“Iran is our neighbour. And if Iran is involved in any military action, it’s a direct threat to our security. We are definitely interested in the non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. But at the same time, we believe that any country has the right to have what it needs to feel comfortable, including Iran.”
That was newly promoted arch-nationalist Dmitry Rogozin, speaking to reporters in Brussels last week. Now a deputy prime minister, just one of several new hard-liners brought into the Putin cabinet to support a crackdown in the run-up to presidential elections in March, Rogozin is speaking for the Kremlin.
And the Kremlin was saying, in other words, not just that Russia supports Iran in its efforts to obtain nuclear weapons, but that it will view an attack on Iran as an attack on Russia.
So much for the vaunted Obama “reset.” The only thing that has changed since Obama became president is that Russia now sees it faces a weakling who will do nothing as Russia obliterates democracy at home and sows the seeds of discontent abroad, seeds which undermine the West and its values while at the same time working to drive up world oil prices so Russia can profit.