Presdient Obama calls Vladimir Putin

When James Kitfield contacted us last year about writing for us, we were pleased because few writers have such a gift for spotting major strategic issues and writing about them first and writing about them with grace and clarity. The following piece in which he asks the seminal question — is America in global retreat and what would it mean — is yet more proof of this. He doesn’t answer the question because it’s not clear yet just what the Obama Doctrine really is. Does it mean America will pursue, capture or kill terrorists but not engage in major military actions beyond our own shores? Does the major drawdown of US forces — especially the Army — forced on the country by a crippled Congress through sequestration mean we will leave a global power vacuum aching to be filled by others, perhaps a rising China? Read on. The Editor.

The juxtaposition of recent images was jarring: Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel unveiling a defense budget that substantially shrinks the U.S. Army, while insisting that “after Iraq and Afghanistan, we are no longer sizing the military to conduct long and large stability operations.” And then there were the images of masked Russian troops seizing Crimea and threatening to carve apart Ukraine with naked aggression.

Ukraine CIA map

President Barack Obama has honed the themes of military restraint and economic renewal into something like a doctrine – a core principle around which national security and foreign affairs policies could be organized and prioritized. Sensing the mood of a war-weary public and Congress, Obama was bent on ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and appears equally determined to avoid further military entanglements. After a decade of conflict, the Great Recession and an unprecedented rise in national debt, he not unreasonably decided that the United States was in danger of strategic and economic over-extension, the bane of great powers and empires throughout history.

Not A Peaceful World

But the world, as many defense experts note almost every day, is not a peaceful place. The Kremlin’s land-grab in Ukraine, China’s aggressive claim to disputed islands and airspace in Asia, Egypt’s military coup and the Syrian regime’s years-long slaughter of civilians and ethnic cleansing all illustrate the strategic risks inherent in a doctrine of restraint and military retrenchment in a time of profound instability. To Secretary Hagel’s declaration that the U.S. military would no longer be sized for large ground operations, Vladimir Putin has fashioned a refrain reminiscent of his 20th-century countryman Leon Trotsky: “You may not be interested in war, but war is interested in you.”

Syrian chemical attack map State Department

“There is a perception of U.S. retrenchment around the world, among both allies and potential adversaries, who see that America has a hangover from Iraq and Afghanistan; we’re cutting troops and pulling back forward-deployed forces from Europe, cratering military readiness as a result of the ‘sequester,’ and in general not looking very assertive in leading overseas,” said retired Lt. Gen. David Barno, a senior fellow at the Center for a New American Security. That dynamic of retrenchment and withdrawal, he said, is encouraging challenges by both state and non-state actors who sense a relative power vacuum. “For a decade we focused on Iraq and Afghanistan, and now we’re seeing challenges from Russia, China, Iran, North Korea and irregular groups aligned with Al Qaeda, which are growing. That world is much more dangerous than during the last military drawdown in the 1990s. For me it feels more like the post-Vietnam drawdown of the 1970s.”

Vietnam Extraction, courtesy of http-::www.casperplatoon.com

Troop extraction in Vietnam 1970. Photo courtesy of http://www.casperplatoon.com

Indeed, one of the outstanding questions of this era has been whether the period after the 9/11 wars in Iraq and Afghanistan would most resemble the post-Cold War military drawdown of the 1990s, or the post-Vietnam period of the 1970s. In both instances the American public assumed there would be a “peace dividend” resulting in significant cuts to military budgets. President Obama’s current long-range plans project roughly 30 percent decline in defense spending, versus a 46 percent drop in the post-Vietnam era, in constant dollars).

Still The Indispensable Nation?

During the 1990s military drawdown, however, the country was coming off historic victories in the Cold War and the 1991 Persian Gulf War, and was brimming with confidence. America was the “lone superpower in a unipolar world,” and the “indispensable nation” willing to deploy unsurpassed military forces to quell crises in Somalia, Haiti, the Balkans and Kosovo.

The current drawdown has closer parallels to the post-Vietnam era of the 1970s, when the United States was ending another very unpopular and unsatisfying war and looking to regroup in a still dangerous world. Then, as now, the Nixon administration sought to end counterinsurgency operations by withdrawing U.S. troops and accelerating the handoff of security responsibilities to local forces through a strategy of “Vietnamization.” A similar process is underway in Afghanistan, where the Obama administration will withdraw all U.S. combat forces by year’s end and hand over security to still-dependent Afghanistan Security Forces.

Afghan soldiers conduct helicopter training during Noncommissioned Officer Battle Course

Then as now, the Nixon administration adopted a doctrine that emphasized strategic air and naval forces over ground troops, eschewed future counterinsurgency operations and called on allies and regional partners to take more responsibility for their own security, albeit at times with U.S. assistance and in some cases under the U.S. strategic nuclear umbrella. When a crisis erupted in Zaire in the 1970s, the Nixon administration used U.S. air transports to ferry French and Belgium forces to the country, but refused to get heavily involved in the operation. Similarly, the Obama administration “led from behind” by insisting that France and Britain take the lead in 2011 operations to topple the Gaddafi regime in Libya, and more recently used U.S. transports to ferry French troops to fight Al-Qaeda-linked groups in Mali and provided airborne refueling to the French at no cost.

Forced to prioritize core national interests during its time of retrenchment, the Nixon administration focused on the containment of a bristling Soviet Union, and attempted to substitute bold and sophisticated diplomacy for military muscle with an outreach to China designed to split the communist bloc. Likewise, Obama has prioritized managing the remarkably rapid rise of China as its top strategic priority, announcing a “strategic pivot” to Asia, reaching out diplomatically to India (a move started by his predecessor) as a regional hedge, and trying (very unsuccessfully) to “reset” relations with Russia. Just as Nixon sought to outsource regional security by backing strong anti-communist partners such as the Shah of Iran in the Middle East and Chile’s Augusto Pinochet in South America, Obama has tried to raise the security profile and responsibilities of regional partners such as Japan, South Korea and Australia in Asia; NATO and the European Union in Europe; and Saudi Arabia, the Persian Gulf monarchs and Turkey in the Middle East.

“I agree this drawdown period feels much more like the post-Vietnam 1970s, and there’s a similar dynamic of retrenchment at play where risks and challengers are accumulating even while U.S. military power and the political will to use it is declining,” said Andrew Krepinevich, president of the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. At some invisible point those trend lines may intersect, he said, at which time U.S. leadership and its security posture “will no longer adequately assure our allies or deter our adversaries.”

Spiral of Decline

Indeed, to grasp the perils of this era of retrenchment after the post-9/11 wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, it’s important to understand how at some invisible point the Nixon Doctrine of retrenchment became a de facto strategy of managing military decline, with disastrous results by decade’s end. A balky Congress weary of the Vietnam conflict and of Nixon himself withdrew air support from South Vietnamese forces, leading to the fall of Saigon and South Vietnam in 1975. Reductions in defense spending cut too deep for too long, infamously leading to the “hollow Army” of 1980. The Shah of Iran, the United States’ top client in the Middle East, was overthrown by an Islamist revolution that heralded three decades of enmity between Washington and the Islamic Republic.  Sensing our strategic weakness, the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan and installed a puppet regime in 1979, putting Soviet forces on the doorstep of the Persian Gulf, America’s energy breadbasket.

What’s remarkable about the current era of retrenchment is how fast evidence is gathering of a similar spiral of decline. By conspiring in the imposition of “sequestration” spending caps, the administration and Congress have already caused a military readiness crisis, and if the caps are not lifted the Pentagon says it will have to cut U.S. ground forces to 420,000 troops, far below the 450,000 planned under the recently released defense budget (a level already down from the wartime peak of 570,000). Congress also plans to blunt the tools of statecraft, with a recent House Appropriations Committee spending bill proposing a $4.3 billion spending cut from the State Department’s $49 billion budget.

“The upshot is we are standing down the U.S. military to pre-1940 levels at a time when the United States is facing huge potential aggression problems around the world,” said retired Gen. Barry McCaffrey, who helped manage the 1990s drawdown as a key aide to former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Colin Powell. The current Joint Chiefs have been largely complicit in those cuts, he said, and Congress has given “zero strategic thought” to the likely repercussions. “This is folly, and I assure you if we continue on this path we will regret it.”

Key regional allies such as Saudi Arabia and Turkey are already so disturbed by U.S. inaction over the Syrian civil war that they may be spinning out of the Western orbit. Meanwhile, China continues to bully its neighbors by threatening to seize disputed islands in the South China Sea and claiming control of international airspace over the Japanese islands; Russia has turned to naked aggression in its invasion of Crimea; Iran continues a proxy war that has included terrorist plots to bomb a restaurant in Washington, D.C. to kill the Saudi ambassador; and a tyrant in North Korea continues to develop long-range ballistic missiles and nuclear weapons that may range U.S. territory before the decade is out.

http://eng.mod.gov.cn/HomePicture/2013-11/24/content_4476198.htm

China’s new Air Defense Identification Zone, which covers the Japanese-controlled Senkaku Islands.

All this before the last of the combat troops have even left Afghanistan.

“In the 1970s drawdown only five years passed between Saigon falling and the U.S. starting to reconstitute its military forces with Ronald Reagan’s defense buildup. I don’t think history will be so kind to us during this drawdown,” said Krepinevich. “We’re not even out of Afghanistan yet and we’re already seeing all these global flare-ups, many of them provoked by revisionist powers like Russia, China and Iran that seem to have a very clear sense of strategic purpose. If the Obama administration continues to let those provocations pass, we’re likely to see a steady increase in that kind of probing of U.S. power and will.”

A major part of the challenge is the changing nature of geopolitics. In the 1990s, the global order was adjusting to the collapse of the Soviet empire and the emergence of a relatively benign unipolar world. Today the global order is recalibrating to a much more multipolar world, with many regional and revisionist powers jockeying for advantage as America’s unipolar moment passes. So the historic analogy may be closest to the post-war period between the World Wars, a time of similar global economic upheaval and shifting alliances.

The epoch following the War to End All Wars (World War I) also ended badly, which is why historians call that period the “Interwar Years.”

Comments

  • GreatBirdUSA

    The BIG Mistake-
    No Sorry,
    The GIANT Mistake was when Obama laughed in the face of Mitt Romney
    when Mr. Romney warned Barack Obama about Russia…
    Obama bowed down to Russia,
    And other enemies of America – over and over again.
    BUT – Obama isn’t the only one to blame…
    Those Americans who voted for this guy TWICE should also be blamed.!

    • diogenesseeking

      Oh great bird, you have the brain of a Sparrow. To take one isolated comment and to point to that as pivital moment when our country went south is laughable. Your time would be better spent calling your congressman, senator, or even the White House switchboard encouraging them to send guns to Ukraine, not butter (promises) the folks over there, believe me, know what to do with Putin Russians

      • GreatBirdUSA

        It was just one example of many —
        Of Obama’s narcissistic, empty headed yet smug personality.
        But why would an Obama sheep be expected to understand that?
        You’ll just keep saying Obaaamaaaaa….

        • Lionfish

          name calling is so jr.hi.
          keep watching fAUX nEWS and slowly become a steppford wife

          • raquila47

            Well said

        • raquila47

          Right Wing/Tea stupidity GreatBird sign up then. Maybe there might be redemtion for all you Right/Tea’s for not fighting the fight in Afghanistan/Iraq. The Ukraine will welcome cowards like you and yours. Oh, by the by the ILLEGAL Afgahn war has become the longest war in the history of our country. I bet you are proud of Bushy/Cheating Cheney for all the murders of our brave troops. You Right/Tea’s are really stupid/clueless. You are nothing like a GreatBird from my country I fought for just keep idiots like you free.

          • Jman

            Time to hush 47. You speak much too much

        • Jman

          Good one bird

        • marxestlennonist

          you are a bird alright a fox parrot.

    • NMM

      You clearly have no knowledge of world history. Did you know Russia invaded Hungary in 1956 under Eisenhower and we did nothing? Did you know Russia invaded Czechoslovakia in 1968 under LBJ and we did nothing? Did you know Russia invaded Georgia under George Bush and we did nothing. Stop calling Obama names just because you do not like having a black man in the White House. Obama is not bowing down to anyone. He has limited options unless you want to sign up, wear the uniform of your country and go off to fight another senseless war that will destroy our economy. Face your bigotry. Own it.

      • Magnolia

        I see nothing in these comments about race — just your comment. I do not object to having a black man in the WH — I object to having a worthless, spineless leader.

        • raquila47

          You would rather have a jerk like Bushy start 2 ILLEGAL wars and murder our young brave servicemen/women. Typical Right Wing/Tea comment. Magnolia get your party out of the DEFENSE business with their sequestration that cut the USA’s DEFENSE BUDGET. Then come back and discuss with some semblence of intellect. In the mean time shhhhhhh.

          • http://www.robertrcohn.com Robert Cohn

            Stop your foolishness, please!

          • raquila47

            The truth really hurts. Cohn. Please be one of the first to sign up to go to the Ukraine, like you didn’t for Afgahn/Iraq. Show how manly you and the rest of you Right/Tea’s are. LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • Silsez

            So YOU signed up raquila47?

          • raquila47

            I am sure you did not. I served my country. I am unable to sign up as I am 66. I am also a Disabled Vet form the Nam war. What excuse do you have?

          • http://www.robertrcohn.com Robert Cohn

            You just confirmed what I stated about your comments! You are unlikely to ever learn.

          • raquila47

            The only thing I have confirmed is the following:
            U R UNEDUMACATED.
            U R a follower
            As Lee Iacocca said: “Lead, follow or get out of the way.”
            Cohn you need to take your brethern and get the hell out of the way.

          • http://www.breakingdefense.com/ Colin Clark

            We use the full, cumbersome designation at the end of the story. We also call the Osprey the V-22 unless we’re talking about the Marine and the special operations versions; then it’s MV-22 and CV-22. We try to write as simply and without cant for as broad an audience as possible.

          • Roy HICKMAN

            raquilla47 The good thing about this country , you can agree to diagree. But people like you would rather call names than to admit a lot of wrong’s. And maybe you don’t know but the president takes his advice from the petagon, and the joimt cheifs of staff. He make the discision’s,on cutting and building. So lets be honest about where the problem lie’s. Just because you made a mistake with this empty chair, empty suited loser, don’t try to take and lie your way as he does. You probally voted for Hanoi John, and still let Hanoi Jane control your movies. You have a traitor, working as secretary of state, and who put him there. A RIVER RAT.

          • raquila47

            Roy……..You mean it is alright for the Right Wing/Tea’s to call others names. Read all the posts you will see more name calling from your side of the aisle. If you can’t stand the heat. Get the hell out of the kitchen. There you go with Hanoi this, Hanoi that. You just insulted a Nam Veteran. I fought in Nam to save jerks like you, so you could have the freedom to critque. As a disabled Veteran of the Nam war. I was proud to serve. It is obvious you didn’t. Just sitting back as a couch potato and critizing. You make me and others vomit.

          • Don Rahilly

            Please educate yourself before making such inane comments.

          • raquila47

            Dan Rahilly……..Educate myself about what. If you are going to make a comment about EDUMACATION spell it out. I believe I was quite clear as to what I posted. If you have a prob with reading it, that is your biz. But, when a Vet does his duty. I would ecpect the younger’s do the same. Remember one thing, Don. Freedom doesn’t come cheap. “SOME GAVE SOME………SOME GAVE ALL.” Is that education enough for you, Don……….

          • Mark Samuels

            The comment is correct, neitther of the invaded countries supplied any of the 9/11 terrorists. Bush should have invaded Saudi Arabia, who supplied 16 of the clowns.

          • paulrevere01

            Glad to see some common sense aboard this board…The true onus of our present wallow in a mentally ill foreign policy is with the PNAC infiltration of the civilian side of the US military over the past 30 years…Rumsfeld goes back to Nixon as the youngest ever Secretary of Defense…here is the spirit that PNAC and the Victoria Nulands and Cheenees n Feiths n Wolfowitlesses et all are conducting US foreign policy…This is a report by Ron Suskind of a conversation he had with a high up administration aid to ‘w’ early in the bushco administration…

            The aide said that guys like me were ”in what we call the reality-based
            community,” which he defined as people who ”believe that solutions
            emerge from your judicious study of discernible reality.” I nodded and
            murmured something about enlightenment principles and empiricism. He cut
            me off. ”That’s not the way the world really works anymore,” he
            continued. ”We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own
            reality. And while you’re studying that reality — judiciously, as you
            will — we’ll act again, creating other new realities, which you can
            study too, and that’s how things will sort out. We’re history’s actors …
            and you, all of you, will be left to just study what we do.”
            http://archive.pressthink.org/2006/12/18/suskind_empiricism.html

            Now if that is not the most loony take on how to behave on the world stage…6th grade, I got the biggest unit and you WILL give me your lunch and your lunch money.

        • Jman

          OUCH mag, But TRUE

        • fredyb

          Hey there magnolia, first of all you wanna talk about worthless, OK lets
          talk about your bushie and his nitwit crew, that did nothing but just about
          destroyed this country, he let corporations, banks, CEO’s, wall streeters etc.
          run rampant, got us into stupid wars and conflicts that we are still paying
          dearly for with our money and our peoples lives, Obama so far during his time
          has done beautifully, took care of Osama didn’t he, he wasted more terrorists in
          his first 4 years than bushie did in his 8, I can go on and on, you new
          conservative republicans call yourselves patriots, nothing can be further from
          the truth, all you people do is sit back, complain like little bitches that you
          are, you have no patriotism what so ever, you people have turned into what I
          call the new McCarthyism, look it up what and who that nightmare was, thank
          goodness we have this man in office and not some non thinking CHARGE LETS GO
          AFTER THEM mentality.

          And of course you don’t see flat out racism openly spoken, you people don’t
          have the b$*#s to flat out admit to it, but it’s written as one can put it it’s
          all over your forehead.

        • Aaron

          Obama
          hasn’t sent four thousand American men and women to give their lives to
          perpetuate a lie?

          • raquila47

            Aaron….Bushy/Cheating Cheney sent more troops than President Obama. Bushy/Cheating Cheney did it for Haliburton/Oil. President Obama did it for scum like you to save your asses. Under Bushy, more than 9.000 of our troops slaughter by Bushy/Cheating Cheney. Over 30,000 of our troops wounded. The majority severely for life. Aaron, and the rest of you couch potaoe’s please visit any Veteran Administration Medical Center (VAMC). Instead of critiquing. Volunteer to help those that saved your sorry ass lives. All you Right Winger/Tea’s can do is critize with no validity. You have nothing. President finished what Bushy could not. Ended the Iraqi conflict. President Obama finished what Bushy could not. Got bin Laden. Remember!!!!!Aaron……All gave some……Some gave all……..If you do not understand…….Ask a Veteran!!!!!

        • Mark Samuels

          Enlist, and go fight, I lost my arm in service 71 – 77, and have no desire to see my sons suffer as I have from a fruitless war. Or are you just another little teddie nugent all talk, no walk.

        • marxestlennonist

          the shrub? The deserter.

      • http://www.robertrcohn.com Robert Cohn

        See the other reaction: you are accusing someone about being a racist, without any proof, how low can you go?

      • Lennie

        Omama is an the worse thing that has ever happened to this country. And yes I my father my grandfather and great grandfather did serve in the military. Now my son has been in for 12 years. What have you done?

      • Dave

        Oh and George W. Bush invited Putin to his “ranch” in Texas and said he looked into Putin’s eyes, right into his soul, and he is a good person. Paraphrasing but this did happen. The right keeps saying President Obama is weak, well he is the one that got Bin Laden, and if the right had their way, we would be in WW3.

        • Silsez

          The Navy Seals “got” Bin Laden. As usual 0BlameBush took all the credit.

        • 10579

          Give it time man give it time.By the way the seal team 6 got osama,not barak hussien obama.

      • John

        An airplane was
        about to crash; there were 5 passengers on board, but only 4 parachutes. The
        first passenger, Holly Madisonsaid, “I have my own reality show and I am the
        smartest and prettiest woman at Playboy, so Americans don’t want me to
        die.”

        She took the first pack and jumped out of the plane.

        The
        second passenger, John McCain, said, “I’m a Senator, and a decorated war hero
        from an elite Navy unit from the United States of America.” So he grabbed the
        second pack and jumped.

        The third passenger, Barack Obama said, “I am the
        President of the United States and I am the smartest ever in the history of our
        country, some even call me the ‘Anointed One.’” So he grabbed the pack next to
        him and jumped out.

        The fourth passenger, Billy Graham said to the fifth
        passenger, a 10-year-old schoolgirl, “I have lived a full life and served my God
        the best I could. I will sacrifice my life and let you have the last
        parachute.”

        The little girl said, “That’s okay, Mr. Graham. There’s a
        parachute left for you.

        America’s
        smartest President took my schoolbag.”

        • Silsez

          sorry pal. lost interest after the first sentence.

        • fedup

          35 year old joke with a teabagger spin…….be creative next time!

          • 10579

            pissed cause you didn’t think of it.Good job John.

      • southdmd

        I think, you clearly have no knowledge of history yourself. USSR invaded Hungary and Czechoslovakia (Ukraine was the most populated part of USSR). USSR is not existing for 20+ years. Just be clear. Now you are talking about separate country with different regime. It is no more socialism in Russia.

      • fredyb

        NMM, You have so beautifully laid it on the line to this GreatBirdUSA
        whomever he or she is, these new republican conservatives have their head so far
        up their behind it’s actually becoming a comedy, this president has done so much
        for our country and all these nitwit republicans do is constantly bash and bash
        with the most stupidest accusations I have ever seen, and I have seen many in my
        time, I have never seen so much hatred for a president not because on what he
        does but just for what he is and lets not kid ourselves because thats exactly what is
        going on.

        Don’t forget this president thinks before he acts, not like
        that other nitwit did by getting us involved in conflicts that had nothing to do
        with us, NMM, you are so right so yes greatbirdusa go join up, but on a uniform
        or better yet, if you have children 18 or over go send them, than you will be
        singing a different tune. So in short greatbirds%#t you have just been made a fool off, but than again you republicans mostly make fools of yourselves.

        • 10579

          He didn’t bring them home either.

      • Aaron

        Amen NMM!!

      • Roy HICKMAN

        You nuts always want to play the race card. How about just out of his class,as community organiser

      • Trojanhorse

        I like that reply to the idiot so call greatbullshitusa.What a moron.He probably grad high school at 21 and his diploma is a AARP consolation.

      • 10579

        Weren’t all those countries under soviet rule at the time,except for georgia in present day.They were under soviet rule, aka, russia.

      • 10579

        He bowed down to the king of saudi arabia. and dont forget the open mike insident “Tell Vlady when I get reelected I’ll be able to do a lot more.”

    • Lionfish

      and a well deserved laugh it was.
      and I AM ONE OF THOSE WHO VOTED TWICE FOR “O”

      • raquila47

        good voting the way it should have

    • Mark Samuels

      Pay attention, Bush took NO action when Putin invaded Georgia, nor when they kept sectors of the country, which they still retain. No President is going to War with Russia, or China, over territory disputes.

    • bolek

      Oh yeh,,,start putting the nuke buttons. Most of you yahoos don’t even know where Crimea is nor do you care. The discussion is so sad, sad, sad.

    • barryaclarke

      I remember in high school when we studied about the holocaust, I thought to myself “how did Hitler get over 6 million people to follow along blindly and not fight back?” Then as I think about today, I see millions of our fellow American voters who have taken the same path.

      • Ruth Thornhill

        Comparing what our “Fellow American’s” “Troubles” to GENOCIDE! To say that “… Americans taking the same path”, to Jews actually being rounded up and lead to their deaths in gas chambers… does not compare to any oppression or Repression of what American “Could” expect is… To compare the two, is grotesque. For all you ACA haters: Making the ACA a law and paying what you think are unfair taxes IS NOT RACISM OR BIGOTRY NOR HATRED towards an ethnicity! Sad to say, your remark is not yours, but stolen. Meme’s abound with this quote.

      • Ruth Thornhill

        “…but the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe.”

        Today I will once more be a prophet: if the international Jewish financiers in and outside Europe should succeed in plunging the nations once more into a world war, then the result will not be the Bolshevizing of the earth, and thus the victory of Jewry, but the annihilation of the Jewish race in Europe! ~Adolf Hitler.
        Source: Translation from J. Noakes and G. Pridham, Nazism 1919–1945, Volume 3 (Exeter: University of Exeter, 1988), p. 1049

  • ron4342

    I find it remarkable that those who condemn Obama for being too cautious completely ignored that gwb did exactly the same thing when Russia invaded Georgia in almost the same manner. What is expecially sickening about the behavior of those making complains about Obama is that it makes absolutely no difference what Obama does, they will still find fault with him. It he sends troops he is a warmonger trying to get us into a war with Russia and if he doesn’t send troops he is weak and bowing down to an enemy. What is also sickening is that they are always willing to bitch but you never see then offer a better solution.

    • GreatBirdUSA

      Obama waited – refused to act years late…
      In the meantime, Obama enabled Russia through his lack of action
      and now that the fire is blazing — now it might be too late.

      • JeanneD

        Especially since under O we are thinning out our military and equipment. No country respects a weak nation who could be otherwise.
        Why does this man want it so ?

        • raquila47

          JeanneD you have that wrong like all you Right Wing/Tea’s always do. President Obama is not thinning the military. It is your very own party from the Right/Tea’s with that noronic sequestration. Your Right/Tea’s have destroyed our country. JeanneD learn before you post.

          • JeanneD

            I’m sorry Raq that you have been convinced by the liberal leftwingers, There are many of us out here who can remember America in much better place than it is now. Friend, the time has come to stop blaming George Bush for the nearly six years of countless problems developing in this Obama administration. If this is what we’re dealing with now, how is another two years going to solve anything ? It’s not !
            Our only hope is that the Fall election will bring in a few more conservatives or others in Washington that may turn things around.
            Obama is not well respected in the world today and sadder still, America’s influence is not what it once was, either.

          • raquila47

            I will start at the bottom of your comments………Not only is President Obama one of the most respected leaders in the world theater. He had to convince our allies that Bush was not in the White House. Friend. Of the 189 countries in the United Nations. Only one was on the side of Dubya, Lithuania. The time has come to continue blaming dubya/ Cheney. Between those 2 they not only ruined the United States. They took our beloved country to the doorways of hell. No time in he history of the US has any prez outsourced more jobs taking the US to the doors of third world countries. The US’ credibility was zero with Bush. Highest unemployment passed on to President Obama. How do you like calling for any kind of tech/service support and speaking with people half way ’round the world, many not understanding what is being said. The last bastian of an American product outsourced by dubya was Levi-Strauss. The funny thing that, Levi-Staruss’ main offices were in Texas. Dubya’s own home state. Lowest point in the stock marketat 7k with dubya. As you can readly see our unemployment is way, way down. As you can see the stock market is at an all time high at above 16k. All this done without the Party of No. The Obstructionists. JeanneD your party. As to the fall election. The more Right Wing/Tea’s losing the better for our country. I am no more liberal than the man on Mars. I am an Independent. Unlike you and others on this page. I see what a person can/will do. I, again, unlike you, can vote both sides of the aisle. The biggest prob people like you have. You can’t see the forest for the trees. I can. I do not give two damns about an elephant/jackass. I don’t give two damns about what is blue/red. JeanneD, you do. When one is as partisan/blind as you and other Right/Tea’s that’s when the country goes into a tailspin.

      • raquila47

        Bird you mean like your heroes Bushy/Cheating Cheney on Georgia. Oh! Wait Bushy/Cheating Cheney did absolutely nothing. Bushy/Cheating Cheney were busy slaughtering our troops in Afgahinstan/Iraq

    • raquila47

      ron4342……..The Right Wing/Tea’s think American’s have short memories. They figure all BUshy/Cheating Cheney did is a dstance past. It was okay at the time. But, these same Right/Tea’s for get Bushy/Cheating Cheney caused 2 ILLEGAL wars =, slaughtered our troops for oil. This, in the demented minds of the Right/Tea’s is perfectly alright.

  • jupiter

    i wouldn’t under extimate Obama.

  • NMM

    We have lost so many lives and money because of our active involvement in the affairs of other nations. Other than WWII and Korea, there has been no time when we should have had “boots on the ground” in another nation. Okay, Afghanistan after 9/11 but not as a war but as a police action. We had no business in Viet Nam; we had no business funding the Afghans when they fought Russia; we had no business invading Kuwait or Iraq and we have no business rattling our sabers over Crimea. This is not the same as appeasement. Obviously, everyone waited too long to crush Hitler and we did nothing to stop Stalin from murdering 30 million of his own people but other than WWII and Korea, we should have stayed home. Our economy would be so much richer and we would have so many fewer battle blasted veterans in our population.

  • Brian

    What’s interesting is you already know what his reaction is going to be when Russia invades the Ukraine because he is not diverting any military or ships to the region. Either that or there’s no military or ships to divert because he has them spread out all over the globe like one pat of butter on 2 slices of bread.

  • NMM

    Dear James Kitfield: What do you want Obama to do in Syria? Were we supposed to invade another Middle Eastern country? That has worked out for us so well in the past. He is sending arms to some of the people fighting the government but it is hard to distinguish Al Queda funded fighters from freedom fighters interested in an actual democracy. Instead of bitching about Obama’s foreign policy, what are your suggestions for him????

    • raquila47

      The Right Wing/Tea’s have no solutions they just like to Bitch.

      • Jman

        As do you 47. hahahahahahahhahahahahahah

      • southdmd

        I am supporter of Tea Party, but I hate useless wars. I think Russians and Ukrainians (which are on 58%+ Russians themselves) should resolve their problems without our ” support”.

        • raquila47

          southdmd, I wish your brethern would read what you just posted. We have no business in Eastern Europe, like we don’t/didn’t have any business in the Middle East. Killing begets killing. I say enough is enough. If other countries want to call the US isolationists. I am fine with it. I served in Nam. I am tired of all this crap.

  • borgenic

    politicians like wars because they and their relatives don’t get hurt and the military industry shovels cash onto them.

  • Daniel Dooley

    cautious when spending tax payer dollars?? Fantastic.

  • Darryl Ehlers

    Hi Folks Most wars are caused by tribel or People who want be self made king. Which involoves religion or power. I say let the tribes fight it out amongst them selves. Only when we are attacked. shall we strike back. We must see, we have better equipment in our hands to beat down anyone. To step in on any police action and not know who the bad guy is stupid. Obama does not know what he is doing and wants to be an angle.
    Think about it with out the crazies killing out masses of people, what would the world be having to many people starving of food shortage.
    WW2 was with held till we were struck. then we fought back. Placing soldiers in a cat fight is dumb, headed by those who would not go to war, only send the sons of our country to fight their dumb fight
    Have a Good Day Pilgram Darryl Ehlers

  • Mike Williams

    Jeez:
    We are broke from 3 wars in the past 10 years, we are cutting back our old people’s retirement Social Security and Medicare, dropping a lot of other programs, our infrastructure is looking bad, our military is getting cut back, and now we need to babysit half of the rest of the world because something might happen. Maybe the Russians or Chinese, or Iran could do something, maybe North Korea could act crazy.
    The downward spiral you make reference too is that our country has supported a huge military, and endless wars since President Reagan. We are broke, many of our pper middle class, and management jobs have departed, and now we are a tired country of deferred maintenance, crumbling schools, a working class of downward incomes, and older cars taking care of the world, but not taking care of our own.
    Am I believing in the impossible to wish to give basic health care to all Americans, fixing up a few bridges and subways, and airports, and giving our kids a pretty good education. Before we go back to going totally broke being the world cop.
    I hope Germany will bail us out too.

  • Magnolia

    Not cautious — spineless. Russia supplies most of the gas to all the former societ bloc countries and Putin will hold these free countries hostage of Obama and the UN forces don’t move NOW. Send in the SEALS, the Marines, the Israelis. No mucking around from these guys.

    • Gary Church

      You are insane. We cannot go to war with Russia over a meaningless peninsula. We need to fix this country; make our own energy, our own products in our own factories, our own food, and take back our government from the corporate consumer driven kleptocracy. The American dream is now being in debt for life to pay off a worthless college degree and a half a million dollar shack working behind a cash register selling chinese goods.
      And you are wailing and gnashing your teeth about the Crimea? Puh-leez.

    • marxestlennonist

      enlist now you festering heap of parrot droppings

  • omnimax

    crimea is on Russia’s border. The US is thousands of miles away. we do almost zero business with Ukraine. the people of crimea made it clear that they WANTED to be with Russia and not Ukraine. in this case doing nothing is the right policy.

    • Gary Church

      “Doing business” and whether they wanted it or not has little to do with it despite the president saying big countries should not bully little countries.
      We cannot play games like this with another nuclear power. It is dangerous. And stupid. I suspect there is a money angle somewhere in this that will surface on a back page somewhere in the future. Some game for quick profit that us stupid little people are not aware of. Probably having something to do with the Russian mafia. We just go along and allow ourselves to respond emotionally and be manipulated. Pathetic.

  • raquila47

    Mitt Romney is a yellow Right Wing demagogue, Mitten, like the rest of the Right Wing/Tea’s, like the fear factor approach to solve all their moronic problems, like the prior administration causing 2 ILLEGAL wars, that proved aboslutely nothing except the slaughter of over 9,000 brave American servicemen/women, over 30,000 wounded, majority for life. The Right Wing/Tea’s would love nothing better to have the US in another altercation. Well, Right/Tea’s we can’t. The Right Wing/Tea’s saw to that with cuts in the military with their idiotic sequestration. What the Right/Tea’s need do, is to learn how their party has ruined our beloved country. At the moment the Right/Tea’s are clueless.

    • Gary Church

      They are clueless because they have nothing left to steal. Their politicians removed protections so all the jobs have gone offshore for cheap wage slave labor, they lowered the tax rate from 80 percent on the super-rich down to where Bill Gates secretary pays a higher tax rate than he does. They changed the rules to allow predatory lending and wall street scams. They have bought enough democrat traitors to get away with it and now they want the entitlements. They have wrecked the economy and laughed all the way to the bank and all that is left are the programs helping the people suffering from the mess they made. The military industrial complex is now having trouble stealing anymore without justification. We NEED a new enemy. Attacking the “entitlement state” and finding a new enemy to justify defense industry larceny are the only crimes left to commit.

      • raquila47

        It is not worth wasting time to talk sense into these Brain Washed Sheep. They are all to far gone.

  • Lennie

    Do you all see what Obama is doing to this country. Do you think Obama did a good thing by cutting our military forces down in size. Well if you do, hold your breath. Wait till you see how much more it is going to cost us in the end. (Obama bad bad president.)

  • Jman

    IF you are going to make some big decisions, you need a real spine first. Oh Well, lost again.

  • raquila47

    One last thing. Hopefully the Right Wing/Tea’s in here posting crapola. You are on the outside looking in. You can thank your leaders. The Right Wing/Tea’s and people like the Koch’ed up bro’s have brainedwashed all of you. The Right Wing Sheep are in lock step with all that is wrong wih our country. Righties?tea’s keep listening to the Faux Channel, nay. The Comic Channel. Listen to their lies. It will make you more clueless. Get a life. Now! I will go take a Lardass and wipe it with a Mitten Rommel (Romney.)

  • Don Rahilly

    A spectacular error in the voting process. People so dumb have the ability to destroy our country. Putin looks at us, Obama in particular, and laughs. We’ve been dumbed down.

  • John

    Sanctions and more sanctions with the stroke of Obama’s pen. I thought this
    was something which had to come through congress. Now if Obama can do this, then
    he is now on his way to being a dictator. He does not need Congress. He can do
    anything with his pen.

    Crimea is a done deal and even though Obama says
    the Ukraine should not have to choose between Russia and the EU, that is exactly
    what the US and the European Union attempted to force them to do.

    Obama, Biden, McCain and George Soros , Obama’s friend, tried and failed to
    take over the Ukraine. To force the Ukraine into the EU and NATO.
    They also
    instigated and supported the coup which ousted the legitimate and duly elected
    leader of that country.

    But before George Soros and the West could get
    their hands on the fuel supplies and riches of that region, Putin took
    charge.

    Obama forgets that Putin was on the cover of Time Magazine in
    Europe due to his achievements and the respect the Europeans have for this man.
    A great leader who brought his country back from the brink and I might add, kept
    all those Russian nuclear weapons out of the hands of the
    terrorists.

    Obama, his friends and the EU are furious, kicking and
    screaming, because Putin took what they were after. But there is really nothing
    the West or the EU can do about it and Obama’s sanctions are pretty much
    meaningless to Putin.

  • southdmd

    We got to start take care about our country and not about problems of Russians getting involved with another Russians (called Ukrainians).

    • Don Rahilly

      Your comment is funny. It apes the comments of liberals when Hitler took part of the Chezch territory early in WW2. Good intellect.

      • southdmd

        My intellect is fine. Hitler believed in taking over Europe and ended his a.. frozen in Russia. I am saying it as Ukrainian origin American. US has no business there! Because of our aggressive politics ex-Ukrainians cannot visit our families now in Ukraine.

  • Silsez

    Keep ALLOWING liberals to write the rules. We’ll be marching with our children and Grandchildren to the poor house.

  • jam

    Georgia is NOT a 1-for-1 comparison to Crimea and Ukraine and the Bush administration did eventually get Russian forces to withdraw. The sanctions that were emplaced by Bush were lifted by Obama. Yes, Russia maintained a presence in South Ossetia but they had that before the conflict. Secretary Rice was ultimately the one that got both sides to sign the cease-fire agreement in her presence (not solely, the French Pres deserves credit). Ultimately, it can only be considered well contained while deterring Russia from further agression and actually pulled Georgia closer to US (they withdrew from CIS [don't remember right off what C stands for but independent states in Russian umbrella]).
    Pres Obama’s options are limited now, but once you’ve driven into a cul de sac, it’s difficult to find other options rather than retreat.
    I might remind you that when you spout off on a topic without knowledge, you illustrate your ignorance. NMM clearly you only have wikipedia knowledge of world history.

    • jam

      Actually, I don’t mean offense to NMM, raquila, and others except when they start throwing out racism and hate speech or calling Bush/Cheney murderers. Many of the actions so deftly done by the Bush Admin in Georgia were kept low key to both allow others to save face and keep the rhetoric down. Some of the same responses would, I believe, work now to at least deter Russia from further aggression but the hand-slap sanctions so far that force a handful of Russians to vacation in Sochi instead of the U.S. don’t count. Hopefully some of the same Georgian actions are being applied now and I believe likely are since Pres Obama has used many Bush strategies quite effectively (eg drone strikes, methodologies for finding/fixing high value targets like UBL, etc).
      Very good article, by the way, as no one knows what the Obama Doctrine is besides having a global perception of weakening our global posture and weakness (perceived only as we still have world’s greatest military) does invite all the aggressive actions listed in the article to include Russia’s actions towards Ukraine.
      I do believe Crimea matters just as the Sudetenland did in 1938 though so let’s not stick our head in the sand and say “who cares about a little peninsula on the Black Sea”.

  • Don Rahilly

    I am beginning to wonder about the relationship between Obama and Putin. I hope we don’t learn later that this was agreed upon prior to the invasion .

    • raquila47

      I doubt it very seriously. Putin is from the old school. Former KGB. He is nothing but trouble.

  • John Banker Jr.

    Please! Let!s start a anther war! Screw the Russians. Take care of this place first.

  • AZKobryn

    Ten
    Myths About Ukraine

    1. Russian population in
    Ukraine.

    With one exception there are no Russians
    in Ukraine. When you see references to Russians in Ukraine in newspapers or in
    the broadcast media recognize that those reports have bought into Putin’s
    propaganda. Maybe they have done so unintentionally, but they have. There are
    no Russians in Ukraine. There are Russian-Ukrainians just like there are
    Ukrainian-Americans and Irish-Americans – and just like there are
    Polish-Ukrainians and German-Ukrainians. But they are all
    Ukrainians.

    Sure, there are Russian-Ukrainians who
    would like closer ties with Moscow just like there are surely Irish-Americans in
    places like Boston who want the United States to have the closest possible bonds
    with Dublin. But those Russian-Ukrainians remain Ukrainians just as those
    Irish-Americans remain Americans.

    As for the one exception I mentioned –
    yes, there are Russians in Ukraine right now. Mr. Putin has dispersed an
    extraordinary number of provocateurs and secret agents throughout Ukraine.
    First they focused on Crimea and eastern Ukraine but they are now spread
    throughout Ukraine and actively carrying out efforts to undermine the government
    and stir up unrest. Those people are Russian – and they have no place in
    Ukraine.

    Words matter and the sloppy acceptance of
    references to Ukraine’s Russian population buys into Putin’s methodical
    propaganda. Then, once he has articulated his fiction about Russians in Ukraine
    Putin disingenuously argues that he has an obligation to defend Russians against
    threats no matter where they live, has the Duma pass legislation confirming that
    obligation and presses it before the world as something like a rational
    explanation for invading Ukraine and others to come. Obviously Putin’s logic is
    flawed and should not/must not be accepted but neither should the predicate lie
    about there being Russians in Ukraine be accepted – and published.

    2. “Russian speakers” in
    Ukraine.

    Hello! Everyone in Ukraine speaks
    Russian. This is a phony category used constantly by Putin and his propaganda
    machine and it has been accepted in the Western media. Some publications have
    actually presented maps of Ukraine showing where the Russian speakers live
    within Ukraine. Now that is really helpful to the public
    understanding!

    First of all it might help if we
    understood some of the realities of the Soviet Union and the comprehensive
    repression of society within that “evil empire.” The Ukrainian language was
    illegal in the Soviet Union – it was not permitted to be spoken. Russian was
    the only allowed language in Ukraine. Everyone spoke and everyone now speaks
    Russian. Obviously free of the Kremlin’s shackles with its independence in 1991
    Ukraine sought to revive its institutions and bring its culture back to the
    surface. Part of doing so was reviving the Ukrainian language but that effort
    and the fact that some portions of present day Ukraine have adopted Ukrainian as
    their primary language does not legitimize the characterization of population
    groups in Ukraine that Putin wants to target as “Russian speakers.” The
    characterization is just another phony classification being used by Putin for
    his own purposes and people should not buy in to his propaganda.

    But, find me a publication that has not
    done so – “Russian speakers” in Ukraine is a constant in news reports.

    Intentionally? Probably not, but with
    every buy-in to Putin’s malevolent and comprehensive propaganda truth is
    compromised and Putin gains in his quest to rewrite history and provide some
    sort of legitimacy to his disingenuous arguments.

    3. The Russians and Russian speakers in
    Ukraine are in danger.

    Here we take the next step on Putin’s
    propaganda machine’s building blocks. Putin’s imaginary populations in Ukraine
    are now – according to Putin – threatened by the Ukrainian government and/or
    some mysterious danger and must be protected. You can easily see the
    development of Putin’s story line but the entire narrative is false. There have
    been no threats to Russian-Ukrainians who have expressed interest in having
    strong ties to Moscow, or anyone else for that matter. Over-and-over these
    allegations have been rejected by Ukraine and by outsiders yet now you seldom
    see the denunciations in the media while, at the same time, the allegations are
    included in news articles and are repeated over-and-over.

    4. The Maidan was/is a Nazi fascist
    mob.

    Over and over Putin and his groupies have
    made this allegation. Now, I do not think the western media or its audience
    have bought this line but Putin will keep making the allegation and down the
    line don’t be surprised how the western view of the 2013-2014 events in Ukraine
    might change.

    As for the Maidan – the Maidan started
    with students protesting former President Yanukovych’s declaring a last minute
    pause in negotiating with the EU over the Association Agreement that was to be
    signed in Vilnius and his then going to Moscow to sign a loan agreement with
    Putin.

    For months and months the people of
    Ukraine were told that Yanukovych was working so he could sign the Association
    Agreement in Vilnius at the EU summit. This was all a part of the European
    integration efforts Yanukovych promised. Not only had he promised to move
    forward with European integration and he had the Rada pass almost all of the
    laws the EU was requiring as conditions to the signing the Association
    Agreement. The students were counting on Ukraine moving further to integrate
    into Europe because they saw their future and the future of their children being
    within Europe.

    But the Maidan was a student led protest
    until the government forces beat students at the end of November. That incident
    brought out a whole different set of protestors – protestors who saw the
    government’s thuggish behavior as representative of a grossly corrupt government
    that was stealing the country blind and accumulating unto itself extraordinary
    power that it was using for the benefit of the President and his “family” and to
    the detriment of the people. That is when the Maidan grew into a massive
    protest. Opposition politicians joined in but the Maidan was not politically
    aligned and resisted any type of political leadership – it was a popular
    protest.

    Just think about it – hundreds of
    thousands of people came out in 2004 and amassed on the Maidan in what was
    called the Orange Revolution. The political candidates dominated the stage and
    were elected to office. But in office they betrayed the Maidan and the people.
    The 2013-2014 Maidan was and is a popular protest and a demand for change, the
    people of the Maidan have a healthy distrust of politicians but they are
    committed to peaceful demonstrations and have remained so.

    The Nazi, fascist allegation is simply
    bogus. Yes, there are and have been some fringe elements lurking about the
    Maidan since it grew in numbers and support, but this should be nothing of a
    surprise. Any huge movement in any country is going to find extremists of all
    types amid their ranks. Some of the members of the group Svoboda – a pretty
    unpleasant bunch with some really unpleasant members — actually ended up
    providing a needed level of restraint against some of its members and some more
    odious nut cases. But the bottom line is that the Maidan was and remains a
    peaceful mass public protest and a demand for change. Any radicals around the
    edges were nothing more than distractions.

    5. There was a coup in Ukraine illegally
    throwing out an elected President and government.

    This story line appears constantly and in
    many different versions in the Western press one example: “…the new government
    after mass demonstrations ousted a pro-Russian government.” Putin loves this
    line and he has, as Lenin called them in his time, “useful idiots” parroting
    this line throughout the Western media. And the point is to undermine the
    legitimacy of the interim government and by buying into Putin story line our
    media is implanting questions as to the government’s legitimacy, a poisoned
    thinking that is wrong and likely can have devastating consequences. It is a
    myth, it is wrong, and it must be challenged at every turn.

    The truth is that after the totally
    unnecessary bloodshed on the Maidan in late February Yanukovych met with
    political opposition leaders and signed an agreement that was essentially
    brokered by three western foreign ministers designed to end the violence. The
    agreement called for legislation to be passed and essentially for a return to
    governance under the 2004 constitution and not the illegally amended
    constitution then being followed that gave the President widely expanded
    powers. It is true that when presented to the Maidan the agreement was wildly
    unpopular and that reaction may have worried the President but for whatever
    reason Yanukovych fled Ukraine without further negotiation or waiting to allow
    the Rada to present the passed the required legislation. Thus, Yanukovych was
    not in Ukraine to sign the legislation into law. He had abandoned his position,
    leaving the parliament the constitutional option – responsibility – of replacing
    him which it did. Everything done was pursuant to the constitution and voted on
    by the Rada where a huge majority supported the actions – a majority that
    included a significant number of Yanukovych’s own Party of the
    Regions.

    6. The government in Ukraine is
    fascist.

    It is very distressing that the western
    media repeats this accusation almost daily without rebuttal. Surely western
    media does not believe the allegation but like programmed clones the allegation
    is repeated over-and-over. Seeing and hearing this allegation unchallenged what
    will the public come to believe? How will that affect public
    perceptions?

    The outrageousness of the allegation
    cannot be overstated. The President of Ukraine is a Russian-Ukrainian Baptist
    minister. The Prime Minister has Jewish roots. The governors the new
    government had to name for major eastern oblasts are both Jewish citizens. How
    much more should you have to say to expose this ugly lie about the government?
    The allegation should not be printed and Putin should be condemned for the gross
    libel.

    7. Crimea chose to become a part of
    Russia.

    You feel embarrassed for the western
    media and, to a growing extent, western governments. Everyone knows the entire
    Crimean situation is built on lies, threats, and brazen violations of laws and
    basic freedoms and yet because Putin has gotten away with his invasion and his
    orchestrated plebiscite and the media is sloppily drifting into Putin’s
    story-line ignoring its responsibility to continue pointing out Putin’s lies.
    Likewise governments are adapting to their convenient reality of accepting
    Putin’s conquering of Crimea and their objections and challenges are drifting
    into the background.

    Putin is winning because the west is lazy
    and sloppy. The question might be, does the western press and do western
    governments have any actually meaningful principals?

    Putin invaded Crimea – first with his
    propaganda and provocateurs, then with special forces absent their insignias,
    they then seized the Crimean parliament building only allowing their chosen
    people to enter and vote, threw out the government and elected as prime minister
    a character who could only muster 3% of the vote for the position in the last
    legitimate election. Then this Putin puppet announced an illegal
    referendum and then moved up that illegal referendum so that there would be no
    time for debate, no time for a lethargic west to react, and no time for a real
    opposition to build. Outside media broadcasts were blocked. International
    monitors were refused entry. A state of siege was imposed. Ballots provided no
    alternative to support for joining Russia. Polling places were “decorated” with
    posters showing two frames – one frame was the Russian flag, the other was a map
    of Ukraine painted red with a swastika. The fraudulent results of this
    Kalashnikov referendum were
    astoundingly reported almost without question. Without question!!! Sevastopol
    has a population of 384,000 people counting children and yet 474,000 votes were
    counted in favor of the ballot proposition.

    The Kalashnikov referendum was not only fraudulent, it was
    a joke.

    But watch your newspapers, joke or not, illegitimate or
    not, fraud or not, those truths are no longer mentioned in describing the
    situation in Crimea. Putin wins again because of western laziness and sloppy
    reporting and governance.

    8. There are “pro-Russian forces” in
    Crimea.

    This fiction too is a part of the Putin
    propaganda campaign. They are no pro-Russian forces, in Crimea or anywhere else
    in Ukraine – they are Russians. These are part of the exception mentioned in #1
    above, they are Russians who have come into Crimea and the rest of Ukraine to
    direct and participate in disruptions, demonstrations and other provocations
    that are intended to undermine the legitimate government of Ukraine and appear
    to the rest of the world as domestic uprisings. Now, it surely is true that
    some Russian-Ukrainians have bought into the Putin campaign but the turmoil was
    not started by Russian-Ukrainians and it is misleading to suggest
    otherwise.

    It really is extraordinary how naïve the
    West is; how incapable of either understanding the breath of Putin’s propaganda
    campaign or its comprehensive approach that considers no detail too small to use
    to Putin’s advantage – naïve and accommodating. Repeating misleading
    information for public consumption distorts public understandings and gives an
    unwarranted advantage to Putin and his malevolent campaign.

    9. The United States and Western governments
    are doing everything they can to support the new government in
    Ukraine.

    I don’t know the details regarding what
    all the countries are doing at this point but it is absolutely clear that the
    United States and it would seem EU countries were woefully late in stepping up
    to help the new government in Ukraine. There has been a lot of talk and there
    have been many promises but all that talk has not been represented in actions
    taken.

    Take just one example – a couple of weeks
    ago President Obama announced with great fanfare that the United States was
    providing Ukraine a $1 billion loan guarantee. OK, a billion dollars is not
    insignificant especially when Ukraine is broke but let’s put the announcement in
    context:

    - This will be a loan guarantee, it is not
    a loan.

    - Congress has to authorize such a loan
    guarantee and the necessary legislation has not yet been passed by
    Congress.

    - So, if you just read the headlines on the
    day of the President’s announcement you might reasonably have assumed Ukraine
    has by now gotten a billion dollars from the United States. That is not the
    case and once Congress authorizes the loan guarantee and the President signs the
    authorization into law, Ukraine will have to go out on the open markets and
    secure a loan using the guaranteed to improve the terms of such
    loan.

    Technical assistance – - So far the
    United States has announced technical assistance that will be provided but a
    careful reading and any experience in the technical field arena leaves you
    underwhelmed with what is so far being offered.

    Urgently needed security assistance – -
    OK, there are legitimate reason the United States has announced it would not
    engage militarily in any conflict in Ukraine. Set aside whether such a
    unilateral announcement was wise, the fact remains Crimean has been seized at
    gunpoint and a huge assembly of Russian troops is posed on Ukraine’s borders
    while Putin continues the same felonious propaganda and provocateur strategies
    he employed in Crimea. The United States does not need to put troops into
    Ukraine but it should be airlifting equipment and supplies into the Ukrainian
    military. Tank assault weapons and aircraft assault weapons, for example, might
    not guarantee the Ukrainians could stop another Russian advance. However, such
    weapons could promise that a heavy price could be paid for such an assault – -
    and how heavy of a price are the people of Russia going to allow Putin to pay
    for his ego trip?

    The West needs to be genuinely engaged
    and creative in finding out what Ukraine needs and getting it to them. There is
    no evidence this is being done. Talk is cheap – and mostly meaningless. So far
    that has been the West’s specialty.

    10. That the west has imposed the
    “consequences” it threatened when Putin ignored law, civility, Russia’s own
    commitments and invaded Crimean, orchestrated the Kalashnikov referendum
    and annexed Crimea.

    It took the United States weeks to
    announce actual sanctions and the first round brought nothing but open derision
    from the Kremlin. The second round started to look serious but again was not
    enough. We are trying to stop an international thug. He will only respond to
    force and pain – we have not yet started to cause pain. He doesn’t think we are
    serious and so far the evidence is on his side. Hopefully this myth will
    addressed very soon – pray.

  • Cal Gal 3

    What would the United States do if it’s base at Guantanimo were threatened by political upheaval in Cuba and nearly eighty percent of that country’s population was of United States descent and had voted to become part of the United States instead of remaining part of the separate Cuban nation? Yeah, that’s right. We would send in troops just like Putin did. So let’s get off the high horse and stop using the Crimea as a political football. Move on to real world problems like the genecide in Syria, the nuclear weapons in Iran, the torture and death of thousands of innocents in North Korea, the sex slavery in mostly Asia and India, the spread of preventable illness in Africa, and the simple lack of clean water that kills tens of thousands of children everyday in underdeveloped countries worldwide. ALL OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT (including Congress) needs to be acting less like eunuchs and more like EFFECTIVE leaders of the free world.

  • bridgebuilder78

    Discretion is the better part of valor. This truth is sadly missing from the Jewish/Neocon culture.

  • badley

    test

  • badley

    Obongo and his handlers know that Putin can expose Barry the Usurper for
    his fraudulent identity. The Dems thought they were clever by playing the race
    card to get their affirmative action Mulatto in the White House, they just
    didn’t think far enough ahead to realize that they dealt themselves a bad hand
    on the international level.

  • jr hawkins

    this articule is too long are we or aernt we going to do something to rectify this over take if not lets move on cutting our trops isnt the right thing to do we need to have trained people to fill these jobs when we get in another war situation we will be in a war state believe me i really believe the goverment are trying to make this a drone and none human fighting country this will not work

  • drevulphd

    I am very sorry to say no matter how much I would love to see it, there will never ever be peace in the whole world! There will always be the Putins and the North Korean Mentality, as well as the Chinese mentality which dates back to the Warring States period 475-221 BC, maybe even earlier. Someone always wants something from someone else and they feel the easiest way to get it is to take it (Crimea).Bullying has always been what what is about, pushing the weakest around. The USA must always keep a strong military , for defensive primarily as well as a reminder to the world of our power as the worlds strongest offensive power.

  • marxestlennonist

    what would have mittens have done? What would the author of this reactionary dreck do?

  • Steve WhiteLotus Renner

    Check this out

  • Steve WhiteLotus Renner

    OKay the last two presidents weve had have both showed the public that they need to open there eyes and see thru all the bullshit we voted for Obama because he was black simple as that ….and for no other reason…because majority of the people wanted to see someone other then a whiteman in the presidential seat any president can tell you what you wanna hear im waiting for a president that says on the podium!’ if another country fucks with us we will destroy them …fuck healthcare fuck Obama care fuck the senate…all theyre working on is ways to increase there salary i did 5 years army active duty 75th ranger rgmt ive seen combat and i looked at my paycheck and wondered why motherfuckers who sit on there ass talking make more then me… truth is ..now is the time to choose sides and gtf outta the united states we are on the brink of nuclear war with Russia threats have been made everyone hates us even our allies and the whole world will turn there backs on us for trying to get in everyone elses business starting wars threatening nuclear superpowers with military intervention really? cus the only people that will die are civilians innocent people im sure all the motherfuckers who started shit will be safe in a nuclear bunker somewhere in mexico or a neighboring country ….your families people …im gonna move to the fucking phillipines …fuck America…we need a fucking communist or a hardened republican not not liberal democrat who goes golfing with tax payers $$ and when you turn on the tv you hear he was a a lakers game ….RT all you people are fucking blind and believe everything you hear on the internet or what they tell you .,…..its all conspiracy its all sugarcoated …theres always that cache…our government is a scam

  • Roger Bartlett

    Several times in my lifetime the US has been the target of attacks because of the perception we had become weak and weary of fighting since we had dramatically reduced our forces. The Embassy in Iran and 9/11 are examples of this. The Korean war probably would not have happened if China and North Korea felt we would fight with the power that ended WW II. Pretty good chance Vietnam would not have happened either. We can’t be the world police but we have to make it clear that we can and will defend our national security with overwhelming force – not “surgical strikes.” The we have to make sure what we are defending is really our national security. Might not be a bad idea to start by securing our own border from illicit traffic.

  • John

    This guy is another Stalinist imperialist who insists on killing everyone in order to save them. He needs to get a real job to wake up and stop is evil work.

  • Agritech Media

    War is an aggressive manifestation of human nature and unfortunately, as hard as you may try, you’re never going to surpress the male urge for total domination. It’s something programmed deep within. Males throughout the ages have made constant attempts to dominate, control by any and all means necessary. Western liberals are and have been desperate for others to ignore and override these powerful impulses of nature when they themselves crave power and control. Do you see the irony?

    So we have aggressive nations (elite males) and their liberal elites running round eschewing the virtues of law, order, human rights etc. when those very nations do the exact opposite imposing their will on others when it suits. Hypocrisy is everywhere you look.

    Everyone wants to be the dominant force in town because every male knows that power never leaves a vacuum.

    Obama hates that, so much so, he ignores it, which is folly because he’s fighting against forces that are far greater than his personal beliefs. His view of the world is not reality and he’s finding out the hard way. He’s probably pleased he only has a few years left. He doesn’t look comfortable where he is anymore. His last interview warning Putin did not come from a confident man, it came from a guy tired of having to deal with human nature.

    The world screams at America for exerting influence and power on the world precisely because they wish to do the same but have been unable to out of fear or inability. As America retreats on the world stage these same adversaries screaming to the opponent liberals that will listen will now go on their own warpath.

    It’s a tough life being a “liberal” which really means being “anti-male nature.”

    War is part of man and man is war. Russia, Iran, China, North Korea, Israel, Arab States and many other nations are proving it.

    America/UK/EU are run by liberals desperate to retreat off the world stage.

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