Thursday, April 8, 2010

Obama's false START

Blogging may be a little light this week as I lend a hand to my mother who is recovering from the recent acquistion of a new knee.  I did want to direct your attention to The Heritage Foundation Morning Bell for some key observations about the New START treaty signed by President Obama and Russian President Dmitri Medvedev today in Prague (image: ITAR-TASS):

Just hours before President Barack Obama unveiled his Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) on Tuesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told reporters in Moscow that the Kremlin maintained the right to withdraw from the new START agreement if the United States pursued its missile defense program. Late last night, the White House responded to Lavrov’s statement, insisting: “The Russian statement does no more than give the United States fair notice that it may decide to pull out of the New START Treaty if Russia believes our missile defense system affects strategic stability. We believe it doesn’t.”

But the Russians could care less what the Obama administration believes about missile defense. The Russians have made it exceedingly clear that Kremlin compliance with the treaty will evaporate at any point when Moscow decides our missile defense program threatens them. And the Russians have already said repeatedly that they believe it does. There is a good reason that neither Russian President Dmitri Medvedev nor Prime Minister Vladimir Putin have uttered a word about the treaty in public. As New York University professor of Russian Studies and History Stephen Cohen told MSNBC just seconds after Presidents Obama and Medvedev signed the agreement: “Politically it is an unstable treaty.” Why should the U.S. Senate ratify a treaty that Russia maintains it can exit at any time?

President Obama’s New START has other problems as well. The Russians have a long and well documented history of violating arms control agreements. By focusing intently on numerical arms reduction, it is unclear what ground Obama gave up on verification. There is also legitimate concern that the President has not yet met requirements under U.S. law (sec 1251 of the 2009 Defense Authorization Act) to adequately address the modernization of U.S. nuclear weapons and infrastructure before entering into a new arms control agreement. But President Obama’s NPR promises not to develop any new nuclear weapons. That’s an odd promise since Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Iran and North Korea are all doing so. (emphasis mine)
Why would the U.S. Senate approve a nuclear arms treaty that the Russians can abrogate at will?

And why would the Commander in Chief, potentially in violation of the 2009 Defense Authorization Act, enter into an agreement in which he promises not to update our antiquated nuclear arsenal while other nuclear states are doing so aggressively?  To set a good example?  Are you kiddng me?

The naivete of the current administration is astonishing.  And frightening.


  1. I heard that the Russian Vice President was overheard saying the following to Russian President at the signing ceremony, "This is a big f*cking deal!"... And then the Russian President stated that he wish that he had said it first...

    No wait, that's the Americans who said that at ANOTHER signing event. The Russians would never exhibit such a lack of class...

  2. ...and then sell t-shirts about it?