How Moscow Sees
the U.S. Presidential Election
it looks as if nothing has seriously changed since the "old glorious days"
of the former USSR.
Thursday, Nov. 9, 2000
In Soviet Union times, Communist propaganda sold the Soviet people
their traditional line that presidential campaigns in America are nothing
else but "the race of the money."
The weakest U.S. presidential candidate was popularized in the former
USSR as "best" for the U.S., and another, who could really do something
important for America, was slandered as an irresponsible person with a
"risky" approach to the most serious problems.
During this year’s U.S. presidential race, Russian leaders were very
worried about the election results. Preferring to deal with American
politicians by secret diplomacy, and on the basis of private and mutually
beneficial relations between top leaders of both countries, Kremlin
insiders didn’t want any changes in these policies.
But the very close race between the two presidential candidates in the
U.S. made Moscow nervous. For example, during the last six months the
Russian Embassy, as well as chiefs of military and political intelligence
stations in Washington, D.C., were ordered to make daily reports to Moscow
about the presidential campaign, and specifically to keep Russia’s
military-political leaders up to date about the latest political
developments in the U.S.
As NewsMax.com reported on Nov. 2, while the Kremlin officially took a
neutral position over the elections, the government-controlled Russian
press didn’t keep any secrets about Moscow’s sympathy for Vice President
At the same time, Russia’s state-run press didn’t make any secrets
about the Kremlin’s frustration over Texas Governor George W. Bush’s
concerns about U.S. national security, his strong support for a national
missile defense system, and other very important problems.
This information later was confirmed by other media when the November 6
issue of Time magazine also reported that President Vladimir Putin
personally favored Gore. As Time magazine’s "Notebook" noted, Putin
privately "is more worried about a Bush presidency than about Al Gore’s
occupying the Oval Office."
This situation continued until Mr. Bush became a relatively clear
front-runner in the race and Moscow began to lose its hopes for an Al Gore
victory. From that time on the Russian government-controlled press, which
some time ago had expressed admiration for American democracy, began to
discredit the U.S. democratic system and to express harsh criticism of the
U.S. election process.
Moscow’s propaganda machine insisted that no matter who won the U.S.
presidential election, the outcome was unlikely to change American
domestic and foreign policy. It also said that many of the positions of
Texas Governor George Bush and Vice President Al Gore are so similar that
it was difficult to tell them apart.
Moreover, as the Russian official news agency said on Nov. 3, "it’s
difficult to call the upcoming U.S. presidential elections democratic in
the usual sense of the word." Like the U.S. media and the Gore campaign,
that agency also has been very critical of the U.S. Electoral College
system and said that contrary to the general point of view, Americans
"will not elect a president, but only a group of people, who will have to
make the official choice between Democrat Al Gore and Republican George
Bush Jr. later."
At the same time, the Russian newspaper Parlamentskaya Gazeta called
the presidential election in the U.S. "the race of the money bags." It
also said that the "the candidates from the party of the donkey and the
party of the elephant have spent millions of dollars to become the boss of
the White House."
Of course this paper, which represents the interests of the Russian
Parliament, would prefer to have this money sent to Russia, where more
than $66 billion of American taxpayers' money already disappeared into the
private Western bank accounts of the corrupt Russian elite. On Nov. 6,
Russian TV stressed that in the U.S. presidential campaign promises made
by candidates "are nothing else but empty words." It’s interesting to note
that a leading Russian TV company reported on the final days of the
presidential campaign from Democratic candidate Al Gore’s election
headquarters in Nashville, Tennessee.
According to public opinion polls in Moscow, most Russians do not have
a preference in the U.S. elections. Thirteen percent of those polled said
that Al Gore would be better for Russia, while only 9 percent chose Texas
Governor George Bush.
However, not all Russian politicians are obeying the Kremlin’s
instructions over elections in America. For example, on Nov. 7 the speaker
of Russia’s lower house of Parliament, Gennady Selesnyov, predicted
Republican George W. Bush would defeat Democrat Al Gore in the U.S.
"For us, it means that a constructive cooperation between our two great
countries will be continued, because all important treaties and agreements
between the former USSR or Russia and the U.S.A. were signed when the
Republicans were in office," he said.
Contrary to official propaganda, the relatively independent RIA news
agency reported that many Russians believe that George W. Bush has the
experience to ensure continued good relations with Russia. The agency also
quoted unidentified politicians as saying that "Russia is not a new theme
for Bush Jr. at least in terms of his family history with Russia."
Currently Kremlin leaders are already prepared to provide in the near
future their official message of congratulations to the new American
President, whether it’s Bush or Gore.
However, in their hearts they harbor a very deep hope that the new
American president will not stick to his stated intentions and
pre-election promises concerning U.S. National Security. Because a weaker
and more vulnerable America is preferable to the Kremlin leaders in their
current drive to dictatorship and international domination.
Without the implementation of the pre-election national security
programs, the U.S. cannot continue to keep its leading position in our
new, so-called unipolar world. But of course, and we all understand it
very clearly, to do so the new American president has, like Hercules, to
clean out Bill Clinton’s equivalent of the legendary manure-strewn Augean