I suppose if you consider endless sternly worded statements “leadership” then yeah, he’s killing it.
WASHINGTON — President Obama has cast himself as the leader of a global coalition opposed to Russian aggression in Ukraine, but it’s not clear exactly where he is leading it.
Analysts say key allies in Europe remain reluctant to take tough action against Moscow, recognizing the economic and energy leverage Russia wields over them.
Although Mr. Obama undoubtedly has succeeded in rallying countries, including China, to condemn Russian action, it remains to be seen whether they will offer anything other than words and, in turn, whether such a U.S.-led coalition will produce tangible results.
The White House again touted its leadership on the crisis, a day before Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk meets with Mr. Obama. [...]
“If all you want to do is wag your finger and moralize, it’s pretty easy. To get folks to sign up to do something serious — that’s a bit more difficult to do,” said Steven Bucci, director of the Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign and National Security Policy at the Heritage Foundation.
Mr. Bucci and others have suggested, among other things, the U.S. immediately approve natural-gas exports to Europe as a way to blunt Russian influence and revive the scrapped missile-defense program in Poland and the Czech Republic.
For now, however, the White House is sticking with its policy of sanctions, visa revocations and strongly worded statements. It already has dismissed U.S. gas exports as a solution to the immediate crisis inUkraine.
“This is part of our effort to work with our international partners and allies to speak in a clear voice together that the actions taken by Russia to intervene militarily, in contravention of international law and in violation of Ukraine’s territorial integrity, is something we all oppose,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said.