President Putin teaches Europe a lesson

President Putin (picture Presidential Press and Information Office, Russia)

By Richard Laming

Published in EUobserver, 25 July 2007

The diplomatic dispute between Britain and Russia brings back unmistakeable echoes of the cold war. A Russian defector is brutally and mysteriously murdered in London, while the chief suspect with his links to the Russian security services is safely back in Moscow. Justice might be frustrated, but that is the nature of power politics.

And power is what this dispute is all about. Russia is growing in strength again and is learning to flex its muscles, while the relationship between Russia and the UK is a very unequal one.

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