The Russian Foreign Ministry shot back at US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for her criticism that Russia’s elections were neither free nor fair. But as the US attempts to take the moral high ground, their political games seem as dirty as ever.
In a strongly-worded statement, Moscow expressed its regret that “Washington is sticking to long-outdated stereotypes and continuing to pin labels, without even trying to look into what is actually happening on our electoral field," Interfax reports.
Pointing out that the US electoral system is “far from perfect,” the foreign ministry continued that only the Russian people “can determine the future of our country – regardless of anyone’s partial judgments and politicized recipes."
Clinton, who had previously chastised Russia’s State Duma elections, stepped up the rhetoric while speaking at an Organization for Security and Cooperation (OSCE) ministerial meeting in Vilnius, Lithuania Tuesday.
“When authorities fail to prosecute those who attack people for exercising their rights or exposing abuses, they subvert justice and undermine the people’s confidence in their governments,” she noted.
“As we have seen in many places, and most recently in the Duma elections in Russia, elections that are neither free nor fair have the same effect,” Reuters quoted her as saying.
However, Asia Times correspondent Pepe Escobar told RT Clinton’s remarks shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. “This is standard procedure for the State Department, interfering in other people’s elections, sometimes directly, like in the Arab Spring; sometimes Indirectly, as is the case of Russia.”
Escobar also believes the US is in no position to criticize Russia’s elections based on its own election irregularities and double standards.
“We had a stolen election in 2000, we had a semi-stolen election in 2004, in Ohio, not in Florida, this is documented, everybody knows this, even in the US, we had Hillary Clinton going recently to Uzbekistan and praising the progress in Uzbekistan, probably she means progress that (Uzbek President Islam) Karimov is not boiling opponents anymore, so it’s an enormous hypocrisy.”