Moscow is in no hurry to congratulate Joe Biden, “the most dangerous candidate”

Coming to power in 1999, at a time when the tenant of the White House was called Bill Clinton, Vladimir Poutine will meet, with Joe Biden, his fifth American president. Suffice to say that the Russian head of state, strong in this precedence, did not rush to congratulate the winner of the presidential election.

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As of Sunday morning, neither the Kremlin nor the Foreign Ministry had made any comment, unlike many of their foreign counterparts. Even the usual snipers of Russian diplomacy, inexhaustible during the long uncertain hours that saw American democracy falter, remained silent.

Unsurprisingly, the election of Joe Biden is seen in Moscow as bad news. In recent weeks, Russian experts have tried to put it into perspective, stressing that the relationship between Washington and Moscow was doomed to deteriorate regardless of the winner of the American election. In support of this observation, the disappointment born of the Trump years: the outgoing president, despite all his marks of friendship for Mr. Putin, has never succeeded in reversing the course of the bilateral relationship. Under his presidency, sanctions against Moscow have become a routine measure of the US administration.

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Personal liabilities

Magnanimous, the Russian leadership had granted him “Extenuating circumstances”, in this case the force of inertia of the American administration and the existence of an anti-Russian bipartisan consensus in Wahington. With Mr. Biden, it’s quite another thing: the Democrat is a declared enemy, in line with his former boss, Barak Obama, a figure hated in Moscow. It was he, during the Obama era, who supervised the Ukrainian dossier, the scene of a frontal opposition between the two capitals. “There is no better candidate for Russia, but Biden is more dangerous”, summarized again, the day after the election, the deputy Alexeï Pouchkov.

Between MM. Biden and Putin, there is even a personal liability. In 2011, from Moscow, the American had publicly estimated that Vladimir Putin, then prime minister, would do better not to return to the presidency, “For him and for his country”. An offense and an indelible stain. In October 2019, Joe Biden had been even more offensive: “Putin knows that if I become the President of the United States, his days of tyranny and threats against us and the countries of Central Europe are over. “

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