Sensitive diplomatic communications have been published by the Wikileaks Web site, and some of this sensitive material concerns Russia. The importance of Russia as a global power has been downplayed since the fall of the Soviet Union. Leaked U.S. State Department cables give us a glimpse of how dangerous Russia is becoming. The true nature of the Russian regime has not been a popular topic of public discussion; but in secret meetings between diplomats, statesmen and law enforcement officials, there is growing concern. Russia has become the center of international corruption, drawing other states into her orbit.
From the leaked cables we also learn that that the dictator of Russia, Vladimir Putin, may not be in charge. We also learn that Russian organized crime, operating under the country's intelligence and security services, has penetrated strategic sectors of the global economy. The purpose of this maneuver is not explained in the cables, but we may assume that analysts in Europe and the United States have drawn conclusions which are kept from the general public. We also learn that President Dmitri Medvedev has issued "directives" to former Soviet republics on helping to cover up, before the world audience, the worst atrocities of the Soviet Union.
Let us examine one of the more interesting cables. It is a U.S. Embassy cable from 8 February 2010, Secret Section 01 of 05 Madrid; "SUBJECT: SPAIN DETAILS ITS STRATEGY TO COMBAT THE RUSSIAN MAFIA." We learn that the National Court Prosecutor of Spain, Jose "Pepe" Grinda, presented a 17-page English-language handout to the U.S.-Spain Counter-Terrorism and Organized Crime Experts Working Group in Madrid. The most fascinating tidbit came when Grinda began to describe the Russian mafia as the ultimate mafia, saying that it is more than Russian. In fact, it encompasses crime groups from all over the world, so that, according to Grinda, we may also call it the "Sicilian mafia." According to the U.S. Embassy cable, Grinda "considers Belarus, Chechnya and Russia to be virtual 'mafia states,'" adding that Ukraine is going to become such a state. In each of the listed countries one cannot "differentiate between the activities of the government and OC [Organized Crime] groups."
Why should the Russian mafia, with its virtual control of states be a problem? Grinda offered two reasons: "First, [the Russian Mafia] exercises 'tremendous control' over certain strategic sectors of the global economy, such as aluminum.... The second reason is the unanswered question regarding the extent to which Russian PM Putin is implicated in the Russian mafia and whether he controls the mafia's actions." Grinda then referred to former KGB official Alexander Litvinenko's thesis that the Russian intelligence and security services, including military intelligence, control organized crime in Russia. According to the U.S. Embassy Cable, "Grinda stated that he believes this thesis is accurate."
Furthermore, Grinda explained to the Organized Crime Working Group, that he had solid intelligence from phone taps and witness statements, that "certain political parties in Russia operate 'hand in hand' with OC [Organized Crime]. " The Liberal Democratic Party was named as one of these, and its creation by the KGB was mentioned in the cable. The Russian mafia is very hard to fight because they have the best lawyers, they have friends in high places, and they can buy people. If necessary, they can liquidate their opposition, including the managers of top TV stations, newspapers, and government officials. Here we see a blending of subversion, spy craft, and scientifically organized criminal activity.
Another related Wikileak has to do with Russian dominance in Central Asia. In an Embassy cable with the subject line of "candid discussion with Prince Andrew on the Kyrgyz Economy," Britain's Prince Andrew told the U.S. Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan that the United Kingdom and Western Europe were back in the thick of "playing the Great Game." Excited by this possibility, the Prince told the ambassador, "And this time we aim to win!" The American Ambassador, perhaps a little embarrassed by this imperialistic enthusiasm, cautiously explained that the United States supports the independence and sovereignty of Kyrgyzstan, and welcomes good relations with Russia. As if to emphasize the reason for increased Western influence in Central Asia, Prince Andrew drew the U.S. Ambassador's attention to a letter sent by Russian President Medvedev to President Aliyev of Azerbaijan, warning him "that if Azerbaijan supported the designation of the Bolshevik artificial famine in Ukraine as 'genocide' at the United Nations, 'then you can forget about seeing Nagorno-Karabakh ever again.'" According to Prince Andrew, the Russians had similarly threatened every single state in Central Asia with the same "directive" letter, except for Bakiyev in Kyrgyzstan.
It is interesting that the Russians were directing Central Asian leaders to deny the Bolshevik "genocide" against Ukraine, and to learn how Russia employs a global mafia to further its mysterious economic policy. Related to this, there was a piece in the Wall Street Journal  on 30 November titled "Russian Missiles Fuel U.S. Worries." Apparently the Russians have moved tactical nuclear warheads to a military enclave surrounded by NATO territory. This movement violates longstanding agreements between Russia and the West, and demonstrates a Russian tendency to intimidate Europe. This move by the Russians puts the final nail in the coffin of the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty negotiated by President Barack Obama. Why would the Russians do this, and virtually guarantee that Europe will become alarmed (and kill the START Treaty)?
A few days ago, Larry King interviewed Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and asked about Russia's forward deployment of tactical nuclear warheads in Europe. In response, Putin said: "I'd like to make this clear to you and to all Americans.... It's not Russia that is moving missiles close to your border; it's the United States that is planning to deploy missiles near Russia's border." The Russian prime minister was referring to the proposed deployment of anti-missile defenses in Europe, which is intended to defend Europe from a future Iranian missile threat. In response to Russia's stated worries about a NATO anti-missile system, the Ukrainian government has offered to host a joint missile defense program in which Russia could be a participant and beneficiary. The Russian government snorted disapprovingly at the proposal.
Putin and his government are dismissive of Europe's security concerns, even while the Russian generals apply brutal and direct pressure on Europe with a provocative tactical nuclear deployment. How can we account for this belligerence when the U.S. president canceled the proposed anti-missile deployment in Poland, last year, in order to appease Russian sensibilities? Is there no reciprocity? Aren't the Russians interested in peace? Here is an American president who wants to trust the Russians. He wants to work with them. Yet they rudely behave as if he was part of some militarist plot against them. Never has there been a better U.S. partner for Russia, yet they intentionally go out of their way to embarrass him. What is their motive? What is going on inside the Russian state?
Perhaps it is the growing weakness of the American side which the Russians are reacting to. Among the wiki-leaked U.S. Embassy cables, we learn of the transfer of 19 missiles from North Korea to Iran. Of further interest, the German publication, Welt Online , reported last week that Iran and Venezuela were working on a secret missile deal in which Venezuela would serve as a base for Iranian medium-range missiles. According to unnamed Western intelligence sources, Iran's top leadership proposed the construction of a joint Venezuelan-Iranian missile base to threaten the United States from its "own backyard."
In closing, it is worth quoting Prime Minister Putin's assurances to Larry King, and the American public, regarding the Iranian nuclear program. Putin stated: "...we have no grounds for suspecting Iran of seeking to possess nuclear weapons."
Is that why they are working with Venezuela on plans for a missile base in South America? And is that why Russia is keen to support Venezuela's arms buildup?