Op-Ed: The New Cold War
Vladimir Putin's invasion of Crimea and his troop buildup along the border of Ukraine casts the world back to a time before Glasnost and Detente.
It was a bitter and chilly time when the Soviet Union felt like it was on another planet; expressions like "deep freeze" and "Cold War"were rampant. The KGB ran the Soviet Union and a man by the name of Vladimir Putin had his formative years in this gut-wrenching and inhospitable era.
Putin has been patient. He has played the role of "diplomat" waiting for the right moment to pounce; he has waited until the 6th year of the Obama Presidency and has embarrassed the President at every turn. His granting asylum to America's number one traitor, Edward Snowden, was only one of the more glaring slights.
He waited until after the Sochi Olympics to invade Crimea, but has already been behind most of the world's present-day trouble spots like Syria and Iran. It was Putin who gave Obama the idea to allow Syria to dismantle its chemical weapons instead of America bombing its chemical weapons depots. Syria of course has not complied with the agreement and the chemical weapons remain in Assad's hands. Putin no doubt is behind this too.
It has been Putin who has supported the Iranian Mullah's in their quest to obtain a Nuclear Weapon.
If Putin's calculations are at all off the mark it may be because his invasion of Crimea could indeed wake up America to the dangers that Iran poses before it has a chance to obtain a nuclear bomb. Let's all hope that Putin "jumped the gun", setting the stage for a strike on Iran's nuclear reactors. This would be if we are lucky a silver lining to Putin's Bolshevik action.
But this does not look likely. Unfortunately, President Obama has done little to counter Putin's aggression. The Russian president should never have been allowed any time to remove most of Russia's assets from American Banks - they should have been frozen immediately.
Former Admiral James Lyons, who commanded America's Pacific Fleet for over 30 years, suggested a number of steps that president Obama could have taken that would make Putin think twice about his bullying tactics, at a recent EMPact America Conference. It pays to consult the Old Guard in America who are used to the Cold War - and Admiral Lyons is one such individual.
He said he would have moved the 6th Fleet into the Mediterranean immediately to potentially attack Syrian positions as a tit for tat gesture for Putin's actions against Crimea. He also said he would have sent America's Air Force over Syrian Airspace as a show of force. Putin would have gotten the message that America will not stand idly by as he tries to assemble his "New Russia".
America is the most powerful country on earth - the President cannot allow a bully like Putin to set the clock back to 1970 and usher in a new Cold War. Too many lives are at stake.