Mikhail Gorbachev believes that all attempts to shut Russia off from the rest of the world will fail
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The West cannot afford to ignore Russia's potential contribution to the settlement of the "global crisis," and all its attempts to shut Russia off from the rest of the world will never succeed, Mikhail Gorbachev, the last Soviet leader, said in an article to be published Friday.
In his article, which is to appear in the Rossiyskaya Gazeta, the veteran politician said that, "Russia can contribute a lot to the settlement of the current 'global crisis.' The West must understand that. All attempts to isolate or ignore Russia will be futile."
He stressed the previous window of opportunity to restore peace emerged after the fall of the Soviet Union, but the United States and the West were too dazzled by what they perceived as a Cold War victory, to make use of this chance for common good.
"The dazzle of triumph led to the 'last superpower standing' claiming a monopoly on global leadership and even the creation of an 'American empire'. This did not make the world safer," Gorbachev noted.
He warned that none of the problems that beset the humankind can be resolved by one nation or a close-knit group of allies, or by a military effort.
The 84-year-old, who ruled the Soviet Union from 1985 to 1991, added he was certain that Russia will be able to come out of the current economic downturn, which he attributed to internal political problems.
"I'm certain that the country will eventually be out of the woods economically… But we must admit that the economic crisis and acute social problems are our own doing, something we must all share responsibility for," Gorbachev said.
Russia's economy has been experiencing an economic downturn since 2014, believed to have been caused by a global drop in oil prices and the fallout effect of Western sanctions. According to the country's central bank, this trend is likely to continue well into the first quarter of 2016.