Thursday, September 17, 2009

Is Obama Selling Out The Poles And Czech Republic?

Updated and Bumped Up: He sure is. The annoucement came today to confirm this.

Apparently the Czech interim Prime Minister found out via a midnight phone call. The eObama Administration had been talking about doing this previously, but even I didn't think they'd be silly enough to follow through.Especially without any kind of Russian quid pro quo:

Russia on Thursday welcomed the news but said it saw no reason to offer concessions in return. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev threatened last November to station tactical Iskander missiles on Poland's border if the U.S. system was deployed.

"The Bush plans on the missile defense as we knew them until now were nothing more than a provocation of security in the European region," said Dmitry Rogozin, Russia's ambassador to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, in a phone interview.{..}

Last week, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said he expected the Obama administration to drop the missile-defense plans. He said that Moscow wouldn't view the move as a concession but rather a reversal of a mistaken Bush-era policy.

Still, the decision is likely to be seen in Russia as a victory for the Kremlin.

It certainly is.

The fiction that both Bush and Obama were peddling is that the missile defense systems were primarily designed to protect against Iran. That was obviously just a line for PR purposes. The policy on locating missile defense components in Eastern Europe was made long before the US even acknowledged that the American NIE on Iran in 2007 claiming Iran stopped its nuclear weapons program back in 2003 was nothing more than bogus horse manure.

No, this was always only incidentally about Iran and more about protecting our NATO allies in Eastern Europe against any attempts to absorb them back into the Russian empire.

The Poles tried to put a good face on this, not commenting on Obama's decision except to say that they expect the U.S. will abide by its commitments to help upgrade Poland's military. if I were them, I wouldn't count on it.

Every nation in the old Soviet Empire has just been placed on notice that they're on their own, and they had better make whatever accommodations they can with the Bear. It's a shameful betrayal and an unmitigated display of weakness.

It will cost us dearly, and as the Russians have made crystal clear, Obama can expect to get nothing for it.

It's one thing to whore yourself out. It's quite another to do it and not even get paid for it.


It looks that way...

Four senior Obama officials, including Under Secretary of State for Arms Control Ellen Tauscher and Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security “Sandy” Vershbow, are apparently in the air right now on their way to Poland. Why? If the Washington hot rumor mill is right, to deliver the news to the Poles and then the Czechs that the administration has decided not to go forward with a missile defense system for Europe and the United States against the budding missile threat from Iran.

If this is how things go down, it's simply stunning in it's duplicity..and stupidity.

We promised the Poles and Czechs we would follow through on this, and they made decisions based on our word. If we leave them hanging out to dry, it represents a complete surrender to Russia and Putin.

And we'll get nothing for it. If Obama is throwing our allies under the bus in hopes Putin will help him on Iran's nuclear weapons program, he's not paying attention.Just a few days ago the Russians announced one more time that they would not support any sanctions against Iran. I don't see that changing, especially if Obama delivers up the peoples of the Old Soviet Empire to the Russians first.

I hope Israel and whatever allies we still have left takes notice of this and keeps it in mind.

Weak, amateurish and desperate.I think we're in for some fireworks.


B.Poster said...

With all due respect the propaganda was that this system was some how going to be able to do any thing against Russia. The bottom line is this system was being designed solely to defend against Iran or any other rogue state.

In order to be able to defend against Russia, the entire thing would have had to have been scrapped and we would have to start over. The Czechs and the Poles understood this. At least the people did, this is why they were by a large majority opposed to the system. They knew it was inadequate to defend against Russia and it was only serving to make the Russians angry. The system was never designed to defend against Russia. Even the stae department persons understood this. This is why they were perplexed at the opposition that the Russians mounted to a system that is not even designed with them in mind and was not even going to be a threat to them.

We had a chance for a teachable moment here. Folks in power, such as at State, should have asked themelves the following question: "we propose a missle defense system to defend against Iran and the Russians are angry about a system not designed with them in mind and that is inadequate to defend against them wh are they angry about this?" Unforutanately like most leftists they implicitly trust Russia. As such, they are unable to ask this question much less answer it correctly.

We also need to understand that the US military as it currently is inadequate to defend against Russia or to be able to successfully engage the Russians in any type of armed conflict. Such a war were it to break out right now would mean almost certain and overwhelming defeat for us. The Generals are no doubt aware of this and, as such, have advised the President and his team accordingly.

If we follow up this decision by improving our border security and developing more of our own oil this will be a good move. We will have extricated ourselves from an unwinnable position and will have improved our national security. Unfortunately I don't expect Mr. Obama or his team to do any thing about border security or developing more of our own oil and gas reserves. As such, I agree with Freedom Fighter that we're in for fireworks. I just pray they are not the nuclear kind as in nuclear weapons used against us.

How can the Poles expect us to help build their military? Better questions to ask are, "will they help us build our military?" Given that our military has fallen behind the other major powers and the Army is worn thin from continued operations, who will help us build up our military? If the Poles or the Czechs actually think we are in any kind of position to be able to help them here, they don't understand much. I wish we could help but we can't. If we've managed to extricate ourselves from this unwinnable situation, this would actually be a good thing for us, however, unless it is followed up by increased border security and upgrades to the military it may be counter productive. Then again the Poles and Czechs were largely opposed to this system any way. As such, I don't think we would have ever been able to build it.

Finally, it should be pointed out that the missle defense system is defensive only. It poses no offensive threat to any one. For the media to be up in arms about the NATO presence in Russia's old territories while ignoring or downplaying Russia's aid to Venezuela and other American enemies is at best one sided coverage and at worst shows media bias of the worst kind. The Russian assistance to Venezulea and Iran poses a much greater threat to America than any American assistance to former Soviet Bloc countries poses to Russia. The media would do well to cover this from all angles and not simply spout out the Russian propaganda line all the time.

Freedom Fighter said...

I couldn't disagree with you let's just leave it there.


B.Poster said...


I tried a lengthy reply to your post but could not get it to post. Perhaps I'll have better luck with a shorter post.

I think you are the best blogger on the internet and I learn a great deal from your posts. I've pretty much laid out my position on Russia in multiple posts and the hurdles we would face in trying mount an effective military effort against them. I've also laid out things that I think would give us better utility for our national defense needs than what we are currently doing in other posts here.

I have yet to see a coherent strategy from you on how you are going to confront Russia, possibly the most potent military force on earth right now. If you have, I missed it. Involving ourselves in former Soviet Bloc countries runs the risk of armed conflict with Russia. Should this happen, we need a coherent strategy on how we can expect to win. Please provide a strategy that gives us a reasonable chance of victory or direct me to where I can find it on your web site.

Freedom Fighter said...

Hi Poster,

It's really not too complicated.

First, we have a different view of Russia. You view them as an awesome super power, a colossus than can't be stopped.

I view them as a dying nation with what is still largely a dysfunctional economy, a military that is still mostly equipped with substandard equipment and a mentality that's mired in paranoia with a fear of 'encirclement'.

They crave recognition and respect as a world power, and the only way they can get it is by fomenting trouble where ever they can.
Putin in this regard is very much like DeGaulle.

The best strategy is based on strength, honesty and the realization of Russia's paranoia and need for 'respect.'

Here's an example..imagine if, instead of caving, Obama had gone full tilt with the missile defense bases in Poland and the Czech republic and increased our military relations with Ukraine and the Baltics. And then, when Putin was fuming, simply said "you stop arming Iran and helping them build nukes and we stop our activities. And by the way, there's a trade deal in it for you and we'll announce that we're partners on this Iran endeavor."

Russia has much more to fear from radical Islam then America does, and Russia's chief source of capital is oil and gas, so they don't need what the Muslims have to sell.They'd be amenable to being treated like equal partners.

We might even get them to help us form a counterweight to OPEC, which Russia like us doesn't belong to.They would have everything to gain from an arrangement like that.And little downside except losing some Iranian contracts that were made indifferent economic times at lower than prevailing prices.Plus, we could signal discreetly that if the US and Russia weren't able to come to an agreement on Iran, we were planning on settling the matter ourselves anyway.

THAT'S a strategy. What Obama has is Zero.


Anonymous said...

Your strategy is probably better than Obama's. I would not be diametrically opposed to complete withdrawl from Eastern Europe IF this is followed up by upgrades to the conventional military, the nuclear arsenal and the delivery systems, and enhanced border. For your strategy to work I think we will need the support of the American people. Frankly I don't see it. It's not that I view Russia as unstoppable its just that I have a healthy respect for a country that could destroy us in under one hour and I'm careful not to overestimate our own power.