Secretary Tillerson and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov Bi Lateral Meeting…

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov held a lengthy bi-lateral meeting earlier today on the heels of considerable political posturing surrounding the Syrian conflict and Assad’s use of chemical weapons.

Lavrov enters the meeting with a weak hand as the international community has fully supported the approach of U.S. President Donald Trump toward halting Bashar al-Assad’s attacks on his political opposition within Syria.

Gamesmanship and optics are very important to Russian President Putin as his position in Russia is entirely dependent upon his projection of strength.

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Minister Lavrov and President Putin do not yet know how to approach Secretary Tillerson and President Trump because the U.S. administration is now entirely different from their former frame of reference. That unsettled nervousness comes through in Lavrov’s comments and statements.

The weaker player within bilateral diplomacy is always the one using the most words to justify their position. In the transcript below, the “tells” are emphasized by me.

FOREIGN MINISTER LAVROV: (Via translation) Mr. Secretary of State, dear colleagues.

We met in Bonn on February 16, where I told you about Moscow’s basic views on Russian-US relations and international affairs.

In the few months since then, many statements have been made in Washington regarding current bilateral relations and their prospects, as well as key international issues. Frankly, they have provoked many questions, considering Washington’s confusing and sometimes openly contradictory ideas on the entire range of bilateral and international issues.

Moreover, these statements have been issued alongside some alarming actions, notably the illegal attack against Syria. Mr Tillerson, we discussed this in a telephone conversation. President Vladimir Putin and other Russian leaders have expressed their principled position on this issue. We consider it crucially important to prevent a repetition of such actions in the future.

I believe that you have come at the right time. Your visit provides an indispensable opportunity to frankly and honestly discuss the outlook for cooperation on these issues, primarily the creation of a broad counter-terrorism coalition, as President Vladimir Putin and President Donald Trump have agreed to do.

This is especially important at a time when, as far as we know, not all key positions in the US Department of State have been filled and hence it is not easy to quickly receive clarification on current and future issues. More than once, we have reaffirmed our readiness for a constructive and equal dialogue and cooperation based on respect for the legitimate interests of the other. This has been our consistent policy that is fully in keeping with international law and does not depend on the current political climate or a false choice, such as “you are either with us or against us.”

We have always stood for collective action and we don’t think it is productive to stand behind the closed doors of alliances and “misalliances”. Of course, we have put forth this position to our American colleagues before, and this is well known in Washington and to you, Mr Tillerson. For our part, we need to understand the position of the United States and the practical intentions of the US administration. We hope to move forward on these issues today.

Welcome.

SECRETARY TILLERSON: Well, thank you very much, Foreign Minister Lavrov, for those opening remarks. This does represent a continuation of our communications and discussions and dialogue that began in Bonn.

We also had telephone conversations since that time, and as we’ve often agreed, our lines of communication shall always remain open.

Our meeting today comes at an important moment in the relationship so that we can further clarify areas of common objectives, areas of common interest, even when our tactical approaches may be different, and to further clarify areas of sharp difference so that we can better understand why these differences exist and what the prospects for narrowing those differences may be.

And I look forward to a very open, candid, frank exchange so that we can better define the U.S.-Russia relationship from this point forward. And I thank you for hosting these important meetings today, and I look forward to a very wide-ranging discussion on a number of important topics.

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This entry was posted in Iran, media bias, President Trump, Russia, Secretary of State, Secretary Tillerson, Syria, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

49 Responses to Secretary Tillerson and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov Bi Lateral Meeting…

  1. SUNDANCE SAID: “The weaker player within bilateral diplomacy is always the one using the most words to justify their position.”

    Truer words were never spoken!

    Liked by 5 people

  2. R-C says:

    Here’s where the Russians learn that the ‘psychological profile’ they’d created for President Trump was built upon incorrect assumptions. (A lesson the leftist American press has yet to learn, BTW.)

    They’re finding out that there is very little of an ‘erratic’ nature to Mr. Trump, after all. They’re learning that he uses the bombastic style as a ruse, and that Mr. Trump is possessed of a most strategic mind, indeed.

    President Trump and our Secretary of State are formidable men, not to be taken lightly. The Russians now know this.

    Liked by 25 people

  3. QuestGirl says:

    Caught about the last 10 minutes LIVE of presser with Lavrov and Tillerson. Rather insightful. Not sure what to think, but Russia appears to be none too pleased with US.

    Like

  4. chojun says:

    Interesting to note here, which backs up Sundance’s assertion of weakness from Russia’s position, is that Mr. Lavrov’s remarks were prepared in advance (his english translator was reading a prepared statement).

    Mr Tillerson’s translator was quickly scribbling down his remarks as he spoke and then was translating them on the fly when given time to speak.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. zephyrbreeze says:

    Russia is scrambling. US is the new old alpha dog. Trump and T-Rex are super-alphas.
    Russia is in anxious, almost cowering, omega dog mode.

    Like

    • KitKat says:

      If they were doing as you say, they’d have dumped Assad by now.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Susan in VA says:

      I find nothing positive in that type of assessment. ‘A Russia scrambling…’ does not favor any type of peaceful co-existence. Russia is far from weak, Putin is no coward, and has been rebuilding his country’s military complex while the US has retrenched. Most importantly, when a person (or country) is backed into a corner, they come out fighting because they have nothing to lose. Bottom line, what do you prefer? Two superpowers who can work together on issues of common ground who also agree to disagree on other ‘sticky’ issues, or a continuous game of brinkmanship for the next 4 years?

      Liked by 7 people

      • Old Codger says:

        How little you know about Russia is too obvious! Russia is a Third World Power with a First World military, which itself is a mile wide and an inch deep! Russian weapons are advertised as “high tech”, but the tech is usually cheaply done, unreliable and available mostly on the “show” models the Russians bring to marketing conventions, such as airshows. I can still recall the top line Russian tanks, whose standard equipment for steering was a monkey wrench to assist in lever pulling and whose auto-loader for their “superior” main gun, had a tendency to grab the turret commander’s crotch, turning him into a soprano!

        You’ve been reading too many CIA-authored reports on Russia!

        Liked by 3 people

        • Heavy on the observations.
          Light on the implications.
          Wrong with the useless criticism.

          Please drop the personal affrontery.
          Thanks in advance for proposing where to go with the implications.
          😉

          Like

          • Maquis says:

            Ride on, Black Knight!

            Susan in VA most assuredly has a number of valid points. Especially about Russia rebuilding it’s military.

            “SATAN II” is no laughing matter, nor are their air-defense systems, such as the ones we blocked Iran from obtaining. Until Zero, prodded by his Iranian Dominatrix Puppeteer, Jarrett, sold the store to the Mad Mullahs.

            Speaking of Mad Mullahs, has there been a conversation here on the significance of the Theology of the Iranian top dogs? That they are Mahdi’s, Twelvers?

            Twelvers are a special brand of Shiism that believes creating Global destruction and unimaginable apocalyptic bloodshed can force the return of the Twelfth Iman, their Messiah, who will finish the job they started?

            These are not “Rational” folks who can be detered. Their own annhililation in return matters not at all, they’ll all have game-boxes to watch the End-of-the-World with their 72 eternal virgins.

            Iran cannot be allowed to develop nuclear bombs, ICBMs, and an arsenal deliberately designed to end the entire World.

            They make SPECTRE look like Girl Scouts.

            Liked by 1 person

    • You will see that bragging is premature. Frankly, it’s rather silly because that is not what’s going on. This isn’t a TV show.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. The Raven says:

    Best part is Mr. Lavrov asking Andrea Mitchell where she learned her manners…

    Liked by 8 people

  7. Janice says:

    Breathtaking to behold isn’t it?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Steven says:

    “Frankly, they have provoked many questions, considering Washington’s confusing and sometimes openly contradictory ideas on the entire range of bilateral and international issues.”

    In other words, ” We Russians need to stop read these fake news from CNN and MSNBC!”

    Liked by 4 people

  9. Sylvia Avery says:

    I was doubtful about T-Rex initially. I mean, he was recommended by Condi Rice. Now, I used to like and admire Condi Rice back when I used to like Bush. Then came the slow realization about the UniParty and globalism, something I saw instinctively I just didn’t have the words to express what I was seeing. Anyway. I was a bit slow to warm up to T-Rex but that all changed when I watched him in the Congressional grilling. He has a gift for communication. Clear, direct. No fluff. He makes the point and he is very believable. I’m really glad we have him on our side. He has gravitas, as they say, and is formidable.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Fe says:

      Sylvia, I had question marks over my head too because Condoleeza Rice recommended Mr. Tillerson, and for the same reason you stated. I was a big fan of GWB for a long time. However, this election opened my eyes to the Bush family and their hostility towards Trump. There are other things I learned but that’s best left unsaid.

      Tillerson was made for this job, trained by God for such a time as this. ❤

      Liked by 2 people

  10. seabrznsun says:

    Here’s where we see statesmanship like we haven’t seen in a long while.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Not significant that China abstained. They abstained back in 2013 the last fake flag accusation against Syria too.

    So they really ARE taking this lie to the UN just like they did in 2013. And the same troika of countries pushing it now that were pushing the farce then: US UK and France. Interesting how they’re spinning this as humanitarian, same lying doublespeak too. I was against it when Obama and Kerry did it and I see nothing has changed to make it worthy since then.

    US making a big mistake and keeping up her reputation as warmonger who will make up lies to war.

    Oil Oil Oil, petro dollar, Israel

    Like

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