The list of “maximal desirables” is much longer and varies from a joint elaboration of new well-coordinated principles for non-conflict coexistence to a tacit recognition of each other’s spheres of influence – the latter is especially something very few in Washington can fathom at this point. Needless to say, US policies towards Russia under a new president will be driven by Russia’s own actions. But they will be primarily defined by the quality and outcome of the debate in the United States on the country’s role in contemporary international relations and the vision for Russia’s place in this system. Preserving the focus on Putin’s meddling in US elections is indeed an effective political tactic but an erroneous policy. It blurs the vision for a much more substantial debate on the issue Russia is having and deprives American political and expert community of the important takeaways from it. Most importantly, it further widens the gap between Washington and Moscow and clouds a relationship that’s in a bad need for a repair.
Dr. Maxim A. Suchkov, expert, Russian International Affairs Council, columnist, Al-Monitor’s Russia Pulse. He was previously a Fulbright Visiting Fellow at Georgetown University’s Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies and Visiting Fellow at New York University. On Twitter: @Max_A_Suchkov
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