US-Russia relations frosty, but no Cold War II afoot

Updated: 2014-07-27 14:22


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US santions

In a bid to voice their displeasure of what they believe is a disruption of that vision, the US and European Union hit Moscow with a new round of sanctions earlier this month. Russian President Vladimir Putin has billed the sanctions as "aggressive foreign policy," referring to the sanctions that hit Russian banks, defense firms and energy companies. Putin urged the US to work to stop the bloodshed in the Ukraine instead of slapping sanctions on Russia.

But the sanctions are not expected to stop the crisis, and the White House seems to have few concrete solutions.

"It's a difficult situation because there aren't a lot of easy, satisfying actions one can take," Oliker said of the options available to the administration of US President Barack Obama.

"The Obama administration continues to weigh its options," she said.

Military conflict

A full-on military conflict between the US and Russia is highly unlikely, experts said, and Russia would stand little chance in a conflict against fully mobilized US forces, David Clark, chairman of the Russia Foundation, told Xinhua.

He added there are doubts about Russia's capacity to sustain military operations, even in neighboring countries, pointing to the 2008 war with neighboring Georgia. The conflict exposed significant deficiencies in Russian military equipment and organization, so much so that many analysts believe Moscow suspended military operations sooner than it wanted to, Clark said.

That prompted Putin to begin a military modernization program, although it remains unclear how successful that has been, Clark said.

So far the Obama administration has ruled out US military intervention in the Ukrainian crisis and has repeatedly called for a diplomatic solution, as the US faces military budget cuts and a war weary public after more than a decade of military involvement in the Middle East.

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