Firmness & Clarity: Putin Draws Red Lines for US, EU But Leaves Door for Dialogue Open, Scholars Say

Vladimir Putin’s address is a firm response to the undue pressure imposed by the US and Europe on Russia, say international observers, suggesting that the need to solve global issues offers hope for a constructive dialogue between the world’s major players.

Moscow will find “asymmetrical” ways to defend its national interests if other nations reject a constructive dialogue, stated President Vladimir Putin during his annual address to lawmakers on 21 April.

The president pointed out that in some countries “a nasty custom has taken root” to point the finger at Russia on any pretext, apparently perceiving Moscow’s self-restraint and good will as a sign of weakness. Putin expressed hope that no foreign nation would attempt to cross any of Russia’s “red lines.”

‘Necessary Reply to Unduly Pressure From US, EU’

“The remarks of the Russian president, in particular those relating to not crossing the ‘red line’ and the fact that Russia is ready to respond even with harsh answers, are part of the classic tradition of the head of the Kremlin: firmness and clarity,” says Tiberio Graziani, chairman at the Vision & Global Trends International Institute for Global Analyses.

Remarkably, Putin has shown that it wasn’t Moscow’s intention to interrupt the dialogue in the first place, the scholar highlighted. The Kremlin leaves the door open even for those who resorted to Washington’s “expulsion” spree, according to Graziani.

At the same time the Russian president’s firm response is no surprise given the US’ “really offensive accusations” against Moscow and interference in the country’s domestic affairs, believes Paolo Raffone, a strategic analyst and director of the CIPI Foundation in Brussels.

It was a necessary reply from President Putin to the unduly made pressures from the Western countries on Russia,” he stresses.

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