- - Thursday, December 18, 2014

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Vladimir Putin was born Oct. 7, 1952. He joined the KGB in 1975 after graduating from the International Law branch of the Law Department of the Leningrad State University. Mr. Putin remembers the Cold War.

Air Force Maj. Gen. Michael J. Carey was in charge of the U.S. intercontinental ballistic missile force of 450 nuclear missiles. In mid-July 2013, while attending a joint U.S.-Russian Federation Nuclear Security Exercise in Russia, Gen. Carey drank excessively and otherwise acted inappropriately. An investigation into his behavior ensued and he was relieved of his duties and quietly retired in June 2014.

This is exactly the type of spycraft in which Mr. Putin was trained and which he conducted during his KGB career. The Cold War may be over, but good, old-fashioned techniques such as compromising your target are not. Mr. Putin must be thrilled to have travel restriction eased on his Cuban moles, and potential U.S. Embassy personnel to show a good time to in Havana. If you argue that Russia is broke and can no longer afford these activities, you are wrong. Beer is cheap. And so is the rum in Cuba.

Before President Obama goes down and hits the links at the El Varadero Golf Club and sips Cuba Libres with Raul Castro on the docks of Havana Bay, it would be wise for him to read some history of the Cold War. Mr. Putin helped write the books.

RANDY STEPHENS

Falls Church


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