(Crescent Springs, KY) – Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) is seeking a “live and let live” policy for the United States when it comes to Russia. Perhaps it’s because he’s found a kindred spirit in Russian President Vladimir Putin?
Paul, who is a likely contender for the presidency in 2016, today said that the United States shouldn’t do anything to “antagonize” Russia when it comes to the situation in Ukraine, whose government collapsed last week. The reason for the collapse was largely due to a difference of opinion over which way was best to point for Ukraine’s future: East (towards Russia) or West (towards the European Union).
“Senator Paul believes we should engage Russia in dialogue, not in geopolitical antagonism,” said a Paul spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity. “And it’s not like there was ever a time of Soviet domination in Eastern Europe. Plus, the senator believes he has seen a window into Putin’s soul, much as President [George W.] Bush did.”
Paul’s opinion somehow doesn’t work in reverse. On the subject of Syria, whose government is friendly to Russia, there has been no breakthrough at the United Nations (UN) in finding a way to end the three-year-old civil war. At every turn, Russia – and, to a lesser extent, China – has turned down resolutions proposed by the UN Security Council.
“Russia has been antagonizing the United States and the West by allowing over 120,000 Syrian civilians to die,” said a State Department (DOS) spokesman, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Millions have been displaced. A country like Russia, which thinks of itself as being so powerful, should be ashamed. Putin has blood on his hands.”
And military historians have used the term “naïve” when asked about Paul’s attitudes towards Russia.
“Putin doesn’t want a stable Ukraine, he wants a pro-Russia Ukraine,” said a military historian, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Putin would like nothing better than to re-establish pro-Russia governments in Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Poland, among other former Soviet satellites. And this isn’t paranoia speaking, no matter what my colleagues, friends, and family members might say. Did they say something to you about me? Well, did they?!”
Paul may also be praising Putin for his stance on homosexuals. Putin has made targeting Russian homosexuals one of his domestic policy centerpieces. In June 2013, Putin signed a “gay propaganda ban” into law. And in January, Putin sought to allay the fears of gay Olympians coming to Sochi for the February 2014 Winter Olympics by saying that gays “can feel calm and at ease” as long a they “leave kids alone, please.”
Paul has sounded a lot like Putin recently.
In May 2012, while referencing President Obama’s support for gay marriage, Paul said he “wasn’t sure [Obama’s] views on marriage could get any gayer.” Obama had initially been against gay marriage, but his position had “evolved” over time and today he endorses the concept.
In June 2013, Paul suggested that the acceptance of gay marriage would inevitably lead to interspecies marriage. “It is difficult because if we have no laws on this people take it to one extension further. Does it have to be humans?” Realizing that such a statement was absurd even by his own standards, Paul later tried to backtrack by saying he didn’t think marriage would be redefined to “be with multiple humans, and I think it will be human and human.”