Russian President Vladimir Putin offered an expanded counterproposal to U.S. missile defense plans Monday, challenging President Bush to build a regional European missile shield that could include a sophisticated new radar facility on Russian soil.
Putin's proposal went far beyond the cooperation he first suggested in Germany last month and surprised Bush as the two leaders wrapped up two days of informal meetings at the president's family compound in this oceanfront resort town. Bush welcomed the plan, and his advisers said Putin's suggestions convinced them that he is serious about working together, not just posturing, as they initially suspected.
Criticism of Putin is nothing new here at PYY and I am sure that there will be much to criticize him for, in the future. With that said however, I also would say that Putin's counter-proposal should be looked at before reaching any final conclusions.
I haven't had time to scrutinize the proposal. But I would say that to balk without looking at it, would be foolish. If the world is to ever have a remote chance of seeing peace, the U.S. cannot be at odds over trivial things with Russia. In short, we have to pick and choose our battles wisely.
Like it or not, Russia cannot be ignored as a player on the world stage. Aside from the rhetoric that comes with the territory (international politics), I still think that Putin would rather have us as an ally, than as an adversary. Deep down, despite the differences in both governments, I still think Putin sees a greater enemy than the U.S., which is radical Islam.