Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov in a follow up interview after George Bush and Vladimir Putin met in Sochi (Russia) 6 April said: “Russia and the US aim at providing collective leadership, joint leadership in the process of solving global issues.”
He was referring to the joint grand statement that was signed by the two leaders.
I think this remark sheds light on what Russians would like to have, rather than on what they actually have. It is funnily naive to think on the Russians’ side, that the US is going to hand over to Russia any share of its own leverage or global leadership, especially bearing in mind the recent Russian evolution into an authoritarian state.
Still the fact Russians say this means that the US must done something wrong. It basically means that the US must have gone so dumb about its principles in foreign policy, that authoritarian states like Russia really think, they can aspire for a “joint leadership” alongside the US.
Moreover, if the US allows Russia to imagine, that there may be a common leadership, bearing in mind again what contemporary Russia is, then perhaps this means the US is actually on its way to lose global leadership.