SANDY Gordon’s letter in Thursday’s paper is interesting, and does to an extent explain Putin’s (ill-advised and ill-considered) actions. I would like to point out though that since 1991 relations with Russia have been normalised, which let them see – and for some of the people to enjoy – the benefits of a liberal “capitalist” system.

The problem is that Putin’s real goal is to recreate a Greater Russia, and to do that he has to pretend that they are under military threat. Which is of course absurd, Nato has never threatened Russia with invasion but was set up to counter the clear imperialist intentions of Russia. All Putin has achieved is to demonstrate to the smaller satellite countries why they need to consider being in Nato.

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While relations were normalised, Nato countries reduced their military expenditure and forces – hardly the actions of a collective aggressive intent. And as for threatening the world with nuclear Armageddon if they stand up to his bullying, well it speaks for itself.

Nick Cole
Meigle, Perthshire