What happens when Republicans really don't have criticisms of what President Obama is doing but have a compulsion to criticize anyway?
They start talking about 'red lines' and crossing them, and how the President is weak.
Former Bush communications director Nicolle Wallace did exactly that with David Axelrod on MSNBC's Morning Joe on Thursday. After Axelrod patiently explained why sanctions are not signs of weakness, and how Putin overreached with regard to Ukraine, he destroyed her talking points.
And once her talking points were destroyed, she had nowhere to go, so she went back to the whole "red line" thing and Syria. No matter how many times Axelrod tried to gently draw her back from her erroneous linkage of Syria to Ukraine, Wallace would not surrender.
Then again, neither would Axelrod.
Regular readers here will recall how things were when Bush was in office and the United States was invading Iraq on the false premise of WMDs in the hands of Dr. Evil, Saddam Hussein. Anyone who dared to criticize Bush was immediately called out as unpatriotic. This was the party line for the entire time Bush was in office. But the minute he left, it was suddenly Game On! for a free-for-all at the President's expense.
Let's be straight about Russia, Ukraine and Crimea. It's not simple, there are many complexities, and yes, Putin overreached. What the Nicolle Wallaces of the world want to do is take a President who chooses to use diplomacy before guns and make it far more difficult for him to actually get that done. Evidently we're not supposed to criticize Presidents who shoot first and apologize later, but it's just fine to paint Presidents who try to resolve conflicts with diplomatic measures as "weak."
Of course, we knew it was coming all the way back in 2008, when Dubya pronounced Obama's campaign promise to use diplomacy to pressure Iran into talks as the same as "appeasement of Nazis."
What a bloodthirsty bunch of ignorant warmongers they are.