The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Commenters weigh in on Obama’s decision to cancel Putin summit

President Obama’s decision to cancel the summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin after Russia granted Edward Snowden temporary asylum has generated almost 5,000 predictable and partisan reader comments. Those who like the president think he did exactly the right thing. Others characterize the action as a sign of weakness or as a cynical political response.

We’ll start with weather3014, who tried to see both views in writing, “President Obama had no choice but to cancel the meeting with Putin but Putin had a choice to grant asylum to Snowden. Putin does not like the US. Internally I am hoping that the Obama administration is acknowledging how poorly they bungled foreign relations with Russia and how they are going to stop playing nice with a country that does not respond to smiles and speeches.”

jsands2 said, “Someone with any diplomatic experience would have been able to deal with this. Obama comes across as imcompetent [sic] and petulant”.

jillbo18 wrote, “Wouldn’t you love to see the video. Our know nothing community organizer sitting down at the table with a career KGB agent. Putins eyes would burn two holes straight through Obamas empty suit”

To which BasicInstinct replied, “Cheerleading the enemy, I see. How about YOU move to another country – maybe Russia – if you’re unhappy with YOUR leader!”

Bluhorizon saw an opportunity in writing, “Be happy! It is an ill wind indeed that does not blow someone some good. The Champagne corks must be popping inside the beltway tonight as the defense contractors hoist their glasses on high. With budget cuts, sequester and withdrawal from Afghanistan things were looking bleak for a while but–thankugod the cold war is on again! LOVE those Ruskies! …”

weather3014 said, “I don’t believe that President Obama is naive enough to think that a smile and a handshake can smooth over anything. I think he is a cynical politician that panders to the base and then does whatever is easiest later. He was elected on speeches, media bias and an uninformed electorate that was sold on marketing hype.”

Elcid wrote, “I listened to Morning Joe today and they said the President is not going. I hope they are correct. We should also boycott the upcoming Olympics [which will be in Sochi, Russia.]

birnster said, “An astounding show of force by the neutered ‘leader’ of the free world. I’m sure that Putin is regretting his actions over and over. Watch for big change in Russo-American relations…wait for it…….wait for it……..”

AmericanPatriot wrote, “Looks like these right wing communist sympathizers miss another dictator like Bush and they’re cheering KGB thug on because he’s a dictator and a communist.”

But Progressive_Liberal said, “Good decision. Russia is becoming a very rogue state; just read Russia Today in English, including the comments and you will get the picture, a strict KGB society in the making.”

dcjohn wrote, “When Obama was campaigning, he said he’d talk to anyone – North Korea, Iran, etc. Guess he forgot to includ [sic] Russian [sic].”

We’ll close with Progressive_Liberal again, who observed that “There is no point of talking if you know what the other side is up to. Obama talked before with Russia, but the situation inside Russia is really getting very bad now for any person believing in democracy, individual rights or liberty.”

All the comments can be seen here.