It will take years for the United States to restore its image as a trustworthy diplomatic partner. U. S. diplomacy has suffered a severe set back and its national security has been damaged by the Wikileak dumps of classified documents.
The Wikileaks revelations on Russia provide a rare candid view of the Russian leadership, the state of Russian democracy, and the prevalence of corruption and thuggery at the highest levels of government. In this regard, the Wikileaks documents confirm what outside experts have suspected. It is perversely comforting to know that U.S. diplomats understand the reality of Russian politics irregardless of the optimistic tone of the “reset” of relations with Russia at the beginning of the Obama administration.
These leaks clearly show that the Russian government is corrupt to the core and that the corruption starts at the top. U.S. diplomats understand that Putin, despite his nominal number two position, still calls the shots and that Russia is run by incorrigible ex-KGB officers, whose mindset is that the U.S. is the enemy. Our diplomats also understand that Russian democracy is dead and will continue to be moribund for the foreseeable future.
These leaks also show the sensitivity of Putin to charges that he is personally corrupt. Attempts to investigate Putin’s personal wealth have likely resulted in assassinations of investigative reporters, and it seems that Putin’s most violent reaction to the published leaks relate to internal discussions of his personal wealth.
The secret dispatches from our diplomats in Russia paint a bleak but realistic view of the state of affairs in Russia.