Joshua Huminski, head of the Mike Rogers Center for Intelligence and Global Affairs, spoke about how the U.S. should think about Russia. The Hill has published a piece on the subject.
In Huminski’s view, the new strategy of President Joe Biden’s administration ought to begin with a profound understanding of Russia’s interests, strength, and actions, rather than “assuming they are based on weakness, structural failure, vulnerability, or some other flaw. Huminski is confident that this will help develop a smarter, more forward-looking policy toward the country.
“In recent years, we have seen a real application of Russian power on the ground, and its success is noteworthy and requires us to reconsider our view of Moscow’s capabilities. Russia has seized Crimea with virtually no conflict (and, of course, with minimal Western reaction), is supporting the conflict in eastern Ukraine, and is conducting overseas operations in Syria. All of this with remarkable results. These are definitely not signs of a ‘weak’ government,” the expert said, adding that there are differences between how Russia is described and what it really is.
He urged to understand and accept Russia but stressed that understanding does not mean acceptance. “Rather, it is the ability to assess Russia as it is, not as Washington wants it to be,” he explained.
Earlier in March, the U.S. declared the lowest point in relations with Russia since the Cold War. Colin Kohl, a candidate for the post of Deputy Defense Secretary for Political Affairs, stressed that the interests of Moscow and Washington could overlap in several main areas. Among these, he cited ensuring strategic stability and minimizing the risk of “unintended escalation in all spheres.