"As a retired Cold Warrior, I find what the Russians are doing right now to be fascinating. Not scary as yet, but simply fascinating."
Our international game of chess has just become three dimensional. In other words, if you are confused as to what is going on with the Russians, join the crowd. Yesterday, was a huge news day concerning the Russians. Fist off, the Left leaning MSM is all over the fact that our new Administration is "in bed" with the Russians. That the incursion of Russian influence into our new Administration goes much deeper than General Flynn. And then yesterday, we had the provocation of Russian forces against our military. If you are thinking, what a mess, I say this - Bingo!
As a retired Cold Warrior, I find what the Russians are doing right now to be fascinating. Not scary as yet, but simply fascinating. First off, the Russians are anything but "willy nilly". In other words, everything they do, they do for a reason. The causal observer might look at yesterday's events as puzzling. They park a spy ship off the coast of Groton. Then Russian aircraft buzz one of our ships. Some might then say, "What up? I thought Putin loved Trump?" Well, maybe not.
Here is my take on what is going on with Russia right now. I do believe that Putin really did want Trump to be our next President. In Putin's eyes, Hillary was too trigger happy. He might have thought she would drag the two countries into some kind of armed conflict.
However, I think Putin is trying to send a strong signal right now - to the Left. He is not Trump's puppet, and Trump is not his. The Russian Bear is alive and well, growing, growling, and getting meaner. Plus the Bear had a long time to rehearse for this moment. We did after all, take a "pause in the action" for the past eight years.
Where do we go from here? Putin still remembers the Cold War, and how to act. He was after all, a player back then. Well even though the Cold War has been over for decades, many of us remember also. Russia, like any other bully, only respects one thing - strength. If they park a spy ship off our sub base in Groton, we park on off the coast of their sub base in Petropavlovsk. If they buzz one of our warships, we buzz the Kuznetsov. And we do all of this with NATO's full knowledge and blessings.
Here is where the chess game really becomes three dimensional. Russia and the United States really need each other today. As allies in defeating the Islamic State. As trading partners. Yet, Russia has shown some old habits from their Soviet days starting to reappear. Hegemonic intrusions in Crimea (or Korea as Maxine Waters calls it). State sponsored cyber meddling in other country's elections and infrastructure. And large scale troop re-positioning in areas they should not be in.
How Russia is going to be "handled" in this very complex environment will take some extreme acumen and savvy. In other words, President Trump needs to fill the rest of his National Security team with seasoned professionals (at all levels) - and do it NOW.
Yesterday I addressed the Norks. Today, the Bear. Soon we will look once again at the biggest menace in the Middle East - Iran. I wonder as Trump's head hits the pillow, if he wonders about the world he just landed in. This is why so many Presidents finish their terms looking much grayer and much older.