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March 04, 2009

Krauthammer's Take on Obama's Russia Letter
Vid: Bolton's Mustache of Righteous Fury Responds

flowerdiplomat.jpg

Yup:

This is smart diplomacy? This is a debacle. The Russians dismissed it contemptuously. Look, if we could get the Iranian nuclear program stopped with Russian's helping us in return for selling out the Poles and the Czechs on missile defense, I'm enough of a cynic and a realist to say we would do it the same way that Kissinger agreed to delegitimize and de-recognize Taiwan in return for a large strategic opening with China. But Kissinger had it done. He had it wired. What happened here is it was leaked. The Russians have dismissed it. We end up being humiliated. We look weak in front of the Iranians, and we have left the Poles and Czechs out to dry in return for nothing. The Czechs and the Poles went out on a limb, exposed themselves to Russian pressure, and we have shown that Eastern Europe is not as sovereign as it appears if the Russian influence is there, and we will acquiesce in what they consider their own sphere of influence. This administration has prided itself, flattered itself on deploying smart diplomacy. "Smart diplomacy" is a meaningless idea, but if it has any meaning at all, it is not ever doing something as humiliating, amateurish, and stupid as this.

Dave @ Garfield Ridge emails:

Realpolitik is a great thing, when it works. But here's the deal: the Bush Administration, favoring missile defense in Eastern Europe, *might* have been able to work out this trade with Russia. Hell, I even argued for a stab at this, figuring it couldn't hurt to try. But the Obama Administration was against missile defense in Eastern Europe-- everybody knows that, including Russia. Why would Russia give Obama anything in return for Obama giving up something that he was always going to give up?

Indeed. And I think the letter indicates that Obama wants any old diplomatic excuse to end missile defense in Europe. He won't do so "unilaterally," as he doesn't have the balls to do so. Instead, he'll keep offering the Russians a "deal" on the missiles until they agree to do something intangible, and then he can come back to the public and say "Look at what a great deal I got, in exchange for nothing but expensive missiles we weren't going to use anyway."

Really minor. And the Russians know that. They know Obama's game -- he doesn't want to get anything from the Russians for America; he just wants to get some political cover for himself.

So the Russians will object until Obama's request is so trivial that it's an entirely free transaction for them.

And Obama gets what he wants -- exchanging missile defense for a meaningless piece of paper, but a meaningless piece of paper he, and his media Spirit Squad, can call some sort of "breakthrough."

And meanwhile most of Russia's conscripts will be Muslim by... 2015. Fifteen, not fifty.

Bolton... on Hannity's show.

P'shop: by Slublog.


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posted by Ace at 11:50 AM

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