Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Trump Has Taken Measures More Hostile To Putin Than Those Enacted Under The World’s Most Dangerous Community Organizer

According to US Ambassador to Russia Jon Huntsman, "The United States is ready to cooperate and forge a better relationship between our two countries. But that will only be possible when Russia chooses to become a more responsible partner.”
On Monday, the Trump Administration said 48 Russian diplomats and 12 members of Russia’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York would be expelled from the country. In addition, the Consulate in Seattle, WA will be closed. The Russian diplomats have seven days to leave the country. The justification for the expulsions was the poisoning of former Russian military intelligence Colonel Sergei Skripal convicted in Russia of spying for the UK and his daughter Yulia. 
According to British authorities, Skripal and his daughter were poisoned by a nerve agent from a group of chemical compounds known as Novichok. The nerve agent was developed by the Soviet Union to circumvent the Chemical Weapons Convention.  This was the first time the military-grade nerve agent has been used in over 70 years.
The EU has called on Russia to urgently address the questions raised by the UK and the international community and to provide immediate, full and complete disclosure of its Novichok program to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).
Since the public poisoning in Salisbury, the UK and Russia have witnessed relations deteriorate further with London expelling 23 diplomats and Moscow responding with similar measures. The UK has signaled it is preparing further measures against Russia, including possibly targeting Russians who "have obtained wealth by corruption."
In remarks to reporters at the Pentagon today, Secretary of Defense Gen. James Mattis said the March 4 attack in Salisbury involved the "pretty obvious" use of a chemical agent.
Mattis, a retired Marine general and former Senior NATO Commander, said he could recall a time when the U.S. and Russian militaries were training together for international peacekeeping missions amid hope of a post-Cold War partnership.
"That regrettably, by Russia's choice, is now a thing of the past," he said. "Russia has chosen to be a strategic competitor, even to the point of reckless activity. That's the only thing it can be called to the innocent people in Salisbury who were exposed, and possibly to the extent of being murdered by this stuff."
Pressed to be more specific in his accusation, Mattis said: "Attempted murder of a man and his daughter. How's that for starters?"
Asked whether this amounted to an act of war, Mattis said it is part of a pattern of Russian actions that President Vladimir Putin apparently believes can be plausibly denied. Mattis cited as examples Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea and its military intervention in eastern Ukraine, as well as its interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
"They are doing things they think are deniable," he said. "So, they're trying to break the unity of the Western alliance," referring to NATO, which joined in the denunciation of the Salisbury attack, announcing Tuesday that it will expel seven staffers from the Russian mission in Brussels and will deny the pending accreditation requests of three other workers there.
More than 20 countries on Monday announced they were expelling a total of more than 130 Russian diplomats. On Tuesday, Australia said it was kicking out two Russian diplomats described as undeclared intelligence officers. They have been given seven days to leave.
Mattis highlighted NATO's response, which carried undertones of Cold War-like tension, but declined to say what role he believes Putin had in the Salisbury attack and other actions designed to divide the West.
"I won't speculate. Certainly, he's responsible as the head of state. We all can draw our own conclusions," he said.
President Trump spoke by phone with the leaders of two key NATO allies, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The White House said that in both conversations the leaders expressed support for the West's response to the Salisbury poisoning, including NATO's expulsion of Russians.
Because of President Trump’s strong leadership and his willingness to punch Russia if it punches America or its allies, fourteen EU countries announced measures to expel Russian diplomats intelligence operatives in a single, unified policy decision.
To this I say…Trump haters, shut your effing pie hole and admit he has repeatedly taken measures more hostile to Putin than any enacted under The World’s Most Dangerous Community Organizer. 

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