Bush says Cold War over, Russia 'not enemy'


Published: Tuesday June 5, 2007

US President George W. Bush declared Tuesday that the Cold War has ended and Russia was "not our enemy" and should not be concerned about the extension of the US anti-missile shield in Europe.

"The Cold War is over. It ended. People in the Czech Republic do not have to choose between being friends of the US or friends of Russia. You can be both," Bush said during a joint press conference with Czech President Vaclav Klaus and Premier Mirek Topolanek.

"We do not believe in this zero sum world. We do not believe that one should force a country to choose," Bush added.

Bush said that he would assure Russian President Vladimir Putin that "Russia is not our enemy." Missile defence was a purely defensive measure "aimed not at Russia but at true threats," he said.

The US president said that Washington and Moscow could work together to achieve common objectives. "One objective is to safeguard free nations from the possibility of a missile attack launched from a rogue regime. That is a true threat to peace."

That message would be delivered at the G8 summit in Germany starting on Wednesday and later when Putin visits the US, Bush said.

The US proposal to site a tracking radar on Czech soil as part of its extended missile defence shield was one of the main issues broached during the talks.