A reality check for Russia

Germany is dealing with Russia as it is, rather than as it would like it to be

The idea of a German-Russian row sounds unlikely – and, to many, rather ominous. A public spat goes against 50 years of history, since Konrad Adenauer started thawing the post-war hostility. Germany’s relations with Russia, and before that with the Soviet Union, have been a model of patience, usually with a mixture of quiet optimism and a dose of smugness towards countries that pursue a ‘confrontational’ policy.

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