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The Daily Vertical: Lavrov's Cost-Free Reset

The Daily Vertical: Lavrov's Cost-Free Reseti
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January 27, 2016
The Daily Vertical is a video primer for Russia-watchers that appears Monday through Friday. Viewers can suggest topics via Twitter @PowerVertical or on the Power Vertical Facebook page.

The Daily Vertical is a video primer for Russia-watchers that appears Monday through Friday. Viewers can suggest topics via Twitter @PowerVertical or on the Power Vertical Facebook page.

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by: Jim Kovpak from: Moscow
January 27, 2016 13:39
This is why Babchenko's theorem, that Putinism is basically "infantilism as a state ideology," is so apt. They actually think they're in a position to dictate to the world how they must relate to them.

by: Yoshua
January 27, 2016 15:34
Kremlin is just playing a political game with Europe. They know that it is politically impossible for Europe to accept this deal. European politicians will turn it down and this will anger European farmers and industrials who need the Russian market.

Kremlin will also be able to show the Russian voters under this election year that they have made a reasonable offer to Europe to end their economic suffering caused by western imposed sanctions... but Europe refuses.

This offer comes at a time when the European economy is heading for a new financial crisis. After the financial crisis in 2008 European banks have been investing massively in emerging markets oil and commodity sectors to feed the Chinese market with energy and raw materials. Now when these investments are in place, China decided to take this opportunity to enter their transition, which has caused a hard landing of the Chinese economy and a crash in oil and commodity prices. European banks have today $1 trillion in non preforming loans and the situation will soon get much worse.

With the Eurozone crisis and the migrant crisis which have already polarized Europe politically and geographically and now a new financial crisis on top of that... things will start to get very tense in Europe.
In Response

by: Neil Nelson from: UT, USA
January 27, 2016 17:47
These recent pages say the EU economy will grow around 2% in 2016 and is on an upward trend. The low price of oil helps and it has fallen much lower since.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/economics/12077525/Europe-is-looking-up-some-good-news-to-start-2016.html

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-34729828
In Response

by: Yoshua
January 27, 2016 19:11
This interview with a former chief economist of the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) doesn't share that rosy picture.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/financetopics/davos/12108569/World-faces-wave-of-epic-debt-defaults-fears-central-bank-veteran.html

by: ""George"" from: Belarus
January 27, 2016 16:26
It's time to get your bracelets out, Brian. You shackled me with speech marks. Yoshua needs the same treatment. Lock him up as "Yoshua".
In Response

by: Neil Nelson from: UT, USA
January 28, 2016 14:47
Counting quote marks while Belarus burns?

by: mf from: US
January 27, 2016 17:00
the appropriate response to this overture (if the "West" was not as feckless and incoherent as it is today) would be to up the ante and put on the table the status of Kaliningrad. No lifting of sanctions and no reset until the Status of Crimea is resolved, all Russian military is removed from Donbas, and Kaliningrad is demilitarized under international supervision.
Sanctions really are no longer an issue. Russia is coming apart under her own weight, given oil prices and costs of the police/military state. The reset talk is a diversion directed at the Russian population.
In Response

by: lh from: Denmark
January 27, 2016 19:01
Exactly my words. Every time the European politicians and bureaucrats mention that now there are potential possibilities for lifting sanctions - things are going ballistic; they basically sell the skin before they are hatched - and every time the mafia in Moscow is encouraged to draw it yet another notch - as they again and again get convinced that if they only wait, the West will give in. And looking at the Western politicians we have today, so desperate to lift the sanctions (instead of actually increasing them, as they _should_ do) - it seems that the Kremlin will get it their way eventually. Sad prospects, indeed.

by: Nabil Hakkan from: UK
January 27, 2016 18:08
I think that the Russian has saved Crimea from the fate of Libya, Iraq & Syria... Zionist masters of New World Order (NWO) want regime change in China & Russia, too. That means the perception war, economy war, civil war, and military war are waged against China and Russia.

by: Michael from: Germany
January 27, 2016 18:09
In the West false accusations often used for mass deception. Russia has a healthier social and political environment, and the west has too much anti-Russia and anti-Orthodoxy propaganda.
In Response

by: Volodya
January 28, 2016 00:30
Oh, please! Russia, a healthy social and political environment? Surely you jest!

by: Ted D from: US
January 27, 2016 18:14
Blame game... So-called the Western progressive liberals who even manage to blame international terrorism on climate change may also blame Putin on climate change when the time comes. Some people in America have gone far crazier than we believe.

by: Susan Clein from: United States
January 27, 2016 18:16
I don't support US/NATO terrorism in Middle East... but I definitely don't support crazy mass migration either. Why can't we just stop bombing countries and start focusing on our own business? This mass migration is partially due to our moral responsibility because we have messed it all up around the world... But risking our own security after creating so much hatred is definitely not wise.

by: John Kanuck
January 27, 2016 23:28
While the West (and Ukraine) will certainly have to reconcile itself to Russian annexation of Crimea, and may have to live with continued Russian intervention in Donbas, and we might eventually have to lift sanctions and "normalize" relations with Russia, the LAST thing we should do is "reset" that relationship, if that means going back to pretending that Russia is just another FSU country on the bumpy road to becoming a European liberal democracy.

If we take away one lesson from this last few years, it is that Russia (or at least Putin & co) have a fundamentally different idea and value set for how their nation, Eastern Europe, and the world should be run.

We can forgive (or at least accommodate) the past, but we must never forget what it means!

by: james from: usa
January 28, 2016 06:15
They can put as much lipstick on that pig as they want, I cant believe they think were gonna kiss it. Really, I don't believe it, I think Yoshua is right in that this is just a continuation of the same old strategy of breaking european resolve.
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The Power Vertical is a blog written especially for Russia wonks and obsessive Kremlin watchers by Brian Whitmore. It offers Brian's personal take on emerging and developing trends in Russian politics, shining a spotlight on the high-stakes power struggles, machinations, and clashing interests that shape Kremlin policy today. Check out The Power Vertical Facebook page or