President Barack Obama has a double standard when it comes to reprecussions for Russia in the wake of a missile strike in the Ukraine and Israel in its effort to defend itself against terror attacks, The Weekly Standard founder and editor Bill Kristol said Friday.
Kristol told "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV
that President Barack Obama's response to Thursday's deadly missile strike in Ukraine was not nearly strong enough.
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"I would say if you were Putin watching that, you got a little bit of a slap on the wrist, but he didn't really get a sense that you were supposed to get out of the Ukraine or stop providing these weapons to separatists immediately or there'd be consequences, or tell the separatists at the very least you can't be shooting at airplanes," Kristol said.
"I hope he makes clear to Putin that all this is unacceptable, but I would say it looks to me like it's heading for a slap on the wrist, lot of reaching out for consultations, sadness about the civilians lost, and then will Putin really pay a price? I'm a little doubtful."
Yet, Kristol said, Obama will "continually harass and nag" Israel "not to do certain things that they judge are necessary for their national well-being."
"Does he really think the Israeli military doesn't care about civilian causalities?" he asked. "… [D]o they really need a lecture from Barack Obama about how to fight humanely?"
Kristol called the U.S. pressure on Israel a kind of "moral preening, that sitting thousands of miles away he can wag a finger at Benjamin Netanyahu, who's been extremely careful and prudent in doing what he has to do here to secure his own civilians' safety…."
"Obviously everyone would like a ceasefire but first Israel has to make sure their civilians are not going to be rocketed of the next few months and they're not going to be subject to terrorist attacks," he said.
Kristol charged Ukraine "is one of the most embarrassing … aspects of Obama's foreign policy," but said it also "directly implicates Hillary Clinton," who was an advocate of a "reset" of U.S. relations with Russia.
"She's the person who visibly launched it in 2009 and defends it to this day," Kristol said.
"So it's just one of unfortunately many examples around the world" of the Obama policy.
"We're now paying, seeing the consequences," he added. "You see what the world starts to look like when people think everywhere – friends and enemies both – think the United States is weak and in retreat."
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