I feel a bit lightheaded. Maybe you should drive.
WikiLeaks on Twitter: "'Nyet Means Nyet: Russia' s #NATO Enlargement Redlines' - Cable from 2008 written by CIA director William J. Burns, then US ambassador to Moscow https://t.co/rOoxmuf7CN https://t.co/CeP2DwBpVD" / Twitter
Dozens Of WikiLeaks Cables Show US Knew NATO Expansion Was Russia's Bright Red Line | ZeroHedge
Unsurprising to me is how this mess, the result of the abrogation of Jim Baker's promise of "no extension of NATO's jurisdiction for forces of NATO 'one inch to the east'" can be traced back to the hands down worst President ever...you know who:
By the time Putin became president the day before the new Millennium, “the initial hopes and plans of the early ‘90s [were] dead,” a leading liberal Russian politician declared. The first round of NATO enlargement had been followed by NATO’s 1999 bombing of Yugoslavia, done without UN security council authorization, triggering a Russian cut-off of contact with the alliance. By 2000, the revised Russian national security strategy warned that NATO using force beyond its borders “’is a threat of destabilization of the whole strategic situation,” while military officers and politicians started claiming “that if NATO expands further, it would ‘create a base to intervene in Russia itself,’” the Washington Post reported.
Ironically, there would be one exception to the next two decades’ worth of rising tensions over NATO’s eastward creep that followed: the early years of Putin’s presidency, when the new Russian president defied the Russian establishment to try and make outreach to the United States. Under Putin, Moscow re-established relations with NATO, finally ratified the START II arms control treaty, even publicly floated the idea of Russia eventually joining the alliance, inviting attacks from his political rivals for doing so. Even so, he continued to raise Moscow’s traditional concerns about the alliance’s expansion, telling NATO’s secretary-general it was “a threat to Russia.”
“If a country like Russia feels threatened, this would destabilize the situation in Europe and the entire world,” he’d said in a speech in Berlin in 2000.
Putin softened his opposition as he sought to make common cause with the George W. Bush administration. “If NATO takes on a different shape and is becoming a political organization, of course, we would reconsider our position with regard to such expansion, if we are to feel involved in the processes,” he said in October 2001, drawing attacks from political rivals and other Russian elites.
As NATO for the first time granted Russia a consultive role in its decision-making, Putin sought to assist its expansion. Italian president Silvio Berlusconi made a “personal request” to Bush, according to an April 2002 cable, to “understand Putin’s domestic requirements,” that he “needs to be seen as part of the NATO family,” and to give him “help in building Russian public opinion to support NATO enlargement.” In another cable a top-ranking state department official urges holding a NATO-Russia summit to “help President Putin neutralize opposition to enlargement,” after the Russian leader said allowing NATO expansion without an agreement on a new NATO-Russia partnership would be politically impossible for him.
This would be the last time any Russian openness toward NATO expansion is recorded in the diplomatic record held by WikiLeaks.
Allies Weigh In
By the middle of the 2000s, US-Russian relations had deteriorated, partly owing to Putin’s bristling at US criticism of his growing authoritarianism at home, and to US opposition to his meddling in the 2004 Ukrainian election. But as explained in a September 2007 cable by New Eurasia Foundation president Andrey Kortunov, now a Russian foreign policy advisor who has publicly criticized both Kremlin policy and the current war, US mistakes were also to blame, including Bush’s invasion of Iraq and a general sense that he’d given little in return for Putin’s concessions.
“Putin had clearly embarked on an ‘integrationist’ foreign policy at the beginning of his second presidential term, which was fueled by the 9/11 terrorist attacks and good relations with key leaders like President Bush” and other leading NATO allies, Kortunov said according to the cable. “However,” he said, “a string of perceived anti-Russian initiatives,” which included Bush’s withdrawal from the Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty and “further expansion of NATO,” ultimately “dashed Putin’s hopes.”
What followed was a steady drumbeat of warnings about NATO’s expansion, particularly regarding neighboring Ukraine and Georgia, much of it from Washington’s NATO allies.
Why is it that so many of the worst US foreign (and domestic - hello, ever heard of the "Patriot" act? Do you like the Covid response?) policy decisions trace back to that complete moron?