Emboldened Secretary of State John Kerry used unusually harsh language for America’s top Obama diplomat in a speech Tuesday.
His words were aimed directly at Russian President Vladimir claiming he was “surprised and disappointed” by a speech the former KGB official gave about his country's “right” to take over Crimea from Ukraine.
Speaking to a group of university students at the State Department, Kerry said "It really just didn't jibe with reality or with what's happening on the ground. The president may have his version of history, but I believe that he and Russia, for what they have done, are on the wrong side of history."
The secretary of state did not divulge what plans the United States is formulating should Russia continue their expansionism beyond annexing the Crimean peninsula. He did warn that such a provocative move would be “egregious as any step that I can think of that could be taken by a country in today's world, particularly by a country like Russia where so much is at stake."
It appears the formal response from the U.S. will amount to diplomatic rhetoric and minimal economic sanctions.
Kerry provided a way out for Putin’s blatant violation of international law that surprised the U.S.’s closest allies. He expressed his belief Putin would move beyond Crimea given Putin's speech Tuesday.
Putin’s words included Russia’s “historical with Ukraine.” Kerry acknowledged those ties but said they were no excuse for the invasion.
Hardly the tough words most Russian leaders have heard in the past. Kerry’s veiled warnings were capped off with a bizarre slap at all Russians.
“You're angry about the end of the Cold War or the end of the Soviet Union."
No comment from Putin. He is probably studying the 'insightful' quote in the Kremlin.
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