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7 May, 2008 07:54

U.S. wants new cold war: Gorbachev

U.S. wants new cold war: Gorbachev

As Dmitry Medvedev was being sworn in as Russia’s president, the last Soviet leader, Mikhail Gorbachev, delivered a scathing critique of recent United States policy. He accused the U.S. of trying to provoke a new Cold War by dismantling progress with Russ

The 1990 Nobel Peace prize winner denounced NATO’s expansion in Eastern Europe as an attempt to extend the U.S. sphere of influence into Russia’s backyard.

“The Americans promised that NATO wouldn't move beyond the boundaries of Germany after the Cold War but now half of central and eastern Europe are members, so what happened to their promises? It shows they cannot be trusted.”

His comments mirror Kremlin opposition to Georgia and Ukraine joining the military alliance.

Gorbachev took aim at the planned missile defence shield in Poland and the Czech Republic, which the United States claims is designed to counter an attack from Iran. He sees it as an act of provocation that threatens to sour relations between the world’s two largest nuclear powers.“Erecting elements of missile defense is taking the arms race to the next level,” he said. “It is a very dangerous step.”

Gorbachev went on to claim that the real leader of the United States was its military-industrial complex, hinting that it was deliberately attempting to stir up conflict. “Every US president has to have a war,” he said bluntly.

“I sometimes have a feeling that the United States is going to wage war against the entire world,” said Gorbachev, referring to the ballooning defense budget of the US.

Gorbachev's latest outburst is not his first about America's recent foreign policy. Last year, he claimed the U.S. suffered from a “winner complex” after the end of the Cold war, which led to recklessness in foreign relations.