The appointment of U.S. President Barack Obama's top adviser, Michael McFaul as the new U.S. ambassador to Russia may help to get reduce mistrust between the United States and Russia, the head of the Institute of Strategic Studies and Analysis, Alexander Konovalov told RIA Novosti.
Earlier on Sunday New York Times reported, citing an anonymous White House official that Obama had decided to appoint McFaul, a current senior director of Russian and Eurasian Affairs at the U.S. National Security Council, as the next U.S. ambassador to Russia.
White House and U.S. Department of State refused to comment on McFaul's candidacy for the post.
"McFaul is a young man, very close to Obama and a devoted supporter of his policy. Moreover, he specializes in Russian issues. Since McFaul is a person from the presidential staff, his appointment would show that Washington pays serious attention to Russian politics," Konovalov said.
McFaul seems to be the best candidate to develop Russian-U.S. relations, Konovalov said, since "he knows Russia well, he is familiar with the problems of national security."
McFaul was born in 1963 in the U.S. city of Glasgow, Montana. In mid-80s he obtained a master's degree in Slavic and East European Studies from Stanford University. In 1991, as a Rhodes Scholar, McFaul earned a Ph.D. in International Relations from Oxford University.
He is the author or several books on Russia, including Between Dictatorship and Democracy: Russian Post-Communist Political Reform and U.S. Policy Toward Russia After the Cold War.
If the appointment is confirmed, McFaul will replace John Beyrle, the current U.S. ambassador to Moscow, appointed by the Bush administration in 2008.
MOSCOW, May 29 (RIA Novosti)