Monday, October 3, 2016

Russia: Putin plays Poker with Obama

(Moscow) Russia has suspended an agreement with the US on the disposal of surplus weapons-grade plutonium. Under the 2000 deal, each side is supposed to get rid of 34 tonnes of plutonium by burning it in reactors. The combined total of 68 tonnes of plutonium is “enough material to make approximately 17,000 nuclear weapons". Both sides had reconfirmed the deal in 2010. With the US stumping up $400 million in which to help Moscow get rid of its plutonium mountain akll done in which to ensure that the world's idiots didn’t get their hands on the stuff in which to try and make a nuclear device.

However, Russian leader playing the hardman, as always has suspended the agreement, claiming the US has reneged on the argument signed in 2010 by then Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and that the US was failing to fulfill its obligations to destroy plutonium. Instead, he claimed, the US reprocessing method allowed plutonium to be extracted and used again in nuclear weapons. Putin said:
"We fulfilled our duties, we built that enterprise. But our American partners did not."
However, he has given the US a list of demands in which to get back on track. They are:
  1. A reduction of US military infrastructure and troops in countries that joined NATO after 1 September 2000
  2. Lifting of all US sanctions against Russia and compensation for the damage they have caused after Moscow annexed the Crimea and the eastern half of the Ukraine.
It seems Putin likes to play Poker. The question to ask is, can Obama or Mrs Clinton?