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Monday, April 06, 2009

Obama's failure on North Korea

Former US ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton views US diplomacy on North Korea as a disaster in light of Sunday's missile launch. According to Bolton, North Korea succeeded in doing what it wanted to do - fire all three stages of the rocket - and will face no real consequences for its actions. Bolton lists the lessons learned by Iran and Israel - among others - from North Korea's actions.
Iran has carefully scrutinized the Obama administration's every action, and Tehran's only conclusion can be: It is past time to torque up the pressure on this new crowd in Washington. Not only is Iran's back now covered by its friends Russia, China and others on the U.N. Security Council, but it sees an American president so ready to bend his knee for public favor in Europe that the mullahs' wish list for U.S. concessions will grow by the minute.

Israel must also be carefully considering how the U.S. watched North Korea rip through "the international community." The most important lesson the new government headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should draw is: Look out for No. 1. If Israel isn't prepared to protect itself, including using military force, against Iran's nuclear weapons program, it certainly shouldn't be holding its breath for Mr. Obama to do anything.

Russia and China must also be relishing this outcome. They will have faced down Mr. Obama in his first real crisis, having provided Security Council cover for a criminal regime, and emerged unscathed. They will conclude that achieving their large agendas with the new administration can't be too hard. That conclusion may be unfair to the new American president; but it will surely color how Moscow and Beijing structure their policies and their diplomacy until proven otherwise. That alone is bad news for Washington and its allies.
Obama is headed down the road of his idol, Jimmy Carter. Thirty years ago, Carter's answer to the Iranian mullahs was to undercut the Shah and facilitate Ayatollah Khomeni taking power. Fortunately for the West, Israel is much less likely to go as quietly as the Shah eventually went. But if we're not yet all the way back to 1938, we are at least back to 1979. It took eight years of Ronald Reagan to undo all the damage that Carter did. And if anything, Obama seems to be much quicker at inflicting damage than Carter was.


At 5:43 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Agreed. If George Mitchell thinks Israel's new government is going to be a pushover, he and his masters in Washington are in for a rude awakening. Israel should give Obama the same treatment the North Koreans gave him. All Washington can do given the straits it is in is to bark loudly. The worst damage to Israel, if it stands its ground vis a vis the US is a bruised psyche. Obama seems content to run America into the ground both abroad and home and there is no reason for Israel to make what he appears to want easier for him.

At 5:45 PM, Blogger Andre (Canada) said...

Let's hope that the damage that this one term president is doing can be undone later on.
I dodn't think there is a parallel to how fast this president is changing America and its place in the world, from a superpower to a super-appeaser. The Chinese, the Russians, Iran and others see this as their one opportunity to finally break out and assert themselves. By the time Obama goes (not a day too soon!) it might be too late for the US to regain the upper-hand. We may then be faced with a world controlled by some of the worst warmongers and Human Rights abusers.
G-d help us all.

At 10:46 PM, Blogger Captain.H said...

Completely off-topic question:

In today's Jerusalem Post, there's an article about Oskar Schindler and a newly discovered copy of "Schindler's List" found in a library in Australia.

In the article is a picture of the late Mr. Schindler's grave in Israel, with a Hebrew inscription. Would some kind soul please translate that inscription for this Yankee goy? :-)

At 1:39 AM, Blogger Findalis said...

I am waiting for him to go on vacation and a rabbit to attack him too.

At 5:30 AM, Blogger John said...

capt h

...still learning the language, but it lieraly means means, 'the righteous people incognito'


At 7:29 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The epitaph on Schindler's grave reads:

"Chassid Umot Ha'Olam"


"A righteous one of the nations of the world"

It is the designation most often heard accorded by, say, the Yad Va'Shem Holocaust Institute to non-Jews who in some way assisted Jews during the holocaust.

Notice the small stones on top of the tombstone. Jewish custom is to leave a stone on the grave as a mark of respect for the deceased, so that others who visit the grave will take note of such respect. We don't do flowers.

At 3:36 PM, Blogger Captain.H said...

Thanks, John and Shy Guy.


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