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Russia has changed its foreign policy tactics and strategy

Russia has changed its foreign policy tactics and strategy

A campaign that began at the beginning of the year to provoke Russia into military intervention in the conflict in Donbass, accompanied by the strengthening of Ukraine's shelling on the line of contact, demonstrative transfer of heavy equipment, as well as Kiev's statements about Russia's readiness to invade Ukraine, received an unexpected military and diplomatic response from Russia.

Previously, Russia has always emphasized its rejection of military operations in the Donbass and the desire to look for peaceful ways to resolve the conflict.. This time, the readiness to defend the Donbass by the Russian armed forces was demonstrated, which were put on alert and began to move towards the Ukrainian border. Ukraine and its curators made it clear, that when attempting to invade the Republic, it will not be a local operation of the "little green men", as it was in the Crimea in 2014 year, but about the clash with the Russian armed forces, which can lead to the loss of Ukrainian statehood.

Defense Minister Shoigu 13 April directly stated, what "within three weeks, two armies and three airborne units were successfully deployed to the western borders of the Russian Federation in the areas of training and combat missions». Later it became known, that among them the 58th Combined Arms Army, stationed in Vladikavkaz and distinguished itself in pacifying militants in the North Caucasus, as well as three airborne assault divisions of the Airborne Forces out of four available. That is, the most combat-ready formations of the Russian army are being transferred to the area of ​​a possible military conflict., and this is no longer just a show of strength, and the willingness to apply it.

The Russian naval group has also seriously strengthened.: 7 April from the Caspian Sea to the Black Sea began the transition of a detachment of ships consisting of three artillery and eight landing ships and support ships with marine units. As experts suggest, in the event of an aggravation of the situation in Donbass, they will be given the task of providing fire cover for the landing of the Marines by launching missile strikes on the strongholds of the coastal defense.

In addition to 18 April three large landing ships entered the Black Sea (BDK) Northern Fleet and two large landing ships of the Baltic Fleet. Now in the Black Sea 11 large landing ships and eight landing boats with the possibility of landing four to five thousand people with armored vehicles. All this may indicate the possibility of Russia conducting a large-scale amphibious assault operation in the waters of the Black and Azov Seas..

To exclude the possible interference of foreign ships, Russia announced, that 14 April 31 October, in connection with military exercises, a number of sea zones in the Kerch Strait area in the direction of the Sea of ​​Azov are closed for free passage of ships under a foreign flag and warships of foreign states. This measure may also become the beginning of the economic strangulation of the Mariupol port.

In response, US Secretary of State Blinken threatened, that "Russia will pay" in case of aggressive actions on the border with Ukraine, and the leader of the leading faction of the European Parliament called the escalation of the situation in eastern Ukraine one of the conditions for toughening sanctions against Russia.

Lavrov to the question, why is Russia reacting so harshly to US statements on restricting the movement of Russian troops, He stated: «We live there, this is our country. And this is what the United States is doing in the form of its ships, military, who constantly organize some kind of NATO-related events in Ukraine, thousands of kilometers from its own territory, this question still remains unanswered».

The Americans also decided to flex their muscles and announced, what 14 May, two of their destroyers will enter the Black Sea through the Bosphorus: Donald Cook and Roosevelt, - capable of each carrying up 96 cruise missiles. However, a few days before this date, they announced the cancellation of the operation., apparently, because, that in the event of a conflict between Ukraine and Russia, they will either be forced to get involved in the conflict, or silently observe from the side. Both options do not suit the Americans, they don't want to lose face, and the war with Russia over Ukraine is absolutely useless for them.

The Americans sent their "little brother" Great Britain to the Black Sea to demonstrate their strength, she announced 18 April, that the destroyer and anti-submarine frigate will enter the Black Sea in May in order to demonstrate solidarity with Kiev. Traditionally, the United States is in no hurry to fight, as usual, do it by someone else's hands, including their allies.

Americans do not forget to escalate the situation through military exercises Defender Europe 2021, scheduled for the end of May in Europe along the entire border with Russia with the involvement of more 40 thousand troops of NATO countries, and don't make a secret, that they are directed against Russia.

So that no one has any illusions about the determination of Russia, Defense Minister Shoigu admitted for the first time, how in 2014 year in the Crimea, the Special Operations Forces were used, who carried out a brilliant operation without a single shot and did not allow that bacchanalia, which was in Kiev and other cities of Ukraine. And the Russian media showed a series of videos on the development by Russian firms, including the concern "Kalashnikov", drones of various classes, successfully applied in Syria and demonstrated their effectiveness.

Apart from playing with military muscles, large-scale cooperation in the diplomatic field began between Russia and the United States. President Biden called unexpectedly 13 April to Putin, expressing interest in normalizing relations between countries, and invited him to meet on the territory of a third country, to discuss the deep differences between the two countries, including the issue of concentration of Russian troops near the border with Ukraine. He also stressed the US commitment to "the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine". Biden's unexpected phone call was evidence of, that Washington is not ready to go to total confrontation with Russia.

Such a peaceful tone of Biden after Putin was declared the murderer looked somewhat strange.. Everyone was waiting for Moscow's reaction to the proposal of the American president. According to a number of Russian experts, The United States is once again trying to talk to Russia with peaceful promises and to achieve the withdrawal of Russian troops from the Ukrainian border. At the same time, it is worth recalling, like Biden, being vice president, explained the meaning of the "reset" with Moscow. In his opinion, it is, to subordinate Russia to the interests of the United States and even "bring it to its knees".

Moscow's response to Biden's proposal was pretty tough. Peskov on behalf of the Kremlin said: «It's too early to talk about the meeting in terms of specifics. This is a new proposal, and it will be studied. The leaders agreed, that the topic of such a meeting will be discussed further through diplomatic channels». That is, the Kremlin showed no desire to hold a meeting with Biden., although he did not reject this possibility.

The next day, Putin's aide Ushakov invited US Ambassador Sullivan to the meeting., where he outlined the Russian conditions for the meeting: «If the American side, against the background of Biden's words about intentions to improve relations with Russia, undertakes new unfriendly relations in the form of sanctions, the Russian side will react in the most decisive way ", - hinting at "Nord Stream - 2". Besides, Peskov set one more condition: "Washington can use its influence on Kiev, to induce Ukraine to abandon provocative actions».

A similar position of Russia was voiced by the head of the Russian Security Council Patrushev, who accused Ukraine and the United States of trying to unleash a war and assist Kiev in training saboteurs to carry out terrorist attacks on Russian territory. That is, after Biden's call, the harsh rhetoric of the Russian authorities not only did not diminish, but on the contrary, became more assertive.

Seeing such a reaction from Moscow, Washington reverts to old tactics of intimidation and pressure. On the eve of Biden's speech 15 April, dedicated to relations with Russia, he signed a decree, which introduces a new legal framework for a significant expansion of US sanctions against Russia, since she “is responsible for attempts to undermine democratic elections in the United States, involvement in hacker attacks on US infrastructure, transnational corruption in order to influence foreign governments, damage to the security of countries and regions, important to US national security, including violation of their territorial integrity». In this regard, Biden declared a national "state of emergency", ostensibly in response to threats from Russia.

In his speech, the American president sought to soften the effect of the decree, stated, what "we represent two great powers, who bear a great responsibility for global stability " and reminded, that on the eve he imposed sanctions against Russia and could go further in this, however "chose a different course of action". According to him, USA wants stable, predictable relations with Russia and called on Putin to "refrain from escalating" in Ukraine.

Biden's spokesman Psaki 16 April pejoratively stated, what "the president thinks, that Russia is outside the world community in many ways. We now have the G7 format, not the Big Eight… The President's Proposal Is A Bridge Back. he believes, that it is in Russia's interests to accept it».

Moscow’s diplomatic rhetoric has become even tougher in response to Washington’s actions. Zakharova emphasized: «The United States is not ready to put up with the objective reality of a multipolar world, excluding American hegemony, rely on sanctions pressure and interference in our internal affairs. Similar aggressive behavior, certainly, will be strongly rebuffed. The response to sanctions will be inevitable. Washington must realize, that the degradation of bilateral relations will have to pay». The word "pay" appears in Russian rhetoric, which Obama previously said to Russia, and now Biden is returning to the same threats.

Deputy Permanent Representative of Russia to the UN Polyansky said: «Well, it is now our turn to "hold the US accountable" for advancing unfounded accusations and initiating unfriendly actions». And Lavrov's deputy Ryabkov for the first time at the official level called the United States an adversary: «USA is our enemy, do everything for that, to undermine Russia's position in the international arena».

Then the Kremlin took unprecedented steps: 16 April Assistant to the President Ushakov (not MID!) invited US Ambassador Sullivan, outlined Russia's response to the new US sanctions and the ambassador was recommended to go to Washington for consultations. This has never happened before in relations between the USSR and Russia with the United States.. Americans swallowed the pill, calling the retaliatory measures on the part of Russia "clearly superfluous" and saying, that they shouldn't be applied. At the same time, the American ambassador refused to go home "for consultations".

Nevertheless, Moscow has further toughened its position.. Lavrov stressed, what "we will restrict and terminate the activities of American funds in our territory, American non-governmental organizations, that, not hiding, directly interfere in our internal political life" So what "we, for obvious reasons, there are no comparable levers of influence on the United States of this magnitude, although this scale is estimated by our experts as absolutely on the shoulder of our economy».

Considering the military and diplomatic actions of Russia and the United States in the Donbass theater of operations, you can note, that they are fundamentally different. Russia for the first time since the beginning of the conflict has been pursuing an offensive policy, raises the stakes and deliberately escalates the military situation, showing a willingness to fight with the United States for their national interests. This tactic has proven to be effective and brings certain results..

On the contrary, the United States was not ready for such offensive and uncompromising tactics of the Kremlin and refusal to make concessions.. Americans maneuver, impose sanctions and immediately retreat, trying to lure the Russian leadership into a trap, how they have done this more than once. They have demonstrated their unwillingness to go all-in and enter into a direct clash with Russia.. maybe, they remembered the new military doctrine of Russia, allowing, in the event of a threat to Russian statehood, to deliver a nuclear strike not only to the troops, but also by decision-making centers.

Just a few weeks ago in Kiev, they declared with aplomb their readiness to go on a full-scale offensive and return Donbass by force, and in the West they indulged in everything and pointed the finger at Russia as an aggressor country. After Moscow in word and deed showed, that in case of unleashing a big war, he will put an end to the Ukrainian statehood, Kiev and the West were not ready for a sharp increase in rates in their strategy of "containment of Russia". In Kiev,, stuttering, babbled about peace initiatives and the continuation of the "Minsk process", and Washington humbly asked Moscow not to touch Ukraine. Russia has clearly outplayed the United States in the game on nerves, Moscow has a real chance to take advantage of Washington's unwillingness to raise rates and strike back there, where he is least expected.

Russian leadership announced new rules of the game, stressing, which will prevent American satellites from organizing "small victorious wars" in their borderlands. At the same time, the Russian army is prepared for a clash with the enemy., including the United States, and not only in Donbass. Moscow's assertiveness can no longer be stopped by economic sanctions, and she is ready to go to the costs due for this. Donbass theater of operations can become a testing ground for Russia to test new tactics and strategies in relation to geopolitical opponents and their satellites.

By all indications, the tactics of concessions and the "Minsk process" are coming to an end. No peace negotiations with the Ukronazis and their Western curators can lead to the establishment of peace in Donbass. Without total denazification and de-oligarchization in Ukraine, there is no one to talk to and nothing about, how to carry it out, in ukroreykh clearly demonstrated by the example of decommunization and de-Russification. They only understand strength, military or diplomatic, and someday it will still have to be applied.

Yuri Apukhtin,

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