Gas trumps Stalin
An article in the May 20th edition of The Economist entitled Marching through Red Square, discusses Russia's movement towards a more pragmatic foreign policy.
The article details changes in Russia’s foreign policy, most significantly, the improvement in relations with Poland, a centuries-old irritant.
'After years of exploiting differences between old and new members of the European Union, Vladimir Putin, Russia’s prime minister, has realised that EU solidarity is more than mere rhetoric. Germany’s Angela Merkel made clear two years ago that, if Russia wanted better relations with the EU, it had to mend fences with Poland. That required a shift in the Kremlin’s historical discourse and its taste for Stalin. Mr Putin has been remarkably flexible. Last year he went to Gdansk to mark the start of the war; this year he knelt to commemorate victims of the Katyn massacre ordered by Stalin in 1940. The importance of Poland in the Kremlin’s eyes has grown along with the prospects of shale gas in the country. Gazprom is now said to be sweet-talking the Poles into a long-term gas contract. In the contest between gas interests and Stalin, Stalin loses.'
Source: The Economist