The Parallax Brief


Unrepentant Subjectivity on Economics, Politics, Defence, Foreign Policy, and Russia

Fresh Angle on US-Russia “New Era”

Sometimes the Moscow Times opinion editorial columns can be a little overbearing. While undoubtedly well written and informative, they are almost universally po-faced. Amid this environment of solemn political analysis and grave social policy, Mark H Teeter brings a delightfully light touch and sharp wit to his keenly observed bi-weekly columns on life and news in Russia.

Most weeks he addresses US-Russia relations through the prism of an American living in Moscow, and this week must have provided a bonanza for Teeter, as Barak Obama apparently “pressed the reset button” on US-Russia relations, and wants to reopen nuclear arms control talks with the Kremlin.

(Note to self: I do wish the press wouldn’t refer to the pressing of any kind of button when it comes to nuclear arms. It causes a certain… frisson. NTS2: And speaking of uncouth Obama press coverage, when will they stop referring to the fiscal stimulus bill as Obama’s stimulus package? How can I take this stuff seriously when I read things like, “Obama’s giant stimulus package was viewed for the first time by the Senate today,” and “Obama’s massive stimulus package was cut in size by a bi-partisan group of centrist Senators.”)

Anyway, back to Teeter: funny guy, sublime writer, irreverent vignettes on US-Russia relations and cultural differences through the eyes of a veteran American expat in Moscow.

Today, Teeter has managed to trump every single one of the major op-eds and foreign policy wonk notes I’ve read on the start of a another new ‘new era’ of Russo-Yankee relations. He notes that a cabal of experienced and baggage free Russia veterans sit waiting for Obama, if he chooses to use them, and outlines just what kind of benefit they can bring.

Click here for an engaging read.

Filed under: Defence, Foreign policy, Politics, Russia, , , , , , , , , , ,

6 Responses

  1. I’m with you on the “stimulus package” phrase. Ew.

  2. David says:

    I love it…

  3. […] fellow blogger (Andrew) posted this interesting article, entitled: “Fresh Angle on US-Russia “New Era”” yesterday, which is primarily devoted to an editorial authored by Mark H Teeter, an American […]

  4. Sara Tinkelman says:

    Thank-you for your kind words about Mark Teeter’s recent piece. He is my big brother as well as a PhD/stand-up-comic who, in my (admittedly unsolicited) opinion should be the 24hr cable news go-to-guy for Things Russian. The thought of unleashing him on some conservative talking head peddling the usual bushwa about Ronald Reagan having “won the Cold War” causes my heart to flutter. C’mon people! Who’s with me? Time to start an email assault on the deciders at MSNBC!

  5. parallaxbrief says:

    Sara, I would definitely support the public unleashing of Mark on the hysterically hawkish conservative foreign policy ignoramuses who egregiously believe that they won the cold war. But I’m not sure it would be a fair fight.

    I’ve actually had the pleasure of briefly meeting Mark on one occasion, and I can say that he’s just as funny in real life as he is in his Moscow Times column (as well as a very nice chap).

    Intrigued to meet a Brit who knew something about his beloved Washington Redskins, he told me a story:

    “I was walking in New York on a cold day wearing my ‘skins cap, and I passed a homeless man begging on the sidewalk. As I passed, he shouted ‘I might be a bum, but at least I’m not a Redskins fan!'”

    I liked that.

  6. Sara Tinkelman says:

    I’m not certain how to contact you via email, but I thought you’d like to know (if you don’t already) that Mark has moved to the Moscow News.
    Kind regards, Sara Tinkelman

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