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Published in Stream:
Ukraine Liveblog Day 153
Press by
The Interpreter
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
'This Is The Moment Of Truth For Russia' - But What About The World's Response?
8 years
Separatists 'Recover' MH17 Black Boxes
Ukrainian Police Discover Mass Grave in Slavyansk

US Secretary of State John Kerry had strong words for Russia today:

"This is the moment of truth for Russia," Kerry said. "Russia is supporting these separatists. Russia is arming these separatists. Russia is training these separatists, and Russia has not yet done the things necessary in order to try to bring them under control."

In addition, he said the administration was hopeful that the shoot-down would galvanize support in Europe for increasing sanctions on Russia over its overall actions in Ukraine.

"We hope this is a wake-up call for some countries in Europe that have been reluctant to move," Kerry said, recalling that President Barack Obama had signed off on a new round of sanctions on Russia the day before the plane went down Thursday.

Regarding the Buk anti-aircraft system suspected of knocking Malaysian Flight MH17 out of the sky, Kerry said he knew who to blame:

"It's pretty clear that this is a system that was transferred from Russia into the hands of separatists," he said.

But inside these statements there may be a hidden clue about what the United States will do to punish Russia and stop its further aggression -- not much. The US keeps pointing toward Europe to lead the way in sanctions, and while there has been criticism of the US's weak response to this crisis, in some ways the US has been more heavy-handed than its European allies. So If Europe does nothing, the US may do nothing as well.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has repeatedly said that she would like the international investigation to progress further before jumping to conclusions, but Kremlin-backed separatist gunmen, the very people who are accused of shooting down MH17, are the ones guarding the crash site. This sums it up nicely.