President Trump is being labeled a traitor by both Democrats and even some Republicans for not harshly attacking Russian President Putin. It’s fascinating to listen how each of these legislators would have been much tougher with Putin. Most of them boldly stated they would have confronted Putin and demanded he extradite the indicted Russians. I have serious doubts that any member of Congress would have called a known, ruthless killer a liar to his face. Had Trump used this approach, Putin would have likely left the room and our relationship with Russia would have returned to the cold war days. The President did not approach this meeting to establish a working relationship with the second greatest nuclear power on earth. There are a host of critical issues that must be addressed, all of which are more important than meddling in our elections. I lived through the cold war days of the 1950s where homes built bomb shelters, schools had nuclear attack drills, and the movie Dr. Strangelove was viewed by millions. Both the U.S. and Russia have more than enough nukes to torch the world and destroy every living thing. Russia has been a bad actor over the past decade, but they were emboldened by a weak president who apologized for America and reduced our military to a shell of its prior strength. The seizing of Crimea and the invasions of Georgia and the Ukraine took place under Obama. To demand that Putin leave these territories is “too little too late.” The time to stop Putin was during his initial military actions. Obama refused to arm the Ukrainian troops who were holding out against sophisticated Russian weapons. Instead of supplying our latest military equipment Obama sent them MREs (meals ready to eat). Obama abandoned Eastern Europe and even pulled a missile defense system from Poland. We have since reinstated the missile defense system and deployed forces to the region. In addition Trump imposed heavy sanctions on Russia which has hurt them financially. Where is the criticism of Germany for purchasing oil and natural gas from Russia? Germany has given new life to Putin’s struggling economy.
Getting tough with Putin at this stage would shut the door on future negotiations on a number of important issues. Russia will never give up its naval port on the Mediterranean Sea nor the riches of the Crimea. Crimea once was part of the U.S.S.R. and is largely a Russian-speaking nation. Claiming Crimea wasn’t a stretch for Putin, plus he said the Crimeans voted for annexation. Georgia and the Ukraine were also once a part of the U.S.S.R. but they definitely do not wish to be under Russian control. These two countries are asking to become part of NATO. The President’s actions are with respect to Russia are more important than his words. We have strengthened NATO and moved troops into Eastern Europe as a deterrent. Talk is cheap; that’s why we are in the mess left by our last President. The President was also correct in saying we were part of the meddling problem. The DNC was grossly negligent in its computer security. That is like leaving your car unlocked and then complaining when it is stolen. Putin is an opportunist and we can’t be vulnerable on any front.