Is Detente Possible for Moscow, Washington or Are They 'Destined to Be Rivals'?

© AP Photo / Alexander ZemlianichenkoA journalist writes a material as she watches a live telecast of the U.S. presidential election standing at portraits of U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Union Jack pub in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016
A journalist writes a material as she watches a live telecast of the U.S. presidential election standing at portraits of U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in the Union Jack pub in Moscow, Russia, Wednesday, Nov. 9, 2016 - Sputnik International
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Donald Trump has repeatedly suggested that relations between the United States and Russia should be improved. However, analysts are divided over how the bilateral relationship will play out in the months to come, with some asserting that both countries will continue to be opponents and others saying that a new détente is possible.

"The United States and Russia are destined to be rivals under any president," political analyst Alexei Fenenko said during the round table conference titled "The arrival of Trump and results of the summit in Davos: Transition to a new political and economic architecture of the world." The event was held at the Rossiya Segodnya news agency.

Fenenko, an associate professor at Moscow State University Faculty of World Politics, mentioned three possible scenarios of how relations between Russia, the United States and China could develop in the future.

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"According to the first and the most realistic option, the United States will have to acknowledge Russia and China's growing influence and find a way to reach agreements with them," he said.

The second scenario will see the US opt for a direct assault which could result in a major military conflict, while the third option focuses on other nations joining the club of the most powerful countries in the world, he detailed.

"Whether you like it or not, Russia, the United States and China are the only three great and independent powers in the world at the moment. It is interesting whether a fourth power could reach this level," the analyst said.

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Fenenko suggested that the United Kingdom could become such a power if it retains its position as a major global financial center and fosters relations with Australia, New Zealand and other countries which used to be part of the British Empire.

For his part, Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies at New York University and Princeton University told CNN that détente between the United States and Russia is "imperative for the sake of American national security."

The rapprochement "is possible to do, but it is going to be exceedingly hard politically, primarily in the United States, but also in Moscow," he added.

For his part, Alexey Mukhin, Director of the Center for Political Information, said that Moscow should cooperate with China, India, Iran and the European Union to provide impetus to the Russian economy. He also urged the Kremlin to maintain a certain level of tensions with the United States, saying that it has facilitated Russia's development.

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