Monthly Archives: December 2009

09MOSCOW3154, EXTRANCHECK: PRE-LICENSE CHECK: MASHCOMPLECS FAKEL LTD.,

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3154 2009-12-31 06:29 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0002
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #3154 3650629
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 310629Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUCPDOC/USDOC WASHDC PRIORITY
INFO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5841
RHMFIUU/US CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS MOSCOW 003154 
 
SIPDIS 
 
USDOC FOR 532/OEA/LRITTER 
USDOC FOR 3150/USFCS/OIO/CEENIS/MCOSTA 
USDOC FOR 532/OEE/MO'BRIEN 
USDOC FOR 532/BIS/OEA/TWILLIS/EHOLLAND/ANALYST 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: BEXP ETRD ETTC RS
SUBJECT: EXTRANCHECK: PRE-LICENSE CHECK: MASHCOMPLECS FAKEL LTD., 
MOSCOW, RUSSIA, LICENSE NO.D427375 
 
REFTEL: REQUEST #6110082; DATED 11/24/2009 
 
1. Unauthorized disclosure of the information provided below is 
prohibited by Section 12C of the Export Administration Act. 
 
2. Reftel requested a pre-license check to determine the legitimacy 
and reliability of the end-user, Mashcomplecs Fakel Ltd., Moscow, 
Russia.  The organization is listed on BIS license application 
D427375 as the ultimate consignee of one explorer 600KHZ Doppler 
velocity log.  This item is controlled for national security reasons 
under ECCN 6A001.  The licensee is Teledyne RD Instruments, 14020 
Stowe Dr., Poway, CA 92064. 
 
3. On December 22, 2009, Commercial Attach Nancy Luther and LES 
Natalya Shipitsina conducted the requested pre-license check at the 
offices of Mashcomplecs Fakel Ltd., 37/2, Prospect Vernadskogo, 
Moscow, Russia.  The export control team met with Vyacheslav Shutko, 
Director of Purchasing.  The small company was founded in March 2009 
(Registration Certificate verified).  The company has 12 permanent 
employees, including two engineers, and hires other specialists as 
needed on a project basis.  The Owner and General Manager is Galina 
Schukina.  The company sources and services machines and equipment 
for government organizations and private companies.  According to 
Shutko, who was very forthcoming with information, since the 
companyQs start up in March, they have had 20 contracts involving 45 
transactions of machinery and parts. 
 
4. Mashcomplecs Fakel has assurances (via the Moscow City 
Government) that upon purchase of this equipment, it will be 
selected to take part in a tender, a construction project in 
preparation for the upcoming 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi.  The 
Teledyne RD Instruments Explorer 600KHZ Doppler velocity log will be 
used for measuring the direction and speed of water currents.  The 
purpose of collecting the data is to assure that the Black Sea 
waters are not damaged by the waste water from the construction 
project, which will be, after filtration, dumped into the sea.  The 
equipment, which will be housed in Moscow at a dedicated secure 
warehouse with 24 hour guard (Luther and Shipitsina visited), will 
be taken to Sochi by a team of engineers and security specialists. 
When not in use in Sochi, the device will be stored at a secure 
warehouse which is to be determined.  The Purchasing Manager 
explained that the company does not yet have a contract to provide 
the proposed services, since the tender has not yet been announced. 
 
5. Recommendations: Post recommends Mashcomplecs Fakel Ltd., Moscow, 
Russia, as a reliable recipient of sensitive U.S. origin 
commodities.  However, given that the company was not yet able to 
provide a contract, it is recommended that a requirement for 
post-shipment verification be added to the conditions of the 
license. 
 
(FCS MOSCOW/ KKRAVETSKY/NLUTHER) 
RUBIN

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09MOSCOW3151, ISTC GOVERNING BOARD IN MOSCOW APPROVES WORKING

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3151 2009-12-30 15:42 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO8218
PP RUEHAST RUEHDBU RUEHLN RUEHSK RUEHVK
DE RUEHMO #3151/01 3641542
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 301542Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5836
INFO RUEHTA/AMEMBASSY ASTANA PRIORITY 0372
RUEHEK/AMEMBASSY BISHKEK PRIORITY 2748
RUEHDBU/AMEMBASSY DUSHANBE PRIORITY 0086
RUEHKV/AMEMBASSY KYIV PRIORITY 0395
RUEHSK/AMEMBASSY MINSK PRIORITY 0001
RUEHNY/AMEMBASSY OSLO PRIORITY 1758
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL PRIORITY 2813
RUEHSI/AMEMBASSY TBILISI PRIORITY 3921
RUEHKO/AMEMBASSY TOKYO PRIORITY 4312
RUEHYE/AMEMBASSY YEREVAN PRIORITY 0550
RUEHAST/AMCONSUL ALMATY PRIORITY 0015
RUEHLN/AMCONSUL ST PETERSBURG PRIORITY 5566
RUEHVK/AMCONSUL VLADIVOSTOK PRIORITY 3437
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF ENERGY WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 04 MOSCOW 003151 
 
SENSITIVE 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPARTMENT FOR ISN/CTR 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: KNNP PARM TSPL RS
SUBJECT: ISTC GOVERNING BOARD IN MOSCOW APPROVES WORKING 
GROUP ON TRANSFORMATION; CELEBRATES 15 YEAR ANNIVERSARY 
AMID UNCERTAIN FUTURE 
 
 Sensitive but Unclassified ) please handle accordingly. 
 
------- 
SUMMARY 
------- 
 
1. (SBU) Amid continued uncertainty over its future, the 
International Science and Technology Center (ISTC) held 
Coordinating Committee (CC) and Governing Board (GB) 
meetings, and celebrated its fifteen-year anniversary 
December 7-10, 2009 in Moscow. The GB agreed to establish a 
working group, to be co-chaired by the U.S. and Russia, to 
discuss the future of the ISTC.  The main objective is to 
address Russian questions about the ISTC,s continuing 
relevance.  Arguing that its assistance legislation did not 
give it any flexibility, the European Union opposed U.S. 
language in a draft "joint statement" designed to alleviate 
Russian embarrassment over the existing ISTC Agreement,s 
implication that Russian scientists remain the same kind of 
proliferation threat they did in the early 1990's.  All 
participants were able to agree to weaker language that 
reiterated the December 2008 GB statement about the ISTC's 
success in meeting its original objective of redirecting 
former weapons scientists. 
 
2. (SBU) Secretary Clinton's congratulatory message at the 
December 10 celebration of the ISTC's 15th Anniversary, read 
by Ambassador Beyrle, sent a strong signal of U.S. 
sensitivity to Russian concerns and interest in developing a 
reinvigorated ISTC.  The U.S. Party led by Ambassador Bonnie 
Jenkins also held bilateral meetings with senior officials 
from the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, state nuclear 
power corporation Rosatom, and the four other Funding Parties 
of the ISTC.  The MFA, which opposes the ISTC in its current 
form, was pointedly absent from all of the week's official 
events.  END SUMMARY. 
 
3. (U) A U.S. delegation led by Coordinator for Cooperative 
Threat Reduction Programs Ambassador Bonnie Jenkins, and 
including Department, DOE, and Embassy officials, 
participated in the preparatory ISTC Coordinating Committee, 
a non-governmental organizations (NGO) Roundtable, the 
decision-making Governing Board, and Fifteenth Anniversary 
meetings in Moscow December 7-10, 2009.  U.S. GB member 
Victor Alessi and overall GB Chairman Ronald Lehman also 
played important roles in the meetings. 
 
------------------------------- 
Working Group on Transformation 
------------------------------- 
 
4. (SBU) At the CC meeting, the U.S. Party  put forward 
language that went beyond the December 2008 GB Statement 
recognizing the success of the ISTC in achieving its original 
mission of redirecting weapons scientists and proposing that 
a consultative process therefore be developed to discuss 
future options for the ISTC.  The European Union (EU) and 
Russian Party agreed in principle to establishing a 
consultative body but not to the statement as proposed. In 
pre-meeting discussions in Moscow, the EU representatives 
said that they had been unable to get clearance for the 
stronger language in a U.S.-proposed "joint statement" 
designed to allay Russian irritation over the existing ISTC 
Agreement's implication that Russian scientists still 
represent a serious proliferation threat. Such a statement, 
the EU argued, would undermine their legislation's 
justification for assisting Russia, a justification founded 
on the need to redirect Russian scientists. At the GB 
meeting, the Parties agreed to the related U.S. proposal to 
open consultations among the ISTC parties in order to find 
common ground on which to base a possibly transformed Center. 
 
MOSCOW 00003151  002 OF 004 
 
 
 Russian GB member Lev Ryabev suggested that a working group 
be established at which he would be able to present his 
"personal" views.  Accepting this idea, the GB Record of 
Decisions included the following: "The Board decided to set 
up a working party with a mandate to discuss options and to 
make proposals regarding the future of the ISTC including a 
possible review of the Agreement." The U.S. drafted Terms of 
Reference for the Working Group and received feedback from 
the other Parties. The Working Party will meet in Moscow in 
March and will be prepared to report to the GB at the next 
meeting in June. 
 
------------------------------------ 
Shifting U.S. Priorities at the ISTC 
------------------------------------ 
 
5. (U) The U.S. continues to focus its funding at the ISTC on 
projects that relate t
o nonproliferation cooperation, 
institutionalization of financial self-sustainability, and 
support of supplemental budget activities such as the 
Targeted Initiative on Biosecurity.  This is in line with our 
vision of a transformed ISTC that can be a platform for 
scientific cooperation among equal partners on areas of 
global importance, including nonproliferation ) in contrast 
to the existing, assistance-based mission centered on 
redirecting weapons scientists.  At the CC, the U.S. 
announced funding for a project to develop technologies to 
more effectively detect nuclear materials in cargo, an 
initiative on the prevention of biological threats, and an 
agreed framework to cooperate with Russia on high-intensity 
light research.  The U.S. also encouraged the Secretariat to 
continue to develop an initiative on nuclear forensics. 
 
 
-------------------------------------- 
Russian Perspectives on Future of ISTC 
-------------------------------------- 
 
6. (SBU) In discussions on the margins of the meetings, 
Rosatom representative and Russian GB member Lev Ryabev 
agreed to the U.S.-proposed consultations on the future of 
the ISTC.  Ryabev suggested a working group that he could 
attend as a member of the GB.  Ryabev said that all Russian 
stakeholders agreed that the ISTC had been a success and that 
the situation had changed dramatically since the ISTC was 
launched fifteen years ago. The point, consequently, was that 
there was no longer a nonproliferation threat from Russian 
scientists (a view that MFA representative Rozhkov strongly 
emphasized in a separate meeting*see para 10).  The 1992 
ISTC Agreement, in effect, labeled Russia a nonproliferation 
threat; this stigma represented a serious problem for the 
Russian government today.  Ryabev said there were varied 
points of view within the government on a future role in 
Russia for the ISTC.  Some proposals had been made, including 
that the ISTC be closed, but no final decisions yet reached. 
With the scientist redirection objective accomplished, the 
task now, in Ryabev's own view, was to define a new objective 
for the ISTC.  In a brief discussion with Ambassador Beyrle, 
he stressed that Russia would not agree to continue the ISTC 
for its own sake, but might be willing to support 
transformation in the context of demonstrating that it would 
add value for implementing new science projects of benefit to 
Russia.  The projects, not the ISTC, should be the starting 
point.  Rozhkov made similar points separately at the MFA. 
 
 
 
------------------------------------ 
Roundtable with NGO Representatives 
------------------------------------ 
 
 
MOSCOW 00003151  003 OF 004 
 
 
7. (SBU) In a roundtable hosted by Post, representatives from 
the Center for Policy Studies in Russia (PIR Center) and the 
Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CRDF)in Moscow 
met with Ambassador Jenkins to share views on the ISTC and 
Russian nonproliferation activities in general.  The PIR 
Board is composed of many well-known Russian and U.S. 
nonproliferation experts, including Anatoly Antonov, Nikolay 
Spassiky, and Rose Gottemoeller. The Russian PIR 
representative stated that the ISTC was perceived very 
differently among various parties in Russia, from very 
positive to not so positive.  In this context, he referenced 
other initiatives dating back to Gorbachev times and how many 
of those had been forgotten. 
 
8. (SBU) In the context of discussing transitioning the ISTC 
from an assistance-based organization to one based on 
partnership, the representative for the Civilian Research and 
Development Foundation (CRDF) in Moscow stated "technical 
assistance is a necessary part of partnership", that 
partnership should not replace technical assistance in 
relations between Russia and the U.S., and that any 
transition should be conducted over a period of several 
years. In separate informal meetings, the representative from 
PIR agreed to explore the possibility of hosting a roundtable 
among government representatives and nonproliferation experts 
in Russia on the future of the ISTC. 
 
------------------------------------ 
ISTC CELEBRATES 15 YEARS OF SUCCESS 
----------------------------------- 
9. (U) A December 10 day devoted to celebration of the ISTC's 
15th anniversary drew hundreds of past and present 
participants in its programs.  Due attention was given to a 
review of the scientific achievements of the ISTC over the 
past 15 years.  The key sentiment expressed by 
representatives of Russian and other former Soviet Union 
scientific institutions was gratitude for ISTC assistance at 
a critical time for their countries.  Ambassador Beyrle, an 
engaged supporter of the ISTC, read a congratulatory message 
from Secretary Clinton. It gave a strong endorsement to the 
work of the ISTC and acknowledged that the challenge it had 
been originally designed for has been met, but also 
recognized its potential to make new contributions and 
expressed U.S. interest in making the ISTC a "nexus for 
renewed and refocused engagement" with scientists of the FSU 
and perhaps beyond.  In  discussions with Beyrle and his 
staff, Jenkins reviewed the options Washington felt the ISTC 
faced: possible improvements under the existing Agreement, 
more sweeping transformation under a review ) including 
possible amendment ) of the Agreement, termination of the 
ISTC in favor of other, admittedly less capable, instruments 
of scientific cooperation, if that became necessary.  Beyrle 
noted the Embassy's misgivings about an approach that might 
reopen the existing Agreement, citing the danger that the 
existing tax and other privileges could be lost in the 
process.  Separately, all of the ISTC funding partners 
expressed similar concerns, while noting it would be 
difficult to avoid this issue. 
 
--------------------------------------------- ----------- 
Ambassador Jenkins' Bilateral Meetings with ROSATOM and MFA 
--------------------------------------------- ----------- 
 
10. (SBU) Ambassador Bonnie Jenkins also raised the G-8 
Global Partnership and the Nuclear Summit in meetings with 
MFA and Rosatom officials.  MFA Deputy Director, DVBR 
(Security and Disarmement Department), Oleg Rozhkov noted 
that he was pleased with the pre-Tokyo text of the Nuclear 
Summit Work Plan and could accept most of the language, while 
reiterating the position laid out in Rome that the Russians 
have no redlines on GP geographic expansion but do want 
 
MOSCOW 00003151  004 OF 004 
 
 
assurance that existing commitments will be fulfilled and 
clarity on the amount of additional funds to be made 
available. He noted that the Summit should be focused and not 
distracted by other issues that other countries might raise 
and that, in agreement with a statement by Beyrle, Russia 
should have a prominent role in the Summit. Rozhkov opined 
that ISTC's mission in Russia was completed, and it would do 
better to pursue non-proliferation objectives elsewhere. In 

response to Amb. Jenkin's suggestion that the two countries 
initiate a dialogue on the future of the ISTC, he said it 
would be useful to discuss how fruitfully to use ISTC's 
current assets in other countries.  Any future for ISTC in 
Russia would depend on identifying new programs first and 
then demonstrating the usefulness of ISTC for implementing 
them. 
 
11.  (SBU) For Rosatom's part, Deputy Director General 
Spasskiy told Ambassador Jenkins he worried that a full 
nonproliferation schedule of activities between January and 
the Nuclear Summit will result in rushed decision making on 
GP issues.  Spasskiy said that Russian nonproliferation 
priorities are, in order, START, CTBT, and the 123 Agreement. 
He also stated that the Nuclear Summit "cannot be a seminar" 
and that "it has to be a summit" and that the entire process 
should be carefully prepared and orchestrated so as to not 
upstage the NPT Review Conference.  Regarding ISTC, Spasskiy 
said both ISTC's goals and economic privileges in Russia 
belonged to an earlier time.  On the way forward, it would be 
important to protect both the pipeline of ISTC projects and 
our cooperation. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3147, EXBS: RUSSIA ADVISOR MONTHLY REPORTING CABLE – DECEMBER

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3147 2009-12-30 14:36 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0132
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #3147/01 3641436
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 301436Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5834
RUEAORC/USCBP WASHDC
RHEBAAA/USDOE WASHDC
RUCPDOC/DEPT OF COMMERCE WASHDC
RULSJGA/COMDT COGARD WASHINGTON DC
RECNEXC/EXPORT CONTROL AND RELATED BORDER SECURITY
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHDC
RUEATRS/DEPT OF TREASURY WASHDC

UNCLAS MOSCOW 003147 
 
SIPDIS 
 
STATE FOR ISN/ECC JFRIEDMAN, ACHURCH, NJOHANSON, LSPRINGER 
CBP FOR INA, PLEASE PASS TO TCORWIN 
USDOE WASHDC ALSO FOR NNSA, PLEASE PASS TO TPERRY 
 
 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ETTC MNUC PARM PREL KSTC KNNP UP RS
SUBJECT:  EXBS: RUSSIA ADVISOR MONTHLY REPORTING CABLE - DECEMBER 
2009 
 
1.  Begin summary: BROAD ITEMS OF INTEREST TO ADVISORS AND AGENCY 
MANAGERS: Planning with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs proceeds on 
the reinstituted Program Review and Export Licensing Exchange 
scheduled for February 2010.  EXBS has submitted data on training 
conducted through the program for the past 5 years at the request of 
UGA/CITS, which is doing an assessment of the Russian export 
controls system.  End summary. 
 
2.  Completed Actions for Reporting Period. 
 
A.  Site Assessments and Meetings During the Reporting Period. 
 
i.  December 8 - EXBS Advisor and Assistant met with representatives 
of the export controls section within the Security and Disarmament 
Department of the Russian Foreign Ministry.  The meeting was 
organized to present to EXBS feedback from MFA and other agencies 
regarding the agenda for the Program Review and the Program Plan for 
FY08, FY09, and FY10.  During this meeting, MFA took the opportunity 
to raise concerns about issues related to implementation of UNSCR 
1540 and arms control compliance - items outside the focus of the 
meeting agenda.  These concerns are the topic of a separate cable, 
MRN 003018, dated December 16. 
 
ii.  December 9 - EXBS Advisor participated in a roundtable 
discussion at the embassy led by Ambassador Bonnie Jenkins, 
Coordinator for Threat Reduction Programs, which also included DTRA, 
DOE, and EST, plus the U.S. Civilian Research and Development 
Foundation (CRDF)and the Center for Policy Studies (PIR Center), 
regarding the future of the International Science and Technology 
Center (ISTC).  One PIR Center representative commented that Russia 
finds itself in a complex position in nonproliferation efforts: 
some forces within the government are trying to get to nuclear zero, 
while other forces support continued nuclear testing. 
 
iii.  December 10 - EXBS Advisor attended the 15th anniversary 
conference of ISTC in Moscow.  The breakout session on "ISTC Impacts 
- Nuclear" had the most relevance for EXBS, in that it presented 
ISTC's cooperation with US and European scientists to jointly 
develop peaceful uses for nuclear energy. 
 
iv.  December 10 - EXBS Advisor attended the Customs Attache Club 
event at the Chinese Embassy.  The program included speeches by the 
Chinese ambassador and other prominent embassy staff recalling the 
60th anniversary of the People's Republic; the achievements of China 
Customs; and China's longstanding cooperation with the Soviet Union 
and Russia.  There was also a Chinese tea-drinking ceremony and 
performances by Chinese opera and pop singers and, of course, 
Chinese food. 
 
v.  December 10 - EXBS Advisor attended the 10th anniversary 
celebration of the Open World program at Spaso House, the 
Ambassador's residence.  The Advisor had several productive 
conversations with embassy staff from the political, economic, and 
scientific sections, which have resulted in greater information 
sharing. 
 
vi.  EXBS Advisor met with the DCM to deliver a year-end report of 
EXBS activities and a look ahead to 2010.  DCM agreed with Advisor's 
suggestion that occasional updates can be very useful and will be 
scheduled during the coming year. 
 
vii.  December 30 - EXBS Advisor and FBI Legal Attache Bryan Earl 
met with University of Georgia Center for International Trade and 
Security (UGA/CITS) Washington representative Julia Khersonsky. 
Discussion was very general, touching on topics of mutual interest 
in the areas of export controls and nonproliferation and ways to 
improve cooperation with Russian government officials. 
 
B.  Training Conducted During Reporting Period. 
 
i.  US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and 
Customs Enforcement (ICE) accompanied 8 Russian Customs officers on 
an International Visitor Program (IVP) to US ports of entry December 
12-20 in Southern California and Washington, DC.  Feedback from 
various sources, both US and Russian, indicated that the delegation 
was very impressed by the technological and procedural efficiency of 
U.S. Customs operations, especially at the Long Beach port.  The 
 
group left the U.S. to return to Russia one day later than planned, 
due to massive snowfall on the East Coast. 
 
C.  Equipment Delivered During Reporting Period. 
 
i.  The EXBS Russia program does not distribute equipment. 
 
3. Imminent Training or Equipment Status Update 
 
i.  In January, EXBS will reconnect with CBP, which is working with 
the Russian Embassy in Washington, on an IVP for Rosgranitsa,
the 
new federal agency charged with security of border facilities. 
Rosgranitsa had approached CBP last fall for assistance in visiting 
US ports of entry.  The visit was postponed to at least March 2010 
due to the holidays and the extended medical leave of the CBP 
Program Manager.  EXBS has been working with CBP on this trip and 
may also develop program activities with Rosgranitsa and CBP. 
 
4.  Significant Developments in Export Controls, Nonproliferation, 
or Related Border Security 
 
i.  On January 1, the customs union with Russia, Kazakhstan and 
Belarus will go into effect.  The three countries will use the same 
foreign trade tariffs and rules with one another, though it will 
likely take another six months for all tariffs to be synchronized. 
 
5.  Country Plans and Other Assistance 
 
i.  EXBS sent a cable MRN 003030 dated December 17 regarding Post 
concurrence with the FY08, FY09, and FY10 Program Plan.  The Russian 
MFA will provide its comments on the abstract of the programs, 
submitted on December 7, when the Advisor meets with MFA at their 
request on January 12.  As the lead agency, MFA has previously given 
broad approval to our program ideas.  In addition to receiving final 
stakeholder approval for the Program Plan, the purpose of this 
meeting will be to continue to move forward arrangements for the 
reinstituted Program Review and additional Export Licensing Exchange 
planned for February in Washington. 
 
6.  CONTACT INFORMATION.  Joan Agerholm is the EXBS Advisor for 
Russia and can be reached at AgerholmJA@state.gov, or +7 (985) 
410-30-87. 
 
BEYRLE

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3144, RULE OF LAW LIPSTICK ON A POLITICAL PIG:

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3144 2009-12-30 14:27 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXYZ0003
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHMO #3144/01 3641427
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 301427Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5829
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L MOSCOW 003144 

SIPDIS 

E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/29/2019 
TAGS: PREL PGOV PHUM KDEM RS
SUBJECT: RULE OF LAW LIPSTICK ON A POLITICAL PIG: 
KHODORKOVSKIY CASE PLODS ALONG 

REF: A) MOSCOW 603 B) MOSCOW 1226 

Classified By: Pol Minister Counselor Susan Elliott for reason 1.4 (d) 

1. (C) Summary: The prosecution in the Khodorkovskiy/Lebedev 
trial has finished reading its 188 volumes of evidence, and 
has moved on to questioning witnesses. An observer for the 
International Bar Association stated his belief that the 
trial is being conducted fairly. Related events outside of 
Russia continue to affect the case. A deposition in a U.S. 
court by Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) may show that PWC 
received GOR pressure to disavow its prior Yukos audits; the 
Russian Supreme Court upheld an ECHR ruling that Lebedev's 
initial arrest was illegal; and an arbitration court in the 
Hague found Russia to be bound by the Energy Charter Treaty, 
leaving it open to a large judgment against it and possible 
seizure of GOR assets abroad by Yukos shareholders. Despite 
the case's wide implications, it continues to be a cause 
celebre only for foreigners and a minority of Russians. The 
case also shows the great lengths that the GOR is willing to 
go in order to place a "rule of law" gloss on a politically 
motivated trial. End Summary. 

Recent developments 
------------------- 

2. (C) The trial of former Yukos chief Mikhail Khodorkovskiy 
and his associate Platon Lebedev continues in Moscow's 
Khaminovsky court, having moved from the reading of the 
prosecution's evidence -- which comprised 188 volumes and 
lasted throughout the summer -- to questioning of the 
prosecution's witnesses. Thus far the prosecution has called 
31 of its 250 witnesses, meaning that the trial will probably 
last until 2012.  XXXXXXXXXXXX told us December 23 that he believes the trial is being 
conducted fairly and that Judge Danilkin has been doing 
everything in his power to make sure that the defense gets a 
fair opportunity to present arguments and challenge the 
prosecution's evidence. 

3. (C) Among recent developments in the case, the defense has 
been trying to introduce the testimony of a former Price 
Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) auditor, who was deposed in 
California in August by Khodorkovskiy lawyers. The 
prosecution has objected to the introduction of the 
deposition into the case, complaining that they had not 
received sufficient notice; however, according to Teets, the 
Russian Embassy did not inform the head investigator in 
Russia until recently. The PWC deposition goes to the heart 
of Yukos's guilt or innocence; as Yukos's auditor, it signed 
off on Yukos's financial statements from 1994 to 2003, only 
to disavow this prior approval in 2007. As  XXXXXXXXXXXX noted, if 
the audits were properly withdrawn, this will be a "black 
mark" for the defense; if not, it could help the defense, but 
would greatly tarnish PWC's international reputation. Teets 
said that the content of the deposition had not yet been made 
public, but speculated that the auditor had testified that 
PWC had been pressured by the Russian government into 
withdrawing its prior certifications of Yukos books and 
records. 

Lebedev ruling and other "international" issues 
--------------------------------------------- -- 

4. (SBU) The Yukos battle continues simultaneously both on 
domestic and the international fronts, with some concrete 
effects on the case's proceedings in Moscow. On December 23, 
the Russian Supreme Court ruled that the 2003 decision to 
arrest and detain Lebedev was illegal, in keeping with a 2007 
ruling by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR). (Note: 
The GOR often loses cases at the ECHR, and its common 
practice is to pay the compensation required by the ECHR's 
rulings while ignoring the substantive redress of the 
systemic problem involved. This decision represents a rare 
departure from this practice and signals a potentially 
encouraging trend. End Note.) The Supreme Court's ruling 
indicated only that the first two months of Lebedev's six 
years (to date) of incarceration were illegal, and thus might 
be considered only marginally relevant. However, the defense 
might use this ruling to argue that the entire conviction was 
tainted by the illegal detention and therefore should be 
thrown out. Defense lawyers told Radio Free Europe that they 
have not yet decided how to proceed, but called the ruling a 
"victory," while expressing bewilderment at the Supreme 
Court's two-year delay in ruling on the case. 

5. (SBU) On December 23, Moscow's Basmanny Court issued an 
arrest warrant in absentia for former Yukos treasurer Andrey 
Leonovich, which Khodorkovskiy's lawyers called a ploy to 

pressure witnesses, and which will likely further exacerbate 
tensions with the UK (where Leonovich now resides) over the 
issue of extraditions. This move follows a December 2 ruling 
by an international arbitration tribunal in the Hague that 
Russia is bound by the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT), thus 
requiring the GOR to defend itself against claims from Yukos 
shareholders for an estimated 100 billion USD in damages (ref 
A). This sum would be the largest arbitration award ever, 
representi
ng 10 percent of Russia's GDP, and although 
collecting the entire amount would be difficult, it could 
allow shareholders to seize state assets outside of Russia. 
The ECT ruling could affect, among others, companies such as 
Royal Dutch Shell and BP who were forced to renegotiate 
contracts on terms favorable to the GOR. 

Russians apathetic, but skeptical towards GOR 
--------------------------------------------- 

6. (SBU) Given such significant international implications to 
the case, and given Khodorkovskiy's former stature, one might 
expect a large amount of focus on the Yukos case inside 
Russia. However, most Russians continue to pay scant 
attention (ref B). According to a December poll by the 
Levada Center encompassing 1,600 respondents in 127 cities 
and villages, only a little more than one-third of Russians 
are following the case (a May Levada poll showed the same 
figure for people who were at all aware that the case 
existed). The same poll, however, revealed a notable 
divergence in public opinion from the "party line" maintained 
by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. In his December 3 
televised question and answer session with the public, Putin 
defended the legitimacy of Khodorkovskiy's incarceration and 
accused Khodorkovskiy of also being a murderer. He also 
claimed that all of the earnings from the sale of Yukos were 
being funneled into the country's Housing and Utilities Fund. 
The Levada poll, however, showed that 65 percent of 
respondents did not believe Putin's claim about the Housing 
Fund, and 50 percent believed that Putin should be summoned 
as a witness in the case. 

Khodorkovskiy starting to lose hope 
----------------------------------- 

7. (SBU) Khodorkovskiy and Lebedev have consistently 
maintained an upbeat demeanor, frequently smiling and 
laughing during the proceedings, and chatting buoyantly with 
supporters. Over the course of his imprisonment, 
Khodorkovskiy has written a series of philosophical articles 
(printed in liberal papers such as Vedomosti) that have 
amounted to shadow policy papers of the type that he might 
write if he were one of the President's advisors. He had 
also expressed faith that the Russian court system would 
exhibit sufficient fairness and rule of law, and Judge 
Danilkin sufficient independence, to acquit him. In recent 
months Khodorkovskiy has made pessimistic statements that he 
does not expect ever to be freed. By all accounts, in 2003 
Khodorkovskiy did not believe he would actually be arrested. 
His thinking here seems to following a similar trajectory, 
from naive refusal to believe what is happening, to the 
gradual sinking in of the reality of his situation. 

Comment 
------- 

8. (C) The fact that legal procedures are apparently being 
meticulously followed in a case whose motivation is clearly 
political may appear paradoxical. It shows the effort that 
the GOR is willing to expend in order to save face, in this 
case by applying a superficial rule-of-law gloss to a cynical 
system where political enemies are eliminated with impunity. 
It is not lost on either elite or mainstream Russians that 
the GOR has applied a double standard to the illegal 
activities of 1990s oligarchs; if it were otherwise, 
virtually every other oligarch would be on trial alongside 
Khodorkovskiy and Lebedev. There is a widespread 
understanding that Khodorkovskiy violated the tacit rules of 
the game: if you keep out of politics, you can line your 
pockets as much as you desire. Most Russians believe the 
Khodorkovskiy trial is politically motivated; they simply do 
not care that it is. Human rights activists in general have 
an uphill battle in overcoming public apathy and cynicism, 
but nowhere more so than in the Khodorkovskiy case. We will 
continue to monitor the case as it unfolds. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3143, MEDVEDEV USING MVD REFORM TO INCREASE STANDING?

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3143 2009-12-30 10:35 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO7868
RR RUEHDBU
DE RUEHMO #3143 3641035
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 301035Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5828
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L MOSCOW 003143 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/30/2018 
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM PINR ECON KDEM RS
SUBJECT: MEDVEDEV USING MVD REFORM TO INCREASE STANDING? 
 
REF: A. MOSCOW 2892 
     B. MOSCOW 2778 
 
Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Susan Elliott for reasons 1 
.4 (b) and (d). 
 
 
1. (SBU)  President Medvedev, capitalizing on several recent 
high-profile events surrounding the Ministry of Internal 
Affairs (MVD), introduced on December 24 proposals intended 
to make the MVD more professional and centralized.  Medvedev 
has frequently discussed the need to reform the MVD since 
taking office, but his recent reforms appear to be more 
significant than earlier directives requiring police officers 
to be more polite and helpful.  He announced a 20 percent cut 
in positions by 2012, higher salaries, a rotation of senior 
leadership, a review of hiring practices and performance 
standards, and that the budget for all police forces would 
come from federal resources.  Medvedev's reforms may also 
dovetail with his introduction of house arrest, push to 
remove limits on blood-alcohol levels to create a zero 
tolerance policy for drinking and driving, and signature of a 
new tax crimes law that will prevent pre-trial detention for 
tax evasion and other non-violent crimes (septel).  If 
actually implemented, Medvedev's reforms will take time and 
resources, and have served to put the MVD leadership on 
notice. 
 
2. (SBU)  Multiple, highly public events in 2009 coalesced in 
the last few days of December have heaped additional negative 
publicity on the MVD.  Former Moscow Oblast policeman Denis 
Yevsyukov on December 29 "partially admitted" his guilt to 
charges of murdering local residents during a shooting spree 
in April that was caught on video and broadcast repeatedly in 
Russian and international media.  On December 29, the Public 
Chamber conducted a probe into the death, while in pre-trial 
detention, of lawyer Sergey Magnitsky and concluded that 
prison authorities and investigators, who fall under the 
purview of the MVD, mounted an organized campaign of pressure 
on him that amounted to "torture," and as one committee 
member said, "to some degree...premeditated murder" (reftel 
A).  Finally, on December 28, the Prosecutor General's 
Investigative Committee announced that former Novorossisk 
policeman Aleksey Dymovskiy, who in November posted widely 
seen video blogs on Youtube about his knowledge of corruption 
in the police ranks, would be formally charged with fraud for 
denigrating fellow officers (reftel B). 
 
3. (C)  Medvedev's reform of the MVD, which remains one of 
the regime's main levers for suppressing demonstrations and 
dissent, also bolsters his standing within the elite. If he 
could push through the reforms, it would show increased 
influence and respect from the elite, and would mute liberal 
and Western criticism, especially coupled with the his 
initiative to hold officials responsible for their actions. 
Novaya Gazeta journalist Leonid Nikitinsky told us December 
28 that Medvedev had harnessed public opinion to paint 
Minister of Internal Affairs Rashid Nurgaliyev into a corner 
and hold him on a short leash.  Nurgaliyev publicly played 
down the seriousness of the reforms, and his willingness to 
fully implement them, as someone viewed as close to Putin, 
could provide another clue into the dynamics of the tandem. 
 
4.  (C)  The reputation of the police forces in Russia has 
been low for years, with Russian polling results depicting 
that more than two thirds of Russians distrust the police. It 
probably would take major reforms sustained over years before 
public opinion toward Russia's police officers significantly 
improved.  Journalists and experts have highlighted that most 
Soviet and Russian rulers implemented reforms of the MVD, and 
generally do not see Medvedev as up to the task.  Medvedev, 
moreover, will continue to need to walk a fine line between 
heeding public opinion, reforming an institution that 
supports the ruling elite, enforcing his authority and 
leadership with the elite, and balancing his efforts with 
Putin. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3139, EUR/RPM DIRECTOR TURNER DEC 16-18 MOSCOW VISIT

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3139 2009-12-29 14:47 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO7227
OO RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHLA RUEHMRE RUEHROV RUEHSL RUEHSR
DE RUEHMO #3139/01 3631447
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
O 291447Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 5821
INFO RUEHXP/ALL NATO POST COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUCNOSC/OSCE POST COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA IMMEDIATE 5459

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 04 MOSCOW 003139 
 
SIPDIS 
 
GENEVA FOR JCIC, DEPT FOR EUR/RPM, EUR/RUS, VCI/CCA 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/29/2019 
TAGS: KACT KCFE PARM PREL RS AF
SUBJECT: EUR/RPM DIRECTOR TURNER DEC 16-18 MOSCOW VISIT 
 
Classified By: POL M/C Susan Elliott for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d) 
 
1. (C) SUMMARY: EUR/RPM Director Bruce Turner visited Moscow 
December 16-18 to discuss NATO-Russia relations, the 
Conventional Armed Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty, the OSCE's 
Corfu Process, and Russia's proposed European Security and 
NATO-Russia Council (NRC) treaties.  MFA officials played up 
the proposed NRC treaty as a legally binding recommitment to 
the terms of the 1997 NATO-Russia Founding Act (though 
excluding many of the commitments made by Russia in this 
document), claiming (unconvincingly) that Russia's desire to 
have a voice in NATO decision-making would not amount to a 
veto.  Russia will consider NATO requests for Afghanistan, 
but gratis donations are unlikely.  MFA disarmament officials 
said Moscow remains interested in reviving CFE, but as the 
Russian military is getting used to life without it, the 
treaty could die completely if the West does not make 
substantial concessions on the Russian flank and Istanbul 
commitments.  Think tank experts and journalists were less 
charitable in assessing Russia's motivations for tabling the 
two draft treaties, which included excluding Ukraine and 
Georgia from NATO, exempting Russia's forces from the CFE 
flank regime, and maximizing Moscow's influence in the former 
Soviet space.  End summary. 
 
2. (C) EUR/RPM Director Bruce Turner and Russia policy 
officer Michael Carpenter met Russian officials and 
non-government experts December 16-18 to discuss European 
security issues in the wake of NATO SYG Rasmussen's visit to 
Moscow a day earlier.  Turner and party met with MFA European 
cooperation department director Vladimir Voronkov, deputy 
Yuri Gorlach, and MFA DVBR conventional arms control director 
Anton Mazur.  Other meetings included Dmitry Danilov 
(Institute of Europe), Pavel Felgenhauer (Novaya Gazeta), 
Dmitri Trenin (Carnegie Center), Fedor Lukyanov (Institute of 
Europe and editor of "Russia in World Affairs"), and Tatyana 
Parkhalina (Center for European Security). 
 
MFA on NATO-Russia and European Security Treaties 
--------------------------------------------- ---- 
 
3. (C) European cooperation director Voronkov said Moscow was 
positive about NATO SYG Rasmussen's visit, particularly the 
commitment to repair relations with Russia and consult on the 
new strategic concept.  However, he noted cooperation would 
be easier if the overall NATO-Russia relationship were 
"reset" on the basis of the European Security Treaty proposed 
by President Medvedev and the NATO-Russia Council (NRC) 
agreement proposed by Foreign Minister Lavrov at the December 
4 NRC ministerial.  Voronkov said Russia wanted NATO 
Strategic Concept discussions to be transparent and welcomed 
former Secretary Albright's planned trip to Moscow to engage 
on the new concept.  Voronkov said the GOR was disappointed 
by Rasmussen's comments on Medvedev's draft European Security 
Treaty (EST) and asked when the U.S. would provide official 
comments.  Turner said the U.S. was still studying Russia's 
proposals and would provide more detailed comments in the 
near future, but asked why new legally binding treaties were 
necessary given that NATO was fulfilling all of its 
commitments in the NATO-Russia Founding Act. 
 
4. (C) Discussing Rasmussen's appeals for assistance in 
Afghanistan, Voronkov said Russia is interested and 
positively inclined towards cooperation, but intimated that 
cooperation would be easier on a fee-for-service basis, 
joking that "Russia is now the most capitalist country in the 
world."  He played up the possibilities for cooperation with 
Russian companies, which should be given opportunity to bid 
on contracts in Afghanistan.  Russia would also like to 
cooperate with NATO on counter-narcotics, missile defense, 
the Cooperative Airspace Initiative, critical infrastructure, 
energy security, and in the military-technical field, e.g., 
training helicopter pilots, maintaining helicopters, and 
providing spare parts. 
 
NRC Treaty 
---------- 
 
5. (C) Voronkov and Gorlach portrayed the Russian draft 
"Agreement on Basic Principles Governing Relations among NRC 
Members in the Security Sphere" as the basis for redefining 
Russia's relations with the West, noting that Rasmussen's 
statement that "NATO will never attack Russia" was welcome, 
but should be made legally binding so it will be permanent. 
 
MOSCOW 00003139  002 OF 004 
 
 
Voronkov asserted that just as the 1947 Washington Treaty 
solved the conflict between France and Germany, the NRC 
treaty and EST could eliminate conflict between NATO and 
Russia.  The "indivisible security" concept, according to 
Voronkov, is not meant to give Russia a veto over NATO 
decisi
ons ("We respect NATO's sovereign right to act.") but 
to ensure Russia's concerns are taken into account "up 
front."  (Note: Despite these protestations, the NRC draft 
treaty as written would grant Russia a veto over any 
substantial NATO deployments on the territory of "new" 
Allies, i.e., those who joined NATO after 1997 - as well as 
all other European states.  End note.)  Voronkov's deputy 
Gorlach explained that a NRC treaty is not meant to 
substitute for CFE.  While Russia is not sure whether U.S. 
bases in Bulgaria and Romania currently contain "substantial 
combat forces," Russia is concerned that they could in the 
future, which is why Russia needs the legally binding 
commitment contained in the NRC treaty. 
 
6. (C) Voronkov said the agreement to regulate "incidents 
related to military activities" (Article 3 of NRC treaty) is 
aimed at preventing incidents that could arise from, e.g., 
accidental Russian over-flight of Lithuanian territory or 
close encounters between Russian and NATO ships on the Black 
Sea.  Turner said communications links to prevent such 
incidents would be a good idea and should be explored further. 
 
OSCE 
---- 
 
7. (C) Voronkov agreed that EST should be further discussed 
at OSCE through the Corfu Process and hoped that that HOSG 
involvement in these discussions at a future summit could 
give impetus to "concrete decisions."  He said Russia looked 
favorably at Kazakhstan's proposal -- as incoming 
Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE -- to hold a summit in 2010, 
but offered no ideas for deliverables other than highlighting 
progress on "process" issues.  Turner cautioned that "summit 
fatigue" makes it unlikely the U.S. would participate unless 
there were substantive deliverables. 
 
8. (C) Voronkov echoed the Russian position that this is not 
the time for OSCE to work inside Afghanistan, raising 
concerns for the safety of any OSCE mission.  Carpenter noted 
that an OSCE Election Support Team had nevertheless provided 
valuable assistance inside Afghanistan during the recent 
presidential elections. 
 
9. (C) Responding to Turner's question why Russia was 
retreating from human rights commitments made in the 1990s, 
Voronkov said "We're at a different stage of development" 
from the mid-1990s and no longer need to focus on 
"democratizing" Central and Eastern Europe.  Although an 
exclusive OSCE focus on human rights will bring about 
deadlock, Russia's approach to the "security of the 
individual" will be based on all three dimensions and might 
accommodate U.S. concerns. 
 
CFE: We're Still Interested 
--------------------------- 
 
10. (C) MFA Department of Security Affairs and Disarmament 
(DVBR) conventional arms control director Mazur said Russia 
is interested in finding a solution to the current CFE 
impasse, but "not more and not less than our CFE partners." 
He noted that Russia had suspended its implementation of the 
treaty two years ago and the Russian military was "not 
unhappy" with the outcome.  Consequently, there was not much 
time left to save the treaty, probably less than "a couple of 
years." 
 
11. (C) Mazur said Russia was very unhappy that language for 
a way forward on CFE agreed by the U.S. and Russia at the 
OSCE ministerial in Athens was rejected by other Allies, 
chiding Turner that "You should keep your Allies in line." 
Turner responded that the U.S. was not inclined to impose its 
will on other CFE States Parties, but was interested in 
forging consensus among them.  Mazur said Russia can still 
work with the Parallel Actions Package, but it was important 
that other Allies not try to improve the package once there 
was an agreement.  Mazur hoped discussions could continue 
among experts in Vienna at the JCG as there is a role for 
Vienna experts in finding a creative solution to the impasse. 
 The NRC treaty could also be discussed in Vienna in the CFE 
 
MOSCOW 00003139  003 OF 004 
 
 
context. 
 
A/CFE Alternatives? 
------------------- 
 
12. (C) Mazur said CFE "modernization" should be seen as an 
ongoing process; States Parties should seek to make some 
updates now and revisit the CFE regime in three to five 
years.  CFE is only viable if it continues to adapt. 
Prolonged absence of a fully-implemented regime will kill the 
treaty altogether.  Mazur noted that the Turkish MFA had 
doubts whether its legislature would ratify an "already 
outdated treaty."  When Turner asked if an interim political 
agreement might substitute for an adapted treaty, Mazur 
suggested U.S. and Russian CFE legal experts would be 
skeptical of the viability of this solution.  On the other 
hand, negotiations on a completely new treaty would probably 
prove too great a challenge; it would be better to build from 
the existing treaty through iterative adaptations. 
 
13. (C) On Georgia, Mazur said the "situation has drastically 
changed."  The (CFE-related) issue was resolved by the events 
of summer 2008: Abkhazia and South Ossetia were no longer 
part of Georgia.  A compromise solution will have to be 
status-neutral, he said, but Russia can provide transparency 
about its forces in Abkhazia and South Ossetia just as Turkey 
does with its forces in Northern Cyprus.  "We need to devise 
a face-saving way for the West to drop the issue of the 
so-called Istanbul commitments."  Mazur asserted CFE should 
not be used to solve "sub-regional" problems (i.e. Georgia 
and Moldova); there were other mechanisms, many of them at 
the OSCE, that could better be used, e.g., Chapter X of the 
Vienna Document, and the "Stabilizing Measures for Local 
Crisis Situations." 
 
14. (C) Mazur said the flank issue needs to be resolved 
"sooner rather than later: it can't be put off to the adapted 
treaty."  While conceding that Turkey wanted to preserve the 
flank regime "as a whole," Mazur said Turkey had told Moscow 
it did not consider Russian forces adjacent to Turkey as a 
threat and did not view Russia as a potential adversary. 
Mazur claimed that Norway did not object to the proposal made 
by Marshal Baluyevskiy in 2008 to make all of Russia's area 
of treaty application into a flank zone.  He added that the 
force limitations in the NRC treaty proposal were thought 
through very carefully and implied that Russian forces 
deployed in Abkhazia and South Ossetia would not exceed CFE 
flank ceilings. 
 
Experts: EST Aims to Restrict the West 
-------------------------------------- 
 
15. (C) The experts were in broad agreement that the EST and 
NRC treaty were designed to prevent further NATO encroachment 
on Russia's "near abroad."  Russia was also opposed to 
additional EU enlargement to the same region and tends to 
view the EU's Eastern Partnership in zero-sum terms.  Tabling 
the NRC agreement and EST were, however, fundamentally 
defensive moves, a way to av
oid further "losses," 
particularly since Georgia and Ukraine are now formally in 
line to join NATO.  According to Felgenhauer, Russia is 
acutely aware of its weakness vis-a-vis the West and China 
and now only seeks to be a regional power, albeit with an 
irredentist interest in ethnic Russian populations in 
neighboring states.  The experts also agreed that the EST and 
NRC proposals were two-way bets: their acceptance would give 
Russia a veto over NATO, while rejection by the West can be 
used to bash NATO domestically, always popular, and be used 
as a justification for any future Russian military activity 
in post-Soviet space: "We asked you to sign a treaty, yet you 
refused and now we have to make our own security guarantees." 
 
16. (C) Experts also concurred that nobody in Russia believes 
NATO will "succeed" in Afghanistan.  While Russia would not 
hide its pleasure at a U.S. and NATO failure, it would also 
fear the likely increase in extremist activities along its 
southern borders. 
 
17. (C) The Georgian war persuaded the Russian military that 
the fewer "CFE-like" limitations on their forces, the better. 
 They and the Russian political leadership view the world in 
stark neo-realist terms (i.e., balance of power), and are 
concerned with uncertainty about the future, which they 
define in terms of years, not decades.  Hence, while Russia 
 
MOSCOW 00003139  004 OF 004 
 
 
may view the Obama administration as more cooperative, even 
docile, there is a persistent uncertainty about what will 
happen in 2012 or 2016, so Russia must hedge to protect 
against future risks. 
 
18. (C) COMMENT: These discussions with officials and experts 
underscore the different mindsets and objectives Russia and 
NATO bring to their discussions of NRC cooperation.  For a 
NATO focused on new security challenges, Russia can be a 
pragmatic partner for enhancing capabilities (and avoiding 
unwelcome friction) even as the Alliance steadfastly rejects 
the notion of "spheres of influence" and insists that the 
spread of Western institutions and liberal democracy in the 
former Soviet Union is in the interests of both Russia and 
NATO.  For Russia, the prevailing narrative that the West 
"took advantage" of Russia's weakness in the 1990s is used to 
justify a veto over NATO activities in Russia's "near 
abroad," which Russian officials intimate is a precondition 
for enhanced NATO-Russia cooperation.  In this view, 
cooperation with NATO must take place in the context of a 
broad (preferably legally binding) "understanding" that 
respects Russia's "legitimate interests."  The challenge in 
formulating our response to the Russian proposals will be to 
find areas of overlapping interests -- however narrow -- and 
incrementally develop pragmatic cooperation to build a more 
constructive NATO-Russia relationship without sacrificing our 
core principles.  End comment. 
 
19. (U) EUR/RPM has reviewed this cable. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3138, A PREVIEW OF RUSSIA’S NEW MILITARY DOCTRINE

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3138 2009-12-29 13:56 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO7149
RR RUEHDBU RUEHSL
DE RUEHMO #3138/01 3631356
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 291356Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5819
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RUEHZG/NATO EU COLLECTIVE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC
RUEKDIA/DIA WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 003138 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/29/2019 
TAGS: PGOV PREL PARM PTER MARR MCAP MNUC RS
SUBJECT: A PREVIEW OF RUSSIA'S NEW MILITARY DOCTRINE 
 
Classified By: Political M/C Susan M. Elliott for reasons 1.4 (b) and ( 
d). 
 
1. (C) Summary:  Experts and media reports suggest Russia's 
new military doctrine, intended to project defense policy to 
2020, will be issued in the near future.  News headlines will 
focus on the fact that the new doctrine lowers the threshold 
for the use of nuclear weapons if other countries infringe on 
Russia's security interests.  The new doctrine calls for 
accelerating the professionalization of the military (without 
abolishing conscription) and preparing for small, local 
conflicts.  One contact involved in drafting the doctrine 
said China, not the west, is Russia's main preoccupation and 
a stand-off in the Far East would the only conceivable 
scenario under which Russia would threaten the use of nuclear 
weapons.  End summary. 
 
---------------- 
The New Doctrine 
---------------- 
 
2. (C) Deputy Director of the U.S.A.-Canada Institute and 
retired General Pavel Zolotarev told us December 28 that the 
Russian Security Council consulted with his institute during 
the drafting of the new military doctrine.  While he has not 
seen the final draft of the document, he confirmed press 
reports that the document sets forth the key principles of 
Russia's defense policy to 2020.  The document is 
approximately 17 pages long and is divided into three parts: 
"Military Dangers and Military Threats to the Russian 
Federation," "Military Politics of the Russian Federation," 
and "Military-Economic and Military-Technical Provision of 
Defense."  He said Medvedev will likely sign the new military 
doctrine soon, possibly before year's end. 
 
------------------------------- 
Preemptive Strikes Are Possible 
------------------------------- 
 
3. (C) Zolotarev confirmed media reports that the new 
military doctrine allows Russia to launch preemptive attacks, 
including nuclear strikes, if Russia is threatened.  The list 
of military threats includes other countries' ignoring 
Russian security interests, attempts to alter the balance of 
power such as deploying missile defense systems, interfering 
in Russia's internal policies, territorial disputes, 
conflicts near Russia's borders, and deploying weapons in 
space.  According to Zolotarev, preemptive strikes would 
happen only if threats to Russia's security appeared 
imminent, such as cases where a potential enemy mobilized its 
military. 
 
4. (C) Zolotarev the new doctrine marks a shift from 
preparing for a large-scale war requiring mass mobilization 
to a posture that sees small, local conflicts and separatism 
as Russia's main military challenges.  The doctrine therefore 
calls for Russia to have a largely professional, modern 
military capable of countering such threats to Russia and 
other countries in the Collective Security Treaty 
Organization.  Press reports indicate that, under the new 
military doctrine, Russia plans to provide modern equipment 
for 30 percent of its military by 2015, and 70 percent of its 
military by 2020.  The new doctrine, however, does not end 
conscription. 
 
------------------------------------ 
The Implications of the New Doctrine 
------------------------------------ 
 
5. (C) Zolotarev argued that, while the chances of a 
large-scale war breaking out are remote, China would most 
likely be the target of any preemptive nuclear strike.  Most 
serious military planners dismissed any threat from NATO long 
ago, he posited.  China still has a mass mobilization army, 
he said, and the Russian Far East is thinly populated, has 
little infrastructure, and a small Russian military 
contingent.  With the Russian army restructured to rapidly 
respond to small-scale wars, the GOR would have to rely on 
its nuclear deterrent to prevent a Chinese attack.  He 
admitted, however, that by declaring the right to launch a 
nuclear first strike, Russia appeared to be taking a step 
back from the spirit, if not the letter of its Nuclear 
Nonproliferation Treaty Article VI commitments regarding 
nuclear disarmament.  Other analysts have told us the poor 
state of Russia's conventional forces leave the planners with 
 
MOSCOW 00003138  002 OF 002 
 
 
no choice but to rely more heavily on nuclear weapons in 
their war-fighting doctrine. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3125, MEDVEDEV’S 2009 YEAR-IN-REVIEW EMPHASIZES ECONOMIC

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3125 2009-12-28 15:11 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO6485
RR RUEHDBU
DE RUEHMO #3125/01 3621511
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 281511Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5811
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 003125 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/28/2018 
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM PINR ECON KDEM RS
SUBJECT: MEDVEDEV'S 2009 YEAR-IN-REVIEW EMPHASIZES ECONOMIC 
STABILITY AND MODERNIZATION 
 
REF: A. 08 MOSCOW 3757 
     B. MOSCOW 2946 
 
Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Susan Elliott for reasons 1 
.4 (b) and (d). 
 
 
1. (SBU)  Summary:  President Medvedev assessed on December 
24 the most important achievements of 2009 during an 
interview in which he cited Russia's social and financial 
stability as the nation's key successes.  He used the 
nationally-televised, live interview to push his economic 
modernization agenda and express his opinion on key domestic 
and foreign policy issues.  Unlike Prime Minister Putin's 
"overwhelm with numbers" approach, Medvedev provided few 
specific policy details and often couched his remarks as 
personal opinion.  Media commentators applauded Medvedev's 
proposed reform of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, but 
questioned his ability to implement needed reforms in the law 
enforcement and economic sectors.  End Summary. 
 
------------------ 
Interview Dynamics 
------------------ 
 
2. (SBU)  Medvedev appeared confident and relaxed in his 85 
minute, scripted interview on December 24 with the General 
Directors of government-controlled Channel 1, Rossiya, and 
NTV television stations.  Unlike last year, TV stations 
broadcast the interview live, with questions centered around 
the economic situation, reform of the legal sector, internal 
politics, and foreign policy.  Medvedev made several 
on-target jokes, including comments about which candidate 
Russia supported in Ukraine's upcoming presidential election 
(Ukraine's current Russiaphobe President Viktor Yushchenko, 
who Medvedev has often criticized for what he perceives as 
Yushchenko's, anti-Russian policies).  By comparison, while 
Medvedev spoke for ten more minutes compared to last year 
(reftel A), Putin's marathon live question and answer session 
on December 3 lasted over four hours (reftel B). 
 
3. (SBU)  Medvedev also used the appearance to warn 
bureaucrats that that they should get on-board with his 
modernization agenda, or risk losing their positions.  In 
response to a comment by the General Director of NTV about 
how the bureaucracy looked bored and inattentive during his 
November address to the Federal Assembly, Medvedev warned 
that bureaucrats who do not fulfill their responsibilities 
would not remain in their positions.  He also explained that 
the recent firing of 20 senior officers in the Federal 
Penitentiary Service was due to their inability to modernize 
the correctional system, although Medvedev and Minister of 
Justice Konovalov have suggested that the recent death of 
lawyer Sergey Magnitskiy in pre-trial detention was the spark 
that prompted the firings. 
 
----------------------------------------- 
Economic Modernization Key To Development 
----------------------------------------- 
 
4. (SBU)  Medvedev's initial focus was on the social and 
financial stability the Government had sustained during the 
global economic crisis.  He noted that despite problems, 
pensions were raised, large businesses were saved from going 
bankrupt, the ruble was stable, and the Government and 
Central bank had worked to avoid a financial crisis scenario 
reminiscent of 1998.  Medvedev tempered expectations of a 
dramatic economic reversal, stating that he expected positive 
growth in 2010 GDP compared to the decrease of 8.7 percent 
this year. 
 
5. (SBU)  When asked what was a failure this year, Medvedev 
piggybacked on his economic stability response to push his 
modernization agenda, declaring, "without modernization our 
economy has no future."  Modernization of the economy was 
needed "long ago" to move Russia away from a dependence on 
the export of raw materials since, as he said, "we cannot 
live on our natural resources forever."  Medvedev downplayed 
fears of a rapid, forced overhaul of the economic system. 
 
--------------------------------------------- --- 
Relationship With President Obama, Putin, Family 
--------------------------------------------- --- 
 
6. (SBU)  Medvedev spoke highly of his relationship with 
President Obama and the respect President Obama had shown 
Russia.  He called President Obama a "strong politician and 
an interesting person...(who) knows how to listen and how to 
respond to arguments...He is easy to work with, and we have 
 
MOSCOW 00003125  002 OF 002 
 
 
established trusting relations."  In response to a question 
about his relationship with Putin, Medvedev's 19-word reply, 
in which he said relations are good, may have been an attempt 
to limit the infighting rumors that inevitably appear 
whenever he or Putin talk about one another. In contrast to 
his brief comments on his relationships with powerful 
political leaders, Medvedev spoke at length on numerous, 
mundane personal questions such as what book he is currently 
reading, and what type
 of music his son enjoys. 
 
------------- 
Legal Reforms 
------------- 
 
7. (SBU)  Playing his role as the tandem member with the lead 
in the judicial sphere, Medvedev announced (and issued later 
that day) reforms to the widely disliked Ministry of Internal 
Affairs (MVD).  Medvedev called for a 20 percent decrease in 
the number of police positions, salary increases for 
remaining policemen, and the rotation of senior officials. 
He steered clear, however, of a wholesale change of 
leadership.  Medvedev also called for softer sentencing and 
pre-trial detention guidelines.  In response to a question 
about illegal influence of judicial decisions, Medvedev 
warned that judges who issue verdicts because of money, 
political pressure, or other factors will be held accountable. 
 
---------------------------------------- 
Will Medvedev's Words Turn Into Actions? 
---------------------------------------- 
 
8. (SBU)  Experts immediately praised the President's 
comments on reform of the MVD and the need to modernize the 
county's economy, but expressed (usual) skepticism of his 
ability to implement any substantial changes.  Supporters and 
oppositionists alike praised Medvedev for discussing--unlike 
Putin--the nonsystemic political opposition.  He dismissed 
nonsystemic opposition party leaders as "a chess player" and 
a former Prime Minister, but acknowledged that a few, mostly 
minor, electoral irregularities in the October 11 regional 
elections had occurred.  The main question for Medvedev, most 
commentators argued, is whether he will be able to get United 
Russia (and Putin) behind him to implement the modernization 
and change in social attitudes he is seeking. 
 
------- 
Comment 
------- 
 
9. (C)  The tandem's two-step format continues, with Medvedev 
and Putin each taking steps to display leadership in their 
respective spheres.  In his interview, Medvedev remained in 
his tandem-approved lane of strategic issues, economic 
modernization, judicial reform, and foreign policy, in 
addition to comments on personal questions and non-political 
topics.  His focus continues to contrast and complement 
Putin's statistic-filled responses from earlier this month. 
Medvedev's ability to implement needed reforms remains tied 
up with the elites' perception of his standing within the 
tandem (septel).  Russian Government officials are likely to 
fulfill their responsibilities in a more honest manner if 
they perceive that Medvedev is willing and able, (with 
Putin's backing), to remove them from office for failing to 
perform their duties. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3124, WAGERS ON WHO WILL BE THE NEXT PRESIDENT OF

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3124 2009-12-28 14:18 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO6429
RR RUEHDBU
DE RUEHMO #3124/01 3621418
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
R 281418Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 5809
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 003124 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/28/2019 
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM PINR KDEM RS
SUBJECT: WAGERS ON WHO WILL BE THE NEXT PRESIDENT OF 
DAGESTAN, ANYONE? 
 
Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Susan Elliott for reasons 1 
.4 (b) and (d). 
 
 
1. (C)  Summary:  The term of Dagestan's current president, 
Mukhu Aliyev, expires in February 2010.  Russian President 
Dmitriy Medvedev has not shown any haste in either naming a 
successor or appointing Aliyev to a new term, although he 
should have made the decision by now.  Most money is now on 
the dark horse candidacy of a classmate of Medvedev's, and 
his decision not only as to who will head Dagestan, but also 
as to who will serve as his proposed overseer for the North 
Caucasus will be telling for not only Russia's most troubled 
region, but also for his place within the ruling tandem.  End 
Summary. 
 
2.  (SBU) Russian President Dmitriy Medvedev has until 
February 2010 to decide his choice to be president of 
Dagestan.  Medvedev has reportedly had a list of five names, 
including incumbent president Mukhu Aliyev, from which to 
chose since November 16.  Also on this short list are Deputy 
Prime Minister Magomed Abdullayev, Federation Council Advisor 
Magomed Magomedov, Dagestan National Assembly member and the 
son of Dagestan's first president Magomedsalam Magomedov, and 
the head of Dagestan's treasury department Saygidguseyn 
Magomedov. 
 
3.  (C) Magomed Abdullayev appears to have the inside track, 
according to commentators and our contacts in Moscow.  While 
early money was on the re-appointment of Mukhu Aliyev, in the 
last several months there has been a low-intensity smear 
campaign against him in the media.  In early November Gadzhi 
Makhachev, Dagestan's Permanent Representative in Moscow, 
told us that Aliyev would be returned to office because "no 
one else in Dagestan would follow the Kremlin's orders as 
fully as he."  At a November 13 reception at Spaso House, 
Makhachev gave us an un-attributed 12-page report setting out 
Aliyev's failings over the past four years as president. 
Central among these are the republic's continued social, 
economic and security problems.  (Note: Makhachev would not 
tell us who drafted the anti-Aliyev manifesto, but enough of 
these same arguments against him have appeared in the media 
to lead us to believe there was a concerted effort to 
discredit Aliyev.  End Note). 
 
4.  (SBU)  Aliyev himself felt the need to counter negative 
reports about him in the influential Nezavisimaya Gazeta, 
Izvestiya and Rossiskaya Gazeta by giving an interview in 
early December to the local state-controlled Dagestan news 
agency.  In November the Federal State Statistics Services 
for Dagestan issued the results of a poll stating that over 
half (54 percent) of the 600 respondents thought Aliyev was 
doing a good job.  In response, the head of Ekho-Moskviy's 
affiliate in Makhachkala said that no more than 30 percent of 
respondents could have been satisfied with Aliyev's 
activities as president over the past four years. 
 
5.  (C) On December 17 Makhachev told us that Abdullayev 
would get the nod, despite that fact that he had little (less 
than one month) experience as Deputy Prime Minister.  He said 
that Abdullayev, an ethnic Avar (the divers republic's 
largest ethnic group), was an outsider from St. Petersburg, 
who had not spent much time in Dagestan and -- for better or 
worse -- was not involved in the inter-clan and inter-ethnic 
rivalries that exist there.  Chief Editor of the Caucasian 
Knot internet news portal Grigoriy Shvedov confirmed to us 
December 23 that he too believed Medvedev would name 
Abdullayev, but claimed the reasons for this decision were 
personal.  According to Shvedov, Medvedev and Abdullayev were 
classmates together on the law faculty in St. Petersburg and 
their wives are friends. 
 
6.  (SBU) Novaya Gazeta's outspoken columnist Yuliya Latynina 
has recently joined the side of those who feel Aliyev will 
not be given a second term.  In a December 23 article, she 
wrote that unlike Ramzan Kadyrov, the president of 
neighboring Chechnya, Aliyev did not have the money or guns 
to address Dagestan's problems.  Another strike against him, 
according to Latynina, was his quarrel with Moscow-based 
Dagestani businessman Suleyman Kerimov.  Latynina concluded 
that, which ever of the five candidates Medvedev selects, 
Dagestan's next president will have to deal with the three 
biggest problems facing the republic -- a wahhabist 
insurgency, corrupt bureaucrats who are a power unto 
themselves and the overreaching influence of the Chechen 
president, who, according to her, can call Russian Prime 
Minister Vladimir Putin at any time. 
 
Comment 
 
MOSCOW 00003124  002 OF 002 
 
 
------- 
 
7.  (C) Naming Abdullayev would be in line with Medvedev's 
two previous appointments in Russia's troubled North Caucasus 
region.  He chose Boris Ebzeyev, a sitting Russian 
Constitutional Court judge, to be president of 
Karachay-Cherkessk and then Yunus-Bek
 Yevkurov, a Interior 
Ministry general, to be president of Ingushetiya.  Both have 
performed well, although neither has solved the ethnic 
tension in Karachay-Cherkessk, the roiling insurgency in 
Ingushetiya and the corruption endemic to both.  In addition 
to appointment of Dagestan's next president, Medvedev has 
also been quite deliberate in naming the overseer for the 
entire North Caucasus proposed in his November speech before 
the Federal Assembly.  Our contacts have said that this 
individual too will probably come from outside the region and 
will not be a member of any ethnic group there.  This delay 
could be the result of the need to come to agreement within 
the tandem over such an important position. 
Rubin

Wikileaks

09MOSCOW3123, CHANGING ROLES IN THE TANDEM LEADERSHIP

WikiLeaks Link

To understand the justification used for the classification of each cable, please use this WikiSource article as reference.
Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol).Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #09MOSCOW3123.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
09MOSCOW3123 2009-12-28 14:12 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Moscow

VZCZCXRO6427
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHNP RUEHROV RUEHSL RUEHSR
DE RUEHMO #3123/01 3621412
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 281412Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY MOSCOW
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5807
INFO RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHXD/MOSCOW POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHDC PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 MOSCOW 003123 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 12/28/2019 
TAGS: PREL PGOV PMAR PHUM PINR ECON EFIN RS
SUBJECT: CHANGING ROLES IN THE TANDEM LEADERSHIP 
 
Classified By: Political Minister Counselor Susan M. Elliott; reasons 1 
.4(b/d). 
 
1. (C) Recent changes in the public messages and actions of 
President Medvedev have led to increased uncertainty among 
regional authorities and bureaucrats.  Medvedev's recent 
decisions to dismiss officials in response to public outcries 
over the Perm nightclub tragedy and remove prison officials 
implicated in the death of Sergey Magnitskiy is a contrast to 
Putin's professed reluctance to sack people.  Some observers 
are beginning to attribute Medvedev's decisive actions as a 
change in the vertical power structure of the Tandem.  While 
the tone and substance of public pronouncements may be 
changing, the key themes in the coordinated messages of both 
Medvedev and Putin remain relatively the same. End Summary. 
 
 
2. (C) In recent weeks, prominent political observers have 
commented on modifications to the division of labor between 
President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin. Medvedev has 
mainly concentrated on matters under his control, especially 
foreign policy.  Putin has tended to the economy, broadly 
defined, including the interests of major state corporations 
such as Gazprom. Exceptions to this division involved Putin 
more than Medvedev, notably Putin's personal involvement in 
the Russia-Georgia war.  Pundits have observed that the 
tandem's division of labor is changing.  Medvedev spends time 
on issues that have in the past been the proviso of the PM, 
and vice versa. Improved bilateral relations with the US have 
strengthened Medvedev's credibility in the foreign policy 
arena. 
 
3. (C) Since the September printing of his article "Russia 
Forward!", Medvedev has changed, at least rhetorically, the 
national debate to a forward-looking assessment of Russia's 
long-term problems.  Prior to this, Prime Minister Putin took 
the lead on proposing changes to the economic and social 
systems.  Many experts, however, downplay Medvedev's ability 
to implement reforms to a system that serves the interests of 
elites, including Medvedev and Putin themselves. 
 
4. (C) While it does not appear that the Tandem leadership is 
contemplating radical change, the national and regional 
bureaucracies are responding to the new signals they are 
receiving from Putin and Medvedev. Tatyana Stanovaya of the 
Center for Political Technologies told us December 21 that 
several recent developments have left regional elites 
confused.  Medvedev's swift dismissals of Perm oblast 
officials following the night club fire was consistent with 
his propensity to sack officials for incompetence.  Stanovaya 
cited another example of mixed signals -- the dispute between 
the Kremlin and the White House over tax legislation under 
consideration by the Duma. The rejection of proposals from 
Medvedev's economic advisor Arkadiy Dvorkovich in favor of 
White House proposals, she contended, demonstrated that 
regional elites cannot count on the Kremlin to get them what 
they need.  This dissonance has led regional officials to 
carefully consider how to respond to orders from the Kremlin. 
 They realize that failures can lead to loss of position, but 
successes may not translate into rewards. 
 
5. (C) In spite of his public pledges to fight corruption, 
few people believe Medvedev will be successful in reducing 
corruption. The ongoing conflict between General Prosecutor 
(GP) Yuriy Chaika and Investigative Committee (SK) Chief 
Sergey Bastrykhin flared again before Christmas with the GP's 
dismissal of an SK Moscow-level official.  Bastrykhin, an 
ally of Putin, successfully defended his subordinate, 
compelling Medvedev-ally Chaika to back off.  The daily 
newspaper "Kommersant" described this as a clear loss for 
Chaika, further muddying the signals to bureaucrats 
throughout the country as to how effective Medvedev will be 
in the implementation of his anti-corruption ideas. 
 
 
6. (C) Stanovaya and "New Times" editor Yevgeniya Albats 
speculated that the mixed messages were leading to government 
gridlock. Foundation for Effective Politics expert Pavel 
Danilin, however, attributed this process to normal 
governance disagreements present in any democratic system. 
Danilin said that he and his boss, Kremlin-insider Gleb 
Pavlovskiy, perceive no major differences between Medvedev 
and Putin, only minor policy disputes between the staffs of 
the two leaders.  He predicted that an amicable split in the 
tandem will come, but much closer to the 2012 presidential 
elections. The two are functioning well together and continue 
to exercise complete political and executive control.  During 
 
MOSCOW 00003123  002 OF 002 
 
 
a televised interview on December
24, Medvedev said his 
relationship with Putin remains "friendly" and will not 
change. While there are undoubtedly differences in the tone 
and substance of public pronouncements, it is also clear that 
key themes in the messages of both Medvedev and Putin are 
well coordinated. 
 
Comment 
------- 
 
7. (C) In recent weeks liberal commentators have rescinded 
some of their previous criticism of Medvedev, citing his 
decisive steps in removing prison officials implicated in the 
death of the lawyer Sergey Magnitskiy and firing officials 
responsible for fire safety in Perm. No one discerns any 
significant or widening policy gaps between Medvedev and 
Putin.  Rather, their good cop/bad cop coordination seems to 
be working at the national level, with their public approval 
rating remaining high.  For regional bureaucrats accustomed 
to paying more attention to decisions from the White House, 
Medvedev has shaken things up and caused regional officials 
to rethink their personnel and administrative calculations. 
That seems exactly what he intended -- to improve his image 
as a decisive leader and strengthen his own longer-term 
political ambitions. 
Rubin

Wikileaks