Sunday, October 14, 2012

Russia Withdrawal From Arms Deal Shows Failure Of Obama Reset

Foreign Policy: Russia announces it will withdraw from a post-Cold War deal to dismantle nuclear and chemical weapons when it expires next year. Is this what President Obama meant by a "reset" in U.S.-Russian relations?

The so-called Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction program, which had been renewed twice by the U.S. and Russia, was a major post-Cold War success.

It led to the deactivation of more than 7,650 strategic warheads from the old Soviet Union, and seemed to put the former USSR onto a far more peaceful path. It helped seal President Reagan's hard-won U.S. victory in the Cold War against its former foe.

But after four years of Obama's weak stewardship of our nation's national security, the Russians are saying "nyet" to renewing the deal in 2013. It's easy to see why.

Everywhere they look, they see U.S. weakness and a failure to respond to overt provocations by others.

They see world affairs as the U.S. retreats from previous strong alliances, such as those with Britain and Israel, and ignores or downplays others, including our ties with Japan.

Why continue to disarm after losing a cold war if your enemy is already busy disarming itself?

In announcing the move, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov seemed to take a contemptuous dig at both the U.S. and the president. "The agreement doesn't satisfy us," he said, "especially considering new realities."

Those "new realities" no doubt include Obama's feckless "reset" — another word for U.S. capitulation to the New Russia's neo-imperialism under its strutting dictator wannabe, Vladimir Putin.

It's enough to make you wonder, isn't it? From the very beginning, Obama's "reset" has included a series of diplomatic moves that clearly weaken the U.S. position in the world, particularly against Russia.

One of the first things Obama did on entering office was to break America's promise to its allies in Eastern Europe, Poland and the Czech Republic, to place missile interceptors and radar on their soil. This was a huge gift to Russia.

Not a year later, at the New Start talks in 2010, Obama gave away America's nuclear edge, agreeing to disastrous cuts in our nuclear arsenal far in excess of what Russia promised and putting missile defense on the negotiating table.

The idea, Obama says, is a nuclear-free world — a utopian idea that has proved dangerous as Iran, North Korea and other rogue nations pursue nuclear weapons. Not only is the world not "nuclear-free," but some of the most dangerous regimes on Earth are now on the verge of threatening us with nukes.

By setting a new tone, Obama suggested, Russia would be far more reasonable in its foreign policy.

Reasonable? In a bit of muscle flexing, it cut off gas supplies to Europe shortly after Obama was elected.

It has failed repeatedly to help the U.S. end Iran's nuclear program, and indeed has instead supplied the mullahs with nuclear know-how and fissionable materials.

Russia continues to stir up trouble in our own hemisphere, forging close ties with Venezuela's Hugo Chavez, who now surpasses even Castro as Latin America's No. 1 troublemaker.

We've asked for Russia's help in solving the murderous civil war in Syria, a country that Russia has particularly close ties to. It's done nothing.

Earlier this year, Obama's fixation with appeasing Russia became clear after he was caught whispering to Russian President Medvedev that after the election, he'd have more "flexibility" in his relations with Russia.

Given the record, it's hard to imagine Russia could get any more from a president. The ultimate "reset"? A new president in the U.S., one who understands reality and realistically calls Russia our "No. 1 enemy."

His name is Romney.


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