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Moscow-Washington: new ideas and old wire-pullers


MOSCOW. (RIA Novosti correspondent Dmitry Kosyrev)

In all likelihood, it will take Barack Obama years rather than months to shape a new foreign policy, but so many are impatient to part with old U.S. policy that one can only sympathize with Hillary Clinton, who has just taken an oath in her new position.

North Korea is bringing components of its intercontinental missiles to the testing grounds and rupturing all ties with South Korea. With rare unanimity, analysts perceive this as a signal to America - remember us, and the pointless crisis that was triggered by the Bush administration on our peninsula, as soon as possible.

Before taking oath, Clinton called her Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Moscow. Both said that the two countries are interested in positive development of bilateral relations under the new U.S. administration, but old policy, and those who shaped and implemented it, will continue operating until Washington proclaims its new policy.

"Has he not been yet dismissed?" This is a typical Moscow reaction to a statement made by Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Matthew Bryza at the Heritage Foundation. He said that if Russia opens military bases in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, the United States will establish its bases in Georgia.

No, Bryza has not been dismissed. Although names of his successors are already being mentioned in U.S. political circles, there is always a chance that he will stay. He illustrates how much an individual can hurt American interests for no reason.

Bryza is primarily known as the architect of Washington's Georgian experiment. Moreover, he is in charge of the U.S.'s Georgian policy. No higher-ranking officials drafted this policy, but rather simply signed wherever necessary.

Vladimir Putin's Russia started the new century with good relations with the United States. Moscow did not object to American bases in Central Asia. Things started getting worse when anti-Russian regimes were established in Tbilisi and Kiev with U.S. aid. As a result, the United States quarreled with Russia and Europe to a certain extent, because the war launched by Mikheil Saakashvili last August created problems primarily for Europe. Besides, the United States found itself in a ridiculous position - it did not want to help Georgia, which started the war hoping for U.S. support.

The Georgian opposition Labor Party demands that Bryza should not be allowed to operate in Georgia. One of its leaders, Nestan Kirtadze, said that "this fatal personality has harmed not only Georgia but also American values in Georgia."

The leader of another opposition movement, Georgia's Way, and Georgia's former Foreign Minister, Salome Zurabishvili, said: "Georgia needs new, normal relations not only with Russians but also with Americans. The days of Matthew Bryza coming in and influencing everyone are over."

Those days may be over, but the consequences are still there. Everything is still in anticipation of a new U.S. policy toward Russia, Eastern Europe, the Caucasus... In any case, it is clear that North Korea will be subject to new U.S. policy quicker, since it is in such a hurry.

The opinions expressed in this article are the author's and do not necessarily represent those of RIA Novosti.

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