Is It Time To Stop Saber-Rattling Russia?

Earlier on February 8, 2021, the Biden administration deployed four Air Force B-1 bombers to Norway as a means of saber-rattling against Russia. The U.S. government conducts such operations in case Russia makes aggressive moves in the Arctic. 

According to a CNN report,  the bombers and roughly 200 Americans stationed at Dyess Air Force base in Texas were deployed to Orland Air Base in Norway. 

Within the next few weeks, the U.S. will begin missions in the Arctic Circle and in international airspace close to Russia’s northwest coast, according to CNN. Biden is clearly delivering red meat to his national security base, who is fanatically committed to raising tensions with Russia. 

On previous occasions, the United Kingdom served as the place of origin for American military missions over the Arctic. The decision to move to Norway shows that the hawks in the Biden administration will go to great lengths to counter perceived Russian aggression in the area.

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Democrats are convinced that former President Donald Trump is a Russian asset, despite the fact that his administration enacted stiff sanctions against Russia, sent lethal military aid to Ukraine, and even took out contractors connected to Russia in Syria. Regardless of these facts, the Biden administration wants to continue doubling down against Russia.

Although the Biden administration agreed to extend the START treaty between the two countries for 5 years, which would have Russia and the U.S. committing to the reduction of their nuclear weapons arsenals, Biden still maintained a firm tone with Putin regarding other Russian activities that don’t sit well with neoliberal interventionists. 

“At the same time, I made it clear to President Putin, in a manner very different from my predecessor, that the days of the United States rolling over in the face of Russia’s aggressive actions interfering with our elections, cyber attacks, poisoning its citizens, are over,” Biden declared.

Biden revealed he was ready to “raise the cost on Russia” if pushed over the edge.

Biden criticized Vladimir Putin for the “politically motivated” imprisonment of Russian dissident figure Alexei Navalny. He demanded that Navalny be freed “immediately.” 

“Mr. Navalny, like all Russian citizens, is entitled to his rights under the Russian constitution,” the president continued. “He’s been targeted for exposing corruption. He should be released immediately and without condition.” 

Back in August, Navalny was allegedly poisoned by elements of the Russian government. In January, Navany was arrested for violating the terms of his parole that originated from a 2014 charge, which prevented him from running for office.

According to a CNN report, the Defense Department is worried about Russia’s actions in the Arctic. They believe that the regional power could attempt to close off access to maritime passageways and natural resources. Per CNN, 25% of Russia’s gross domestic product comes from hydrocarbons located north of the Arctic Circle.

The anti-Russia hysteria could prove dangerous for American interests in the long-term. Excessive hawkishness towards Russia could push the Eurasian power into China’s arms and effectively create a powerful anti-U.S. balancing coalition.

Prudence would dictate a more balanced approach to Russia that is not based on Cold War era prejudices and takes into account that Russia has a sphere of influence and its own interests that generally don’t clash with U.S. security. The U.S. would be wise to de-escalate tensions with Russia.

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