The White House Press Secretary issued a statement on the downing of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 Thursday evening, saying the United States is shocked and offering our deep condolences to all those who lost loved ones on board.
At the time of the statement, they were still seeking information to determine whether there were any American citizens on board.
They urged safe and unfettered access to the crash site for international investigators, pointing out that the United Nations and the OSCE in Ukraine may be “particularly relevant” for this effort.
They offered the assistance of the United States and reiterated that it’s vital that the evidence not be tampered with.
“While we do not yet have all the facts, we do know that this incident occurred in the context of a crisis in Ukraine that is fueled by Russian support for the separatists, including through arms, materiel, and training. This incident only highlights the urgency with which we continue to urge Russia to immediately take concrete steps to de-escalate the situation in Ukraine and to support a sustainable cease-fire and path toward peace that the Ukrainian government has consistently put forward.”
Later Friday morning, around 11:30, the President will issue a statement on the situation in the Ukraine. The statement issued last night is consistent with the Obama doctrine – the wait until the facts are in methodology is exemplary of the way this President makes judgments. But this calmness should not be mistaken for leniency. It was also this President who got Osama. Senator John McCain might wish to recall this fact before he spouts off any more Republican hatred, politicizing yet another tragedy.
If Obama comes after someone or initiates a conflict, it is or will be because they are a clear and proven dangerous enemy. He will then use every weapon at his disposal as leader of the free world. But he only takes action after he has determined deliberate, willful fault and danger for a fact. The Obama administration’s request for the UN to be engaged is a welcome change from our recent facts-later-or-never, go-it-alone cowboy fantasy past.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.