If Russian President Medvedev wants to lure Western investors to his country, he will have to follow through on promises to reduce corruption and lawlessness. That will require real reforms.
One of the first owners of an iPhone in Russia was President Dmitry Medvedev. Today, he’s visiting the phone’s birthplace, California’s Silicon Valley, where he hopes to build on a “reset” in relations with the United States by also improving economic ties.
That task may be tougher than improving ties with official Washington, which began last year with the US blinking first.
Relations had become so frosty, that a new Obama administration announced it wanted to start over, then it altered its plans for an anti-Iranian missile shield in Europe – an irritant to Moscow. That paved the way for a nuclear arms reduction treaty between the two countries, for Russia’s backing of sanctions on Iran, and for increased cooperation in Afghanistan.
When Mr. Medvedev meets with President Obama on Thursday, the two leaders are expected to issue a joint statement on troubled Kyrgyzstan – another welcome sign of geopolitical cooperation. Kyrgyzstan has been the scene of bloody ethnic tensions, as well as tensions between Russia and the US over the presence of a US military base there (Russia also has a base in this Central Asian country).