Spy mania seems to be fading away. Time for common sense to gain upper hand

“Our position is the same. We would like to think that the question is settled at this point, so we can return to business and have a constructive dialogue over all the issues of mutual interest, those issues being numerous,” Russian Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov is quoted as reacting to US suggestion to bring the latest spy scandal between the two countries to a close. Russia is ready to discuss openly and eagerly all international and bilateral issues with a new US administration. “It is just the way the yesterday’s telephone talk passed off between Mr. Ivanov and his US counterpart Collin Powell,” foreign ministry’s spokesman Aleksandr Yakovenko emphasized. In the meantime, repercussions of the spy scandal are still vivid in the US. John Ashcrtoft, attorney general, has said he is ready to consider death penalty as one of possible verdicts for a spy whose guilt has been proven. Most likely, Robert Hanssen is mentioned here – the man who has allegedly worked for 15 year, first for Soviet Union, then for Russia.