'Giving aid and comfort to an enemy': Is Hillary Clinton right Trump and GOP are enabling Putin?


Fact Box

  • On MSNBC’s Morning Joe, Hillary Clinton critiqued former President Trump and Republicans for “giving aid and comfort” to President Vladimir Putin prior to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, saying, “We have to also make sure that within our own country we are calling out those people [...] who are talking about what a genius [Putin] is, what a smart move it is, who are unfortunately being broadcast by Russian media.” 
  • On February 23, former President Trump commented on Putin’s “peacekeeper” strategy of invasion of Ukrainian territory as “genius,” saying, “Putin is now saying, ‘It’s independent,’ a large section of Ukraine. I said, ‘How smart is that?’ [...] he used the word ‘independent,’ ‘and we’re gonna go out and we’re gonna go in and we’re gonna help keep peace.’ You gotta say that’s pretty savvy.”
  • Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, “unleashing airstrikes on cities and military bases and sending in troops and tanks” with condemnation coming from the US, Europe, South Korea, Australia, and other countries. 
  • Russia has deployed over 150,000 troops near Ukraine’s border in the last few months with claims of maintaining “peace.”
  • As of January 24, the Pentagon has 8,500 US troops on “heightened alert” to deploy to Ukraine if needed. 
  • Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014 on the basis of Russians and Ukrainians being “one people” and defending the historic parts of Ukraine as Russia. After a peace deal was reached in 2015, large battles were put to a stop, but “frequent skirmishes” continued.

Curtice (No)

Hillary Clinton is again confused about who is currently in charge of the US government when she made the outlandish claim that Trump and the GOP are currently enabling Putin. Joe Biden is in the White House, and the Democrats control both houses of Congress. The GOP controls nothing.

Biden has shown he needs no help from the GOP or anyone else to enable Putin; he and his Democratic predecessor, Obama, have done more than enough already in regards to creating this Ukraine crisis. 

While some of what Trump said regarding Putin's invasion strategy of Ukraine was easily and happily misconstrued by the media and Democrats, Biden's actions as president have strengthened Putin's hand. It should be noted Putin took no such aggressive action during Trump's presidency. It should also be noted that Putin essentially annexed Crimea in 2014, in part due to Obama's weakness in foreign policy, directly helping set the stage for Putin's present actions in Ukraine.

Biden canceled the Keystone XL pipeline to appease the far-left of his party, thereby reducing America's energy independence now and in the future. Making the US more dependent on foreign countries, including Russia, for energy merely emboldens each of those countries, especially Russia. Biden's further actions regarding removing sanctions against the company building the Nord Stream 2 pipeline in Europe did nothing but strengthen Putin.

Finally, Hillary Clinton, whose campaign spied on Trump and paid for the bogus 'Steele dossier' to bring down a sitting president, is in no position to criticize anyone else for 'undermining democracy.' She's already used this deception, fabricating Trump's ties with Russia while having strong ties of her own.

Andrew (Yes)

As Russia has invaded Ukraine, the entire world has spoken with one voice to condemn this uncalled for and manufactured violent crisis; Donald Trump and his allies, as Hillary and Democrats see it, stand alone as supporters of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The United States, the European Union, and the United Kingdom have all issued sanctions, and even China and India, who are dependent on Russia for trade, have issued statements favoring diplomatic solutions. There is no significant nation in the world where Putin can turn for comfort, except for Donald Trump, who seemingly approves of his strategy; Hillary Clinton is right to point this out. 

In times of foreign conflict, it is critical the US presents a united front in foreign policy. This is particularly true when dealing with Russia, a military power superseded in ability by the US alone. Vladimir Putin is all too aware of internal politics in the US, knowing that despite Trump's apparent lies, indictments, and willingness to undermine nearly every American institution, he still retains tens of millions of supporters. How can we expect the words and actions of our leaders to carry the full weight of American might when populist outrage merchants such as former President Trump continue to attempt to sabotage them? Donald Trump's supporters can be found in the military, national security agencies, and all walks of life; why is he expressing support for a foreign tyrant who has invaded a sovereign nation? This attack took planning and is ongoing; there is no place for support from Trump and his party. Hillary Clinton is right to call out her former rival; this isn't politics; it's arguably un-American.

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