Vladimir Putin may be a villain, but his leadership is undeniable

Source Flickr Author Bohan Shen_沈伯韩

CHARLOTTEN.C., March 5, 2014 — Without intending it, the president may have finally awakened the American people to the true state of international affairs. The Russian president, that is.

The polar vortex of politics has arrived in Ukraine and smacked President Obama’s fantasy theoretical world head-on with a massive dose of reality. Vladimir Putin may be a villain, but he possesses a major attribute that is woefully missing in the United States and the West: leadership.

If other commentators have been as vocal about Obama’s horrendous foreign policy blunders and miscalculations as Col. Ralph Peters of Fox News, it has certainly been lost on the media. Speaking on Hannity on Tuesday evening, Peters lashed out with words of condemnation about the administration that may be as strong as any to date.

If Obama were Sherlock Holmes, then Putin would be his Moriarity, except for one thing. Obama is more like Inspector Jacques Clouseau than Conan Doyle’s consulting detective, which means there can be no legitimate comparison between the two heads of state. One is a leader and the other merely pretends to lead. It is not difficult to determine which is which, and Peters clarified the distinction with harsh words.

“The bottom line on this is that Russia has a real leader. You may not like him, but he’s brilliant, he’s ruthless and he has clear goals and he moves straight toward those goals. The West lacks a leader. Like it or not, the President of the United States is the de facto leader of the West, and our president is incapable and not willing to lead,” said an obviously frustrated Peters to Sean Hannity.

Many analysts claim that Putin has all of the cards stacked in his favor, yet there are specific holes in his strategy that could be countered by the West, if they had someone strong enough to battle the bully.

In one of his more damning comments, Peters hit the nail squarely on the head when he spoke of Putin’s determination to regain Russia’s status on the world stage compared to Obama’s apparent efforts to minimize the strength of the U.S.

Leaving no room for confusion about his feelings, Peters said, “The problem is that, as a president, Obama is far weaker than Carter, and he’s probably the worst president we’ve ever had. He is a man who is incapable of making a hard decision and, by the way one other key point, Vladimir Putin believes in Russia. He believes in Russia’s destiny, its mission. Obama does not believe in American exceptionalism. He does not believe in this country.”

Therein lies a potential flaw in Putin’s tactics; he may have inadvertently pushed the people of United States into a position we refuse to accept. Americans cannot abide weakness in any form. It is alien to our national character. We have never backed down from a challenge when we believe we are on the side of what is right. It is one of the founding principles of our country. Though it can sometimes be a significant flaw, more often than not, it is one our greatest strengths.

If Obama is too weak to recognize his own inadequacies against the ruthlessness of Putin, the American people are not, and that could be where the Russian president has overstepped his bounds.

Though not endorsing military intervention by the United States, Peters pointed out that “we are not weaker than we were in the Carter years. Our military today is the best in the world, the best in our history, although Obama wants to dismantle it. We’re also immensely wealthier than the Carter years.” Ironically, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel recently put forth an announcement about the administration’s intention to reduce the size of America’s armed forces.

Following Peters’ comments, communications consultant KT McFarland echoed his beliefs: “Putin has had a fifteen year plan. He’s followed it religiously and it’s been extremely successful. He’s used his natural gas to keep Europe hostage. He’s used the revenues from his oil to give him the windfall profits to carry out his other thing. I think he honestly didn’t figure he’d get lucky enough to have a weak president like Obama but he’s taken full advantage of it.”

Both Obama and Putin are stubborn and “ruthless.” The difference however, is that Obama prefers to govern by bypassing authority with stealth decisions that are deceptive or hidden from view. By contrast, Putin is blatantly public about his intentions.

Perhaps Putin will defect in 2016 and run for President of the United States. We could use a strong leader who refuses to back down. It would be a refreshing change after five years of indecision.

Bob Taylor has been traveling the world for more than 30 years as a writer and award winning television producer focusing on international events, people and cultures around the globe. Taylor is founder of The Magellan Travel Club (www.MagellanTravelClub.com).  

Read more of What in the World and Bob Taylor at Communities Digital News. Follow Bob on Twitter @MrPeabod



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  • David Klassen

    Absolutely, Bob! I actually started to believe this a long time ago when we started to “lead from behind” in Libya. As a Marine I never considered that to be a good trait to have as a leader. It is something that has never been taught to me by anyone anywhere.

    Mr. Obama has shown us that he is an excellent public organizer i.e he can get a bunch of people together and get them to vote for him and he can discreetly [email protected] our constitution and make the uninformed feel good about it while he dangles trinkets in front of them.

    Mr. Putin on the other hand is decisive and not at all shy about what he wants to do. If he had been the one in office when Reagan was we might of had a few more years of the USSR. As a leader I have a lot more respect for him than what we have.

    Respectfully submitted,
    USMC Cold War Veteran,

    • macanac Kaputnik

      Thank you for your service to the people of the United States of America and to the world in general, Marine David Klassen! Your sentiments are echoed by my person and many others! Faithfully submitted by Louis Delmedico, 185th Airborne Field Artillery, Folgore (Italy). We salute you!

    • thinkingabovemypaygrade

      Good assessment sir.

    • Stephen Zeigler

      thank you for all you have done for this great country !

  • “nhbuckvt”

    Here’s your great leader kissing a ring…..I have no idea how he stays in the White House….we have something really wrong with the senate and congress….shame on them!!

    • Sherill Weber

      Too bad you didn’t show the picture of Putin standing straight up and shaking the hand of that leader where Obama is kissing his ring or bowing. The two picatures side by side says it all. What a joke this shows him to be. lol

      • Stephen Zeigler

        the ones with free cell phones would not have cared much less know who Putin is.

        • Sherill Weber

          You are right. Do you know if they were given a pen with those phones? lol

  • Pam

    Amazing that so many people think Putin is in the wrong part of history. What arrogance! How enlightened and above such crass behavior the enlightened people are that run this country! Putin being KGB trained will never give up the idea of reuniting what he considers his country. Mans nature does not change no matter what century you are in. He is a man with a plan and strong motive and Obama was a gift. You may have to acknowledge his determination but he is a dictator and I cannot admire him as a leader. He does not lead by being a great man, but with a gun at the back of your head.

    Obama is not a great anything but con man. He has perpetrated a great act on America that even Houdini would have gaped at. I will be vilified for this but, had he been white and no matter the party affiliation, he would have been crucified.

    • Darren Douglas Walriven

      u mean assassinated?

      • Sherill Weber

        I like her word crucified. And you know that is true.

      • dubyads

        I believe she meant metaphorically, however incorrect…she should have just said if he had an “R” by his name.

      • Pam

        I didn’t not mean that in a Biblical context, but then again they crucified criminals and it took weeks for them to die a horrible death.

    • macanac Kaputnik

      You are too harsh on Vladimir Putin he is a strong leader and anyone can admire that! Remember any strong leader did not get their beginning from being a boy-scout! Obama is . . . I lack adequate words to describe the hypocrite, liar and traitor! I ask you , which one of the two would you rather have as your leader?

      • Pam

        Well if I were a communist it would be Putin. If I want to commit suicide, forget Obama I would just pop a cap. Truthfully,neither and hope that is not a choice we will be faced with.

        • macanac Kaputnic

          Beg your pardon but the USSR (United Soviet Socialist Republic) no longer exists for some time now and Russia is not a communist country! On the other hand the USA seems to be moving towards socialism.

          • Pam

            The idiots that presently have a strangle hold on this country are taking it in a direction that the people do not want. We will be trying to correct that soon. Putin is KGB trained. What you have lived and breathed never completely dies. Communist is simply a word. He is still a dictator and I would not like to live under his thumb. Why does that offend you, if you do I am happy for you.

  • lechezz

    Even considering all the “bad” things that could be said about Putin. I have seen him for a long time as smart, ruthless and brave. AND he is not pretending to be something he is not. Good or bad, he is a leader, a leader that believes in his country.

  • Sherill Weber

    Yes Putin can be ruthless and I wouldn’t want him to be our President BUT I have a lot of respect for him. Respecting him was something I had struggled with for awhile because at the same time I really didn’t like him. But then I remember that you can respect somebody and not have to like them. You can see he is extremely intelligent and whatever his plans or goals are,,,nothing distracts him from them. He is a very strong leader.

    Not to long after Obama took office you could see that Putin had no respect for him. Putin could see the weakness in Obama. I don’t believe it had anything to do with his color. I believe Putin saw Obama was somebody who seemed to have a Narcissistic Personality, a liar, a leader who wouldn’t honor his word to his own people and could be walked all over. He saw the lack of respect that Americans had of their own leader, how we criticize his every move and make jokes of him. He saw that Obama couldn’t even manage the Senate and the House to unit them to get the job done because of all the fighting and how Obama, I believe, encouraged it. He can see Obama has surrounded himself with incompetents and our country is so divided. He saw how Obama handled Benghazi, took a broom and swept it under the rug and held nobody responsible ,,,do you think Putin would have handled it that way? Putin would have had people answer for that and heads would roll. Putin maybe ruthless but at the same time he has a loyalty to his people. Obama is weak, spineless, a liar and doesn’t really care about our country or it’s people. He saw Obama turn his back on some of our allies. He has been sitting back watching Obama ruin this country. He is just another corrupt Democrat from Chicago and Putin see him for that.

  • Vlad99

    Obama will let Putin bluster and rattle his saber and will quietly hand him enough rope to hang himself. If this gets out of hand Russians will take Putin out themselves and that’s something Sarah Palin wont see coming. Before you know it Putin will be chocked out like Romney’s wife on election night.

    • macanak Kaputnick

      Stop with the drugs for your own sanity!

      • Vlad99

        That’s how he dealt with Hillary Clinton, Mccain, Romney and Boehner countless times. But keep swooning over bear wrestling you guys are making Putin very happy,

    • Stephen Zeigler

      that free cell phone still working for ya ?

      • Vlad99

        Do you have your GED?

  • macanac Kaputnick

    Yes, I will trade Obama for Putin any day. Trouble is the Russian citizens will not go for that!

  • Juliet Giles


  • Stephen Zeigler

    Just a thought…..you think Putin has a birth certificate ?