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Bibi Backs Trump — on Putin

Another well written piece exposing elements of neoconservative hypocrisy within the GOP.

“Bibi Backs Trump- on Putin”, Pat Buchanan, September 15 2016:

Since Donald Trump said that if Vladimir Putin praises him, he would return the compliment, Republican outrage has not abated.

Arriving on Capitol Hill to repair ties between Trump and party elites, Gov. Mike Pence was taken straight to the woodshed.

John McCain told Pence that Putin was a “thug and a butcher,” and Trump’s embrace of him intolerable.

Said Lindsey Graham: “Vladimir Putin is a thug, a dictator…who has his opposition killed in the streets,” and Trump’s views bring to mind Munich.

Putin is an “authoritarian thug,” added “Little Marco” Rubio.

What causes the Republican Party to lose it whenever the name of Vladimir Putin is raised?

Putin is no Stalin, whom FDR and Harry Truman called “Good old Joe” and “Uncle Joe.” Unlike Nikita Khrushchev, he never drowned a Hungarian Revolution in blood. He did crush the Chechen secession. But what did he do there that General Sherman did not do to Atlanta when Georgia seceded from Mr. Lincoln’s Union?

Putin supported the U.S. in Afghanistan, backed our nuclear deal with Iran and signed on to John Kerry’s plan have us ensure a cease fire in Syria and go hunting together for ISIS and al-Qaida terrorists.

Still, Putin committed “aggression” in Ukraine, we are told.

But was that really aggression, or reflexive strategic reaction?

We helped dump over a pro-Putin democratically elected regime in Kiev, and Putin acted to secure his Black Sea naval base by re-annexing Crimea, a peninsula that has belonged to Russia from Catherine the Great to Khrushchev. Great powers do such things.

When the Castros pulled Cuba out of America’s orbit, did we not decide to keep Guantanamo, and dismiss Havana’s protests?

Moscow did indeed support secessionist pro-Russia rebels in East Ukraine.

But did not the U.S. launch a 78-day bombing campaign on tiny Serbia to effect a secession of its cradle province of Kosovo?

What is the great moral distinction here?

The relationship between Russia and Ukraine goes back to 500 years before Columbus. It includes an ancient common faith, a complex history, terrible suffering and horrendous injustices — like Stalin’s starvation of millions of Ukrainians in the early 1930s.

Yet, before Bush II and Obama, no president thought Moscow-Kiev quarrels were any of our business. When did they become so?

Russia is reportedly hacking into our political institutions. If so, it ought to stop. But have not our own CIA, National Endowment for Democracy, and NGOs meddled in Russia’s internal affairs for years?

Putin is a nationalist who looks out for Russia first. He also heads a nation twice the size of ours with an arsenal equal to our own, and no peace in Eurasia can be made without him.

We have to deal with him. How does it help to call him names?

And what is Putin doing in terms of repression to outmatch our NATO ally, Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and our Arab ally, Egypt’s General el-Sissi?

Is Putin’s Russia more repressive than Xi Jinping’s China?

Yet, Republicans rarely use “thug” when speaking about Xi.

During the Cold War, we partnered with such autocrats as the Shah of Iran and General Pinochet of Chile, Ferdinand Marcos in Manila and Park Chung-Hee of South Korea. Cold War necessity required it.

Scores of the world’s 190-odd nations are today ruled by autocrats. How does it advance our interests or diplomacy by having congressional leaders yapping “thug” at the ruler of a nation with hundreds of nuclear warheads?

Where is the realism, the recognition of the realities of the world in which we live, that guided the policies of presidents from Ike to Reagan?

We have been told by senators like Tom Cotton that there must be “no daylight” between the U.S. and Israel.

Fine. How does Israel regard Putin “the thug” and Putin “the butcher”?

According to foreign policy scholar Stephen Sniegoski, when Putin first visited Israel in 2005, President Moshe Katsav hailed him as a “friend of Israel” and Ariel Sharon said he was “among brothers.”

In the last year alone, Bibi Netanyahu has gone to Moscow three times and Putin has visited Israel. The two get along wonderfully well.

On the U.N. resolution that affirmed the “territorial integrity” of Ukraine, Israel abstained. And Israel refused to join in sanctions against a friendly Russia. Russian-Israeli trade is booming.

Perhaps Bibi, who just got a windfall of $38 billion in U.S. foreign aid over the next 10 years from a Barack Obama whom he does not even like, can show the GOP how to get along better with Vlad.

Lindsey Graham says that the $38 billion for Israel is probably not enough, that Bibi will need more, and that he will be there to provide it.

Remarkable. Bibi, a buddy of Vlad, gets $38 billion from the same Republican senators who, when Donald Trump says he will repay personal compliments from Vladimir Putin, gets the McCain-Graham wet mitten across the face.

One thought on “Bibi Backs Trump — on Putin

  1. Reblogged this on Rio Olympics and commented:
    Mike Pence describes Putin as bullying leader
    Republican vice presidential nominee Mike Pence has described Russian President Vladimir Putin as a bullying leader. He said only way to counter such an attitude is to strengthen the American military.

    Pence’s description of Putin as a bullying leader is a notable departure from Trump who has characterised the Russian leader as strong.

    “The small and bullying leader of Russia is now dictating terms to the US to the point where all the United States of America, the greatest nation on Earth, just withdraws from talks about a cease-fire while Vladimir Putin puts a missile defence system in Syria while he marshals the forces and begins — look, we have got to begin to lean into this with strong, broad-shouldered American leadership,” Pence said during the vice presidential debate here last night.

    “It begins by rebuilding our military. The Russians and the Chinese have been making enormous investments in the military. We have the smallest Navy since 1916. We have the lowest number of troops since the end of the World War II. We’ve got to work with Congress, and Donald Trump will, to rebuild our military and project American strength,” he said.

    “We’ve just got to have American strength on the world stage. When Donald Trump becomes president of the US, the Russians and other countries in the world will know they’re dealing with a strong American president,” Pence said.

    “Strength. Plain and simple,” he said when asked why would Russia respect US under a Trump Administration.

    Pence’s Democratic rival Senator Tim Kaine was quick to remind him about Trump’s praise for Putin.

    “Hillary Clinton has the ability to stand up to Russia in a way that this ticket does not. Donald Trump, again and again, has praised Vladimir Putin. And it’s clear that he has business dealings with Russian oligarchs who are very connected to Putin,” he alleged.

    “The Trump campaign management team had to be fired a month or so ago because of those shadowy connections with pro-Putin forces. Governor Pence made the odd claim, he said inarguably Vladimir Putin is a better leader than President Obama,” he said.

    “If you don’t know the difference between dictatorship and leadership, then you got to go back to a fifth-grade civics class,” Kaine said.

    Pence said that the “weak and feckless foreign” policy of Clinton as secretary of state and US President Barack Obama has awakened an aggression in Russia that first appeared a few years ago with their move in Georgia, now their move into Crimea, now their move into the wider Middle East.

    “All the while, all we do is fold our arms and say we’re not having talks anymore. We just need American strength. We need to marshal the resources of our allies in the region, and in the immediate, we need to act and act now to get people out of harm’s way,” he asserted.

    The country needs to be tough on Russia, asserted Kaine.

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