So far, it hasn't been much of a deal. And as we scale down our defense efforts, Russia is boosting military spending at double-digit rates. Here we have all but abandoned the testing and rebuilding of our nuclear deterrent, and Russia only last month test-launched two new Sineva class sub-based ICBMs.By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY
Whom do you think they're trying to intimidate?
Missile Defense: The U.S. has abandoned plans to install a missile defense system in Europe, according to a report. If true, this is a major strategic error that will have serious consequences for our allies in Europe and for us.
Quoting a U.S. source, the Polish daily Gazeta Wyborcza says the Obama administration has decided against building a missile shield to protect Poland and the Czech Republic. The reason? Russian opposition.
Now, if we want to build a defense system for friends in Europe, we'll have to place it in the Balkans, Israel or somewhere else. That is, if Russia approves.
This is a stark reversal of past policy and reneges on promises made by the current administration. Worse, it shows weakness. We got into a staredown with the Russian bear and we blinked.
President Obama has vowed to support missile defense, provided it was "pragmatic and cost-effective." Well, the Congressional Budget Office rated the system going into Poland and the Czech Republic as the most effective of the alternatives.
As for promises to our allies, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton just this month said the U.S. would offer our allies a "defense umbrella" against threats from a possible Iranian nuclear weapon.
Now, all that high-sounding defense rhetoric is out the window.
Coupled with the $1.2 billion slashed from the missile defense budget this year, the administration is making clear it hopes to kill off missile defense — a mistake we may all come to regret.
We've just weakened America's standing in a critical region of the world — Eastern Europe — and let our allies down. We've made them vulnerable, in ways that only we could, to Russia's growing military menace. Polish and Czech friends who had relied on us to stand firm and keep our word no doubt feel betrayed.
This diminishes our global influence. What smallish country will now take our word at face value when we promise to protect them?
The U.S. abandonment of the so-called "third site" development of 10 missile interceptors in Poland and a radar array in the Czech Republic signals our weakness to both Russia and Iran.
Iran, as some have recently estimated, is less than a year away from having a workable nuclear weapon. Germany's intelligence agency, the BND, said in July that Iran will have the means to produce a nuclear weapon within six months. So the threat is growing.
In a related story...
US snubbing Poland for 70th anniversary of WWII?
Thanks to HotAir
In less than a week, Poland will commemorate the 70th anniversary of the beginning of World War II. On September 1st, 1939, Germany launched a war that killed tens of millions of people after concocting a false provocation on the Polish border, with the Soviet Union invading from the other direction. The Polish nation all but disappeared for several years, and for decades after the end of the war, Poland had to live with the war’s Iron Curtain legacy. For many reasons, September 1st will be a day of somber reflection for Poland and eastern Europe.
A few nations appear to have been left off of the list - including France and the UK, which had guaranteed Poland’s security but failed to initiate military action against the Germans until the invasion of France. Also missing is any mention of a representative from the US, despite American efforts to build a robust alliance and friendship with the Poles since their liberation from Soviet domination. Polonia News, a blog out of Poland with both English and Polish language versions, claims that the “snub” has Poles angry:
It is five days before the commemoration ceremony of the 70th anniversary, September 1st, of the outbreak of World War II in Poland and Washington has not yet announced who is going to represent the US administration.
Polish officials had been led to believe the US would be represented by Vice-President Joe Biden or Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. But Prime Minister Donald Tusk seems to have lost all hope that the Obama administration will be sending a high-level official to the ceremony. The ceremony will be attended by Chancellor Merkel, Prime Minister Putin and heads of 12 other states.
Many Polish officials are astonished and see it as a snub but don’t say it out loud. Here are some of comments voiced recently: “I would not attach a great importance to the fact that one country will not be represented by a member of the current administration.” “There is a very long way from Washington to Poland.”
Polish politicians and commentators noticed that Hillary Clinton has spent 11 days in Africa, while Polish soldiers die or get wounded in Afghanistan, but can’t spare a day to show a face for this important day for Poles. Just last week Polish government decided to spend nearly 300 million dollars on equipment for troops in that country. In Poland it is a lot of money.
Major Polish newspapers ask what else Poland can do for America? How many more officers should die in Afghanistan? How many more F-16s should they buy? Do they, Obama and Clinton, understand that US is about to commit another blunder?