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Dan Coats, Ukraine and vacationing in Siberia
When Russia announced a list of Americans who would be sanctioned by the Putin regime in response to American and European Union sanctions, Senator Dan Coats posted a humorous response on his official Facebook page about canceling his vacation in Siberia.
He followed it up with a top ten list the next day. Yesterday, the Bloomington Herald-Times editorial board (subscription required) puffed up their chests and stuck their noses in the air in response:
We're not laughing. Guess we're humorless when it comes to an international crisis.
When we think of Hoosier statesmen, we think of former Republican Sen. Richard Lugar and former Democrat U.S. Rep. Lee Hamilton.
It's hard to imagine either of them making light of the events in Ukraine.
What an absurd, hypersensitive editorial. Vladimir Putin's list of Americans to be sanctioned demonstrates how petulant and childish the Russian leader is, and he deserves to be mocked and ridiculed for his immature behavior. Coats was the subject of sanctions for... what, exactly? Because he said some words critical of Putin's military aggression? Did Coats actually do anything, in addition to criticizing Putin and Russia??
In one sense, Putin is a cartoon character, with his many shirtless pictures and his campaign to encourage attractive women to take their clothes off in support of his presidency. But he's also a former KGB apparatchik who said the collapse of the genocidal Soviet Union was a great historical tragedy. He has shown his militaristic ambitions in his invasion of Georgia a few years ago.
Furthermore, our own President does not seem to understand the danger Russia presents:
Russia is a regional power that is threatening some of its immediate neighbors, not out of strength but out of weakness. Russia's actions are a problem. They don’t pose the number one national security threat to the United States. I continue to be much more concerned when it comes to our security with the prospect of a nuclear weapon going off in Manhattan.
If Barack Obama is so concerned about nuclear weapons, he should also consider the following:
RUSSIA STILL HAS ENOUGH NUCLEAR WEAPONS ATTACHED TO INTERCONTINENTAL BALLISTIC MISSILES TO WIPE THESE UNITED STATES OFF THE MAP MANY TIMES OVER.
I apologize for the all caps, but that statement by our President is not just stupid, it is dangerously stupid.
It was not all that long ago that those missiles were pointed directly at these United States, and there was real worry about global thermonuclear war and "mutually assured destruction."
So far, I agree with what Obama is doing, in terms of isolating Russia and harming them economically. Obama is right that getting into a military conflict with Russia over Crimea (which belonged to Russia for over 150 years before Soviet tyrant Nikita Khrushchev gave it to Ukraine in 1954) would not be a good idea. But dismissing Russia as a threat is naive.
We Hoosiers can take pride in the fact that not only is our senior Senator enough of an irritant to be sanctioned by the Putin regime, he also understands global politics and the danger presented by Russia far better than our President.