PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Chris Stigall spoke with foreign policy analyst Ed Turzanski on Talk Radio 1210 WPHT about President Obama’s response to the missile strike that downed a Malaysian Airlines flight, killing 298 people near the border between Russia and Ukraine.
Turzanski, the John Templeton Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute and Political Science Professor at LaSalle University, said the President’s lack of a strong statement criticizing Russian President Vladimir Putin is a sign of how he views the region.
“The Administration’s response to this occurs within a context, and it has to do with the Russian reset. This notion that, in Barack Obama’s conception and Hillary Clinton’s, the Bush Administration was needlessly provocative to the Russians, so what they would do is remind Russia or tell Russia that in that part of the world, Russia is the most important relationship we have, and everyone else take a ticket and stand in line,” he said.
He stated he thinks President Obama does not care to engage in foreign policy and focuses his attention elsewhere.
“This President has very little interest in foreign policy, in large part because the world has not behaved the way he thinks it should. It pays too much attention to geography and history, which is beyond his level of interest. He doesn’t believe that’s how the world is organized,” he commented.
Ultimately, Turzanski believes the airliner was shot down by accident by Russian separatists who mistakenly thought it was transporting Ukrainian troops.
“Putin has been very cagey and smart in how he’s played his cards with Ukraine for the most part. I see nothing by way of gain for the Russians to have had this happen, and right now, Putin has to be pretty angry because somebody’s put him in a real bad spot…Right now, it looks like these thugs that the Russians have set on Ukraine went and shot down a civilian airliner because they didn’t have the sophistication to know that it wasn’t a military transport,” he said.