelings that have evolved about this Cold War mentality have not stopped.
Press TV: And finally and quickly, do you think that this is going to actually affect the common factors that US and Russia share? We can talk about Iran, its nuclear program, discussions with the P5+1. Russia has already come out and said that it may use counter-measures even though ... came out later after that statements by Russia saying that they are not going to do that.
Beeman: Well certainly Russia has less reason to cooperate with the United States when the United States is accusing it of essentially hegemony in the case of Ukraine. So there is no question that when relations deteriorate over one area of foreign policy, then that tends to affect other areas of foreign policy as well.
The Secretary of State John Kerry has a very tricky, tricky problem in trying to maintain cooperation with Russia over situations like for instance the Iranian situation and at the same time to complain about the situation in Ukraine.
So this is a very difficult diplomatic situation. I do hope that it can be resolved but the fact that there are now demonstrations going on in eastern Ukraine and people in eastern Ukraine calling for reunification with Russia, and some accusations that the Russians are sending Russian troops or Russian supporters into Ukraine in order to abet the situation, this does not help it.