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Russia - US Relations: Putin’s Goal: Bankrupting America? - by Alexei Bayer

On March 1, in his annual address to the Russian Federal Assembly, President Vladimir Putin adopted a decidedly bellicose tone. Claiming that the world’s great powers — notably the United States — had long ignored and humiliated Russia, Putin unveiled a bunch of new weapons, such as nuclear-powered ballistic missiles and unmanned submarines.

According to Putin, those weapons are more advanced than anything else that currently exists in the world. In particular, he claimed, they could evade U.S. missile defenses.

The Russian President illustrated his talk with some fairly primitive animation, with one shot clearly showing his miracle missile striking a peninsula that looked very much like Florida. “We’re not bluffing,” Putin assured his audience.

However, bluffing was exactly what Putin was doing, say independent military experts. First of all, Russia is technologically backward and is unlikely to be so far ahead of the Pentagon in the development of new weaponry.

Equally to the point, with over 4,000 nuclear weapons, of which nearly half are active ballistic missiles, Russia already has the capability to annihilate the United States, for all its sophisticated missile defenses.

The Republicans have chosen to hollow out the revenue base at a time when America needs to fix its crumbling infrastructure and pay for the retiring Baby Boomers who will live well into their nineties (while having next to no financial reserves) and foot the mounting bill for the effects of the global warming.

Going forward, money is going to be tight. Attempts will be made to cut entitlements, such as U.S. spending on Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security — which are already among the shoddiest in the rich industrial world. None of it is fat any more — and cutting those programs to the bone is not going to sit well with voters, notably the traditional base of the Republican Party.

In this environment, Putin’s Cold War rhetoric and miracle weapon visuals are a godsend for the Pentagon. It could get a lot of mileage out of this in the fight for budget allocations.

For Putin, then, it will be the best of all possible worlds. Without spending a penny — not counting the few bucks he spent on that primitive animation — Russia’s President could exacerbate divisions in American society. His grand move is to pit the Pentagon against a huge and growing army of retirees.

Ultimately, Putin may even hope that he is able to force Washington to bust its budget by not being able to turn down either the military or the retirees. If that happens, he would have managed to send America into bankruptcy the way the old Soviet Union was 30 years ago.

Read the complete report: Putin’s Goal: Bankrupting America? - The Globalist

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