MOSCOW — One Russian city wants to send a message to Americans protesting the election of Donald Trump: Well, we like him.
city of Obninsk was granted a permit for a rally Saturday in favor of
the U.S. president-elect — another sign of Trump’s embrace in a country
whose relations with the Obama administration soured badly over rifts
such as Syria and Ukraine.
The demonstration was organized by Artyom Mainas, a 27-year-old blogger in
Obninsk, a nuclear-research center some 60 miles south of Moscow. He
said he decided to act after seeing news from the United States
about demonstrations in the wake of Trump’s election.
well, it would be good if we can organize something here in Russia to
demonstrate our support to the newly-elected president,” Mainas said by
telephone Friday. “We think that Trump is a good candidate for Russia.”
Russians have greeted the election of Trump as a victory, in part because of the Republican’s support for Putin and
calls for better ties with Russia during the campaign. On Friday,
Sergei Lavrov, Russia’s foreign minister, said Trump and Putin see “eye-to-eye politically,” according to the TASS news agency.
the campaign, Russian officials and state media constantly warned that a
Hillary Clinton presidency could erode already poor U.S.-Russia relations. Meanwhile, Moscow has conducted nationwide civil defense drills.
U.S. administration accused Russia of interfering on Trump’s behalf,
including hacks of emails from top members of Clinton’s campaign team.
Earlier this week, President Obama warned his successor not to embrace
Putin too readily.
Putin also sounded a bellicose note Friday, saying Russia is working to develop new weapons to “ensure a strategic balance.”
Russian leader, wrapping up a week-long series of talks with his senior
commanders on Moscow’s plans to modernize its military, said that
Russia is developing state-of-the art weapons that draw on laser,
hypersonic and robotic technologies.
“We are giving special
attention to the development of weapons based on new physical principles
that allow selective, pinpoint impact on critically important elements
of enemy weapons and infrastructure,” Putin said at the meeting,
broadcast on Russian television from the Black Sea resort of Sochi.
Russian military officials have recently described developing warheads for ballistic missiles that would be invisible to antimissile defenses, or capable of evading them. Russia has protested NATO’s U.S.-led missile defense system, and Putin on Friday appeared to lodge a response to the U.S. development of Prompt Global Strike, a weapons systems that would allow the U.S. to deliver a strike anywhere in the world within an hour.
will do all necessary to ensure a strategic balance,” Putin added. “Our
task is to efficiently neutralize any military threats to Russia,
including those created by strategic missile defenses, the
implementation of the concept of global strike, and information wars.”
Kremlin believes that the Obama administration is waging a propaganda
war to isolate Russia, and a top Putin aide accused the White House on
Thursday of “doing everything it can to drive bilateral ties into such a
deadlock” that it would be difficult for a new team to improve
The aide, Yuri Ushakov, said Trump supported Putin’s
call for normalizing ties, and “expressed his readiness not only to
normalize ties, but also develop them intensively in all areas.”