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WILL RUSSIAN-AMERICAN RELATIONS COOL DOWN?
MOSCOW, November 4 (RIA Novosti) - At a press conference on Thursday Lilia Shevtsova, a member of the Carnegie Moscow Center's scientific council, said relations between Russia and the United States would enter a cooling period.
She said, "a significant coolness in the Russian-American relations as 2008 approaches - the end of President Bush's term," can be expected.
"I do not expect a crisis in our relations," she said, "but they will continually change from cooling to warming and will be based on who are our enemies. And this makes them very unstable.
"During the second term of his presidency, George W. Bush will think about getting out of the problems he created during his first term, i.e., Iraq, the unity of a now divided America, and what has to be done with the Republican Party.
"I will not be surprised if Bush, who is imagined by many as the terminator president starts looking for a new role for himself as the unifying president."
The center's deputy director, Dmitry Trenin also addressed the press conference and said Russia would remain an important partner to the U.S. in combating terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, however, he said that Russia's importance as a partner to the U.S. would not be great and was unlikely to increase.
In his opinion, the Bush administration will deal mostly with the country's domestic policy. "The economic situation in the U.S. is of serious concern, and economic problems will dominate in the Bush administration's activity," he said.
He said that US foreign policy would be focused on Iraq, Afghanistan and the continuation of the fight against terrorism and proliferation of WMDs.