No chance Obama will shut up. He’s like a poodle barking at truck.
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With the help of an impatient news media, a global taste for drama and Russia’s provocative posturing in the Ukraine, the White House is now wedged in the put up or shut up position. Are we in a Cold War now? A Cool War? Maybe it’s just tepid.
War and the rumors of war, like relationships, are complicated these days. Choices are many. Threats of economic sanctions, stern warnings and the withdrawal of diplomatic officials may or may not dissuade Russian President Vladimir Putin. Blunt force is effective, but not always efficient.
The mere suggestion of blunt force and dire consequences, however, has been helpful in the past. Recall that strategic deterrence and the old Strategic Air Command’s “peace through strength” motto persevered in difficult decades, back when Russia was the Soviet Union. But wait. There’s already some strategic deterrence afoot. Consider that when Mr. Putin simply parks a warship in Cuba or assembles black-clad, unidentified troops somewhere, he gets much press, and worries challengers plenty. The Russian president is tactically image-minded: Mr. Putin shaped the opening and closing ceremonies of the Sochi Olympics, which proved to be both global spectacle and handy political vehicle.