The egregious pusillanimity, fecklessness, and cravenness in the US, Europe, and Ukraine, metastasizes day by day.
Today Obama, at Putin’s request, spoke with the Russian president.
That’s problem one. Obama should have said: we have nothing to talk about until you call off your dogs in eastern Ukraine, move your troops away from the border, and cease all economic pressure on Ukraine.
And yeah, all the previous five talks made such a big freaking difference. Hasn’t Obama heard about Einstein’s definition of insanity? Or maybe he is a glutton for punishment, and gets some perverse pleasure out of being Putin’s bitch.
Why do you think Putin asked for the call? The most likely explanation is that he gets off on having Obama being his supplicant, and then telling him to sod off.
Obama expressed “grave concern.” Judas Priest, if I hear “grave concern” or “deep concern” or “great concern” one more time I am going to have a stroke. The most vacuous phrase in the English language, because this airy “concern” is never transformed into action.
It gets worse, if you can believe that’s possible:
[Obama] urged President Putin to use his influence with these armed, pro-Russian groups to convince them to depart the buildings they have seized.
“Use his influence”? Seriously? Barry-they are under Putin’s orders, as anyone with two eyes and a room temperature IQ can understand.
Obama to reassure Putin: Won’t provide lethal aid to Ukraine
The White House on Monday said President Barack Obama would speak to Russian President Vladimir Putin soon, perhaps later in the day, and made clear the United States was not considering lethal aid for Ukraine.
“We are looking at a variety of ways to demonstrate our strong support for Ukraine including diplomatically and economically,” White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters.
“We’re not actively considering lethal aid but we are reviewing the kinds of assistance we can provide,” he said
Reassure Putin? Huh? So he can, after being suitably reassured, proceed to gobble up Ukraine with no fear of humiliating defeat, or even breaking a nail?
Here’s a thought: “Hey, Vlad. Remember those Kornet ATGMs that wound up in Hezbollah hands and caused the Israelis huge problems in Lebanon in 2006? Good times, good times. Well, anyways, since one good turn deserves another, we’re supplying Javelins and TOWs out the wazoo to Ukraine. And we have all these Dragons that we’ve phased out laying around, but they were designed specifically to take out T-72s, and it would be a shame to have them sit around going to waste. The C-130s and C-5s are winging their way as we speak. We’re nothing if not generous, and I hope you appreciate the spirit in which these are given. Have a nice day!”
If you can handle more, there’s this:
The President noted Russia’s growing political and economic isolation as a result of its actions in Ukraine and made clear that the costs Russia already has incurred will increase if those actions persist.
Obviously our genius president hasn’t figured out that Putin wants to isolate Russia: isolation is a feature, not a bug. He has made it quite clear that he views the west as a malign force, and fears that western ideas and influence threaten his control over Russia. But Obama so believes that everyone views the world the same way as he and the Harvard faculty and the Euros do, and would just die! at the thought of being cut off from their wine and cheese parties. Mirror imaging will be the death of us.
And insofar as costs are concerned, even the seriously mentally challenged will have concluded that the “costs” that have been imposed heretofore have not checked Putin in the slightest. This implies that if Obama is serious about deterring Putin, he must dramatically ratchet up the pressure. Dramatically: the costs must be increased by orders of magnitude. The additional sanctions announced last week just convinced Putin of Obama’s lack of seriousness: yeah, like Putin could give a damn about the Crimean oil and gas company. Rosneft and Gazprom, and Sberbank and VTB: maybe that would get his attention. But instead of stabbing brutally at the jugular, Obama gingerly pricks the capillaries.
Sadly, Obama has plenty of company in his pusillanimity riot.
The Euros have announced that they might have a meeting in a week or so to discuss the “emergency” in Ukraine. If it can wait a week, it ain’t an emergency. Disgusting. The Euros give every impression of someone who hopes that Putin will prevail in the next couple of days, so they can throw up their hands and say “Too bad! There’s nothing we can do now!”
But the Ukrainian “leadership” gives Obama and the Euros a run for their money for the Craven Cup. It is obviously paralyzed at the thought of exercising control over its own territory, and this paralysis just spurs on Putin. Acting President Turchynov declared that the military would undertake an “anti-terrorist” operation against those who have seized government buildings and facilities (including air bases) throughout eastern Ukraine. But as of yet, nothing serious has happened. This is stoking popular anger at the new government: Maidan may very well reconstitute itself to demand ouster of this government out of outrage at the abject failure to defend Ukraine from invasion by Russia.
If the World War II cohort was “the greatest generation,” we are its antithesis. We are the living personification of what C.S. Lewis called “men without chests.” Denatured humans, enervated by a smug rationalism that is profoundly irrational because it fails to take the world as it is, populated by people who see things much, much differently, and who act accordingly.
“We make men without chests and expect from them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.”
That is where we are now.