The Ukraine and USA – a minor update

The crisis in Ukraine rumbles on and so do the examples relevant to A2 Politics from it. After the first post about this topic, showing the photograph of Obama on the phone to Putin, lots has happened that you could use within an exam answer.

  • In the story linked above, John Kerry, Secretary of State, warns Russia about destabilising Ukraine. A useful example of the role of the Presidency in foreign policy (remember, the Cabinet is part of the executive branch) and also of the role of Cabinet within US politics. Often, it is all too easy to find reasons why the Cabinet is unimportant; this could provide you with the other side to an essay.
  • The US has planned military exercises near Russia (http://time.com/72595/russia-ukraine-united-states-military/). Great evidence for the President controlling FP not Congress, as he is C-in-C and therefore controls troop movements.
  • Biden got involved promising help for Ukraine on aid and energy – the symbolism of the VP visiting is important and could be used in a VP 15 marker on the importance of the role (http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/04/21/us-ukraine-crisis-biden-idUSBREA3K0HK20140421). In this sense, it demonstrates clearly which side the USA is on and willing to support, without deploying their biggest weapon (and perhaps most controversial), the President himself.
  • Obama is pressing the Russian Government through sanctions levied, in part, by the White House. This shows the power of the presidency abroad. (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-27193628)
  • In the media and in G7, Obama seems to be leading the charge, vocally if not in action (http://www.usatoday.com/story/theoval/2014/04/25/obama-russia-ukraine-hollande-merkel-putin-renzi-cameron/8148019/). Great examples for potentially an imperial president – although that said, there has yet to be much real action.

There will doubtless be more to follow, but these bullet points are easy to incorporate in an exam answer.

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