Where is the Barack Obama who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009 and inspired hope that perpetual war would no longer be at the top of America’s foreign policy agenda?

His response to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent call for a negotiated peace in Ukraine has been to call for a billion dollars of additional arms for Eastern Europe and to pile more economic sanctions on Russia – a return to the scary days of Cold War brinkmanship, in which a miscalculation can lead to a hazardous nuclear confrontation.

The military option is not the road to security. America’s costly interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan have left their peoples divided and suffering in shattered economies while inspiring a new generation of terrorists.

All those billions could have been better invested in America – rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure, paying workers a living wage, extending unemployment insurance to the long-term unemployed, making our health care the best in the world and developing clean energy, to name a few needs.

This is the path to restoring America’s greatness.

Gene Clifford

Mount Desert Island