Monday, February 24, 2014

Three extremist Poles keep the Cold War going

Anti-Russian sentiments have always been strong in Poland but they have never been as influential as they are now.

In the US America's Russia policy is dominated by Zbignew Brzezinski on the democrat side and Richard Pipes on the Republican side. Both are now very old (85 resp. 90 years) but through they are still influential. And through their academic career they have formed a generation of US academics and diplomats who see Russia as the cradle of evil instead of just another country. Both men are Poles. They arrived in the US in resp 1938 and 1940.

Many of Obama's foreign policy appointments are Brzezinski pupils. And his policy of trouble making at Russia's doorstep that we now see in Ukraine is a carbon copy of Brzezinski's trouble making in Afghanistan in order to provoke Russia.

In the EU the situation isn't much better. In the Ukrainian crisis EU policy is dominated by the Polish foreign minister Sikorski, who is a well known Russia hater.

It is a common problem that in big empires policies can get dominated by a very small group of extremists. The Floridan anti-Cuba lobby in the US is a famous example. In the case of Russia however, the stakes are much bigger. It is time our politicians take their responsibility and sideline the extremists.

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