This closeness should not be about knowing how to conquer your enemy. It should be about understanding how to make friends with your enemy.
This is of course banal, but if you look at the intensifying conflict between Russia and the USA and EU countries, the first impression is not, that the world leaders understand the ramifications of this banality. On the contrary: they focus on their world view, on how they can maintain or increase their dominance. They are like male turkeys fighting for the dominance and the sole right to mate.
If an argument turns into a fight that develop into a quarrel between neighbors who will know how it started after some time? No one. Both parties will continue to exploit the actions of his enemy to justify his own actions aimed at continuing or increasing the intensity of the quarrel.
The Soviet Union/Russia has had a neighbor’s quarrel with the USA and West-European countries for more than 100 years. Who started it? Was it Lenin and the communist takeover, or was it the fact, that the USA could not tolerate to lose dominance over the part of the world that started to adhere to communist ideas?
Why should we care who started it? These World pseudo leaders threaten world peace NOW. For the sake of humanity, find ways to stop that. THAT would be showing leadership!!
The USA could start by NOT deploying more troops to eastern European NATO countries. Of course, Biden would claim, that Russia started it, like two kids fighting in the school yard: “HE STARTED! – two fingers pointing at each other”. There does not seem to be any grownups around to stop the fight.
The fight started more than 100 years ago and intensified after WW2 in the cold war. After the breakdown of the Soviet Union there was a moment where the Western World could have seized the opportunity to end the cold war once and for all – to accept Russia as part of the Western Alliance. It could have been a gradual acceptance of Russia as part of NATO and the Western economy, to build up trust between old enemies.
The idea of Russia becoming a NATO member is not new. Gorbachev proposed it in 1990, and some say that Putin proposed to Clinton (https://thehill.com/opinion/national-security/591036-invite-russia-to-join-nato). This would have prevented the present crisis, and if the process started now, it would stop Russian threats to invade Ukraine.
But the USA couldn’t accept that back in 1990, probably because it would threaten US dominance, militarily and economically. This consideration is more important to these American Turkey males, than peace and prosperity.
Let us stop all this reciprocal war mongering. Let us stop this fight for individual dominance of political “leaders”.
NATO membership for Russia need not be the first step. The first step could be Biden stopping deployment of more troops if Putin would accept to start removing at least some of the troops from the Ukrainian border area, so that both parties showed some good faith. Sort of a replay of the Cuban crisis.
Second step could be for Ukraine to acknowledge that their future full membership of NATO and/or the EU is unwise for the next 5-10 years until trust between old enemies have been built.
Third step could be a green economy where the USA and the EU countries start involving Russia more in the European economy, thereby helping all of us to achieve an economy growing with green technologies. Perhaps at some time there will be no need for NATO. The eastern enemy will be no more, and we would hopefully have achieved a world, that has been de-fenced.