Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton continues to trumpet the so-called 2009 "reset" of the U.S.-Russian relationship despite all evidence to the contrary that it worked.
With relations over the past two years dwindling to lows not seen since the Cold War, Clinton still told National Public Radio Thursday that it was a success. She told BBC last month that it was a "brilliant stroke."
"The reset worked," she said. "It was an effort to try to obtain Russian cooperation on key objectives while Medvedev was president, and of course Putin still pulled the strings but he gave Medvedev a certain amount of independence to negotiate, number one, a new arms control treaty which was absolutely necessary. We brought Russia around to understanding why we thought there needed to be international sanctions against Iran."
Not everyone has been quite so deluded about the soured relationship between the two countries.
Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney referred to Russia as "our No. 1 geopolitical foe" in 2012 and was roundly mocked by a chorus of Obama administration members, including Clinton. Since that time, led by President Vladimir Putin, Russia has antagonized the U.S. through such moves as granting asylum to fugitive NSA leaker Edward Snowden, continuing to support Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, invading Crimea and, most recently, through its role in arming pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine suspected of shooting down a Malaysian Airlines commercial flight.
As for Iran, the Washington Free Beacon reported in May that a senior Russian official held a meeting with Iran’s ambassador to Moscow for advice on how the Russians could skirt U.S. sanctions after their invasion of Crimea, and the two nations have boosted their ties over the past year.
HILLARY CLINTON: The reset worked. It was an effort to try to obtain Russian cooperation on key objectives while Medvedev was president, and of course Putin still pulled the strings but he gave Medvedev a certain amount of independence to negotiate, number one, a new arms control treaty which was absolutely necessary. We brought Russia around to understanding why we thought there needed to be international sanctions against Iran.
I’ll never forget the meeting that we had, the president and I and just one other person on our side and Medvedev and two on his side, where we told him that we had evidence, conclusive evidence, about Iran building an underground facility, at a place called Fordow. The Russians were shocked because they thought they knew what was going on in Iran. So we brought them to the table at the security council, we got those tough sanctions, and we eventually were able to get to the negotiations that are going on now with the hope that something real can come out of them.
Published under: Edward Snowden , Hillary Clinton , Russia , Syria