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Top Headline Comments 12-31-09 | Main | New Year's Eve Afternoon Open Thread
December 31, 2009

Putin Knows How To Deal With Terrorists And Obama

First, Vlady on terrorists...cut their balls off.

Unfortunately, this is related to another story. Putin is rolling Obama in nuclear talks.

Earlier this year Obama and Medvedev agreed that missile defense wouldn't be linked to the attempt to reach a new nuclear weapons reduction treaty. Suddenly Putin the puppet master has come out from behind the curtain and says the two will have to be linked.

Josh Rogin writing at The Cable (Foreign Policy's blog) says it could be the result of a split between Medvedev and Putin or a game the two are playing against Obama.

So what can the administration do? (Atlantic Council Fellow Alexandros) Petersen recalls a similar incident when Ronald Reagan was negotiating the original START agreement with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev in Reykjavik. Gorby demanded that START be linked to U.S. missile defense and Reagan said it was not negotiable and walked out of the room.

"The result of Reagan taking a hard line was that it wasn't linked from the beginning," said Petersen.

More broadly, the question is: What do the current problems with the START process say about Obama's pledge to reset relations with Russia? Perhaps that Russia is looking at the long term and isn't confident that Obama's overtures will be continued by successive administrations.

"They view Obama as somewhat of an anomaly in U.S. foreign policy, and START is for decades," Petersen said.

For the U.S. side, this might also change the calculation about giving Russia concessions before a negotiation is near completion.

"You give them a finger and they take an arm," said Petersen. "With this statement [from Putin], the debate has shifted completely."

The problem is Obama would be happy to dump missile defense for free let alone in exchange for some sort of concession from the Russians. The idea that Obama either by policy preference or personal temperament is going to be anything like Reagan when it comes to the Russians (or anything) is simply laughable.

Whether it be with Islamic terrorists or Obama, Vladdy is playing for keeps and Obama is still operating from that classic foreign policy text, Winnie The Pooh.

Courtesy of the man, the myth, the legend...Slublog.

I don't think this ends well for us.

digg this
posted by DrewM. at 11:24 AM

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