The Russians say the US should turn away from its current path of criticizing Russia on human rights issues and embrace greater anti-terrorist cooperation in the name of common civilizational values.
That pitch was made explicitly by President Vladimir Putin in a Saturday telephone conversation with Barack Obama. A brief statement posted on the Kremlin website noted that “both sides emphasized their interest in increasing coordination between Russian and American intelligence services in the fight against international terrorism.”
“I would like to remind you that since the early 2000s, when there was a war going on in the northern Caucasus, Putin has said more than once that there can’t be domestic and foreign terrorists, and you can’t flirt with them,” Dmitri Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, told journalists Saturday. “They can’t be differentiated. You can’t deal with some of them, and not others. They all equally deserve non-acceptance.”