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Senator Cruz: 'Putin fears no retribution,' says we 'abandon our friends'

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With Russian leader Vladimir Putin reported to be mocking the West and threatening to disrupt gas supplies to the European Union, Senator Ted Cruz believes a "critical reason for Putin's aggression has been President Obama's weakness."

And this is exactly what Cruz told ABC's Jon Karl in a This Week interview airing on Sunday. The Senator added:

"... Putin fears no retribution. Their [Obama's] policy has been to alienate and abandon our friends and to coddle and appease our enemies."

Further, Cruz stated in the interview:

"And so Putin -- you better believe Putin sees in Benghazi four Americans are murdered and nothing happens. There is no retribution. You better believe that Putin sees that in Syria, Obama draws a red line and ignores the red line."

Russia is 'geopolitical foe'

Way back in 2012, according to Slate, Presidential candidate Mitt Romney was mocked by Barack Obama about his belief that Russia was a threat.

According to the Slate story, which asks "Why did Barack Obama blow it? Let's revisit the final 2012 presidential debate .... "

Obama: "Governor Romney, I'm glad that you recognize that Al Qaida is a threat, because a few months ago when you were asked what's the biggest geopolitical threat facing America, you said Russia, not Al Qaida; you said Russia, in the 1980s, they're now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because, you know, the Cold War's been over for 20 years."

Romney: "Russia I indicated is a geopolitical foe... and I said in the same -- in the same paragraph I said, and Iran is the greatest national security threat we face. Russia does continue to battle us in the U.N. time and time again. I have clear eyes on this. I'm not going to wear rose-colored glasses when it comes to Russia, or Mr. Putin. And I'm certainly not going to say to him, I'll give you more flexibility after the election. After the election, he'll get more backbone."

In re-reading the news regarding Russia, Ukraine and Crimea, it seems Putin does indeed have a foreign policy plan of his own.

The facts are:

From Bloomberg: "Putin is seeking to regain influence over Ukraine after the overthrow of Kremlin-backed President Viktor Yanukovych, who was deposed by lawmakers on Feb. 22 after clashes with protesters in Kiev left at least 95 people dead. Ignoring warnings from the U.S. and the European Union, Putin has since sent thousands of troops to augment the 15,000 already in Crimea, where Russia has stationed the Black Sea Fleet since its founding by Catherine the Great in 1783."

Also noted:

  • From the UK's Telegraph: Gazprom, which is Russia’s state-owned energy giant, said it would start to reduce deliveries to Kiev, a move that would disrupt supplies to Europe. Gazprom said Ukraine had failed to make payments on its £1.2 billion debts.
  • Vladimir Putin is mocking the West and threatens to turn off gas supplies, according to the Telegraph.
  • And from theSun comes news that the Kremlin-backed President Viktor Yanukovych has been accused of stealing £22 BILLION.

So, apparently the Ukraine cannot pay the £1.2 billion Gazprom debt, because allegedly Russia's favorite Ukrainian leader, the now toppled Viktor Yanukovych, is accused of stealing it.

And where is the well-to-do Viktor Yanukovych now?

He resides in Russia, according to a story from USAToday, after having "vanished for days following his removal by the Kiev parliament."

The story mentions this tidbit as well:

"He said he was staying in a residence in Russia at the invitation of Moscow and insisted he is still the legitimately elected president of Ukraine, Interfax Ukraine reported."

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