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Obama makes world safer, already

Written By: - Date published: 2:10 pm, January 29th, 2009 - 31 comments
Categories: International, us politics - Tags:

In response to U.S. President Barack Obama’s review of the proposed U.S. missile defence system in Eastern Europe, Russia is scrapping plans to deploy nuclear capable Iskander missiles in Kaliningrad, just north of Poland. The Guardian reports:

Obama has not yet decided whether to press ahead with the scheme or to abandon it, although indications suggest he is sceptical about its value…

Today’s Russian move can be interpreted as a Kremlin olive branch to the new US team and a tactic to put pressure on Obama to scrap the shield.

“These plans have been suspended because the new US administration is not pushing ahead with the plans to deploy the US missile defence system in Poland and the Czech Republic,” an official told the Russian state news agency, Interfax.

And so the value of a sane U.S. president is demonstrated. Obama’s tactics are conciliatory, non-confrontational and will create a safer world. But don’t take my word for it. If a radical left-wing revolutionary like Fidel Castro can call Obama “a man who seems absolutely sincere,” who believes strongly in his ideas “and who hopefully can carry them out”, can we really expect Obama to yield to the neo-conservative legacy?

31 comments on “Obama makes world safer, already ”

  1. The world and America is in good hands with Obama as leader.

  2. To quote John Pilger from his blog:

    http://www.johnpilger.com/page.asp?partid=515

    “…President-elect Barack Obama has named his A-team. They include Hillary Clinton, who voted to attack Iraq without reading the intelligence assessment and has since threatened to “totally obliterate’ Iran on behalf of a foreign power, Israel.”

    “…His secretary of defence will be Robert Gates, who serves the lawless, blood-soaked Bush regime as secretary of defence, which means secretary of war (America last had to defend itself when the British invaded in 1812). Gates wants no date set for an Iraq withdrawal and “well north of 20,000′ troops to be sent to Afghanistan. He also wants America to build a completely new nuclear arsenal, including “tactical’ nuclear weapons that blur the distinction with conventional weapons.”

    The United States have bombed over 30 countries since World War 2, how sure are you that Obama will be any different.

  3. Quoth the Raven 3

    I guess the attack on Pakistan and the death of three Pakistani children just slips down the ole’ memory hole.

  4. Obama will be different. Mark my words.

  5. BLiP 5

    America votes for a leader with vision who can galvanise that nation around common ideals, and one who brings disinfecting sunlight to the filthy sewer that was the Bush regime. And what does New Zealand do . . . elect the biggest Goober the world has seen.

    Obama’s first 100 days in office are going to make Goober John Key’s effort look like a holiday in the islands . . .

  6. Lew 6

    Ye gods, I’m agreeing with Brett Dale.

    By ordering that Guantanamo be shut down, the CIA stop with their own detention/interrogation centres, and declaring invalid almost the entire jurisprudence of the War on Terror, Obama has already done more for the standing of the US in the world, and consequently for global safety than most people would have dreamed this time in 2006.

    LRO, QtR: Reread this comment.

    L

  7. Lew 7

    F’k’sakes. That was me, again, not PB. Despite having turned off the cookie which identifies me, the standard still thinks I’m PB.

    L

    [lprent: Will fix your message. I will have a look at the cookie generator. The site isn’t caching at the server side and your client side has been told that it is off. The caches just happen to be turned off right now. So it has to be how the cookie is generated.]

  8. Quoth the Raven 9

    Lew – We’ll just forget about the dead children shall we? Obama is the prince of peace starting… now.. oops how about now, no now. How long will we play that game for. I’m not denying he’s a damn sight better than Bush, but he’s no hero worth fawning over like some schoolgirl. I applaud the closing of Gitmo. All that’s happened in this instance is the Russians have said they won’t do something they said they would do. If Obama acutally stops the US building the missile shield in Poland than I’ll applaud it, but that will only be one little drop in an ocean of militarism. So I’ll thank you if you let be a little cynical until I’ll see a great deal more progress.

  9. Peter Burns 10

    “Obama will be different. Mark my words.”

    Oh yes Mr Dale . Watch the Yanks go down the tube in a big way. What a silly boy.

  10. higherstandard 11

    QTR

    “I’m not denying he’s a damn sight better than Bush, but he’s no hero worth fawning over like some schoolgirl.”

    Aye agreed people tend to forget that he is a politician first and foremost rather some Gandhi like figure. Let’s give him a hearty ‘well done’ for his actions to date but judge him after a few years in office for both him and his staff.

  11. Rex Widerstrom 12

    HS: Agreed entirely. What worries me about over enthusiastic “reportage” like this post is that the writer seems to have forgotten the old rule that the level of desire to hold public office is the most reliable indicator of the degree of one’s unsuitability to do so :-/

    And if there’s one thing that’s clear about Obama, he wanted that office more than any candidate (other than Hillary, perhaps) with a determination bordering on scary.

    And like the 17 year old who’s been chafing to get his licence, we can only cross our fingers and hope he figures out how to drive the thing now he’s got behind the wheel.

  12. higherstandard 13

    Yep

    Let’s face it even a battery hen would have looked rather impressive compared to the previous occupant of the oval office.

    I’m reminded of the dying words of Prince George in Blackadder where he asks that people remember him as a kind and wise ruler (something like that) and Blackadder responds that the best he can hope for is that he’s remembered as a bit of a thickie

  13. SPC 14

    I always thought Ukraine would have been a better “proposed” site for the missiles, once Iran realised nuclear capability.

    That would encourage Russia to assist more in containing Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

    And should that be ineffective – a better idea for an actual missile defence system would be a NATO-Russian base in south Russia.

  14. Quoth the Raven 15

    SPC – How about they don’t build any missile bases.

  15. Russia have rather elegantly boxed Obama in. There was one call. Russian power has diminished substantially with the fall in the oil price and they needed an out from confrontation. If Obama now goes ahead with missile bases in Poland & Czech it will look as though he has behaved in bad faith. If he does not go ahead it looks as though Obama has responded to the Russian threat as though they were still equals. Either way Russia wins.

    Siting the missiles in Poland was provocative and probably unnecessary but was an effective guarantee of Polish security by the US that was better than simply being in Nato. The US would not be willing to allow hostile forces to take control of advanced weapons systems.

  16. Tut tut, there are major provisos to this “agreement” over the missiles. Russia wanta a few concessions and I do not think the US will comply with them all.

    Furthermore, and I say this with an open mind about Obamas Presidency (which has only just started), the Poles and Czechs CHOSE to have these installations in their own country, just as they chose to join the EU. This choice was to be well away from Russia and their slow reapproachment to a sphere of influence.

    Give Obama a bit longer, this whole “he has already saved the world” malarky is a little premature. The more he closes operations and pulls back on highly publicised prisons – leaves more room to open up more secret ones that we don’t know about. It IS the US Govt after all we’re talking about 🙂 All modern administrations had their ways of getting information, why break a habit that neither Clinton or Kennedy tried to stop? 🙂

  17. gingercrush 18

    I disagree that Obama has made the world safer if anything I believe the world is more dangerous with Obama in power than it was before. There will be consequences with the amount of borrowing and big government Obama is pursuing. If America continues to borrow the amounts of money they are currently, that will have consequences. Eventually, that massive borrowing will cause financial problems sometime in the future. A poor world is certainly going to cause conflict.

    That and Obama has stated they’re likely to be in Afghanistan for 10 more years. And somehow I don’t see Obama doing anything about Israel. Which still makes the middle-east a dangerous place. Additionally, by moving out of Iraq that too likely will become a more problematic state. It was never right to attack Iraq and to be in Iraq. But I don’t feel pulling out of Iraq makes that state any safer.

    China continues to emerge as a world power and Russia is further becoming a problem. And I don’t believe the eight years of Clinton diplomacy made the world safer. Something the Obama administration looks set to repeat. And there is still the issue of terrorism. Terrorism doesn’t go away just because you decide to be nicer to the world.

    Add to all that there are problems/conflicts in asia, the middle east, africa and latin-america that continue to be under-reported.

  18. I agree Gingercrush. There is massive under reporting about what Russia is doing around Ukraine and Georgia as all we read is what is filtered through the Russian media. Latin America isn’t too dangerous at the moment, as they are ambitious to try and stir it up but are facing internal problems -including reigning in domestic support for their revolution.

    Clinton by all means didn’t leave the world in a safe place, I remember his world wide charm trips at the end of his 2nd term – widely covered by the sympathetic media as his final chance to forge a legacy. It’s a tough job for any president.

  19. Felix 20

    Eventually, that massive borrowing will cause financial problems sometime in the future. A poor world is certainly going to cause conflict.

    Ummm, ginger, not sure if you’ve been paying attention lately but…

  20. Redbaiter 21

    Closing down Guantanamo and allowing more terrorists to rejoin their cells, sucking up to Iran’s totalitarian murderer weeks before the “election”. Sure, that’s going to make us all so much safer. Obama is a left wing moron, and a danger to the free world such as we have not seen in a long long time. Not even Adolf Hitler enjoyed the benefit of a corrupt media to the extent the bat eared Constitutionally illegitimate Chicago thug Obama does.

  21. Chris 22

    Eddie, you are an idiot, just like last time

  22. Redbaiter 23

    Oh Gawd, what the fuck is it with this site and moderation?? Talk about fucken Nanny state. Loosen up a bit for fuck’s sake.

    [lprent: You’re just getting hit by a machine with a phrase book common to trolls. Use your native intelligence and figure out smarter ways of saying the same thing. I’m sure you don’t NEED those hackneyed stereotypes and words.. After all the bar is just there to annoy trolls enough that they don’t stick around to annoy the rest of us.]

  23. Lew 24

    QtR: We’ll just forget about the dead children shall we?

    No. What a fucking stupid statement. Why would you think I’d say that?

    I’m not denying he’s a damn sight better than Bush, but he’s no hero worth fawning over like some schoolgirl.

    I’m not fawning; I made my case. It’s not that he’s better (from a world peace and justice standpoint) than Bush Jr – he’s already better than Clinton and Bush Sr as well (Reagan is a tough call; let’s revisit in 8 years).

    So I’ll thank you if you let be a little cynical until I’ll see a great deal more progress.

    If you allow your cynicism to see what a big freaking deal those two executive orders and this agreement are in geopolitical terms, you’re a damned fool. I’m not suggesting you get his name tattooed across your arse, I’m suggesting you not bag him when there’s no evidence he’s made things worse, and plenty that he’s made things better.

    L

  24. Redbaiter 25

    Err BTW, thats the Iranian elections- I’m trying to make the point that the POTUS showing regard for this queer hanging totalitarian scumbag is a blow to the groups seeking real democracy in Iran, and will only build the esteem of this jumped up self important little gangster scumbag prior to the so called “vote’.

    He’s actually due nothing but contempt, and if this is not what he receives, then the freedoms of the Western world (those that remain) stand for nothing.. Obama and his advisors have no clues.

  25. Matthew Pilott 26

    Talk about fucken Nanny state. Loosen up a bit for fuck’s sake.

    This blog is private property, you just violated yourself.

    Incidentally, why do you care about Iranian elections? I understood that Ahmadinejad is merely a figurehead and weilds bugger-all power. He is indeed worthy of contempt, but the US doesn’t seem to have figured out how to start to deal with Iran – it’s the Ayatollah and the Guardian Council that they need to deal with…

    Do you think that elections could actualy achieve anything with the backdrop of unelected & untouchable power?

    The fault with Guantanamo does not lie with Obama. Bush’s illegal actions put the US in an untenable position (life, liberty and property unless you’re an a-rab I guess). If the people there had been dealt with legally and not in contraventoin of international law then the US wouldn’t be in the unenviable position of having to release people who shopuld probably be locked up.

    If Bush wasn’t a complete clusterfuck of a president it wouldn’t have been a problem but his incompetance and that of those around him have ensured an honourable President (or at least one who honours laws and such) would have no other course of action.

    Edit: “…Blackadder responds that the best he can hope for is that he’s remembered as a bit of a thickie – HS – poor Bush can’t even hope for that. Well maybe he can hope people think he was a thickie and not malignant.

  26. Redbaiter 27

    “The fault with Guantanamo does not lie with Obama. Bush’s illegal actions put the US in an untenable position (life, liberty and property unless you’re an a-rab I guess). If the people there had been dealt with legally and not in contraventoin of international law then the US wouldn’t be in the unenviable position of having to release people who shopuld probably be locked up.”

    Except for the expressions of opinin therein, a paragraph composed of utter lies from go to whoa. Bush did nothing “illegal” or in “contravention of international law”. In what court (other than that of deranged leftist hate) has he been charged, tried and convicted?

    All you people ever have are distortions of truth, smears and propaganda.

  27. Rex Widerstrom 28

    Matthew Pilott:

    This blog is private property, you just violated yourself.

    Did you have to phrase it that way? I’m now going to try and obliterate the brain cells that are harbouring the mental image that statement has created 😀

  28. Felix 29

    Matthew I have to agree with Rex, that was just awful.

  29. Quoth the Raven 30

    Lew – No need to be so short. I didn’t say he’s made things worse and I didn’t mean you were fawning I meant the poster was. Personally I’ll give it more time and reserve my judgement. It’s not going to be hard for him to be better than Reagan. Reagan was terrible. Far worse than Clinton. My point is this Russian business is nothing to get excited about. After all the Russians saying they’re going to do something than saying they’re not going to do it is nothing unusal, the blustering buffoons that thery are, and doesn’t signify some great change. And as I said if Obama says he’s not gong to build the missile bases then that will be a big step in the right direction, but I can hardly see how ramping up the attacks on Pakistan as per his miltaristic campaign rhetoric is going to make the world a safer place.

  30. Matthew Pilott 31

    It was deliberate, Felix and Rex. Look on my words, ye retinas, and depair.

    Red, try the odd Geneva convention if you’re stuck. Extraordinary rendition either violates the Fourth Geneva Convention (if they’re ‘enemy non-combatants – viz. civilians) or the third if they’re POWs.

    Since you’re simply bandying words instead of promoting anything of substance (gutless from go to woah eh?) you’ll note that I didn’t call Bush a war criminal since he hadn’t been convicted as such.

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