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The Lavrovian Logic on Kissinger

putinkissinger102208.jpgApparently I missed quite the stinging attack against Henry Kissinger made by Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov during his visit to CFR about a month ago. This is interesting to me because for the past six months or so Kissinger has been seen as the leading proponent in the U.S. foreign policy community for rapprochement with Russia, pushing a softer policy line. In a by-lined WaPo article along with George Shulz, Kissinger argued that “We believe that the fundamental interests of the United States, Europe and Russia are more aligned today — or can be made so — even in the wake of the Georgian crisis, than at any point in recent history. We must not waste that opportunity.” Just a couple weeks earlier, Lavrov had this to say about Kissinger’s understanding of events in the Caucasus:

McCain’s tough approach has infuriated Russian leaders. Last month, Russia’s foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, took a swipe at McCain’s foreign policy adviser, Henry Kissinger, saying he knew nothing about Georgia and the two breakaway provinces that Russia recently recognized as independent.”I talked to Henry Kissinger this morning,” Lavrov told a gathering at the Council on Foreign Relations in Manhattan at a September 24 speech. “He didn’t know the history. He didn’t know the history of how Abkhazia and South Ossetia became part of the Russian Empire, entirely independent of Georgia.””He didn’t know the history of the Soviet Union being created and Abkhazia being one of the constituent republics, with the same rights, with the same status as Georgia. And he didn’t know that it was Stalin who put Abkhazia inside Georgia, who cut Ossetia in two and left, put, gave South Ossetia to Georgia and left Northern Ossetia in Russia. He didn’t know that for Abkhazians and Ossetians, when they were brought by Stalin inside Georgia, inside the Soviet Union, it was very difficult to get a decent career unless they Georgianized their names.”

If Kissinger doesn’t understand these basic conditions, according to the Lavrovian logic, then how could he possibly be right about American interests being aligned with those of Russia in the wake of this war? Who would’ve ever thought that John Bolton, Garry Kasparov, and Sergei Lavrov would ever find themselves in such agreement? Scary stuff…