Frankly, he's a laughing stock on the international stage. Our foreign rivals can rest assured the U.S. won't lift a finger to defend U.S. strategic interests.
At the Wall Street Journal, "Russia Warned Over Unrest in Ukraine's Crimea Region: Troops Seize Airports, Roads Amid Fears Moscow Is Intervening in Ukraine; Kremlin Denies Involvement":
@LouiseMensch Putin can do anything short of threatening territory of an EU/NATO country & knows nothing will happen other than condemnation— David Jack (@DJack_Journo) February 28, 2014
Ukraine's new government appeared to lose control over the restive territory of Crimea on Friday after heavily equipped gunmen—possibly Russian soldiers—surrounded its two main airports and armed checkpoints were established on key roads.Continue reading.
Officials in the West reacted with alarm, with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister David Cameron and others working the phones to Moscow. President Barack Obama publicly told the Russians "there will be costs for any military intervention in Ukraine."
In Kiev, the country's capital, acting President Oleksandr Turchynov went on national television to accuse Russia of "blatant aggression" aimed at provoking a conflict that could lead to the annexation of Ukrainian territory by Moscow.
Top officials in Kiev said the men who had taken over the airport and the roads—who wore unmarked military uniforms and carried automatic weapons—appeared to be Russian soldiers.
Russia denied its forces were involved, and the Russian foreign ministry said what was happening in Ukraine was an internal matter. Russian President Vladimir Putin told concerned European leaders who called him Friday that he opposes any escalation of violence and supports normalizing the situation.
Though the U.S. intelligence community doesn't yet have clarity on the precise nature of troop movements in Crimea, preliminary indications point to a Russian military that is in the process of intervening—despite assurances from Moscow that it would respect Ukraine's territorial integrity, U.S. officials said.
The unrest in Crimea—where Russia maintains a naval base despite ceding control of the territory decades ago—raised the possibility of the de facto partition of Ukraine, a former Soviet republic that gained its independence in 1991...
More at TCOTs, "Ukraine Recedes Into The Darkness," and the Mad Jewess, "Obama Warned Putin Tonight About Ukraine..."