Sunday, September 20, 2009

Obama's Paradigm Shift in Geopolitics (Updated)

Update: Sen. Kyl brings up another important aspect of this case. It brings back to life the Cold War paradigm of the "spheres of influence" through which swathes of the globe were either on the East or on the West's side. No wonder the Poles are upset. What's more, they were informed about the decision about the same time as the news broke. I have a feeling this mistake may cast a very long shadow.

Newt Gingrich also weighing in. This looks worse by the hour. The program was apparently scrapped without any quid pro quo and Obama on Russian insistance "correcting an American mistake". Incidentally, I think this administration will find the Russians quite racist and very insensitive to their notions of political correctness. 

Almost simultaneously news is breaking that may well define history. 

On the eve of the Soviet Union invading Poland 70 years ago US President Obama has made it formally known he's flinging Europe under the appeasement bus. How sensitive and empathic! After the debacles of the Iran uprising and the Honduras enormity, Obama is now pandering to the next autocracy. It is unmistable. Obama is not the champion of liberty-hungry peoples.

Our valued contributor, Dr Sam Holliday, director of the Armiger Cromwell Center just sent in this:

It is too soon to know all of the implications of today's announcement by the Obama administration scrapping plans for a Ballistic Missile Defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic. But the timing of this announcement is interesting. Today marks the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Poland on September 17, 1939, sixteen days after the beginning of the German attack. I doubt that Obama and his postmodern experts gave it much thought, but I'm certain that the timing of this announcement was not lost on the Poles. This will be seen as another betrayal of Poland by a great power.
At the same time news is breaking that one of the main reasons the Bush administration proposed the missile defense shield, is one disastrous step closer to apocalyptic reality.

Times Online: "Dismay in Europe as Obama ditches missile defence"

President Obama dismayed America's allies in Europe and angered his political opponents at home today when he formally ditched plans to set up a missile defence shield in Poland and the Czech Republic.

The project had been close to the heart of Mr Obama's predecessor, President Bush, who had argued before leaving office in January that it was needed to defend against long-range ballistic missile attacks from rogue states such as Iran and North Korea. (...) >>>

It's no surpise the German Spiegel Online is able to report:

Sense of Triumph in Moscow

"Euphoria over Obama's Decision To Shelve Missile Shield"

Moscow is triumphant over Obama's decis
ion to cancel his missile shield plan. But it is no foregone conclusion that Russia will harden its line against Iran. And Poland and the Czech Republic will also expect overtures from the United States. (...) >>>

Manure hits the fan on the Iran nuke front as well, as IAEA in a secret report admit Iran has now enough info to plug the holes in its program!

The Yeshiva World News: "Secret Report: IAEA Says Iran Can Make Nuke Bomb"

A breaking news report released by the Associated Press just moments ago, claims that they have seen a “secret report” in which the International Atomic Energy Agency agrees with Washington’s fears that Iran has the capabilities to manufacture a nuclear bomb. The “secret report” also concludes that Iran is currently working on producing a missile which is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead.

Additionally, the AP reports that the highly secret IAEA document which the USA claims IAEA chief Mohamed ElBaradei withheld, says Iran has “sufficient information” and will “overcome problems” on missile technology.

The US, France, and Israel have recently accused the outgoing head of the IAEA, Mohammad ElBaradei, of concealing information regarding Iran’s nuclear program. ElBaradei rejected the allegations, saying they had political motives. >>>



The Washington Examiner: "Obama helps strengthen General Electric-Putin ties", by Timothy P. Carney

Reuters reports an interesting nugget in the wake of President Barack Obama's decision to grant Vladimir Putin his wish and kill the Eastern European missile shield:

Shortly after the pullback on the shield programme was announced, Russia's government said Prime Minister Vladimir Putin would meet several U.S. executives on Friday from firms including General Electric, Morgan Stanley as well as TPG, one of the world's largest private equity firms.

General Electric may be the company with the closest ties to the Obama administration (if not, GE is second only to Goldman Sachs) (...) Reuters paints the broader picture (...) GE CEO Jeff Immelt sits on Obama's Economic Recovery Advisory Board, and GE owns MSNBC, the network famously friendly to Obama. (...) Read it all >>>

Russia, for obvious reasons, but other opponents of the plan as well, want us to forget that we're talking here of a defensive system.  They like to present it as if the missile shield is an offensive weapon.

For his part Czech President Václav Klaus can't say he's surprised. The signals have been coming for some time (indeed).

Der Spiegel's complete coverage of the missile shield contraversy and an interview with former Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski. And then there's this comment:
US President Barack Obama has scrapped his predecessor's plans for a missile defense shield in Eastern Europe. German editorialists hope the move will encourage Russia to back tougher sanctions against Iran. But while some praise the decision as hopeful and brave, others dub it naive and dangerous.
They can't be serious! German editorialists hope the move will encourage Russia to back tougher sanctions against Iran ... completely unhinged ... are there no grown-ups in the place anymore?

Here's a reaction from Poland just in.


James Higham said...

I wonder if it's only Poland's geographical position or something in their mindset or political history which causes this to happen all the time.

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