Lawmakers in Russia resorted to making fun of former President Barack Obama when he was in office, one NATO expert said.
Obama did not take a hard enough stance on America's Cold War foe, the Atlantic Council's Jorge Benitez told Business Insider.
"Yes, Obama was too soft on Russia," Benitez said, adding, "but so were Germany, France, the UK, the EU, the UN, and Congress."
Regarding Russia's aggressive actions in Ukraine that resulted in a takeover of Crimea, Benitez continued to pile criticisms onto Obama.
"The U.S. and the international community had a lot of powerful non-military options to raise the cost to Russia and make it more willing to stop killing Ukrainians," Benitez said. "Obama's sanctions are so soft, some Russian legislators made fun of him and begged the U.S. to sanction them."
The Obama administration took action against Russia in 2014 after the Crimea fiasco, which included freezing assets and banning several Russian nationals from the U.S.
President Donald Trump raised the issue on Twitter on Wednesday morning:
Russia has been a hot topic of conversation for several months. The U.S. intelligence community concluded Russia interfered in the presidential election last year, which led to Obama placing additional sanctions on Russia.
Retired Gen. Michael Flynn, meanwhile, was forced out of his role as Trump's national security adviser this week after it was reported he might have discussed U.S. sanctions on Russia with the Russian ambassador to the U.S. before Trump took office.
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