The Unz Review: An Alternative Media Selection
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 BlogviewStephen F. Cohen Archive

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American opponents of readmitting Moscow to the former G8 fail to understand the consequences
Two years ago, I asked, “Will Russia Leave the West?” The world’s largest territorial country—sprawling from its major European city St. Petersburg to its vast Far Eastern territories and long border with China—Russia cannot, of course, depart the West geographically. But it can do so politically, economically, and strategically. Indeed, where Russia belongs, where it... Read More
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Vital questions about perhaps the worst alleged presidential scandal in US history remain unanswered
It must again be emphasized: It is hard, if not impossible, to think of a more toxic allegation in American presidential history than the one leveled against candidate, and then president, Donald Trump that he “colluded” with the Kremlin in order to win the 2016 presidential election—and, still more, that Vladimir Putin’s regime, “America’s No.... Read More
Professor Stephen F. Cohen, a Nation contributing editor and professor emeritus of Russian studies at NYU and Princeton, discusses with the host of The John Batchelor Show the recent nuclear accident on a submarine in Northern Russia and the unrelated political protests in Moscow. Cohen puts both in the historical and political context usually missing... Read More
The friends and foes of a Kiev-Moscow settlement
Ukraine, as I have often emphasized, is the epicenter of the new US-Russian Cold War, and its location directly on Russia’s border makes it much more dangerous than was Berlin during the preceding 40-year confrontation. Some 13,000 people have reportedly already died in Donbass in fighting between forces backed by Washington and Moscow. For many... Read More
Liberals and other Democrats seem to want to cover up the CIA’s role in Russiagate
William Barr, a two-time attorney general who served at the CIA in the 1970s, would seem to be an ultimate Washington insider. According to his Wikipedia biography, he has—or he had—“a sterling reputation” both among Republicans and Democrats. That changed when Barr announced his ongoing investigation into the origins of Russiagate, a vital subject I,... Read More
The Trump-Putin meeting in Japan is crucial for both leaders—and for the world
Despite determined attempts in Washington to sabotage such a “summit,” as I reported previously, President Trump and Russian President Putin are still scheduled to meet at the G-20 gathering in Japan this week. Iran will be at the top of their agenda. The Trump administration seems determined to wage cold, possibly even hot, war against... Read More
Is plunging Russia into darkness really a good idea
Occasionally, a revelatory, and profoundly alarming, article passes almost unnoticed, even when published on the front page of The New York Times. Such was the case with reporting by David E. Sanger and Nicole Perlroth, bearing the Strangelovian title “U.S. Buries Digital Land Mines to Menace Russia’s Power Grid,” which appeared in the print edition... Read More
Why Barr’s investigation is important and should be encouraged
It cannot be emphasized too often: Russiagate—allegations that the American president has been compromised by the Kremlin, which may even have helped to put him in the White House—is the worst and (considering the lack of actual evidence) most fraudulent political scandal in American history. We have yet to calculate the damage Russiagate has inflicted... Read More
If Venezuela becomes a Cuban Missile–like Crisis, will Trump be free to resolve it peacefully?
Now in its third year, Russiagate is the worst, most corrosive, and most fraudulent political scandal in modern American history. It rests on two related core allegations: that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an “attack on American democracy” during the 2016 presidential campaign in order to put Donald Trump in the White House, and that... Read More
Little-noted aspects of the first volume of the Mueller report
Special prosecutor Robert S. Mueller III’s two-volume “Report on the Investigation Into Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election” is not an easy read—not unlike those manuals that come boxed with “easy to assemble” multipart children’s toys on Christmas Eve. Nonetheless, considering the exceedingly damaging effects Russiagate has had on America at home and abroad... Read More
How the long-anticipated report addresses—or ignores—Russiagate allegations will be vital for US-Russian relations
Amajor theme of my recently published book War with Russia? is twofold: The United States is in a new Cold War with Russia, but one more dangerous, more fraught with possibilities of actual war, than was the 40-year Cold War the world survived. I began arguing the first proposition nearly 20 years ago, long before... Read More
The Kremlin did not “attack America” in 2016, but the myth could lead to war between the nuclear superpowers
Today’s perilous reality is unprecedented and twofold. On the one hand, never have Washington-Moscow relations been so multiply fraught with the possibilities of war. American and Russian forces are in close and increasingly hostile military proximity from Eastern Europe, Ukraine, and Georgia to Syria, and now possibly Venezuela. On the other hand, the “cooperation” and... Read More
Its perpetrators, not Putin or Trump, “attacked American democracy.”
The very few of us who publicly challenged and deplored Russiagate allegations against candidate and then President Donald Trump from the time they first began to appear in mid-2016 should not gloat or rejoice over the US attorney general’s summary of Robert S. Mueller’s key finding: “The Special Counsel’s investigation did not find that the... Read More
US Cold Warriors escalate toward actual war with Russia
Heedless of the consequences, or perhaps welcoming them, America’s Cold Warriors and their media platforms have recently escalated their rhetoric against Russia, especially in March. Anyone who has lived through or studied the preceding 40-year Cold War will recognize the ominous echoes of its most dangerous periods, when actual war was on the horizon or... Read More
Too many reputations and other interests are vested in the legend for it to vanish from American politics anytime soon
Russiagate allegations that the Kremlin has a subversive hold over President Trump, and even put him in the White House, have poisoned American political life for almost three years. Among other afflictions, it has inspired an array of media malpractices, virtually criminalized anti–Cold War thinking about Russia, and distorted the priorities of the Democratic Party.... Read More
The two governments have repeatedly interfered in each other’s domestic politics during the past 100 years—and...
Even though the bipartisan Senate Intelligence Committee found “no direct evidence of a conspiracy between the Trump campaign and Russia,” Russiagate allegations of “collusion” between candidate and then–President Donald Trump and the Kremlin have poisoned American politics for nearly three years. They are likely to continue to do so for the foreseeable future, due not... Read More
“Collusion,” “contacts,” selective prosecutions, coup plotting, and media taboos recall repressive Soviet practices
Having studied Soviet political history for decades and having lived off and on in that repressive political system before Mikhail Gorbachev’s reforms—in Russia under Leonid Brezhnev in the late 1970s and early 1980s—I may be unduly concerned about similar repressive trends I see unfolding in democratic America during three years of mounting Russiagate allegations. Or... Read More
Why would Moscow want to fight terrorists without the US? It doesn’t
Manichaean Cold War myopia and ludicrous Russiagate allegations have produced one of the worst periods of American “geopolitical” thinking in recent decades. Consider President Trump’s recently announced withdrawals of US forces from Syria and Afghanistan. Instead of applauding these long-overdue steps, the bipartisan US political-media establishment has denounced them as “Trump’s gifts to Putin.” But... Read More
How Russiagate has impacted a vital struggle in Russia
For decades, Russia’s self-described “liberals” and “democrats” have touted the American political system as one their country should emulate. They have had abundant encouragement in this aspiration over the years from legions of American crusaders, who in the 1990s launched a large-scale, deeply intrusive, and ill-destined campaign to transform post-Communist Russia into a replica of... Read More
Baseless Russiagate allegations continue to risk war with Russia
The New Year has brought a torrent of ever-more-frenzied allegations that President Donald Trump has long had a conspiratorial relationship—why mince words and call it “collusion”?—with Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin. Why the frenzy now? Perhaps because Russiagate promoters in high places are concerned that special counsel Robert Mueller will not produce the hoped-for “bombshell” to... Read More
A wise decision is greeted by denunciations, obstructionism, imperial thinking, and more Russia-bashing
President Trump was wrong in asserting that the United States destroyed the Islamic State’s territorial statehood in a large part of Syria—Russia and its allies accomplished that—but he is right in proposing to withdraw some 2,000 American forces from that tragically war-ravaged country. The small American contingent serves no positive combat or strategic purpose unless... Read More
The year 2018 in the history of the new Cold War
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of politics and Russian studies at Princeton and NYU, and John Batchelor mark the fifth anniversary of their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments are at TheNation.com.) Cohen reflects on major developments in 2018, in part drawing on themes in his new book War with... Read More
The Russian-Ukrainian military conflict in the Kerch Strait illustrates again how this Cold War is more dangerous that...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of politics and Russian studies at Princeton and NYU, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) A major theme of Cohen’s recently published book, War With Russia? From Putin and Ukraine To Trump... Read More
The New Cold War is more dangerous than the one the world survived
War With Russia?, like the biography of a living person, is a book without an end. The title is a warning—akin to what the late Gore Vidal termed “a journalistic alert-system”—not a prediction. Hence the question mark. I cannot foresee the future. The book’s overarching theme is informed by past and current facts, not by... Read More
Washington’s attempt to “isolate Putin’s Russia” has failed and had the opposite effect
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) On the fifth anniversary of the onset of the Ukrainian crisis, in November 2013, and of Washington... Read More
Allegations that Russia is still “attacking” US elections, now again in November, could delegitimize our democratic...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) Summarizing one of the themes in his new book, War with Russia? From Putin and Ukraine To... Read More
President Trump’s withdrawal from the INF Treaty nullifies a historic precedent
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at Princeton and NYU, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) After a brief discussion of Cohen’s new book, War With Russia? From Putin & Ukraine to Trump... Read More
Intelligence agencies, Nikki Haley, sanctions, and public opinion
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and politics at Princeton and NYU, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com). Cohen comments on the following subjects currently in the news: 1. National intelligence agencies have long played... Read More
Overshadowed by the Kavanaugh confirmation hearings, US-Russian relations grow ever more perilous
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) Emphasizing growing Cold War extremism in Washington and war-like crises in US-Russian relations elsewhere, Cohen comments on... Read More
Falsely demonizing Russia’s leader has made the new Cold War even more dangerous
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at Princeton and NYU, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) This post is different. The conversation was based on Cohen’s article below, completed the day of the... Read More
According to New York Times intel leakers, “informants close to” Putin have “gone silent.” What can it all mean?
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen’s contribution follows: For nearly two years, mostly vacuous (though malignant) Russiagate allegations have drowned out truly... Read More
Valorizing an ex-CIA director and bashing Trump obscures what is truly ominous
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) Ever since Dwight Eisenhower in the 1950s, every American president has held one or more summit meetings... Read More
For nearly 100 years, Russia has been under US sanctions, often to the detriment of American national security
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com. Cohen begins by putting the current bipartisan Senate campaign to impose new, “crushing” sanctions on Russia in... Read More
The president has broken with the nearly 20-year orthodoxy of blaming Russia alone for today’s post-Soviet confrontations
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) As has every American president since Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1943, President Trump held a... Read More
Not surprisingly, Trump’s meetings with NATO and Putin are being portrayed as ominous events by Russiagaters
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) As Cohen pointed out in previous discussions, US-Russian (Soviet and post-Soviet) summits are a long... Read More
If it actually occurs, never in the 75-year history of such US-Russian meetings will an American president have had so...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) Discussing the apparent decision to hold a prepared Trump-Putin meeting in July, Cohen points out... Read More
The unprecedented allegation that the Kremlin “attacked America” and “colluded” with its president in order to...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) Cohen reminds listeners that the Russiagate scandal, which first leaked into the media in mid-2016,... Read More
Ten ways the new US-Russian Cold War is increasingly becoming more dangerous than the one we survived
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) Recent reports suggest that a formal meeting between Presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin is... Read More
Is Putin really a “pariah” and Russia “isolated from the international community”?
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments of these conversations, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) Baseless and reckless tropes about Russia, Cohen points out, have proliferated in... Read More
McCarthyism and firsthand recollections of Soviet surveillance practices
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments of these conversations, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) Cohen has several reactions to the recent revelation that a longtime CIA-FBI... Read More
A discussion of the Stephen F. Cohen–Michael McFaul debate
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments of these conversations, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) On May 9, at a public event jointly sponsored by Columbia University’s... Read More
Neo-fascists play an important official or tolerated role in US-backed Ukraine
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussion of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen begins: The orthodox American political-media narrative blames “Putin’s Russia” alone for the new US-Russian Cold War.... Read More
Cooperation with Moscow remains vital for American national security, but “Russiagate” allegations, now codified in...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussion of the new US-Russian Cold War. (You can find previous installments of these discussions, now in their fifth year, at TheNation.com.) Cohen points out that for more than a decade Russia—certainly its state and leadership—has... Read More
Incessant Kremlin-baiting of President Trump is risking a Cuban missile–like crisis that he, unlike JFK in 1962, may...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fifth year, are at TheNation.com.) The Cuban missile crisis of 1962, Cohen points out, is widely regarded as a landmark event in... Read More
Several factors make this US-Russian Cold War more dangerous than its predecessor—is “Russo-madness” one of them?
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen has previously explained why the new Cold War is potentially even more dangerous than was its... Read More
“Russiagate” and the Skirpal affair have escalated dangers inherent in the new Cold War beyond those of the preceding one
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, continue their weekly discussion of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen begins by expressing to the Russian people and government profound sympathy and sorrow for the death of scores of Russians,... Read More
Some reflections on the Russian presidential election and on the Sergei Skripal case
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen thinks that the proximity—in time and politics—of the Russian presidential election on March 18 and the... Read More
Putin declares that the long US attempt to gain nuclear superiority over Russia has failed and hopes Washington will...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Cohen explains that President Putin’s speech to both houses of the Russian parliament on March 1, somewhat... Read More
Many aspects of Russiagate are said to be unprecedented—which is very far from the truth
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian studies and politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-American Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) Russians pride themselves on an awareness of “living history”—memories of past events whose recurrence or consequences continue... Read More
Its allegations and practices suggest disdain for American institutions, principles, best interests, and indeed for the...
Stephen F. Cohen, professor emeritus of Russian Studies and Politics at NYU and Princeton, and John Batchelor continue their (usually) weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. (Previous installments, now in their fourth year, are at TheNation.com.) The nearly two-year-long series of allegations and investigations now known as “Russiagate” were instigated by top American... Read More