President Barack Obama spoke by phone to Russian president Vladimir Putin, but didn’t object to the attack-style flyovers made by Russian warplanes against a U.S. warship April 11 and 12 in the Baltic Sea.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest confirms the president had spoken on the phone with Putin to discuss multiple issues involving national security. But Earnest indicated that Obama did not discuss the viral video of two Russian Sukhoi SU-24 bombers buzzing the United States Navy destroyer USS Donald Cook.
“That did not come up in the call between the two presidents,” Earnest said, when questioned by reporters.
Secretary of State John Kerry condemned the incident last week, calling it “reckless” and “provocative” after it was widely reported.
“People need to understand that this is serious business and the United States is not going to be intimidated on the high seas,” he said last week. “We are communicating to the Russians how dangerous this is and our hope is that this will never be repeated.”
But the Russians appeared proud of their actions, bragging of their piloting skills in the media. “Judging by the videos released by the U.S. Navy, the sailors were nonplussed by the Russian aerobatic skills. They gathered on the top deck of the destroyer to watch the Russian pilots,” The Russian news website RT reported.