The New START treaty could be ratified in Russia as early as Friday. But many pitfalls remain amid the US-Russia attempt to move away from cold war constraints.
Moscow's new drug czar, Viktor Ivanov, claims Russia is being flooded with cheap heroin and charges that the US and its NATO allies in Afghanistan are reluctant to pursue a drug war that could drive poppy farmers into the arms of the Taliban.
President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed the START treaty on nuclear weapons today. While both hailed the missile reduction pact as a landmark, Russia is uneasy about its strategic future.
Russian President Medvedev made few new concessions in response to the canceling of Russia's Eastern European missile-shield plan. But new ways to cooperate on threats like Iran's nuclear program and instability in Afghanistan are emerging.
The Russian president is being pressed for an apology for the secret deal the Soviets made to carve up Poland with the Nazis.
The two nuclear powers continue to bicker over NATO war games, nuclear weapons, and fighter jets in Kyrgyzstan.
A deal on missile defense could be part of a 'strategic framework' the presidents plan to sign Sunday, legacies in mind.