For Putin, a flex of Russian muscle in the Middle East
June 27th, 2012
12:00 AM ET

For Putin, a flex of Russian muscle in the Middle East

By Elise Labott

Russian presidents don't come to Israel every day. The last time President Vladmir Putin came to Israel was in 2005, the first leader of Russia to visit the country since the time of the czars.

There should be good reason for close ties between the two countries.

Israel is home more than a million Russian-speakers who came from parts of the former Soviet Union. And Israelis will never forget that it was the Soviets who liberated many of the Jews from death camps in the Holocaust. On Monday, Putin stood next to President Shimon Peres at the unveiling of a "Victory Monument" in the Israeli city of Netanya, marking the Red Army's victory over Nazi Germany.

But these strong historical ties don't necessarily translate to modern day cooperation.

On foreign policy issues, Israel and Russia could not be further apart. Russia supplies deadly weapons to Israel's greatest enemies, Syria and Iran. Moscow never misses an opportunity to criticize Israel for its occupation of the Palestinian territories. During Russia's war with Georgia, it was Israel that supplied sophisticated weaponry to Tbilisi.

Trade between the two countries is a modest $3 billion a year. Decent, said one official, but nothing compared with the huge potential for cooperation, not only in trade but in culture, science, technology and tourism.

"We have a dialogue, but no understandings," one Israeli official said of the relationship with Russia.

Both Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Peres sought to strengthen their relationship with Putin, with Peres calling him "the most experienced president in our world" and a leader who could contribute to peace in the region.

Israel wants Russia to curb its support for President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, pressure the regime in Iran to halt its nuclear program and constrain missile sales to Iran that could impede an Israeli nuclear strike.

The Russian president pledged cooperation but was noncommittal. He did, however, flex a lot of Russian muscle. He arrived in Israel with an entourage of about 400 ministers, advisers, security personnel and journalists and spoke of Russian immigrants in Israel as if they still belong to the Russian Empire.

In the West Bank town of Bethlehem, Putin continued his campaign to reinforce Russian prescience, culture and prestige in the region, attending the official opening of the Russian Scientific and Cultural Center in Bethlehem. He then left for Jordan, where he was to visit a hospice for Russian Christian pilgrims at a site on the Jordan River revered as the place where Jesus was baptized.

With Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, Putin was more forward leaning, saying Russia's position on the peace process was closer to that of the Palestinians than of Israel. Putin made clear his desire for Russia to become more active in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, reintroducing an idea for a peace conference in Moscow in an effort to jump-start negotiations.

At a time when Moscow is vilified around the world for its unwavering support for the Syrian regime and Putin is facing widespread criticism for his crackdown on political opposition, the Russian president found a receptive audience.

His visit also is a not-so-subtle message to the United States that Russia will vie for influence in a region where American diplomatic leadership has had too few successes in recent years to remain the only power broker. And it should be a signal to President Barack Obama, who has not visited Israel in three years since becoming president, that showing up matters.

"It's clear this visit is a nudge to the Americans, to tell them 'I am here on your turf, and I am player here too,' " one Israeli official said. "It's not confrontational, but it's telling the Americans, 'don't overlook us.' "

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Filed under: Israel • Putin • Russia
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  2. Matt

    There is not going to be an Iranian nuclear bomb.

    January 19, 2013 at 4:18 pm | Reply
    • Matt

      I am pretty sure, like Assad WMD, I will burn my wheat again and everyone's else and they can eat themselves from the inside out like Syria. Stockpile what 2 years.

      January 19, 2013 at 4:25 pm | Reply
      • Matt

        Go away before you get hurt my Persian friends.

        January 19, 2013 at 4:27 pm |
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    July 30, 2012 at 5:43 am | Reply
  5. william king

    re uss liberty incident

    July 15, 2012 at 2:59 am | Reply
  6. dortaf

    Check out this troll who calls himself Rob. Taking pot shots at those who point out the stupidity of the first paragraph.
    He must be related to this reporter Elise Labott. He sounds anti-Israel but more like a Zionist plant.

    June 27, 2012 at 10:20 pm | Reply
  7. Sheikh Krishna bin Govind

    It appears to me that Muslims are the fastest growing segment of world society today. As others are withering away the Muslims seem to be rising again with their contributions as was the case historically when they ruled India and Europe and left behind a legacy of science, art, architecture, culinary et al. One only needs to go to Spain and India to witness this. As immigrants, it is a good thing to be aware of your glorious heritage and be connected with it. The Italian immigrants do it as do the Germans, Polish, Jewish, Hispanic and many other cultures. What really pleasantly surprised me was what I witnessed in the Middle East. A tolerant society that has come so far in a few years. Most importantly providing job and economic opportunities to all, Hindus/Indians, Jews, Christians, Muslims, Europeans, Americans, Africans, South Americans, Chinese, and Russians etc. Never have I witnessed such openness and equal opportunities unless you go back to the times of Muslim rule in India and Spain. My conclusion is that the Muslims get it. They are striving to once again take their leadership role in the world order and take this civilization to its next level of excellence. The climb to success and progress is not a linear curve but a stochastic one. Let us join in wishing our Muslim brethren well and much success in their endeavors. If we can't help them let's not pull the rug from under them.

    June 27, 2012 at 5:30 pm | Reply
    • Thinker23

      If and when the Muslims will accept all other cultures and people as equal I'll wish them luck. As of now it is difficult to me to wish luck to the folllowers of religion who's Prophet ordered them (the Muslims) to KILL EVERY JEW.

      June 27, 2012 at 6:09 pm | Reply
    • Ojala=inshalla

      The day I see a synagogue or christian church in Saudi Arabia, then I will know that the muslim world has evolved from centuries of backwardness.

      June 27, 2012 at 6:11 pm | Reply
      • saeed

        there will be no churches no synagogues no mosques there will only be chinese dao temples this is the truth the only truth.

        June 27, 2012 at 11:32 pm |
  8. Bored

    "The first leader of Russia to visit the country since the time of the czars."

    Am I the only one that realizes that the state of Israel did not exist during the time of the czars? I believe it was called Palestine.

    June 27, 2012 at 4:45 pm | Reply
  9. Jimmy

    horrible atricle, it says absolutely nothing besides Puting going to Israel. CNN SUCKS. Props to Putin.

    June 27, 2012 at 3:15 pm | Reply
  10. PowerToIsrael

    Israel is just too cool for school. U mad libby's?

    June 27, 2012 at 2:56 pm | Reply
  11. bert f.

    "... Peres calling him "the most experienced president in our world" and a leader who could contribute to peace in the region."
    Sounds like a not so subtle dig at Obama to me.

    June 27, 2012 at 1:51 pm | Reply
    • bob

      The Isrealis enjoy biting the hand that feeds them.

      They also enjoyed murdering 34 US sailors aboard the USS Liberty.

      With "friends" like that.......

      June 27, 2012 at 2:04 pm | Reply
      • Mirthful

        Israel doesn't bite the hand that feeds them. The first thing Obama did after he was elected was to run into the Arab world and attempt to placate them. As far as the Liberty incident:

        About a dozen formal U.S. government investigations concluded it was an accident of war. 

        NSA intercepts of the Israeli pilot-to-base transmissions were recently declassified and show that Israel didn't figure out it was an American ship until after the attack. 

        As a result, U.S. ships communications were altered because there was an error in the ship's positioning (the U.S. didn't know it was there and told Israel it had no ships in that area). 

        The U.S. also upgraded ships markings to reduce the likelihood of such friendly fire accidents ever happening again.

        These declassified transcripts, released 4 years ago, prove it was an accident:

        nsa. gov/public_info/declass/uss_liberty/recordings.shtml

        June 27, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
      • Peikovianyi

        Oh, Bob... the SWAT team would have lost those bullets, but fortunately your face was there to prevent it.

        June 27, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
      • Thinker23

        Bob... Israelis are not much different from the Americans who enjoyed killing 290 Iranian civilians on board of the Iranair flight 655.

        June 27, 2012 at 6:14 pm |
  12. starrwish

    What Hitler did to the Jewish people was terrible. What Stalin and other Soviet leaders did to "everybody" behind the iron curtain was horrific. I understand that Jewish people were dying by the thousands on daily basis under Nazi Germany occupation of Europe in 1945, but to give an old- school leader like Putin( former KGB) the liberator treatment seems too ironic to me. Where's the local Russian, VFW post members when you a need 'photo opportunity'?

    June 27, 2012 at 1:44 pm | Reply
  13. ART

    Mirthful STFU

    June 27, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Reply
    • Mirthful

      Art, go give your daily head sessions to your usual terror cells.

      June 27, 2012 at 1:43 pm | Reply
  14. Socrates

    This world will so much better if the superpowers can work together for the sake of humanity. Am I getting drunk or what. For a second I thought the politicians have brains. Sorry.

    June 27, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Reply
    • ED4

      I also experienced a brief moment of optimism. When Putin returned to the presidency I was sure this translated to a return to the old confrontational ways. The 3rd world despots were experts in playing one superpower against the other. Maybe the new Putin is a wiser Putin. I can only hope. It is not good that the US always takes the lead. It builds resentment and is expensive.

      June 27, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Reply
  15. RUSIRIUS

    Education is kaputin in America based on the comments I see. Zionist this or commie that or short man syndrome. No wonder your paranoid. Everyone else is smarter than you!

    June 27, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Reply
    • Kurtinco

      It's you're...not your. Talk about smart. That's third grade grammar, Rus.

      June 27, 2012 at 4:07 pm | Reply
  16. ART

    saeed what drugs are you on ,please respond i'd like to try some, because some time i like to be a little delusional also.

    June 27, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Reply
  17. Disfigured Hasbara Troll

    ALL jews go to HELL...

    June 27, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Reply
    • Mirthful

      For me, being in hell would be, to be a brainless, racist dumbshît. You're clearly in hell already.

      June 27, 2012 at 1:44 pm | Reply
  18. Antwoine

    Israel will always fall in line with the flavor of the month. Instead of worrying about the President's stance on the mid-east peace process... we should have been focusing on the political factors in Israel and where their allegiance stands. Obviously, they are looking to "better deal" the U.S.

    June 27, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Reply
    • Mirthful

      Sure. With Obama in office and his open hostility toward Israel, Israel shouldn't look toward improving relations with other countries.

      June 27, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Reply
      • bob

        Facts not in evidence, fool.

        Never forget the Isrealis murdered 34 US sailors aboard the USS Liberty.

        June 27, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
      • Mirthful

        Never forget, the Liberty was an accident of war...

        About a dozen formal U.S. government investigations concluded it was an accident of war. 

        NSA intercepts of the Israeli pilot-to-base transmissions were recently declassified and show that Israel didn't figure out it was an American ship until after the attack. 

        As a result, U.S. ships communications were altered because there was an error in the ship's positioning (the U.S. didn't know it was there and told Israel it had no ships in that area). 

        The U.S. also upgraded ships markings to reduce the likelihood of such friendly fire accidents ever happening again.

        These declassified transcripts, released 4 years ago, prove it was an accident:

        nsa. gov/public_info/declass/uss_liberty/recordings.shtml

        June 27, 2012 at 2:08 pm |
      • Peikovianyi

        Never forget what a what of life you are, "Bob" ======) --

        June 27, 2012 at 2:14 pm |
  19. AlexShch

    Actually a very twisted article full of speculation.

    At first, lets remind to everybody that Russia and Israel have very intimate relationship, which were not always very smooth, but lets make sure that there is no ambiguity here: Russia is the main supplier of Israelis most precious resource: Jews. Lets also face the fact that Putin and Israeli foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman can talk on their native language without an interpreter.

    Lets look an this paragraph:

    "On foreign policy issues, Israel and Russia could not be further apart. Russia supplies deadly weapons to Israel's greatest enemies, Syria and Iran. Moscow never misses an opportunity to criticize Israel for its occupation of the Palestinian territories. During Russia's war with Georgia, it was Israel that supplied sophisticated weaponry to Tbilisi"

    O'Reilly? At first, Israel supplied sophisticated weaponry to Georgia not during the Aug. 2008 war, but BEFORE the war. When war started, Israel stopped instantly. And after the war ended, Israel started supplying Russia with the very same sophisticated weaponry.

    Secondly, as for the differences of opinion about Syria, etc... and the overall Russia vs. Israel position toward "Arab spring" are they actually different, meaning that Russia is obviously very conservative in sense that it is easier to talk with "known and sane" Mubarak and Assad than with unknown "brothers"?

    June 27, 2012 at 12:57 pm | Reply
  20. Everett Wallace

    so now i know why i call him poootin, he got to go to iran and talk to the devil face to face. this is going to get REAl interesting, got syria, got U.S. Embassy with Allies posted in BEriut, interesting, You got E. coming to syria.

    June 27, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Reply
  21. jacob

    thank god russians are not manipulated by zionists, putin can go to israel and speak without any fear of not getting a budget passed from zionists who own world's half wealth or more (ex: rothchilds)

    June 27, 2012 at 11:30 am | Reply
    • hmm

      Is someone talkign right now, all I can hear is static and noise -_-

      June 27, 2012 at 11:56 am | Reply
    • Mirthful

      People who aren't absolutely stupid realize that Russia isn't influenced by "Ziønists" but their leader visits. Conversely, the U.S. is supposed to be under Ziønist control, but the leader of the U.S. DOES NOT visit. Jew-haters are STUPID.

      June 27, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Reply
    • Thinker23

      Those Zionist must really be "chosen by God" if they managed to own world's half wealth or more while living in a tiny country occupying 0.2% of the Middle East and having absolutely no natural resourcers to selll.

      June 27, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Reply
      • 32rekniht

        That's because your ancestors shoveled cow turds and mine read books. Not a conspiracy, just a focus on education and community.

        June 27, 2012 at 1:10 pm |
      • jbloombe

        Such an obviously ignorant comment. Israel owns have the world's wealth? It's so absurd that there is no need for supporting evidence.

        June 27, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • sawolf

      So get off your ignorant behind and earn some, then you too can wield influence and stop complaining about others success.

      June 27, 2012 at 3:18 pm | Reply
  22. jack 1

    Putins nothing but a man with shortman syndrome, leading a has-been world leading country trying to make it like the former Soviet empire. If we had a leader other than the very weak Obama putin would be sent back to his chair. Putin is no threat to us, just a pain in the rear.

    June 27, 2012 at 11:24 am | Reply
    • Socrates

      You are so bright, Einstein.

      June 27, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Reply
  23. Ariel

    Israel and Russia have much more in common than the average redneck imagines.
    The main reason why they are no closer is the stupid Cold War hangover that still opposes frothing American right-wingers with their Russian counterparts.

    June 27, 2012 at 11:00 am | Reply
    • Joe Domingo

      Yeah I'm sure being allies with Iran has nothing to do with it. I welcome a Russian relationship with Israel, if it means no support for Iran it's win-win for the US. I doubt that will happen though. Russia is too used to keeping company with scoundrels.

      June 27, 2012 at 11:48 am | Reply
      • Socrates

        !Guau!

        June 27, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  24. Russian Federation

    Vladimir Putin would make a MUCH BETTER President right here in the USA than Mitt Romney or Barack Obama ANYDAY !!!! President Putin would get things done, and if both Congressional Chambers fail to see eye-to-eye, rest assured, Putin would MAKE IT HAPPEN !!!!

    June 27, 2012 at 10:52 am | Reply
    • jack 1

      The guy's a crook, dictator and has severe shortman syndrome. A good US leader will send him back to his chair.

      June 27, 2012 at 11:18 am | Reply
      • Socrates

        Are you sure you are not describing an American president? After all in the US only 55% of the people vote so the president is elected with no more than the 1 or 2% of the half of 55%, maybe 28 or 29%? Putin was elected with 49% of the popular vote, a big drop from the last election he was elected, 70%. Your problem is that the guy is not Yeltsin, the drunk. You love to deals with inept presidents like Yeltsin and other dictators. Well, I am so sorry that Putin is a strong an intelligent president who you can't fool around with

        June 27, 2012 at 1:49 pm |
    • SUVsAreEvil

      Putin is still a Communist. And you want to put him INCHARGE of America?????? The Russian people don't even want him. They FEAR him. And they should.

      June 27, 2012 at 11:23 am | Reply
      • Joe Domingo

        He isn't an American, their propagandists try to pretend to be us and then say these things. The old way of propaganda is to say "Give up evil imperialists", the new form is to pretend to be you and agree with them.

        June 27, 2012 at 11:51 am |
    • Joe Domingo

      Says the anti-US propagandist.

      June 27, 2012 at 11:49 am | Reply
  25. Spence

    Sooo Russia, who supplies weapons to sworn enemies of Israel, is going to Israel to basically unveil a monument for the freedom of concentration camps from during WWII. But then the Jews who went back to Russia were sent to Gulags (Russian Labor Camps)........am I the only one who is left scratching his head?

    June 27, 2012 at 10:45 am | Reply
    • Maria Bogren

      No, you're not the only one and I I agree with you, it's very ironic. Russia – a thug nation under the Tsar and the Commissar. Not much has changed under Putin – the new PresidenTsar.

      June 27, 2012 at 10:57 am | Reply
    • Socrates

      If you have one.

      June 27, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Reply
      • Chris

        Pretty sure he said "head" not "brain" so yeah.... I guess your assumption of what he said is what you're are... if you know how to make sense of that statement. Oh also change your name, Socrates would be ashamed of your stupidity.

        June 27, 2012 at 2:18 pm |
  26. Carm

    I don't trust Putin as far as I can throw him. Someone should check to see if he has 666 engraved on his head.

    June 27, 2012 at 10:41 am | Reply
    • obamaliar

      i AGREE THAT PUTIN CAN,T BE TRUSTED;BUT LOOK FOR THE 666 ON OBAMA'S HEAD BEHIND HIS LEFT EAR

      June 27, 2012 at 11:14 am | Reply
      • bob

        FAIL

        June 27, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  27. samonrusty

    Are there any news channels in America, without Jews or Jewish names?

    June 27, 2012 at 9:48 am | Reply
    • sherman the bedouin

      as you can see clearly, none what so ever. but names are without the meaning here that you give them there.. Now about the occupied territory and the walled up ghetto, they began this with a country too tiny to BE VIABLE. was it Churchill or FDR that couldn't add? or did they not really care all that much?

      June 27, 2012 at 10:11 am | Reply
    • jbloombe

      It is so absurd to say that the American media is controlled by Jews. If it were the 100+ missles that were fired into Israel this month would have made it into the news. But it didn't....at all. But when Israel makes surgical strikes and kills 2 millitants that are firing rockets it DOES make it into the news. The media in the US has an "underdog" bias due to the liberal control of the media and Israel is no longer the underdog as they were in past decades. Rupert Murdock is not a Jew, CNN is not owned by Jews, MSNBC is not run by Jews. Stop promoting hate and start using facts.

      June 27, 2012 at 2:06 pm | Reply
  28. jim

    Saeed...The hate you spill does no good. Beside it's the goverment that is the problem not the people.

    June 27, 2012 at 9:41 am | Reply
    • sherman the bedouin

      he's spelling his name wrong so he is either 15 and bored OR langley's best. often mistaken for the 15 and bored crowd.

      June 27, 2012 at 10:12 am | Reply
  29. George Patton

    This could be good news indeed. We need a couterweight to the West which seeks to become dominant in the Middle East and Central Asia.

    June 27, 2012 at 9:39 am | Reply
  30. larry5

    With Obama under control Putin has a free hand to go where ever he likes and to do what ever he likes.

    June 27, 2012 at 9:23 am | Reply
    • PaxHominibus

      Good post larry.

      June 27, 2012 at 10:47 am | Reply
      • Phunnie boy

        I agree.

        June 27, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
  31. DaGrEs

    Hard to take the writer says seriously after the first paragraph: "the first leader of Russia to visit the country since the time of the czars" - the last czar was executed in 1917, Israel didn't exist until 1948.

    June 27, 2012 at 9:00 am | Reply
    • dortaf

      That's my point but not just this writer. This is how those who don't look beyond these idiots get their information.
      Phew.

      June 27, 2012 at 9:21 am | Reply
    • Rob

      History is not your strong point is it? Please educate yourself before exposing your ignorance on this tribune.

      June 27, 2012 at 9:33 am | Reply
      • dortaf

        You went through trouble twice to show your ignorance. Czars did not exist at the times of old Israel and were taken out by communists before current Israel. What's your motive?

        June 27, 2012 at 9:27 pm |
    • viaquest

      actually you couldn't be more wrong , the first kingdom of Israel was established in the 11th century , in 1948 the jewish people's council declared it " The State of Israel" . In fact most of the Jews were run out of Israel or exterminated by the Romans in the 1st century ce, thats the 1st century i'm pretty sure that was before 1948.. please stay in school

      June 27, 2012 at 1:06 pm | Reply
      • dortaf

        Wow, you're not just a history prodigy but also a math wizard. Just like this troll Rob(Sure you're not him with another moniker)

        June 28, 2012 at 9:45 am |
  32. Matt

    Whats funny about this headline – I read it, and thought, literally? Like those photos he takes on horseback, or shooting bow and arrows, or mowing the lawn or whatever other studly activities he does – So was he literally doing a 1980s arnold style pose down? Or is this just another figurative headline....boooo

    June 27, 2012 at 8:41 am | Reply
  33. dortaf

    Read the first paragraph again. "first leader of Russia to visit the country since the time of the czars." Ha Ha Ha. Israel came to be when Moscow was run by communists. Czars came to being a good centuries after Jews were dispersed from old Israel. This is how stupid the media is and how we get informed.

    June 27, 2012 at 8:40 am | Reply
    • Rob

      Your are historically challenged, please educate yourself.

      June 27, 2012 at 9:35 am | Reply
      • dortaf

        Why thank you. So good to have such a historical genius set me straight Where do you read your history? In the lining of your colon?

        June 27, 2012 at 9:12 pm |
    • ensense

      Israel as a country did not exist before 1948. and the CZARIST rule ended around 1912.

      June 27, 2012 at 10:30 am | Reply
  34. dumbAmericansDoingtheirusualthing

    No one cares about the Juice, promised land or Jhagobah.The world aint here, the party goes on in Brazil, India, South Africa. Dubai..Hong Kong

    June 27, 2012 at 8:21 am | Reply
  35. Justin Time

    I'm also not sure it's terribly helpful that Israel's Russian pals are shipping gunships to Syria...doing nothing for regional stability. If Assad falls and the opposition takes over the Russian Navy better get their behinds out of Syria ASAP.

    June 27, 2012 at 7:49 am | Reply
  36. lEO PEREIRA

    "Israel is home more than a million Russian-speakers who came from parts of the former Soviet Union"

    STRANGE THAT AN AMERICAN MEDIA WOULD ADMIT THAT THE ISRAELIS CAME FROM RUSSIA AND ARE NOT NATIVE OF THE MIDDLE EAST.

    June 27, 2012 at 5:41 am | Reply
    • Urduny

      LOL, true dat

      June 27, 2012 at 6:01 am | Reply
      • vinni gambini

        Moses was born in Egypt, his name is Egyptian- yet, that doesn't diminish the fact he's a Jew.

        Jesus was born in Bethlehem, he's an Israeli- yet the so called Palestinians who've never EVER had a country known as Palestine, are claiming Bethlehem, a part of Israel as their hopeful country.

        Ethiopian Jews are oppressed simply for being Jews, yet media ignores these anti-Jewish headlines.

        1 Million Russian Jews that moved to Israel doesn't diminish their religious right to return to the Gd given promised land of Israel. Regardless of their tribe, race or national origin, as much as so called Palestinians demand their rights to return to their so called Palestine- upon which they hope to eventually have an indie country.

        Showdown is comin and Putin can flex all he likes.
        Greater powers have come and gone, and none have outlasted the Jews.
        In fact, there doesn't exist any nation that was exiled 2000 years then restarted speaking it's langage, regained it's original national country-AND offered to give part of it's national land to a local refugee population- who want to make their own country in spite of deadly hostile activities.
        And no one thinks this is unusually abnormal, special, in particular?
        Amazing arrogance.

        June 27, 2012 at 6:43 am |
      • Santa Claus

        Amazing arrogance, indeed. Using your logic, America should be handed over to the Native Americans forthwith. The "Jews" are a cultural construct. There were many Semitic tribes warring and vying for control of territory over centuries. The whole notion of a stable nationhood is ludicrous. Jews claim ownership of someone else's territory based on a literary collection of Bronze-age myths concerning a non-existent god. That territory belongs to the Arabs who were living there. The land was stolen from them and war crimes have been committed ever since. The best nation for Jews to live in is the U.S. Please take your ignorant views and GTFO.

        June 27, 2012 at 1:28 pm |
    • Dapper98

      Strnge that you post such nitwit opinions that have nothing to do with facts. According to your logic, Arafat had no right top be there, he was born and raised in Egypt! But that is a different matter for you antisemitic nazi terror loving nitwits

      June 27, 2012 at 6:03 am | Reply
    • Udi

      Huh? Israelis come to Israel from every corner of the earth, same is in the United States and many other countries, especially in Europe. What are Australians? What are South Americans? We are proud of our multinational society and culture. Of the roughly 7 million Israelis a million are Arab Israelis, for instance. So what's your point?

      June 27, 2012 at 6:34 am | Reply
    • Thinker23

      Are YOU willing to admit that the founder of thge Palestinian nation and its first President came from Egypt?

      Israel never claimed that all its citizens were born in the Middle East. Only 90% of them were born there.

      June 27, 2012 at 7:29 am | Reply
  37. Paul

    The devil incarnate..

    June 27, 2012 at 5:12 am | Reply
  38. funny

    i find it funny how this article doesnt really quote anything putin actually said there,lol.

    June 27, 2012 at 4:11 am | Reply
    • levend

      Syria is Russias last direct connection to the middle east. Putin is there to protect his national interests similar how the US, Europe, Asian countries do. Not surprised.

      June 27, 2012 at 5:13 am | Reply
  39. Justin Time

    I hope Israel also remembers that anyone who returned to Russia after being imprisoned by the Nazis often stayed on the train and was directed immediately to the Gulags....

    June 27, 2012 at 3:55 am | Reply
    • kuduson

      another sad jewish story
      just like the palestinian story

      June 27, 2012 at 5:06 am | Reply
      • Justin Time

        Very sad for all involved, normally people who return to their countries after internment get a heroes welcome – these poor souls were thought to have been 'contaminated' by the west and so had to be punished.

        June 27, 2012 at 6:49 am |
  40. Richard

    The last time Russia manufactured anything worthwile it was called Malware...

    June 27, 2012 at 2:56 am | Reply
    • Frank

      Please don't be insulted by this question, but is your job devoted to spreading ignorance?
      A sharp tongue is no indication of a keen mind...

      June 27, 2012 at 3:59 am | Reply
    • kuduson

      manufacturing something wothwhle to kill and destroy
      what an achievement

      June 27, 2012 at 5:07 am | Reply
      • Thinker23

        What did the Palestinians give tothe world except walking bombs?

        June 27, 2012 at 7:31 am |
  41. Marney

    Flexing his muscles and getting some botox!

    June 27, 2012 at 2:32 am | Reply
  42. Love Zionists

    Israel loves the Russians

    June 27, 2012 at 2:19 am | Reply
  43. Joseph FitzGerald

    "The last time President Vladmir Putin came to Israel was in 2005, the first leader of Russia to visit the country since the time of the czars." The modern state of Israel did not exist in the time of the czars. The last czar, Nicholas II, abdicated in March 1917. The modern state of Israel did not come into existence until May, 1948.

    June 27, 2012 at 1:14 am | Reply
    • robert nammour

      Thank you! As soon as I read that part of the article, I jumped straight down to the comments section...and saw your post. Brilliant. The more CNN articles I read these days, the more I realize that journalism is dead. Oh, and not to mention the overall trend when it comes to comments: the racism, the prejudice, the general idiocy.

      But then again, sometimes there is a comment like yours.

      So, high five to you Sir.

      June 27, 2012 at 2:31 am | Reply
      • icunme

        Ditto – one factual comment among a mass of prejudistl drivel. Actually, Puten is well placed to host a forum on Israel/Palestinian resolutions. Mid East does not trust U.S. bias.

        June 27, 2012 at 8:43 am |
    • Rob

      Another historically challenged agitator, who has no idea what he's talking about...
      Don't let the word Israel fool you and please study history before exposing your complete cluelessness on the subject.

      June 27, 2012 at 9:45 am | Reply
      • Roger

        What is historically incorrect about his statement?

        June 27, 2012 at 10:55 am |
  44. Casablanca

    This may be the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

    June 27, 2012 at 1:14 am | Reply
  45. Cheese Wonton

    "Israel wants Russia to curb its support for President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, pressure the regime in Iran to halt its nuclear program and constrain missile sales to Iran that could impede an Israeli nuclear strike.

    The Russian president pledged cooperation but was noncommittal."

    What Mr. Putin wants is access to US military technology. This is the quid pro quo. The Israeli UAV's Russia wants are only the beginning. Israel has been selling US military technology to China for ages for the purpose of buying the Chinese off to prevent China from selling Syria or Iran their J-10 (designed with Israeli assistance by the way, fresh from their experience on the Lavi which was a joint IAI/General Dynamics project that was cancelled for high cost) or some of China's better missile systems. Israel is China's second largest foreign arms supplier. Most Americans are quite unaware of this relationship. I'm quite certain all of Israel's concerns vis-a-vis Russia can be satisfied if the Russians get access to what they want.
    And the US tax payer is blithely ignorant of the double game Israel plays with the US, paid for by the US taxpayer via their billions per year of foreign aid.

    June 27, 2012 at 12:59 am | Reply
    • Steve

      One wonders whether you are
      a) a senior diplomat with access to the latest intelligence and national intelligence estimates who is working with verified intelligence data analyzed and compiled by the best specialists
      b) speaking out of your backside based on bits and pieces you read on the internet, coupled with your over-active imagination.

      I'm guessing on the second. make sure your tinfoil hat is on nice and tight!

      June 27, 2012 at 1:40 am | Reply
    • Hotaru

      The military technology China getting from Israel is nothing critical to the security of the United States, I don't think Russia is remotely interested in some US military technology from 30 years ago.

      June 27, 2012 at 2:00 am | Reply
    • Cheese Wonton

      Even two decade old western technology, especially if it is made reliable, would be an improvement over what the Russians have now. Their equipment looks good on paper, but their more complex equipment does not stand up to hard field use. The Germans, for example, received MiG-29's from the former East Germany. In actual use the Germans could not even get the advertiesd 400 hours from the jet engine. The Germans had to limit the power the pilot could use to extend engine life to a measley 400 hours, while most western tactical jet engines last a minimum of 1500 hours and do so reliably with no failures before being removed for overhaul. This is all public knowledge. The Indian Air Force experience with their MiG-29's mirrors that of Germany.
      The Israelis were forced to admit they helped the Chinese develop the J-10 fighter, based on their experience with the Lavi program. That is public knowledge. There is a very good video if you poke around of a debrief from a Red Star exercise at Nellis AFB where a USAF pilot talks at length about the qualities of the Indian Air Force pilots and their equipment. In that brief he mentions that Israeli supplied jammers and radar warning receivers allows the latest version of the Chinese J-7 (a Chinese copy of the old MiG-21) to defeat some modern USAF radars and get to "the merge", meaning get close enough without being detected to engage a USAF fighter in a close range dogfight where that old MiG's small size and agility could give it a possible edge against the newer, heavier equipment we use.
      If you look at publicly available photos of the Chinese J-10 you will see it is equipped with a Chinese built version of the Israeli Python III, called PL-8 in Chinese service. Neither the Chinese or the Israeli's are shy about talking about the factory the Israelis built in China to assemble that missile. In fact, one of the Israeli websites sneers at the US for not selling them enough AIM-9's, forcing Israel to do something on their own. The particular Israeli website is usually blocked in the US so you have to go abroad to read some of this. It is an Israeli Military Industries official site however, and it includes photos of the plant in China that now manufactures complete Python III missiles.

      June 27, 2012 at 11:27 am | Reply
      • sawolf

        As opposed to clinton who allowed the technology transfer to china, who can now target our carriers, with our own technology and the lax security of our National Labs and Defense Contractors who the chinese steal from.

        June 27, 2012 at 3:24 pm |
  46. rob

    Good, let the Israelis ruin Russia, as they have ruined the USA.

    June 27, 2012 at 12:39 am | Reply
    • paul

      "ruined"? Seriously? USA is still by far most powerful country on the planet, still the safest place to invest (Europe stinks, China unreliable govt), and still has the largest economy. I don't think tiny Israel (I recall its the size of Delaware) could ruin us. We have problems, yes, some severe, but they are largely self-created.

      June 27, 2012 at 1:09 am | Reply
      • ules

        actually america has a worse economy than europe and in most countries there the people have more jobs tan here plus ueropes government thinks of the people unlike aamerica were u deal with counties like isrel

        June 27, 2012 at 5:34 am |
    • Thinker23

      You must be one of those caliming that the Jews are "God chosen people" with superhuman abilities. How else would a tiny Jewish minority (less than 2% of the US population) be able to "ruin" the most powerful economy on the planet?

      June 27, 2012 at 7:36 am | Reply
    • PaxHominibus

      rob – you're a very unusual American – admitting that YOU – the greatest Nation on earth [or so you say.....] are controlled and ruled by the tiniest of tiny Democracies? Wow, that's a first!

      It breaks my heart to say this but America has had her day. The Chinese and Russians are in the ascendancy now. And like ALL great empires, you blew it. You got too big, too rich and too greedy too quickly and now you'll have to pay the price.

      If you had a LEADER who commanded respect ,and din't have a rubber spine, it would be different. Putin just proved that he is judging America by her current president!

      June 27, 2012 at 11:00 am | Reply
  47. saeed

    now i understand why germany started the ww2 did germany have any choice no britain and its allies denmark norway france usa had to be leveled to the ground. like what choice does russia has russia needs to nuke britain and usa thats the one road that exits. usa and britain are 2 malfuctioning hardware what is there to do nothing else then to start ww3 usa and britain have to many shortcomings the must be killed of removed from existence its the only way the only truth.

    June 27, 2012 at 12:37 am | Reply
    • Richard

      Saeed, when are you going to meet your 72 VIRGINS??

      June 27, 2012 at 2:54 am | Reply
      • kuduson

        richard when you go to meet them he will too

        June 27, 2012 at 5:04 am |
      • Fawad

        When you rapture and meet the man floating in the air, while unicorns are galloping around, then he will meet the virgins. By the way what happens if u were driving with three of your kids and suddenlty got raptured, does your kind tied on the back seat run into another car and cause a huge accident, well i guess then they will be with your within next hour or so.

        June 27, 2012 at 11:54 am |
    • 1

      The only way, the only truth? Stupid is as stupid says....

      June 27, 2012 at 4:41 am | Reply
    • Matthew

      Can you please retype that in English this time.

      June 27, 2012 at 9:26 am | Reply
    • jack 1

      Russia wouldn't be stupid enough to attack toses two countries. They would lose badley.

      June 27, 2012 at 11:29 am | Reply

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