The Western narrative on Russia takes departure from reality

Businessman Mr Hammond, who is the UK’s Foreign Secretary, has made a speech at a dinner in London. He touched on relations with Russia:

Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and its aggression in eastern Ukraine are both attacks on the international rules-based system. In the place of partnership, Russia has chosen the role of strategic competitor, at the very time when the diffusion of power more widely around the world makes the international rules-based system all the more important as the principal means to keep the peace between nations. So we must be steadfast in the defence of where nations threaten to undermine it, as we have been, and will remain, in response to Russia’s actions.

We will maintain our efforts to ensure the European Union remains resolute, robust, united and aligned with the United States in the face of this challenge. Because this isn’t just about Ukraine: it is about Russia and its future intentions; about its apparent aspiration to exercise control over the former Soviet republics which were liberated by the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1989 – an event we celebrate, but which President Putin describes as “the greatest geo-political catastrophe of the 20th Century”. It is about standing firm and standing united now, to prevent renewed tests of our resolve in the future. [1]

That this narrative in general from Mr Hammond bears no relation to any kind of

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