por Dmitri Trenin

En todo el debate de la ONU sobre Irak, el Presidente Putin intentó dejar que Francia liderara la carga contra el supuesto "unilateralismo" de Estados Unidos. También evitó unirse a la oposición abierta del Canciller alemán Schroeder a cualquier acción militar contra Bagdad. Finalmente, el presidente ruso terminó declinando apoyar a EEUU y, no obstante, hasta ahora no ha atraído sobre sí ninguna de las burlas coléricas que los líderes de Francia y Alemania han recibido de los estadounidenses. La sutileza y madurez de su diplomacia sobre Irak son otro signo de que Rusia está saliendo de la larga inmovilidad del periodo post-comunista, para encontrar su voz en un mundo liderado por EEUU.

Desde el comienzo de la crisis, el presidente ruso fue hábil al ver la diferencia en que los estadounidenses perciben a Francia y Alemania, por una parte, y a Rusia, por la otra. La prolongada empatía hacia Francia y Alemania, nacida en la alianza de la Guerra Fría, contrasta intensamente con la cautela de la comunidad diplomática estadounidense hacia la Rusia post-soviética. Si el Presidente Putin se hubiera unido al coro franco-alemán de quienes ponían sus dudas sobre la mesa al comienzo del debate de la ONU, habría dilapidado la buena voluntad y reputación de confiabilidad que había acumulado tan trabajosamente desde que llegara al poder hace tres años.

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