The View From 1776

Obama’s Polish Pullback Encouraged Putin’s Ukraine Move

Read Richard Miniter’s assessment in Forbes Magazine:


As Russia devours Ukraine, President Obama’s decision to stall missile defenses for Poland looks more and more reckless.

Let’s go back to 2009, in the heady days when President Obama was sworn in and his advisers were eager to hit “the reset button” with Russia. The “reset button” was self-congratulation masquerading as a bold new idea. Just because the occupants of the White House had changed, didn’t mean Russia’s long-term interests had. The “reset button” mentality assumed that personalities, not interests, drive nations.

Still, Vladimir Putin was shrewd enough to spot a naïf at the poker table and upped the ante. Team Obama was happy to oblige and indefinitely delay the Bush Administration’s move to deploy ballistic-missile defenses to Poland and Czech republic.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 05/16 at 04:52 PM
  1. Miniter's argument is clearly without merit. How on earth does he think that placing missiles in Poland would have affected the take over of Crimea?
    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  05/19  at  09:46 PM
  2. Mr. Jay, to put it bluntly, “There are none so blind as will not see."

    Minter makes the cogent argument that opening the way for an aggressor to engage in aggressive action encourages further aggression. The well-worn example is Hitler's Austrian Anschluss, followed by his move on Czechoslovakia, agreed to by Chamberlain, that led Hitler to the conclusion that war-weary and peace-loving England would not oppose the invasion of Poland that started WWII.

    Weak defenses in a nation bordering an aggressor like Russia make aggression appear to be a low-cost maneuver. Just as Hitler used the pretext of “protecting” German minorities in Czechoslovakia and later in Poland, Putin is alleging the need to protect Russian minorities in Ukraine. Obama made it clear in public speeches and private diplomatic conversations that, after his re-election, he would be free to accommodate Russia with further diminutions of military support for our allies and with reductions in our own military capacities.

    The administration’s fairy-land perception of international relations is on full view in Secretary of State Kerry’s blustering about Russia not playing by liberal-progressives’ 21st century Robert’s Rules of Order.
    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  05/20  at  11:14 AM
  3. You still have not explained how anti-ballistic missiles in Poland would impact the type of actions that are going on in the Ukraine.

    It is also an interesting position to wail about huge deficits and simultaneously complain about not spending enough on the military.
    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  05/23  at  10:39 AM
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