Originally Posted by wojt
There's no much anybody can do. I am not a fan of Obama or US international policy in general, but his options are really limited now.
This is just another sad attempt to disrespect Obama whenever possible. Nobody will risk to intervene so close to Russia, it would make more harm than good anyway.
I really don't understand what people expect the Obama administration to do.
The US simply doesn't have the cash nor the manpower to take any actual military action at present as it's exhausted from the Afghan and Iraq campaigns started by Obama's predecessory.
Furthermore, going up against Russia militarily typically doesn't end well.
The problem that pretty much everyone faces is that the Ukraine and Europe (well, Eastern Europe, anyway) need Russia for its natural resources, particularly its gas. That's not going to change for quite some time. As a result, no-one wants Russia to turn off the gas - they've done it before to make a point and people don't want it to happen again.
I think that the Obama administration quite possibly made a mistake by demanding that Putin/Russia meet various conditions, including withdrawal, as it leaves Putin with fewer options. Putin has a domestic reputation as a hardman and if he accepts the US's demands, he risks losing face - hence, he will be reluctant to do so. If he does not do so - as is very likely - then what can the US do? The US can't afford to use military force - that's simply not a realistic scenario. NATO won't want to get involved as the situation could quickly spiral out of control.
As an aside, whilst I don't like Putin and I don't like the Russian government in general, I can also understand why Russia is acting as it is. The Ukraine is Russia's immediate neighbour, and a significant portion of the population identify as ethnic Russian. It has significant military assets. It is in a state of chaos. In the circumstances, I've got some sympathy with Russia's decision to intervene in Ukraine's affairs - although I'm very, very sceptical as to whether they will want to leave when things have calmed down.