Foreign Policy Land Mines

Does president Obama face a possible Vietnam or worse?


Yes. Possibly much worse.


*The first and foremost problem is Pakistan which is a highly unstable nation with nuclear weapons that could fall into the hands of conquering terrorist groups like al Qaeda.


What will Obama do if Pakistan starts to crack? Will he stand by like Carter did when Iran fell and the pro-Western shah fled for his life? Will he order American forces from neighboring Afghanistan to enter Pakistan and raid terrorist strongholds? What if the presidential palace is attacked? What resolute actions will Obama take?


After the uproar over everything that Bush has done to quell terrorists, Obama may listen to his pacifist flank and do nothing. And this is the frightening extreme reaction coming from someone who said he would consider invading Pakistan during the campaign. Which way is Obama going? Where is his rational core?


We do not have any idea. He took both sides of many issues in the campaign.


Complicating Pakistan was Democrat US senator Dianne Feinstein of California revealing publicly in a senate hearing that US Predator aircraft are operating against terrorists out of Pakistani air bases. This is certain to stir resentment in Pakistan and protests at home, and obviously was another case of another Democrat revealing secret information in order to hamstring the war on terror. “As I understand it, these (predators) are flown out of a Pakistani air base,” Feinstein said.


Obama even apparently has decided that he no longer will use the words “war on terror”. That would be too politically incorrect for his critics on the left. Perhaps “intervention in the name of liberty” would be more positive and put us in the good graces of the people who hate us.


So imagine that Pakistan’s capital of Islamabad comes under terrorist assault. It happened recently. On September 20, 2008, just one month after pro-American strongman Pervez Musharraf resigned, terrorists set off a massive truck bomb outside the Marriot Hotel in Islamabad. So as soon as the opportunity presented itself, the terrorists struck because they knew that the new leader was weak. They also chose a time when the new leader was just getting started in order to further unnerve him.


While terrorists like to say that their war against Christianity and the West will last 1,000 years, they will act as soon as they smell weakness. And the terrorists are going to test Obama because they know he is weak and just getting started. And they know that they have everything to gain and virtually nothing to lose except for some jihadist martyrs, which they are willing to lose at any time and do not consider a loss but a gain. They know they have at least four years to act. They are plotting right now. Guaranteed.


Consider these other potential flash points for Obama:


*Hillary Clinton already is allowing left-wing politics to affect her duties. While saying that she will continue to pursue human rights and other issues with China, she said she will be addressing so-called ‘climate change’ as a top priority.


“Now, that doesn’t mean that questions of Taiwan, Tibet, human rights, the whole range of challenges that we often engage on with the Chinese, are not part of the agenda,” Clinton told reporters.  “We have to continue to press them but our pressing on those issues can’t interfere with the global economic crisis, the global climate change crisis and the security crises,” she added.


This is frightening. What this means is that US foreign policy is going to shift in a big way to the completely debunked theory of ‘global warming’, and is an example of how Obama plans to put the politicized environmentalist agenda on a par with other big foreign policy issues.

*Less than one week after Obama’s election, Iran test-fired a new medium-range ballistic missile, obviously a taunt. This comes after years of Iranian steps toward building a nuclear warhead. If that missile is determined to have the capability to reach Israel, there will eventually be a need for direct action which only Israel may be willing to take because Obama likely will be paralyzed by his pacifist supporters.


*After Obama offered to talk to Iran, that nation has implied that it may not accept as a negotiator Dennis Ross, who Iran claims is pro-Israel. So after Obama has reached out, the enemy now is dictating which American officials it will meet with. If Obama caves in on Ross, his credibility will be severely undermined.


*The government of the former Soviet republic of Kyrgyzstan, apparently under pressure from Moscow, is reported to have ordered the shutdown of the Manas airport base on its soil which is described by the Air Force this way:


Manas Air Base, Kyrgyz Republic, is home to the 376th Air Expeditionary Wing and serves as the premier air mobility hub for the International Security Assistance Force and Coalition military operations in Afghanistan. The wing’s around-the-clock missions include aerial refueling, combat airlift and airdrop, aeromedical evacuation and strategic airlift operations. The base also provides support for Coalition personnel and cargo transiting in and out of Afghanistan.


This threatened shutdown is part of Russia’s ongoing pressure to stop the US from expanding NATO and placing missile defenses in Russia’s sphere of influence. The invasion of South Ossetia last summer was another shot in that war.


The loss of Manas would hinder deliveries of war materiel into Afghanistan – they probably would be shifted to Uzbekistan – but the bigger crisis is how Obama responds to the incremental pressure being put on him by Russia. If he is seen as weak, there will be more trouble ahead.


*India says that the US is talking to the wrong party in trying to pressure India on a deal with Pakistan over Kashmir. With Pakistan already under stress, Obama must be careful not to upset that part of the world with the wrong response to the situation on the ground.


*With the planned deployment of 17,000 additional US troops to Afghanistan, that war is expected to become more difficult as terrorists have abandoned Iraq and have moved into Afghanistan to confront the United States. They will be seeking payback for losing in Iraq. This could end up being Obama’s Vietnam because we already are entrenched there. He must act resolutely or we will be run out.


*Mexico is suffering widespread drug violence that is spilling over into the US. Mexico could suffer instability, possibly even a civil war, leading to an exodus of more Mexicans to the United States and more violence along our southern border.


*The European Union and Canada protested Obama’s stimulus package plans to “buy American”. This type of protectionist talk could spark a trade war and should not be taken lightly. Big American companies like Caterpillar want world business and do not want America to be seen as protectionist. Obama must be careful with his words. In his first three weeks, he has not been.


*North Korea has tested and will continue to test ballistic missiles in order to distract Obama and to draw attention to itself. North Korea is run by crazies and Obama may eventually need to act on these tests, especially if they are seen as threatening South Korea, Taiwan or Japan, and his decision could have big ramifications. The wrong signal could make for big trouble in the region.  


Beware. Conservatives repeatedly warned that Obama was not ready to be president. And the array of foreign policy challenges already on the horizon are enough to set off alarm bells around the world. With Hillary Clinton as secretary of state and Bill Clinton having financial interests all over the globe that could affect every situation, the world could become very dangerous in a very short period of time. And Obama is not exactly the type of person you want dealing with them.


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