It may be time to follow Jefferson’s advice on dealing with Russia

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It may be time to follow Jefferson’s advice on dealing with Russia
Published 24-01-2020, 07:42

Frank Shatz

Shatz is a Williamsburg resident. He is the author of “Reports from a Distant Place,” the compilation of his selected columns. The book is available at the Bruton Parish Shop and Amazon.com

By Frank Shatz

Editor’s note: Dr. Edward Lozansky, was responding to Frank Shatz’ column on Dec. 25. 2019, "We must avoid another Cold War.”

"It looks like US-Russia relations reached a point of no return, to normalcy,” said Dr, Edward Lozansky, the founder and president of the American University in Moscow, in a recent interview with the Gazette.

"Congress and mainstream media present Russian president Vladimir Putin as Bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and Muhammar Gaddafi, all rolled into one. And it blames Russia for almost all the world’s calamities,” he continued.

Lozansky seems to have all the credentials to evaluate rationally the relationship between the U. S. and Russia. He is a nuclear physicist, who lived in exile in the United States during the Cold War. After the collapse of Communism, he returned to Russia and founded the American University in Moscow with the blessing of Mikhail Gorbachev and George H. Bush.

He is recognized as a vital bridge between American and Russian institutions of higher education. He was instrumental in organizing the first William & Mary/American University in Moscow lecture that was presented by Dr. Joel Levine, a research professor at W&M, who for 41 years served as a senior researcher at NASA.

Reflecting on the current political atmosphere in America, Lozansky said, "It is ripe for the Iraqi-like military operation to change the Kremlin regime. The only thing that prevents this is the fear of massive retaliation which most likely will lead to mutual annihilation of both nations.”

Lozansky maintains, Republicans and Democrats in Congress, disagree on almost all issues except when the vote is on a new round on anti-Russian sanctions. "Going along with Russia is good for America, Trump is saying, but his words are not supported by any deeds.”

What does all this leave private citizens to do who don’t want just to sit and wait until hell breaks loose?

Lozansky’s answer is, that ordinary citizens should demand that their elected representatives should work toward signing a new nuclear arms control agreement with Russia. "I doubt that the voices of the people can compete with those from the military/industrial complex, but effort must be made.”

"My group at the American University in Moscow, is organizing many international conferences, university lectures, publication of books and articles with the participation of leading American and Russian scholars to search for US-Russia rapprochement to avoid a major catastrophe,” Lozansky said.

One of the upcoming projects is the celebration of the 75th anniversary of the US-Soviet military linkage at the Elba River which took place April 25, 1945.

U. S. and Soviet forces met at the Elbe River in the city of Torgau, Germany, successfully cutting the German army in two.

"The "Meeting on the Elbe” signaled the approaching end of the Nazi regime and was heralded around the world. Today, the joyfulness created by that open display of comradeship between East and West is needed more than ever” states the announcement of the event.

During a previous interview, I asked Lozansky, what specific recommendations he has that would put US-Russian relationships on an even keel, he said:

"Follow Thomas Jefferson’s advice and try not to meddle and micromanage Russian’s internal affairs. Identify a priority list of common problems which can be resolved by joint efforts. Try solving them one by one, starting with an agreement on joint missiles defense. The rest will follow much easier.”

Shatz is a Williamsburg resident. He is the author of "Reports from a Distant Place,” the compilation of his selected columns. The book is available at the Bruton Parish Shop and Amazon.com

 

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