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Collins’ lavish praise of Putin is shameful

Has it really come to this? Has Rep. Chris Collins’ disdain for President Obama actually reached the point where he publicly supports a Russian dictator against his own commander in chief in a foreign policy dispute? Seems a little anti-American to me!

The News recently reported that Collins considers Vladimir Putin, former head of the Russian KGB, to be a “master statesman” in his stance on the Syrian use of chemical weapons. We have to ask ourselves: Does Collins understand who it is he is supporting in this dispute and what may have taken place diplomatically, behind the scenes, that may have led to this astonishing turn of events?

Does he know that Putin used illegal means to come to power, and how many of his own people he continues to illegally imprison? Does he understand that Putin provides material and political support to our enemy Iran and to the Syrian dictator Bashar Assad in their efforts to drive Israel out of the Middle East?

While I am aware that the Republican Party line is to oppose anything our president supports, even if it is detrimental to our country’s interests, I had hoped for some independence from my representative. Hearing Collins praise a ruthless, anti-democratic dictator as part of this partisan political effort is really too much to bear. I was hoping for some leadership from Collins, but alas, he does and says what he is told, like an obedient little child.

Would Collins please display the courage to give us his own opinion on this matter, and clarify exactly which side he’s on?

Edward A. Vasbinder

East Amherst