Beltway Insider: Obama Shifts on Putin; ISIS/Boko Haram Update; Oklahoma City Bombing; NH Politics

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President Obama has maintained a strong conviction to hold Russian President Putin responsible for violating the territorial sovereignty of neighboring Ukraine more than a year ago as sectorial sanctions have driven the Russian economy downward the beleaguered soviet leader wants equality and unity restored.

According to Gallup, President Obama's job approval, over the past week, decreased four percentage points to 44% of those polled who approve of his effectiveness as President and those who disapprove of his effectiveness as President increased three percentage points to 51%. 

Obama Shifts on Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin is turning on his charismatic appeal as he embarks on a well-crafted public relations campaign to rebuild and restore his reputation as a viable player in world politics, global economics and a genuine and rightful member of the G8.

Over the past year the banished leader has faced global sectorial sanctions, suspension from the G8, his closest political counterparts have shunned him and he has been painted as a territorial dictator who wants to rule the world by rolling into neighboring countries at whim or will simply because he desires.

President Obama for all intents and purposes gave the Russians an opportunity for inclusion in all necessary global meets since and has acknowledged the dedication and effort they, as a member of the P5 + 1, aided the Iranian nuclear deal.

"We have acknowledged on a number of occasions that Russia has played an important role alongside the P5+1 in our negotiations with Iran to try to carve a diplomatic pathway that would prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.  Russia has played a constructive role in that effort," Josh Earnest, White House Press Secretary.

Stopping short of praising Putin and allowing him to return to the fold, Earnest also added, "Russia has been helpful in other circumstances negotiating with and assisting in the destruction of Syria's declared chemical weapons stockpile."

There are also expectations for influential world powers.  One of those expectations is that they are going to respect the borders of sovereign countries.  Russian military activity remains inside of eastern Ukraine in support of separatists.  That is not at all consistent with the kind of behavior expected of a world power.

This opinion is not simply the view of the United States. It remains the view of a substantial number of other legitimate world powers that have imposed sanctions and tried to negotiate around the table with President Putin and other senior members of the Russian government to deescalate the situation in Ukraine.

Although a lead role is waiting, until territorial sovereignty of the Ukraine is restored to pre-invasion levels, Russian will retain a secondary and bit part status in the world stage.

ISIS/Boko Haram Update

One year ago Boko Haram kidnapped more than 240 girls from a boarding school, taking them presumably to be married off to Muslim leaders, murdered, raped or sold into slavery.

Bring Back our Girls became the world's cry believing global pressure would force the terror organization, recently partnered with Islamic State of Syria and Iraq, ISIS, to return the girls to their parents.

One year ago Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan refused assistance from the United States indicating his government could handle the situation.  One year has passed and the girls have not been returned. Hope is always present but Nigerians who live under the terror of Boko Haram everyday are realistic.

Boko Haram kills indiscriminately without concern or thought for the law. More than one genocide has destroyed villages, leaving women vulnerable to enslavement.

Political Transition

Vice President Biden spoke with Nigerian President-elect Muhammadu Buhari to congratulate him on his victory and affirm that the United States is ready to expand collaboration on issues of common concern, including economic and security matters. Biden also expressed the United States' support for Nigeria's efforts to counter Boko Haram, recover hostages held by the group, and protect civilian populations.

With a political transition currently underway, Nigerians are more vulnerable to the threat of Boko Haram. With this transition comes the increases risk of acts of terror, on a wider scale that not only effect Nigerians but also Americans, so there is also counterterrorism effort underway.

Recently elected Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has said he has a plan to attack Boko Haram, it has yet to be determine if the new president will be effective.

"The United States has taken efforts to both augment the capabilities of the Nigerian security forces while also ensuring that those efforts are integrated with the international community that's responded to this situation.  There is obviously a significant humanitarian need.  There's a significant security need in terms of providing security to communities inside that country. And then there is this effort to try to find the girls that have been kidnapped," White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said.

Boko Haram is as lethal as ISIS.  The two terror organization have agreed to form separate but partnered organizations who will assist each other locally if needed, in operations by supplying human shields and sacrifices and in force as need arises.

To combat the growing concern over ISISI and Boko Haram's advancement, President Obama plans to meet leaders from the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, to the White House on May 13 and to Camp David on May 14. 

Oklahoma City Bombing 20th Anniversary

April 19, 2015 marks the 20th Anniversary of the domestic terrorist attack of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City, Oklahoma which killed 168 employees, visitors and children in the buildings daycare center.

The fertilizer blast, that sheared off the front side of the nine story building occurred at 9:02am, was packed into a truck bomb engineered by two men, former military specialist, Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols.

In New York City, Dan Rather, former CBS News Anchor, 60 Minutes Correspondent and Journalist, was due to speak at the Brown Bag Lunches lecture series at New York University's Journalism Department, responsible for wrangling speaker talent, his delayed appearance become a concern, telephoning his office I was notified of the blast.

Transfixed from that moment forward, the images blanketing the media were moving, poignant and graphic. Firefighter Chris Field carried from the ruins of the daycare center baby girl, Baylee Almon, gently cradling the dying infant became the most graphic and moving image from the blast winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1996.

The cost of the explosion that killed 168, injured more than 680 and caused $654million dollars in damage to more than 24 buildings in a sixteen block radius of the centrally located federal building? Approximately $5000.00 is the total amount McVeigh gave Nichols to build the ammonia nitrate bomb packed in the back of a Ryder Rental truck.

An unremorseful McVeigh a devotee of Ruby Ridge and David Koresh justified his actions blaming the system and government. He was tried, convicted and sentenced to death. He was executed under the authority of federal law.

Today, marking the 20th Anniversary the details of McVeigh, Nichols and a third accomplice were not touched on by those luminaries speaking who chose to speak of hope, to encourage those survivors to remember the beautiful moments, abbreviated or many, shared with loved ones.

Former President Bill Clinton, in office at the time, arrived boots on and stood by those in need, James Comey now the Director of the Department of Justice, explained the task his office lives by now and in part because of Oklahoma City.

Eloquent words were spoken, tributes paid, moments of sorrow blacked the skies again as mother, fathers, friends and loved ones, paused and remembered.

The ceremony held at the Oklahoma City Memorial has a permanent display of 168 seated chairs, a pool of reflection, and a museum.

New Hampshire Politics

The Republican Leadership Summit is underway in Nashua, New Hampshire a two day gathering of 21 potential Republican candidates in a first look style pitch to the New Hampshire voters who will lead the polls when primary season kicks off January 2016.

In the heated and heavy race for the GOP Nomination the candidates from the stalwart and recognizable to the potentially viable and the spoilers all showed up pitching their message.

In attendance were Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, and South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham. Real estate mogul Donald Trump, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry all took the stage.

Texan Senator Ted Cruz, who has declared his intent to run for the GOP nomination for the President of the United States, electrified the audience touching on the standard hot button issues that are in actuality middle of the road politics as all eyes on are focused on the impact of the Republican Leadership Summit.

All candidates made their case against the democratic secret weapon, Hillary Clinton, from former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina indicating she has years of service and no accomplishments, to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker viewpoint that she has yet to distinguish herself and represents a third Obama term.

If Hillary doesn't distinguish herself from the Obama politics of passivity in the face of radical terrorism and other uncomfortable issues than she should have enough consideration for the American people not to waste the taxpayers time and money.

Ted Cruz Comes out Swinging

Cruz has been labeled firebrand, far right, ultra conservative, out of touch and other choice terms meant to dissuade voters from considering his ideas viable.  

Also the son of a Cuban immigrant, Cruz's father was a political prisoner, tortured and when he arrived in the United States unable to speak English.

He, as his colleague and fellow Presidential Candidate Marco Rubio, believe in the American dream and as they see rust and deterioration and the Obama policies rotting the United States reputation globally have chosen to seek higher public service to make a difference.

In Defense of America is the theme of Cruz's campaign. His points, those presented in the 30minute speech delivered at the GOP Republican Leadership Summit, were more middle of the road than extreme.

Believing America has lost respect in global politics Cruz presented instances of clear absences of strength and direct leadership from President Obama, who seems to always condemn actions in the strongest possible language, and never moves beyond empty words.

Global Unity March

Obama refused to support the more than 40 World leaders gathered in Paris, in a global show of unity against the ever growing and darkening clouds of Islamic radicalism spreading far and wide, held after radical Islamic terrorist's murdered a dozen journalists at the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

President Obama watched from home, and admitted he was concerned for his security. That's unfortunate as more than forty world leaders gathered, not even a Senior Administration delegate was dispatched, even as then Attorney General Eric Holder was in Paris.

A security breech would have been devastating for any of those present, and a leader who lives by "What if?" dies by fear.

Unconfirmed reports also indicated the President was upset over positioning as he would have had to march third out on either side, and possibly positioned next to Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu instead of directly beside French President François Hollande.

 ISIS

The murder of James Foley. The first American murdered by ISIS to which President Obama organized a coalition. The second American, Stephen Sotloff, to which President Obama, offered sympathies and prayers and finally airstrikes, the third American, Peter Kassig. Still no Jihad John. Only empty words.

Senator Cruz spoke of the same frustration many Americans feel watching ISIS freely murder American citizens and those of our allies.

Cruz indicated he spoke with a General Dempsey of the Joint Chiefs and asked what it would take to destroy ISIS in 90 days. To which the General replied "it is not possible."

Senator Cruz laid out his plan to destroy the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq which included a plan In order to annihilate ISIS, utterly and completely destroying ISIS.

Cruz believes overwhelming air power destroying ISIS strongholds and arming the Kurds as they are effective soldiers. Any extended military action requires a declaration of war and he also believes the boots on the ground decision should not a political decision, driven by military necessity and based on Senior military advice armed effectively, embed US special forces can at least begin to carry out the task,

President Obama and his global coalition has proven ineffective against ISIS and his refusal to send in Navy Seals to capture Jihad John have portrayed him as weak. Media has identified him, backed away from arrest and identified him again and have yet to arrest him.

For more information on President Barack Obama: www.whitehouse.gov

Sources: Whitehouse.org, Wikipedia.com

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