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Former U.S. Ambassador Huntsman Insists U.S. Needs ‘More, Not Less, Dialogue with Russia’

Oct. 8, 2019 (EIRNS)—In an op-ed appearing in the Wall Street Journal on Oct. 7, former U.S. Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman said the United States needs to cultivate constructive relationships with Russia’s future leaders.

According to Huntsman, whose term as ambassador ended Oct. 3, Russian President Vladimir Putin

“runs the country with unrivaled strength but, his time will pass. We need to do less obsessing about Mr. Putin and more thinking about the institutions and generations that will outlast him. Rather than cutting ourselves off from Russia, which is the inescapable effect of all these sanctions, we need to cultivate constructive relationships with those who will shape Russia’s post-Putin period,”

he emphasized.

“We need more, not less, dialogue with Russia. But first, we need to allow space for discussion about Russia among ourselves,” Huntsman went on to say.

“As security experts know, fear often has a paralyzing effect. If we allow fear to dictate our approach, we may never find or even consider policies that more effectively advance our national interests, improve the bilateral relationship and make the world safer.”

He said that many of the sanctions leveled against Russia “may be having the desired effect and should be maintained, but not all. Blithely implementing sanctions without making sure they fit into a larger strategy of engagement costs us the ability to shape outcomes,” he wrote. “Our goal should be a Russia that is both a better partner and a more responsible global citizen.”

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