In late February of 2002, the New York Times reported on the creation of the NATO-Russia Council, with officials heralding a new era of cooperation and trust between Putin’s Russia and the alliance of democracies. They were former rivals and future friends, with a period of strategic partnership easing the transition. Yet the tone of the reporting betrayed the presence of tension in the proceedings.
The Times headlined the story: “NATO Offers Russia New Relationship, but Without Any Veto.” As if repeating this like a mantra would make it true, the report stated, in the second paragraph, that Russia “will not have a veto over any NATO political or military policies.” The story closed with a third mention of the lack of a veto, but then offered a striking bit of foreshadowing: “[NATO] want[s] to counter concerns that Russia will use the new relationship to try to divide Europeans from Washington.”
Keep reading this post . . .