Rep. Michael Rogers, Michigan Republican chair of the House Select Committee on Intelligence, said Russian president Vladimir Putin is outmaneuvering President Obama in recent negotiations, including the Russian presence in the Ukraine.
“I think Putin is playing chess and I think we’re playing marbles,” he said Sunday on “Fox News Sunday.”
Russian military forces have seized Crimea, an autonomous version of the Ukraine, and Mr. Rogers said Mr. Obama’s threat of stalling planning for the upcoming Sochi G8 summit is falling on deaf ears.
“Not even a little bit,” Mr. Rogers said when asked if the halting the summit planning would stop Mr. Putin. “If any of that would’ve gotten Putin’s attention, we wouldn’t have been there in the first place. This isn’t an isolated incident, they’re expanding their border.”
“If you look at a series of events, Russia believes there is nothing that’s going to stop them which is why they’ve become so aggressive in Crimea,” he added.
While Russia could be poised to overtake all of Ukraine, Mr. Rogers said he believes the Crimean peninsula is the most important to Mr. Putin. He also said the time to use military intervention has passed and sending Navy ships to the Black Sea isn’t the best strategy.
He did, however, say the U.S. could try to take control of the situation by imposing economic penalties on Russia through the European Union.
• Jacqueline Klimas can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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