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Saturday, April 11, 2009

Russia refuses to accept Obama's surrender; How to survive in a post-American world

Shavua tov v'moadim l'simcha - a good week and a happy holiday to everyone.

In her weekly JPost column on Friday, Caroline Glick shows the same pessimism that many of us feel about what's going on in America today.
Somewhere between apologizing for American history - both distant and recent; genuflecting before the unelected, bigoted king of Saudi Arabia; announcing that he will slash the US's nuclear arsenal, scrap much of America's missile defense programs and emasculate the US Navy; leaving Japan to face North Korea and China alone; telling the Czechs, Poles and their fellow former Soviet colonies, "Don't worry, be happy," as he leaves them to Moscow's tender mercies; humiliating Iraq's leaders while kowtowing to Iran; preparing for an open confrontation with Israel; and thanking Islam for its great contribution to American history, President Obama made clear to the world's aggressors that America will not be confronting them for the foreseeable future.

Whether they are aggressors like Russia, proliferators like North Korea, terror exporters like nuclear-armed Pakistan or would-be genocidal-terror-supporting nuclear states like Iran, today, under the new administration, none of them has any reason to fear Washington.

This news is music to the ears of the American Left and their friends in Europe. Obama's supporters like billionaire George Soros couldn't be more excited at the self-induced demise of the American superpower. CNN's former (anti-)Israel bureau chief Walter Rodgers wrote ecstatically in the Christian Science Monitor on Wednesday, "America's... superpower status, is being downgraded as rapidly as its economy."
While this may be pleasing to moonbats like Soros and the American and European mainstream media, it's not good news for American allies like Israel, India, Poland, Japan and other democracies.
Tokyo was distraught by the administration's reaction to North Korea's three-stage ballistic missile test. Japan recognized the betrayal inherent in Defense Secretary Robert Gates's announcement ahead Pyongyang's newest provocation that the US would only shoot the missile down if it targeted US territory. In one sentence, uttered not in secret consultations, but declared to the world on CNN, Gates abrogated America's strategic commitment to Japan's defense.

India, for its part, is concerned by Obama's repeated assertions that its refusal to transfer control over the disputed Jammu and Kashmir provinces to Pakistan inspires Pakistani terror against India. It is equally distressed at the Obama administration's refusal to make ending Pakistan's support for jihadist terror groups attacking India a central component of its strategy for contending with Pakistan and Afghanistan. In general, Indian officials have expressed deep concern over the Obama administration's apparent lack of regard for India as an ally and a significant strategic counterweight to China.


Then there is Europe. Although Obama received enthusiastic applause from his audience in Prague when he announced his intention to destroy the US's nuclear arsenal, drastically scale back its missile defense programs and forge a new alliance with Russia, his words were anything but music to the ears of the leaders of former Soviet satellites threatened by Russia. The Czech, Polish, Georgian and Ukrainian governments were quick to recognize that Obama's strong desire to curry favor with the Kremlin and weaken his own country will imperil their ability to withstand Russian aggression.

It is not a coincidence, for instance, that the day Obama returned to Washington, Georgia's Moscow-sponsored opposition announced its plan to launch massive protests in Tblisi to force the ouster of pro-Western, anti-Russian Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili.

And as for Russia, like Iran, which responded to Obama's latest ode to the mullahs by opening a nuclear fuel plant and announcing it has 7,000 advanced centrifuges in operation, so Moscow reacted to Obama's fig leaf with a machine gun, announcing its refusal to support sanctions against North Korea and repeating its false claim that Iran's nuclear program is nonaggressive.
I omitted Glick's reference to Iraq (where she was an embedded reporter during the American invasion six years ago), because I don't see there being any chance that Iraq will go along with Glick's prescription for saving itself - at least when it comes to Israel. But please allow me to interrupt Glick's message with a more recent report from Russia. It seems that they're not willing to accept Obama's surrender in exchange for stopping assistance to Iran.
Russia's foreign minister said Saturday that relations with the United States are on a positive track under Barack Obama's administration, but warned that Moscow won't make any trade-offs like agreeing to increase pressure on Iran.

Sergey Lavrov [pictured. CiJ] said Moscow is feeling a "cautious optimism" about relations with Washington.

"We are satisfied with how our relations with the new US administration are developing," Lavrov said in a speech to a group of political scholars.

"Mutual confidence was being eroded for a long period, and it will take time to rebuild it. But we are moving now in the right direction."


Lavrov made it clear Saturday that Moscow had no intention of being tougher with Teheran in order to please Washington.

"It's our neighbor, it's a country which can play a very important role in solving a number of acute international issues, such as the situation in Afghanistan, Iraq and different aspects of Mideast peace settlement," Lavrov said. "We aren't closing our eyes on remaining questions about the Iranian nuclear program. But it would be unrealistic to expect us to raise pressure on Iran beyond what has been agreed upon."

On a more general note, Lavrov warned that Moscow wouldn't engage in any kind of quid pro quo.

"Any trade-offs would be unprincipled and unrealistic," he said. "They would undermine trust in our diplomacy, and we cherish that trust no less than others."
Now back to Glick:
Finally there is Israel. If Obama's assertions that Israel must support the immediate establishment of a Palestinian state, his declarations of support for the so-called Saudi "peace plan," which requires Israel to commit national suicide in exchange for "peace" with the Arab world, and his continuous and increasingly frantic appeals for Iran to "engage" his administration weren't enough to show Israel that Obama is sacrificing the US's alliance with the Jewish state in a bid to appease the Arabs and Iran, on Tuesday Vice President Joseph Biden made this policy explicit.
Glick suggests that the only way for America's abandoned allies to survive in the current environment is to build alliances with one another.
But to survive the current period of American strategic madness, Israel and the US's other unwanted allies must build alliances with one another - covertly if need be - to contain their adversaries in the absence of America. If they do so successfully, then the damage to global security induced by Obama's emasculation of his country will be limited. If on the other hand, they fail, then America's eventual return to its senses will likely come too late for its allies - if not for America itself.
Glick has a point. I can certainly see Israel building an alliance with India, but part of that alliance would involve sales of weapons to India and the US has objected to Israeli weapons sales in the past. Israel used to have an alliance with Georgia but it abandoned that alliance last summer in the face of the Russian aggression against Georgia. And one has to wonder how Israel can build an alliance with Georgia, Poland or the Ukraine - all of whom are threatened by Russia - when it has decided that the way to build its military sales is to sell drones to Russia.

Much as Glick's idea makes sense, it will require a retrenchment in Israeli foreign policy. So far, there is no indication that retrenchment is happening.


At 9:55 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

All democratic allies of the US have another 3 years and about 9 months to wait for a change in administration. Hopefully, back to a more rational posture.

Unfortunately, republicans have managed to get themselves into an impossible scenario. They are trying to build upon a base of conservatism, which is not bad by itself, but they are saddled with a politically active religious right (read as christian right), which makes up a substantial fraction of the conservative base. Unfortunate for the republicans, as it forces them to include wildly unpopular ideas in their political planks, simply to appease these groups.

What we need in the US is a republican party free of these planks. Many of these religious conservatives don't realize that you can't act on your ideas if you are not in power, and getting into power is somewhat of a beauty pageant.

Maybe it is time to form a new party in the US, which has a specifically conservative, though not-religious, outlook, including a muscular foreign policy, a sane economic policy based upon sound business principles. We could pull as many "blue dog" democrats away as well as real republicans ... not the christian right.

We may need to do this in order to defeat the moonbat ideology now in control of this country. Because the republicans can't really do this.

At 11:47 PM, Blogger adagioforstrings said...

"Unfortunate for the republicans, as it forces them to include wildly unpopular ideas in their political planks, simply to appease these groups."

What specific ideas would they be?

At 12:38 AM, Blogger Unknown said...

Intelligent design, specific abortion stances, specific prayer in public school stances ...

Listen to any of the so-called conservative voices, and you will hear an overwhelming minority talking about things the country wants to hear, while you will hear an overwhelming majority whining about evolution, prayer in schools, 'pro life', and other divisive causes.

The left has their nutjobs ... its hard distinguish between the normal people and nutjobs most of the time. So does the right.

It does us no good that these people are the voice of the party, setting the party planks, setting the agenda.

The last election should give pause to anyone thinking otherwise.

At 5:56 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Israel will have to stop looking to America to save it and begin look to G-d. The country's survival in a post-American world would be secured by finding new friends and developing new alliances - which isn't the easiest of things for Israel to do but America has shown its weaknesses. Its no longer to put it bluntly, the world's policeman. Israel is out in the cold and the sooner she comes to terms with it, the better off the Jewish State will be in the months and years to come.


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