President Obama has presented a short list of priorities. Today he pushed for tax cuts and a new nuclear arms treaty in setting out an ambitious agenda for the lame-duck session of Congress. The new START (Strategic Arms Reduction) treaty worked out with Russia to cut each country’s nuclear arsenals is a priority, Obama said. Ratification of the treaty by the Senate would “send a signal to the world that we’re serious about non-proliferation”. In Wellington, New Zealand, Secretary of State Clinton backed up Obama on the urgency of ratifying START. “We do hope that at the end of the day, senators will say their “yes” to the START pact” Clinton said, quoted by New York DailyNews. Clear sign that the Obama′s administration wants a more conducive climate as Russia NATO Summit in Lisbon. Especially since the intense courtship of Russia as regards the inclusion in NATO and participation in anti-missile shield in Eastern Europe failed to smash the Kremlin skepticism.
Notice that Russia and NATO have certain frictions but they would try to find a compromise, Russia’s Deputy Defense Minister Nikolai Makarov said on Monday. “We share a common approach to many problems, though certain discrepancies remains” the Russian general said after talks with NATO’s Supreme Commander of the United Forces in Europe, Admiral James Stavridis, which visited Moscow last week. Admiral Stavridis stressed the “extraordinary importance of strategic partnership between NATO and Russia“, while Makarov noted that Russia-NATO relations have been improving. Also on Monday, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Russia expected not to be called an enemy in the new NATO’s strategic concept, which the alliance was to adopt during its Lisbon Summit on Nov. 20, Interfex news agency reported. More about the Lisbon Summit and its implications in a future material.