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The President of Russia, Mr. Putin said that the U.S. is a hypocrite when it denounced Russia’s annexation of Crimea – a semi-autonomous religion of Ukraine. Mr. Putin was of course referring to the U.S. invasion of Iraq. This comparison, however, is not justified.

Yes, the United States invaded Iraq under the pretense that Saddam Hussein had “Weapons of Mass Destruction.” This claim was later found to be false. No weapons of Mass Destruction were found. Despite the fact that the dictator Hussein was later captured, tried and executed, an end result many praise as a success of the Iraq War. Still, the end does not justify the means. The United States does deserve criticisms for its invasion of Iraq.

However, unlike the Russian annexation of Crimea, the United States never intended to take over and annex Iraq (despite the false pretense to invade)! During the many years of military occupation, the United States trained and supported Iraqi security forces, so that a democratically-elected government of Iraq could eventually govern on its own. The Russian invasion and the eventual annexation of Ukrainian territory, however, amount to outright aggression against a sovereign nation!

While Mr. Putin’s comparison of Ukraine to Iraq was intended to expose the “hypocrisy” of the United States, it nevertheless exposed plainly his very own hypocrisy! The annexation of Crimea sure will make Russia’s Eastern European neighbors very nervous, sending chills down their spines. What’s more? Mr. Putin’s decisions and actions will further isolate Russia from the international community, economically and diplomatically. Is this the great and strong Russian nation that the Russian people wish to see?