Since losing the 2012 presidential election to incumbent President Barack Obama, former Republican candidate Mitt Romney has been relatively quiet regarding his opponent’s decisions. In a new statement, however, Romney criticized Obama’s approach to the situation in Ukraine.
Appearing on the CBS program “Face the Nation,” Romney claimed that Obama could have prevented the current situation with Russia, Ukraine and Crimea if he had used better judgement.
“The president’s naiveté with regards to Russia and his faulty judgement about Russia’s intentions and objectives has led to a number of foreign policy challenges that we are facing,” Romney said. "Unfortunately, not having anticipated Russia’s intentions, the president wasn’t able to shape the kind of events that may have been able to prevent the kinds of circumstances that you’re seeing in the Ukraine."
Romney’s opponents claim that it would have been impossible for the Obama administration to predict an event such as Russia invading Crimea would occur. Still, Romney claimed that Russia’s intended tactics have been obvious for quite some time.
“There may have been some people surprised, but there have been many, many others that predicted Russia would try to grab other territories,” Romney said, according to the Huffington Post. "This had been prepared for some time and we could have taken action earlier on. We would have had far more options to shape events to keep Russia from moving in – for instance, working with our allies around the world to develop sanctions and communicate those to Russia very, very clearly."
Romney’s recent statements echo those that he made prior to the presidential election, in which he claimed Russia was among the United States’ biggest geopolitical enemies. Obama was considered to have “won” a debate in which he snapped back, “When you were asked what’s the biggest geopolitical threat facing America, you said Russia, not al Qaeda. In the 1980s, they’re now calling to ask for their foreign policy back because, you know, the Cold War’s been over for 20 years.”
Whether or not Obama has handled the current situation with Russia in the best possible manner, it’s now apparent that Romney’s warnings about the country's threat to the U.S. were not so far off.