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MOSCOW, December 25. /TASS/. The first and last president of the former Soviet Union, Mikhail Gorbachev, sees the ‘collapse of trust’ in world politics as the worst problem humanity will inherit from the outgoing year. He expressed this opinion of his while speaking at last autumn’s ceremonies marking the 25th year since the fall of the Berlin Wall. Evidence of this collapse can be seen and heard in actions and statements by the heads of state, legislators, and the governments of the countries whose geopolitical and national interests stumbled over the problem of Ukraine in 2014.
In his address to the UN General Assembly session US President Barack Obama mentioned the Ebola virus disease, the so-called “Russia’s aggression in Europe,” and Islamic State terrorism as the worst threats to peace. The US Congress promptly adopted the Ukraine Freedom Support Act, envisaging military-technical assistance to Kiev and tighter sanctions against Moscow. Encouraged by Washington’s support, the authorities in Kiev in the last days of the outgoing year voted for an act cancelling Ukraine’s non-aligned status with a view to accession to NATO. The Russian Defense Ministry explained that the West was determined to turn Ukraine into an outpost of confrontation with Russia. And Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said “the attempt to perpetuate the dominating positions of the US-led historical West in the world system was the worst threat to the world order.”
What are the ways of downgrading the intensity of confrontational rhetoric in international relations? What is to be done to reimplant elements of trust into world politics? And what should politicians do for this to meet each other halfway?
“For overcoming the collapse of trust first and foremost a fundamental discussion strengthening international security should be followed. Such a dialogue has long been absent from the agenda of main actors in international relations. Incidentally, Russia should not be relieved of its share of responsibility for addressing this task, for Moscow over the past few years showed little insistence on conducting in-depth analysis of the existing threats to humanity, such as Islamic terrorism, organized crime, drug trafficking, efforts to ease the effects of natural calamities, man-made disasters, food security, the shortage of drinking water and climate change,” the honorary president of the Foreign and Defense Policy Council, Sergey Karaganov, has told TASS.
“The Ukrainian crisis in 2015 will be pushing the United States, the European Union and Russia towards overcoming the collapse of trust. Politicians must develop the awareness their reluctance to negotiate and the use of sanctions and counter-sanctions are a road leading nowhere. Statesmen of responsibility will be obliged to do their utmost next year to ensure the ongoing political crisis over Ukraine should not develop into an active military phase. The risk of a major war now is as high as it has never been over the past 40-50 years,” Karaganov said.
“It should be remembered that the collapse of trust is observed between the part of humanity called Russia and part of the Western world. A vast part of the world including China, India and the other members of the BRICS group have a great degree of trust towards Russia. With reliance on its old-time and trustworthy partners Russia will have to overcome the current adverse foreign situation and the financial and economic problems inside the country,” the analyst said.
“I would say that the outgoing year’s landmark events were not the crisis or the collapse of trust, but an upsurge in the struggle of interests in the world. Some politicians in the United States and their supporters in Europe have gone to great lengths in a bid to demonize Russia for its intention to conduct an independent policy,” the deputy chairman of the Federation Council’s international affairs committee, Andrey Klimov, told TASS.
“The West is conducting a political, diplomatic and media war against Russia. Moscow has to retaliate for each unfriendly move. To eliminate this estrangement Western politicians should give up attempts at containing Russia and resisting the natural process of forming a multi-polar world. Also, they must take a sober look at the modern realities and by no means ignore the existence of new rising centers of economic development and economic power. It is beyond the powers of one or several countries to dictate their will to the rest of the world, including Russia. Trust can be restored only on the basis of equitable partnership,” Klimov said.
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