NEWS

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June 29, 2006

Russian anger

Apparently Russians are quite upset about the gruesome murder of four employees of their embassy. This is to be expected. The interesting thing though, is that the Russians have been largely blaming this on the U.S.:

[M]any Russian officials, clerics, politicians and commentators have blamed the deaths on the United States and the failure of the American-led forces to provide security.The lower house of Parliament voted today to adopt a statement that referred only to the "occupying countries" in Iraq, but blamed them for the deaths. "We believe they could have prevented the tragedy," the statement said.
I find this pretty absurd. It would be one thing for a Western European country with no modern history of maltreatment of Muslims, but the Russians have made their own bed with their behavior in Chechnya. On top of that, I wouldn't be surprised if a group of Shias had a bone to pick over Russia's implicit pre-war support of Saddam Hussein. Russia has made its own choices in its war on terror, it is hardly America's fault that Islamic extremists are angry (especially given their track record at carefully scoping out targets). Of course this is ignoring the obvious argument against the Russian response which is simply that the US are not the barbarians cutting off people's heads here (although we have done some terrible things, just nothing to the Russians).