‘If there is a leader in the world today, that leader is Vladimir Putin’ – Ronald Reagan’s son

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Mike Reagan, son of the 40th US President Ronald Reagan, believes that there are few truly influential leaders in the modern world and that Russian President Vladimir Putin is certainly one of them.

In one of his latest TV appearances, Reagan, a political commentator, said that the United States didn’t have a clear and firm foreign policy today, which was one of the reasons behind the successes gained by terrorists in Iraq after the US troop withdrawal.

It’s time for someone to take responsibility, Reagan said in an interview with “America’s Forum” on Newsmax TV.

Right now, in the world we live in, there is a lack of really strong leaders like Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, Mikhail Gorbachev or Pope John Paul II, who could stand up and say: “What are you doing? What’s going on? Stop this right now,” Mike Reagan said.

“If there is a leader in the world today, that leader is Vladimir Putin… I wrote about this months ago – that Vladimir Putin is basically the puppet master and everybody else is on the string that he has allowed them to in fact have,” he added.

Nobody in Washington wants to accept responsibility, for what is going on today, like his father, President Ronald Reagan, did following the Iran-Contra affair, Reagan argued.

Mike Reagan is the adopted son of Ronald Reagan and his first wife Jane Wyman.

In his teens he complained that his father was too busy to spare time for him.

‘Putin’s demonization not a policy but an alibi for the absence of one’ – Kissinger

Henry Kissinger said he had seen four wars begun with great enthusiasm and public support, none of which the parties involved knew how to end. The test of policy is how it ends, not how it begins. Far too often the Ukrainian issue is posed as a showdown: whether Ukraine joins the East or the West. But if Ukraine is to survive and thrive, it must not be either side’s outpost against the other, it should function as a bridge between them, the former US State Secretary, Henry Kissinger, says.

The West must understand that Russian-Ukrainian relations are a matter of great importance. The West must understand that, to Russia, Ukraine can never be just a foreign country. Russian history began in what was called Kievan Rus. The Russian religion spread from there. Ukraine has been part of Russia for centuries, and their histories were intertwined before then. Some of the most important battles for Russian freedom, starting with the Battle of Poltava in 1709, were fought on Ukrainian soil. The Russian Black Sea Fleet, Russia’s means of projecting power in the Mediterranean, is based by long-term lease in Sevastopol, Crimea.

The European Union must admit that its “bureaucratic dilatoriness and subordination of the strategic element to domestic politics in negotiating Ukraine’s relationship to Europe” contributed to turning a negotiation into a crisis. Foreign policy is the art of establishing priorities and the Ukrainians have to be the decisive element here. They live in a country with an extremely complex history.

Russia and the West, and least of all the various factions in Ukraine, have not acted on this principle. Each has made the situation worse. For the West, the demonization of Vladimir Putin is not a policy; it is an alibi for the absence of one.

The United States should avoid treating Russia as an aberrant to be patiently taught rules of conduct established by Washington.

Putin is a serious strategist on the premises of Russian history. Understanding American values and psychology, however, is not his best skill. Nor has understanding Russian history and psychology been a strong point of the current American policymakers.

Leaders of all sides should return to examining outcomes, not compete in posturing.

Kissinger pointed out that Ukraine should have the right to choose freely its economic and political associations.What is more, Ukraine should not join NATO.

If Western leaders do not put their personal ambitions aside, the drift toward confrontation will only accelerate. The time for that will come soon enough.

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