September 17, 2014

Martin Wolf, a neighbor, Russia, can become dangerous by Europe’s and US’ own weakening.

Sir, Martin Wolf is absolutely right when he writes “For Europe and, I believe, the US, there is no greater foreign policy question than how to deal with today’s Russia”, “Russia is our most dangerous neighbor” September 17.

But that said let us not never ignore the dangers with a neighbor becoming more dangerous, only because ones’ own country is becoming weaker. And in this respect something is happening both in Europe and in the US. 

Only as an example I cannot shake off the impression it made on me seeing the image of Britain’s David Cameron, Germany’s Angela Merkel, Holland’s Mark Rutte and Sweden’s Fredrik Reinfeldt, in a row boat, in a little lake, probably surrounded by thousands of life guards… wearing life vests… exactly where, perhaps in the same boat, 50 years earlier, we had seen Tage Erlander of Sweden and Nikita Khrushchev, rowing… without life vests.

What I said to those around me was “Never ever would Winston Churchill (or Putin) have allowed to be photographed in a little row boat, on a small lake, close to the shore, wearing a life vest!”

And with respect to the US, I just heard on the radio of a soccer team being sued because one of the players hurt his head while playing… come on... in the "home of the brave"?

And of course I do not refer here to any silly bare-chested testosterone showing-off, like Putin often does… but, of course, I do refer here to that de-testosteroning of our banks, which risk adverse regulators are causing with their credit-risk-weighted capital requirements.

PS. By the way, in order not to become dangerously cocky, we should never forget that one of the reasons for the fall of Russia was the low oil price at that time.