It would be far easier to rail against the apparent misguidance of President Obama on National Defense and his silly little notions of World Peace than to attempt a calm assessment of his revamped nuclear strategy, but a calm assessment is more of what this country needs right now. Rudy Giuliani has a piece up over at National Review that sums it up fairly well: Obama is living in a ‘Left-Wing Dream’ world. The bigger issue, though, is that he continues to talk out of both sides of his mouth. Consider the “guiding principles” on his Defense Issues page at the White House website [emphasis mine]:
The Obama Administration is investing in a strong, agile, well-trained, and well-equipped U.S. military that can fight and win the nation’s wars. U.S. Armed Forces must be able to prevail in current operations and the missions they are most likely to face, while developing capabilities to deter potential adversaries and provide a hedge against other risks and contingencies. Our policies will incorporate lessons from our experience in Iraq and Afghanistan. First and foremost, we will ensure that our troops have the training, equipment and support that they need when they are deployed, and the care that they and their families need and deserve.
Given Obama’s work on the international scene, since taking office, this statement is just not true. The only hedging ‘against other risks and contingencies’ going on in the White House these days is related to re-election bids and campaign donors.
Obama’s promise to get out of Iraq as quickly as possible gave rise to a scramble between the factions in anticipation of the power to be had in the vacuum of our withdrawal. His dithering in Afghanistan doubled the fatality rate of George Bush’s worst period in that war, and has pushed its President to the point of considering changing teams. His willingness to expose Central Europe to Russian missiles might have pleased the Russians and it might have even been the deal-sealer in getting the START treaty signed, but it certainly didn’t make any new friends among those on the losing end of that strategy.
It’s not unfair to assume that our list of friends grows shorter by the day, in large part, because Obama presents to the world an untrustworthy partner and an unreliable ally that is no longer willing to fight, let alone win, when backed into a corner and provoked. Even in gaining Russian acceptance of the new START agreement, for example, Moscow reserves the right to opt-out under certain circumstances. How does this reassure our allies in that region?
This is not the posture of a superpower willing to lead the free world through superior strength and fight to defend herself and her friends with honor dignity and self-respect. This is the posture of the new kid in school giving away his lunch money in hopes he won’t get his butt kicked and shoved into his locker.
This President is unserious about Iran, and is unaware or unconcerned that this very same Iran means to destroy Israel, and promises on a regular basis to do so when the right opportunity present itself.
Selling a pacifist America to an International community hell-bent on killing eachother and themselves in the name of some greater good serves no master save for the “Peace at all costs” crowd. Obama sells our strength and honor for all the wrong reasons and at great peril to us all. Giving away our promise of cataclysmic retaliation for large-scale attacks against us by any means only guarantees that they will now be tried sooner and with little reason to fear reprisal. Allowing Iran and North Korea to trundle along with their nuclear programs, especially now that we’ve told them we won’t fight back too hard unless they’re really really mean about it, only makes us the laughing stock they’ve been saying we were for years.
It’s clear to most of us that Obama does not negotiate in good faith (see health care), and that he means to keep campaign promises regardless the damage and destruction he leaves in his wake by doing so. What’s not so clear, even now, is just where America will be by the time he’s finished keeping his word to all the folks that seem to like us the least…here AND around the globe. Erick is right…Obama’s is a very dangerous game.