#1
Here it is, and in my opinion he's a condescending little worm in this letter. He paints the Syrian opposition as the true enemy everyone should be focused on, and then "eloquently" throws out American narratives and values in an attempt to "educate" us. Do what you will with it:

MOSCOW — RECENT events surrounding Syria have prompted me to speak directly to the American people and their political leaders. It is important to do so at a time of insufficient communication between our societies.

Relations between us have passed through different stages. We stood against each other during the cold war. But we were also allies once, and defeated the Nazis together. The universal international organization — the United Nations — was then established to prevent such devastation from ever happening again.

The United Nations’ founders understood that decisions affecting war and peace should happen only by consensus, and with America’s consent the veto by Security Council permanent members was enshrined in the United Nations Charter. The profound wisdom of this has underpinned the stability of international relations for decades.

No one wants the United Nations to suffer the fate of the League of Nations, which collapsed because it lacked real leverage. This is possible if influential countries bypass the United Nations and take military action without Security Council authorization.

The potential strike by the United States against Syria, despite strong opposition from many countries and major political and religious leaders, including the pope, will result in more innocent victims and escalation, potentially spreading the conflict far beyond Syria’s borders. A strike would increase violence and unleash a new wave of terrorism. It could undermine multilateral efforts to resolve the Iranian nuclear problem and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and further destabilize the Middle East and North Africa. It could throw the entire system of international law and order out of balance.

Syria is not witnessing a battle for democracy, but an armed conflict between government and opposition in a multireligious country. There are few champions of democracy in Syria. But there are more than enough Qaeda fighters and extremists of all stripes battling the government. The United States State Department has designated Al Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, fighting with the opposition, as terrorist organizations. This internal conflict, fueled by foreign weapons supplied to the opposition, is one of the bloodiest in the world.

Mercenaries from Arab countries fighting there, and hundreds of militants from Western countries and even Russia, are an issue of our deep concern. Might they not return to our countries with experience acquired in Syria? After all, after fighting in Libya, extremists moved on to Mali. This threatens us all.

From the outset, Russia has advocated peaceful dialogue enabling Syrians to develop a compromise plan for their own future. We are not protecting the Syrian government, but international law. We need to use the United Nations Security Council and believe that preserving law and order in today’s complex and turbulent world is one of the few ways to keep international relations from sliding into chaos. The law is still the law, and we must follow it whether we like it or not. Under current international law, force is permitted only in self-defense or by the decision of the Security Council. Anything else is unacceptable under the United Nations Charter and would constitute an act of aggression.

No one doubts that poison gas was used in Syria. But there is every reason to believe it was used not by the Syrian Army, but by opposition forces, to provoke intervention by their powerful foreign patrons, who would be siding with the fundamentalists. Reports that militants are preparing another attack — this time against Israel — cannot be ignored.

It is alarming that military intervention in internal conflicts in foreign countries has become commonplace for the United States. Is it in America’s long-term interest? I doubt it. Millions around the world increasingly see America not as a model of democracy but as relying solely on brute force, cobbling coalitions together under the slogan “you’re either with us or against us.”

But force has proved ineffective and pointless. Afghanistan is reeling, and no one can say what will happen after international forces withdraw. Libya is divided into tribes and clans. In Iraq the civil war continues, with dozens killed each day. In the United States, many draw an analogy between Iraq and Syria, and ask why their government would want to repeat recent mistakes.

No matter how targeted the strikes or how sophisticated the weapons, civilian casualties are inevitable, including the elderly and children, whom the strikes are meant to protect.

The world reacts by asking: if you cannot count on international law, then you must find other ways to ensure your security. Thus a growing number of countries seek to acquire weapons of mass destruction. This is logical: if you have the bomb, no one will touch you. We are left with talk of the need to strengthen nonproliferation, when in reality this is being eroded.

We must stop using the language of force and return to the path of civilized diplomatic and political settlement.

A new opportunity to avoid military action has emerged in the past few days. The United States, Russia and all members of the international community must take advantage of the Syrian government’s willingness to place its chemical arsenal under international control for subsequent destruction. Judging by the statements of President Obama, the United States sees this as an alternative to military action.

I welcome the president’s interest in continuing the dialogue with Russia on Syria. We must work together to keep this hope alive, as we agreed to at the Group of 8 meeting in Lough Erne in Northern Ireland in June, and steer the discussion back toward negotiations.

If we can avoid force against Syria, this will improve the atmosphere in international affairs and strengthen mutual trust. It will be our shared success and open the door to cooperation on other critical issues.

My working and personal relationship with President Obama is marked by growing trust. I appreciate this. I carefully studied his address to the nation on Tuesday. And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.

Vladimir V. Putin is the president of Russia.
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Last edited by Carnivean at Sep 12, 2013,
#4
He isn't wrong though, even if I don't support his backing of Assad.
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#5
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He's not wrong

Except for the numerous "slippery slopes" and generalizations he makes about America.
#6
Quote by Skullivan
Except for the numerous "slippery slopes" and generalizations he makes about America.


What slippery slope? He's not saying violating international law will eventually lead to WWIII and nuclear proliferation, he's saying violating international law (vigilantism) is an activity that directly undermines international law, and everyone's efforts to maintain a proper geopolitical climate.

Which is 100% true. His comparison to the LoN is quite apt, though I don't recall America being a member (could totally be wrong on that though).
#7
I'm not reading all that shit. I will say that I think intervention needs to be done in Syria one way or another, but I will also say that I feel that big world powers bypassing the UN does seem to make it illegitimate.
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#9
Quote by progdude93
What slippery slope? He's not saying violating international law will eventually lead to WWIII and nuclear proliferation, he's saying violating international law (vigilantism) is an activity that directly undermines international law, and everyone's efforts to maintain a proper geopolitical climate.

Which is 100% true. His comparison to the LoN is quite apt, though I don't recall America being a member (could totally be wrong on that though).

In hindsight I didn't phrase that as I should have. I meant there were slippery slopes, like when he said attacking Syria would launch a new wave of terrorism. And generalizations about America, when he said our only reasoning for getting in people's business was our "with or against us" mentality.
#10
If you account for obvious bias towards Assad, he makes a lot of sense. Plus, the US shouldn't be acting as the "world police", and it's obvious that the citizens of the US are sick of constant warfare.

Quote by Skullivan
In hindsight I didn't phrase that as I should have. I meant there were slippery slopes, like when he said attacking Syria would launch a new wave of terrorism.

It kind of would. How many more children would die if the US launched missiles on Syria? Wouldn't the US be acting in a manner similar to terrorists in that sense?

And generalizations about America, when he said our only reasoning for getting in people's business was our "with or against us" mentality.

But it kind of has been for quite a while. That's not how the US citizens view it, but in practicality...it basically is that. He called a spade a spade.
Last edited by crazysam23_Atax at Sep 12, 2013,
#11
And I would rather disagree with a case he made on American exceptionalism, stating that the United States’ policy is “what makes America different. It’s what makes us exceptional.” It is extremely dangerous to encourage people to see themselves as exceptional, whatever the motivation. There are big countries and small countries, rich and poor, those with long democratic traditions and those still finding their way to democracy. Their policies differ, too. We are all different, but when we ask for the Lord’s blessings, we must not forget that God created us equal.

Slaaaaaaaaaaaap
#13
I like the idea of placing Syria's chemical weapons under internation protection, but I still don't trust Putin. Russia makes a killing selling weapons to Syria, and they have strategic interests in the Syrian port of Tartus.

Quote by Skullivan
In hindsight I didn't phrase that as I should have. I meant there were slippery slopes, like when he said attacking Syria would launch a new wave of terrorism.

I don't see how that's a slippery slope argument. Al Qaeda have infiltrated parts of the opposition movement, and any attack on the Syrian military would make the military more vulnerable to rebel attacks. Unless, of course, he meant it would lead to a new wave of terrorism outside of Syria.
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Last edited by I.O.T.M at Sep 12, 2013,
#14
Putin making a lot of sense here.

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#15
Quote by crazysam23_Atax

It kind of would. How many more children would die if the US launched missiles on Syria?

Nice pathos there.
We can't leave it at "US launching missiles." We have to, at the very least, hope that we don't have as many civilian casualties as Iraq etc. But that's all in the hands of the armed forces.

Wouldn't the US be acting in a manner similar to terrorists in that sense?

In terms of killing innocent people? Probs. In terms of destroying the peace of mind of a general populace? Not as much.


But it kind of has been for quite a while. That's not how the US citizens view it, but in practicality...it basically is that.

I'll agree with you slightly on that, just the manner of how he said it was what irked me. He said "slogan," as if we were Russians...how ironic
#16
He makes a lot of sense for a guy who wants to imprison all the gay people. And by "he" I mean his team of writers who tagged his name at the end.

That said, I like what the text says.
#17
Carefully worded to make him look good, he has a lot of good points for sure, but we all know he's a dickhead
#18
Putin and Russia have a greater interest in keeping Muslim extremists engaged in Syria than the US does in deposing Assad.
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#19
Quote by Skullivan
Nice pathos there.

Well, where are the chemical weapons being stored? Word is, Assad moved them into populated areas. Yeah, that makes him scum. But we start launching missiles, civilians die.
And it's not really our fight in the first place.

We can't leave it at "US launching missiles." We have to, at the very least, hope that we don't have as many civilian casualties as Iraq etc. But that's all in the hands of the armed forces.

Or we could, you know, just let Syria sort its own shit out, after we take Assad's nerve gas away.

In terms of killing innocent people? Probs. In terms of destroying the peace of mind of a general populace? Not as much.

Hmm...I'm sure the general populace will be in a peaceful state of mind if the US drops a few missiles in populated areas. Yes, that will just calm them immensely.

I'll agree with you slightly on that, just the manner of how he said it was what irked me. He said "slogan," as if we were Russians...how ironic

Meh.
#20
I wouldn't be upset if Vladmir Putin was murdered. Smug, chauvinistic prick.
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#21
Most politicians are full of BS. Putin being Ex KGB only makes him a true expert in BS.

Created equal? Ah well, except for the gays that is. I don't back Obama at all on this but I think it's fair to say that Putin is not to be trusted.