The passive handling of Russian President Vladimir Putin's aggressive push into Ukraine by President Barack Obama has given Russia a political advantage, says Daniel Henninger, deputy editorial page director of the Wall Street Journal.
"Vladimir Putin has annexed Crimea and now has between 50,000 and 100,000 Russian troops sitting on the border of eastern Ukraine," Henninger told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV.
"While the president of the United States is trying to sort of give us tutorials in the post-Cold War world, the president of Russia is grabbing territory. It would seem that just on the basis of what we call realpolitik, the Russians are a lot further ahead than the Americans right now," he said Monday.
"The question is, does Barack Obama actually believe that he's going to be able to talk his way out of the Ukrainian crisis?"
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Henninger, a Pultizer Prize-winning reporter, said the result of a four-hour meeting in Paris on Sunday between Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov added up to "zero."
"It would suggest that perhaps the president is pursuing the wrong strategy here on Ukraine," Henninger said.
He said he understands why Americans may be reluctant to take military action against Russia.
"I understand the fatigue that many Americans feel after our war in Iraq and the time spent in Afghanistan," Henninger said.
"Events don't just stand still for the way Americans feel at any point in time . . . The world economy will suffer. If the world economy suffers, the average American is going to suffer too.
"It's not the job of the average American person to try to summon these kinds of geostrategic realities on their own. I'm not saying they can't, but that's not their job. That's why they hire the president of the United States. That's why we give him all this power."
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