American presidents generally do not seem to appreciate irony, and we’re not just talking about the disaster zone which is Donald Trump.
His successor, Joe Biden, once called Russian President Vladimir Putin “a killer”.
The irony is that US presidents – via the use of the country’s massive military power – have probably presided over more deaths of innocent civilians in the past decades than has the Russian leader.
Perhaps Biden realised that in their summit meeting this week, in which both men spoke in soothing, reconciliatory tones.
Not that the world has been perched on the edge of the Cold War’s “Mutually Assured Destruction” in recent times, but it was still a relief to see the US and Russia ratcheting down the tension between the two of them.
Like Putin or loathe him, he has rebuilt his country after the shambles which ensued following the collapse of communism and has made Russia a major player again in international affairs, although he is hardly the greedy imperialist that many in the Western media portray him.
What the world needs now, more than anything else, is stability so we can rebuild post-Covid-19.
When two of the three global superpowers can have civilised chats, it’s a good sign.