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“Playing The Wrong Blame Game”: Blame Vladimir Putin For The Ukraine Crisis, Not President Obama

All I have heard with regard to Ukraine & Russia is the blame game. Rachel Maddow of MSNBC said it was Bush’s fault. The right wingers in America say it’s President Barack Obama’s fault. And I, Leslie Marshall, who do I blame?

Putin.

Putin is acting like a school yard bully, only it isn’t kids he’s targeting, it’s an entire nation. Putin loves what most nation’s leaders historically have: power and money. Just look at the emperors of Rome or the kings of England; the more land they acquired, the more powerful and richer they were. And so is the case with Putin and Ukraine – if he gets his way. And that’s a big if. The people have spoken. The Ukranian parliament has booted its former elected leader. Ukraine wants to be westernized and a part of the European Union. And the western world wants to help them; the United States has already promised, pending Congressional approval, $1 billion dollars in loan guarantees.

Now there are those that believe this is personal between Putin and Obama, as if Putin deliberately took action in Ukraine when the president warned him not to. And to those I say: Don’t be ridiculous. Again, remember who this man is and what he wants. Putin has the ego of Ramses and would have responded in this matter to the resistance of the pro-European Ukranians no matter who was president … Obama, either Bush, Clinton, Carter, Reagan, FDR, Truman or Eisenhower in the same exact way.

And speaking of past presidents; many on the right have invoked the name ‘Reagan” with regard to this issue, saying their political messiah would have shown Putin who is boss. Really? Doubtful. This is a very different time. Putin isn’t Gorbachev, Ukraine isn’t East Germany.

The right also want to blame President Obama for resetting the U.S. relationship with Russia in ’09 and not being more forceful; accusing him of having a weak foreign policy. Really? Was taking Osama bin Laden out weak!? Oh I’m sorry, our Navy SEALs took him out, I forget. But when Saddam Hussein was captured, wasn’t the line being used that Bush got Saddam? I didn’t hear ‘our troops caught Saddam.”

So let’s talk about Saddam. Saddam Hussein. A man who wrongly imprisoned his people and made many of them disappear. Sounds a bit like Putin doesn’t it? There are those that also say we have no right to call out Russia for breaking the law by invading the sovereign nation of Ukraine; but let’s look at who is making that statement: President Obama. Although the United States invaded the sovereign nation of Iraq, it was done during the Bush presidency – and voted against by a young Senator from Illinois named Barack Obama. Iraq was not Obama’s war. He did not start it, he ended it. Must we refuse to help any nation being invaded in the present because of our past sins?

And there are those on the right who roll their eyes at the president when he speaks (hello Lindsey Graham) and many on the right who say the world doesn’t respect Obama or take him seriously and they’re wrong. Of course when the president wanted to fly over Libya’s air space they said he was overreaching. And now with Ukraine’s he’s too cautious. Perhaps the right should make up its mind.

Let’s be honest, the United States is not going to get involved militarily in Ukraine. Obama knows it, the right knows it, Putin knows it and furthermore, both parties in the U.S. don’t want it nor do our allies. Ukraine is just not that important politically or resource wise to either the United States or the EU. So the President has limited options with what he can do. And I believe he is going about this the right way.

Due to Putin’s nature (power and greed), we must strike him where it hurts most. We need to reduce Russia’s International stature and isolate Russia, not just the country, but it’s people; especially the richest of the rich of Russia.

Now Russia’s stature has already been diminished. President Obama contacted (and got on board) Germany, the U.K., Poland and every other G8 nation to hold off preparations for the Sochi meetings. Further, to isolate Russia, Secretary Kerry has discussed travel bans and there is a possibility of freezing Russian business assets. And learning from history, the U.S. won’t do this alone. We won’t fly solo or take just a few of our team with us; we need everyone worldwide to be on board, otherwise we will fail.

And for those that think Obama is weak, an intellect who is trying diplomacy while Putin comes to the fight with a weapon; think again. Putin backed a failed government in Kiev. Putin watched as the world was disgusted by his actions in Ukraine; so much so, he made up a nice fairy tale to justify it. And after President Obama accused Putin of breaking the law, we have not seen any movement from the Russian military in  Crimea.

So who is to blame? Putin.

Who does the world look down upon? Putin.

Who is losing this fight? Putin

So for those of you that want to champion Putin over our president, like actor Steven Seagal did on Russian television, perhaps you had better wear red rather than red, white and blue. Obama’s our commander in chief. Russia’s not our ally. The right thing to do – the patriotic thing to do – is to back our president and trust he has our best interest at hand.

In Kiev this week, voices echoed as they chanted “Thank You America!” as Putin covered his ears.

 

BY: Leslie Marshall, U. S. News and World Report, March 6, 2014

March 7, 2014 - Posted by | Russia, Ukraine, Vladimir Putin | , , , , , , ,

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