Vladimir Putin, Bashir Assad and Ali Hosseini Khamenei have got a working entente going.
Kim Jong Un is a distant fourth partner.
Xi Jinping, the president of China, isn't a fifth shareholder in this union of very bad men, but neither is he a disinterested outsider working to cabin their collective ambitions. For him and his colleagues, the rogues serve a wonderful purpose of keeping the Western eye off the Pacific and places like the Senkaku islands where tensions between the PRC and Japan are peaking.
Five years of President Obama's "leadership" have left the world with no enforcer of the international order, and America's stock has fallen so low that the U.S. cannot even persuade its European allies to get tough beyond token slaps on the wrist with an avaricious, aggressor Russia.
This is the Obama Effect: The inability to name much less deal with evil.
MSNBC's Joy Reid was my guest Monday. Joy has been welcome guest in the past and I hope will come back often in the future. She is an amiable lefty, a smart, thorough-going partner in the media arm of Tam Obama, and she could not bring herself to brand either Putin or Assad as evil:
Try number one:
H: Now but do you agree that what Russia is doing is evil?
JR: I think what Russia is doing is troubling and a problem in the world.
Try number two:
HH: But Joy Reid, simple question. Is he evil?
JR: You know what? I’m not inside anybody’s mind. I don’t need to characterize anybody as evil. I don’t know Vladimir Putin from a hole in the wall. I know what he’s doing is risky to his own country’s, I mean, it’s risky, obviously, to what the Ukrainians need in terms of security. I think he’s a bad actor. I don’t need to call him evil. He’s a bad actor.
Try number three:
HH: Joy, is Assad evil?
JR: Bashar Assad?
JR: Oh, well, you know, like I said, I’m not characterizing people. Bashar Assad is an even worse actor and an awful human being.