US raises the stakes by signing missile deal with Poland

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THE US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in Tbilisi yesterday for talks with the Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili.

Her mission was to get his signature for the six point ceasefire agreement with Russia, without which President Medvedev has made clear he would not sign.

Earlier, the US had further inflamed tensions with Russia by signing an agreement with Poland allowing the US to station radar tracking equipment and ten interceptor missiles along with US troops, at a Polish base, bordering Russia. In return Poland will get US help modernising its defences, including the provision of Patriot anti-aircraft missiles.

The Russian deputy chief of staff, General Anatoly Nogovitsyn responded to this by telling a news conference in Moscow that the signing of the missile defence deal had worsened already tense relations with the US.

The general continued that the US move ‘cannot go unpunished’.

He added: ‘It’s a cause for regret that at a time when we are already in a difficult situation, the American side further exacerbates the situation in relations between the United States and Russia.’

Other Russian officers wondered publicly whether the boxes of aid, currently being flown into Georgia on US planes, contained more weapons to replace those that had been lost.

President Medvedev speaking, standing next to German Chancellor Merkel at a press conference in Socci, answered Merkel’s description of the Russian intervention into Georgia after the Georgians attacked South Ossetia.

She called the attack an ‘over-reaction’. He responded by saying that Russia would do the same again if Georgia carried out such an attack again.

What has clearly been revealed by the inexorable drive of NATO eastwards, the US inspired attack on Georgia and now the signing of the deal with Poland to station its missiles there, is that there is a deep and lasting cause of the enmity between the US and the EU ruling classes, and the Russian Federation, which was the core of the USSR.

The issue for the US ruling class is that the counter-revolution launched by Gorbachev’s Glasnost and Perestroika programme, and carried forward under Yeltsin with open plundering of the workers state was not completed.

The Russian workers hated Yeltsin’s shock therapists, the ex-Stalinist bureaucrats turned capitalists who boasted that they were going to restore capitalism in between 100 and 500 days of ‘shock therapy’.

The shock therapists were fought to a standstill by the Russian masses who in March 1991 voted by 76 per cent in a USSR wide referendum that the USSR should be maintained, and during the assault on the Supreme Soviet in 1993 supported Rutskoy and those who were defending the building.

With the replacement of Yeltsin by Putin, the latter faced a choice of either facing overthrow by a political revolution of the masses, or of seeking to rule with one foot on a section of the new bourgeoisie that was prepared to leave politics to the Kremlin, with the other foot placed on the Russian workers.

This move saw the Berezovskiy wing of the bourgeoisie driven into exile to form a British protected bourgeois government in waiting. Putin meanwhile declared that the bureaucratic dissolution of the USSR in December 1991 had been an unmitigated disaster.

With this form of rule, and through the state ownership of all of Russia’s strategic industries, Russia remained a much degenerated workers state, that had seen off the attempt of the world bourgeoisie to carve it up, and dish it out among themselves.

Now in a period of capitalist crisis the bourgeoisie is being forced east once again. The assault on South Ossetia, and the Polish deal are semblances of this.

The News Line supports the Russian Federation against imperialist attack. We call for a political revolution to overthrow the Stalinist bureaucracy and the new bourgeoisie that it has spawned, and to return all power to the Soviets, as part of the world socialist revolution.