by Micah J. Fleck
Well. This is awkward. In his annual New Year’s statement to the fellow world leaders, president of Russia Vladimir Putin congratulated President-Elect Donald J. Trump on his win, and completely omitted still-current U.S. President Barack Obama altogether, even though Obama is still technically the leader of the U.S. and not Trump, therefore making Obama the more fitting and likely contender for inclusion in this address.
Putin did address Obama in a generic season’s greetings this past Friday, but all while he spoke harshly about America’s latest accusations against the Russian government: “It is regrettable that the Obama Administration is ending its term in this manner.”
This has led some to speculate that the mention was somewhat backhanded and meant for implication rather than any genuine well wishes.
President-Elect Trump has been quoted in the past as calling Putin “very smart” and offering open-armed alliance with Russia, which starkly contrasted the much more contentious and volatile rhetoric of Trump’s opponent, Hillary Clinton.
Trump assumes office on January 20th.