As Russia Invades Ukraine, Romney Devastates Dems with One Brutal Truth


The Greek prophetess Cassandra may have died in antiquity, but she’s had a busy afterlife. For the past 10,000 years or so (give or take), she’s been the archetypal example of the truth-teller whose dire predictions aren’t believed — leading to terrible consequences.

It’s rare that Sen. Mitt Romney gets to fill her sandals, but the Utah Republican — and one-time GOP presidential standard-bearer — tried to warn Americans about the dangers of Russian President Vladimir Putin during his 2012 run. For this, he was famously mocked in one debate by then-President Barack Obamas, who said that the “1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back.”

As the kids like to say, that hasn’t aged well. The Obama administration’s famous “reset button” on U.S.-Russian relations went as one might expect, and Putin annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula in 2014.

Now, Obama’s former veep is in the White House and the latitude President Joe Biden has afforded Putin — not to mention Biden’s military failures in Afghanistan — has brought us to the point where Russia is mounting a full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

In a statement Wednesday night, Romney bluntly noted the failure of administration policy, saying: “The ’80s called’ and we didn’t answer.”

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Romney’s statement was released after Putin announced a “a special military operation” (translation: invasion) against Ukraine, according to Reuters. He also warned Western powers that if they interfered, they would face “such consequences that you have never encountered in your history.”

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In a statement Wednesday night, after Putin announced the “special military operation,” Romney noted that “Putin’s Ukraine invasion is the first time in 80 years that a great power has moved to conquer a sovereign nation.”

“It is without justification, without provocation and without honor,” he said in a statement, which also cited Putin’s invasion of the country of Georgia in 2008.

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“Putin’s impunity predictably follows our tepid response to his previous horrors in Georgia and Crimea, our naive efforts at a one-sided ‘reset,’ and the shortsightedness of ‘America First.’ The ’80s called’ and we didn’t answer,” he continued.

“The peril of again looking away from Putin’s tyranny falls not just on the people of the nations he has violated, it falls on America as well. History shows that a tyrant’s appetite for conquest is never satiated.”

“America and our allies must answer the call to protect freedom by subjecting Putin and Russia to the harshest economic penalties, by expelling them from global institutions, and by committing ourselves to the expansion and modernization of our national defense,” he added.

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Romney’s statement referenced the infamous moment during the third presidential debate in 2012 when Obama chided Romney for saying Russia was a bigger threat than al-Qaida.

“The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back,” Obama said. “Because, you know, the Cold War has been over for 20 years.”

Two years after Obama uttered that line, which only a speechwriter could love, Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine. The 1980s called then, too, and the president didn’t pick up.

In addition to Crimea, as The Wall Street Journal noted in a Feb. 4 report, Russian separatists controlled large swaths of Ukraine’s Donbas region, where economic activity had all but ceased and residents are dependent on handouts from Moscow to survive.

“As much as half the prewar population of 3.8 million has left, for the rest of Ukraine, more prosperous Russia or Europe. Those who remain are disproportionately retirees, members of the security services and people simply too poor to move,” the Journal’s Yarislav Trofimov wrote. “Current economic output has shrunk to roughly 30% of the level before the Russian invasion, economists estimate.”

But it wasn’t just Obama who was scoffing at Romney’s Cassandra-like warnings about the Putin regime. Here’s Joe Biden, then Obama’s veep, criticizing Romney for thinking “the Cold War is still on, Russia is our major adversary.”

“I don’t know where he’s been,” Biden said. “I mean, we have disagreements with Russia, but they’re united with us on Iran … they are working closely with us. They just said to Europe, if there is an oil shutdown in any way in the Gulf, they’ll consider increasing oil supplies to Europe. That’s not — this is not 1956.”

No, it’s 2022, and Joe Biden is facing yet another major crisis — one that may have been prevented. Say what you will about the Senate’s foremost RINO — who still managed to apportion some vague blame to former President Donald Trump for “America first” policies in his statement — he got it right 10 years ago. The Democrats up top didn’t listen.

When Trump took office after Obama, Democrats and the mainstream media ginned up the story that he was somehow aligned with Putin, but as conservative commentator Byron York demonstrated in a January column, Trump’s actual policies on Russia were much tougher on Putin’s ambitions than he got credit for.

Now, Biden has been in the White House for more than a year, and the results are becoming evident.

In Cassandra’s case, after she accurately predicted a future no one would listen to, her city was defeated and she was eventually murdered. In Romney’s case, it’ll be Ukraine that ends up bearing the brunt of our refusal to listen.

How do those Cold War zingers sound now, Messrs. Obama and Biden? Still want to stand behind them as Putin slaughters Ukrainians?

It turns out the 1980s have been calling for more than a decade — and because neither president answered, Mitt Romney’s worst fears are being realized.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture