Gates: Russia seeking role in world affairs

March 1, 2009 7:45:52 AM PST
Defense Secretary Robert Gates says he isn't sure at all what the future holds for Russia. Gates has had a longtime interest in Russia - he has an advanced degree in Russian and Soviet history.

Gates says Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin seems to want to assert Russia's role on the world stage by blocking what it doesn't like and by insisting the U.S. consult with Russia if the U.S. wants Moscow's cooperation.

The Pentagon chief spoke of Putin and other older Russians apparently trying to bring their country back from what they consider a humiliation - the downfall of the Soviet Union and the loss of the Russian empire.

Gates was interviewed on NBC's "Meet the Press."

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