Russia has been making a lot of noise over the past few months since the school murders, trying to re-establish itself as a world power.
Show casing new missile systems, building subs for India, the Ukrainian election mess.
The way it looks Putin wants to go back to the former Soviet Union days instead of free market, hmmm one to watch.
No more a superpower, its conventional forces greatly weakened, Moscow increasingly relies on the deterrent power of atomic weapons.
December 6, 2004
By David Holley, Times Staff Writer
MOSCOW — It was near the end of President Vladimir V. Putin's reelection campaign early this year, and two days of high-profile military exercises
highlighting his role as Russia's commander in chief had been marred by failed tests of submarine-launched missiles.
But with a few cryptic words, Putin dispelled the gloom. The exercises, he said at a news conference, confirmed that Russia would soon possess
intercontinental nuclear weapons capable of maneuvering in flight to evade antimissile defenses.
"No other country in the world has such weapons systems," Putin said. "It means that Russia has been and will remain one of the biggest nuclear
missile powers in the world. Some people may like it and some may not, but everyone will have to reckon with it."
The end of the Cold War, improved relations with the U.S. and the personal rapport between Putin and President Bush have all served to make Moscow's
military seem far less ominous than in Soviet times. On top of that, Russia's conventional forces have vastly weakened.
The sad state of its regular military has forced Moscow to place fresh emphasis on nuclear weapons in order to protect its interests in Europe and
Asia. Washington is building military bases in some former Soviet republics. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization has expanded eastward into the
former Soviet Baltic republics. Washington has continued to develop missile defenses.