By Dave DeCamp / Antiwar.com
Russia’s Foreign Ministry warned on Monday that Washington’s policies have brought the US and Russia to the brink of a “direct clash.”
Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Maria Zakharova made the comments in response to a statement from State Department spokesman Ned Price, who said last week that Russia was to “blame” for the deterioration of US-Russia relations.
Zakharova said that the US was at fault due to its goal of maintaining “American hegemony” while ignoring Russia’s security concerns. “This is a dangerous and short-sighted policy that puts the US and Russia on the verge of a direct clash,” she said.
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Zakharova said that Russia was interested in reducing tensions with the US and called on the Biden administration to avoid escalation. “For its part, Moscow urges the Joe Biden administration to soberly assess the situation and not to unleash a spiral of dangerous escalation. We hope that they will hear us in Washington, though there is no reason for optimism so far,” she said.
Throughout the war, Russian officials have made clear that they believe they are not just fighting Ukrainian forces in Ukraine but also the US and NATO. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov recently said that the US and NATO are “directly participating” in the war by providing weapons and training Ukrainian soldiers.
The US and NATO continue to escalate their role in the war, with the US planning to give Ukraine new weapons and increase the training of Ukrainian forces in Germany. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg acknowledged earlier this month that the current policy could lead to full-blown war with Russia but said the alliance must continue supporting Ukraine despite the risk.
“I fear that the war in Ukraine will get out of control, and spread into a major war between NATO and Russia,” Stoltenberg said. “If things go wrong, they can go horribly wrong.”