Putin Punks Obama
Although KGB style secrecy and the Kremlin’s careful manipulation of his image make him difficult to read, watching the recent body language between Putin and Obama makes it is clear for all to see that Putin has little respect for Obama.
Whether Putin or any other Soviet/Russian leader likes you or not is irrelevant to a successful foreign policy. Ronald Reagan understood that. George W. Bush understood that. Mikhail Gorbachev respected Ronald Reagan and grew to like him. Putin never openly displayed affection for Bush in the way Gorbachev did for Reagan, but Russia’s relative inaction during Bush’s presidency indicated that Putin respected him. It seems clear that Putin saw, as a result of Bush’s actions, that Bush was ready and willing to promote U.S. interests and power abroad. In Obama, Putin sees the inverse. Putin does not see a partner in Obama. He does not see an adversary in Obama. In Obama, Putin sees a tool, a weakling who can be punked at will. Russia’s military deployment to Syria reinforces that conclusion.
Obama’s insistence on making the world like him the cornerstone of his foreign policy is but one of a multitude of reasons why removing him in November is vital to American interests.
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