President Obama is exercising leadership by not doing what so many people are clamoring for: getting tough with that dictator Putin. President Obama hasn't forgotten that Putin controls thousands of nuclear weapons.
I was an amateur Sovietologist in the 1980s. I made three trips to Russia and Ukraine, read over 25,000 pages and talked with many Russians, both here and in the Soviet Union.
Most Russians like a strong, tough leader like Putin and will gladly support him making Mother Russia a world power again.
We won't have to worry about America looking weak for long. Someday Putin will force Obama to show what Americans are really made of, and those who are anxious to put Putin in his place could see their sons and daughters sent off to die in a war that will make the war on terror look like a squabble in a preschool sandbox.
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What Putin is doing in Ukraine looks a lot like what Hitler did in the Sudetenland, Czechoslovakia in 1938. We realized too late that we made a mistake by not standing up to Hitler then.
Sadly, the Cold War with Russia has returned and the "Evil Empire" is back. But before we escalate we had better be very careful what we do.
I happen to like this planet and don't want to destroy it because we let a dictator push our patriotic freedom button and we didn't take the time to think out a well reasoned response before some scared or overly zealous commander of nuclear weapons pushed a different kind of button.
The stakes are a lot higher now than they were in 1938. We should all pray that Obama's leadership is up to the task.
Unlike in preschool sandbox fights, there are no do-overs in the adult world.