Mar 20 2014
There is an aspect of the current aggressive Russian actions that people probably completely overlooked, and that is a stupid, short sighted decision made by this administration a few years back. That decision has made the US impotent in the face of Russia today. I wrote about that decision at the time:
There is a rule on NASA missions that we can never design or implement a mission which relies on foreign resources to succeed or be safe. It has been a major barrier to international joint efforts forever because just about everything in a space mission is critical to its success. You can’t have a successful Hubble, for example, if you can’t get it into orbit, can’t communicate with it on a daily basis, can’t respond quickly to anomalies.
The norm is for a mission to be self sufficient in terms of US resources to operate within all expected and emergency scenarios. Until Obama, Pelosi and Reid took charge that is.
Now the International Space Station is incapable of being supported by American technology and resources. Not since the Democrat fools in the last Congress and this White House retired the space shuttle fleet AND ALSO cancelled the program to replace that fleet with another (cheaper) mode of transportation (i.e., the Orion program):
The Obama Administration’s proposed cancellation of the Constellation program in February 2010 and was signed into law October 11, 
This job killing myopic act illustrates the clumsy, unthinking rashness of this White House and the last Congress. Apparently the President wanted Americans with shovels working, not exploring space and holding onto our technical edge in that final frontier of humanity. This White House is the first since Kennedy to halt America’s leadership in having people in space.
Today the International Space Station we spent billions of tax payer dollars to deploy can only be accessed via Russian manned launch systems. America has no method to send or retrieve our astronauts to this national treasure without Russia. And Putin knows this. Everyone knows this.
We are being held hostage because Democrats made a bone-head decision and violated a common sense law regarding America’s access to space. And that is why we can only bluster and bluff as Vlad marches into Crimea.