Day By Day

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Obama's Disastrous Foreign Policy

Once again the "intelligence community" has screwed up big time. Anyone who has read Tim Weiner's Legacy of Ashes understands that this is about par for the course and has been since the CIA's inception, and that inaccuracies are often politically or ideologically driven. So too, as Victor Davis Hanson reminds us, is the journalistic response to intelligence screwups.

Remember all the outrage in the major media regarding the intelligence reports that Saddam Hussein was developing WMD? Of course you do. When it turned out that those weapons could not be found anger in the press was directed not at the intelligence services that had provided bad information, but at the Bush administration that had acted on bad information. The mantra that emerged was "Bush lied, people died". And of course "veteran intelligence professionals" were eager to push the line that the problem lay not with the intelligence services themselves but with the politicians who used the information they provided. And, also of course, the media and liberal commentators avidly promoted that line of argument.

Then in 2007 the intelligence professionals again issued a bogus report. This time a National Intelligence Estimate claimed that the Iranian government had halted their nuclear weapons development program in 2003 and had not since resumed it. Based on this estimate, which was widely leaked to the media, Democrat politicians and their media toadies developed a line of attack on the Bush administration and its confrontational stance toward Iran. Reluctantly, and to widespread international approbation, Bush adopted a more conciliatory stance toward the Iranian regime and liberals congratulated themselves for pulling the nation back from the brink of conflict.

Since then the "soft power" approach to Iran advocated by liberals has been spectacularly non-productive. Rather than moderating, the regime has been threatening a genocidal attack on Israel, has been supporting radical terrorist organizations throughout the region, including terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan who have killed Americans. And, as the public now learns, they have been continuing, even accelerating, their clandestine WMD programs.

And now we learn that Obama knew, as early as last year, that the 2007 NIE report was bogus and that Iran had in no way moderated its activities. Yet, even in possession of this knowledge Democrats not only concealed it from the public, they actually demagogued the issue. What is more, for months after assuming power, committed by their demagogic rhetoric to a non-confrontational, "soft power"approach to Iran the Obama administration stubbornly ignored heightened provocations and evidence that Iranian-backed forces were killing Americans, and recently refused to criticize the brutal suppression of democratic protests within Iran itself. And not only Iranian policy was affected. In support of the soft power approach Obama recently reversed the decision to supply our Eastern European allies with missile defense systems so as to get a newly-aggressive Russia on board for proposed sanctions. The consequences of this decision are to give Putin's Russia a green light for reasserting control over newly-freed peoples on their borders.

And, as Dr. Hanson reminds us, ignoring hostile acts for the sake of negotiations is dangerous business. The recent terror plots uncovered here in the U. S. make a conciliatory course even more so. If Iran successfully develops and is a position to disseminate nuclear devices the world will become a far more perilous place than it is now and no American community anywhere will be safe.

And Dr. Hanson wonders, where is the press on this most vital of issues? Why is there no outrage at the production of a bogus intelligence assessment that led to a change in policy? Why no outrage at the cynical suppression of evidence to the contrary? Why no consideration of the adverse effects that have ensued from the Democrats' manipulation of intelligence for political gain and in service of a questionable ideology?


If the American press has been content to ignore the perils of Obama's approach to foreign relations, the same cannot be said for Europe. At the recent UN gathering French President Sarkozy blasted Obama, calling his diplomacy "naive", a fact that was ignored by the U.S. media, but widely reported in Europe [see previous post here]. Now from Britain comes a devastating critique of Obama's policy with regard to Eastern Europe.

Obama has done more to restore Russia’s hegemonial potential in Eastern and Central Europe than even Vladimir Putin.

His latest achievement has been to restore the former satellite states to dependency on Moscow, by wimping out of the missile defence shield plan. This follows on his surrender last July when he voluntarily sacrificed around a third of America’s nuclear capability for no perceptible benefit beyond a grim smile from Putin. If there is one thing that fans the fires of aggression it is appeasement.


Thanks to President Pantywaist’s supine policies, the former satellite states can see that they are fast returning to their former status. The American umbrella cannot be relied upon on a rainy day.


If the word is out that America is in retreat, it will soon find it has no friends. The satellites will pragmatically accept their restored subordination, without openly acknowledging it, and co-operate with their dangerous neighbour, ushering in a new generation of Finlandisation.

Bringing unstable states like Georgia into Nato would be a liability, not a defence. The crazy notion of a US-Nato-Russian combined defence policy has all the staying power of the Ribbentrop-Molotov Pact.


Barack Obama is selling out America and, by extension, the entire West. This is a catastrophe for America and the wider world.
Wow! No pulling punches there. Read the whole thing here.

"President Pantywaist" -- kinda like the sound of that.