Ready for a Fight: Russia’s New Security Policy

Diminishing supplies of oil and natural gas will push countries into violent competition, the Kremlin predicted in a long-awaited national security strategy paper released this week. The document foresees these struggles playing out in the Arctic as well as the Middle East, the Barents Sea, the Caspian Sea and Central Asia — and states that Russia is prepared to fight for its share of the world’s resources.

By John Wendle
Time Magazine

“In the face of competition for resources, the use of military force to solve emerging problems cannot be excluded,” reads the strategy paper, which was signed by President Dmitri Medvedev on Wednesday. It adds: “This could destroy the balance of forces on the borders of Russia and those of its allies.” The paper also addresses the future of NATO and nuclear proliferation, as well as domestic social issues.

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, stand with World War II veterans during the annual Victory Day parade on Moscow's Red Square.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, stand with World War II veterans during the annual Victory Day parade on Moscow’s Red Square.
Mikhail Klimentyev / RIA-Novosti / AP

Although it vividly outlines the worsened relations between Russia and the West, the anti-Western rhetoric is tempered with acknowledgment of the beginning of rapprochement with the Obama Administration. “Now there is a viewpoint in the Kremlin that the U.S. can be worked with,” says Nikolai Petrov, an analyst at the Carnegie Moscow Center, an independent think tank. “Russia has come out and specifically formulated its foreign and defense policy. However, this paper is not setting out how policy will look; it is setting out the de facto situation.”

The paper was ordered up by Medvedev last August, after Russia’s brief war with Georgia made it clear that a new security policy would need to be drawn up to replace the one set out in 2000, which focused more on playing up Russia’s role in the war on terror while it was fighting a war in Chechnya. The updated paper is meant to be a guide for policy development and implementation until 2020.

Read the rest:
http://www.time.com/time/world/articl
e/0,8599,1899066,00.html?xid=rss-world

Related:
Battles over energy may lead to wars, Russian strategists conclude
.
China Buying Oil, Uranium, Gold, Other Products At Bargain Prices
.
Russia, “Desperate For Cash,” Sells Oil to China In “Very Bad Deal”

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