The United States is poised to dump a critical missile-defense agreement with two of its most dependable NATO allies. The Polish daily Gazeta Wyborcza reported yesterday that the Obama administration is going to scrap the "third site" anti-missile system scheduled to be deployed in Poland and the Czech Republic. Missile interceptors in Poland and a radar station in the Czech Republic were scheduled to be deployed by 2013. Now the plan appears to have been shot down.
This move sends the wrong signal to our allies in Eastern Europe. The former Soviet satellites have been among the strongest proponents of a robust U.S. role in Europe because they believed they could count on the United States to defend their interests against perennially predatory Russia. Both countries showed good faith by sending troops to fight in Iraq as part of the multinational force. The Polish and Czech governments acted courageously when they agreed to host the missile-defense system.
Prague and Warsaw knew Moscow would react negatively, but after years of patient diplomacy, they chose to stand with the United States. Canceling the deployment will betray the trust of our allies in Warsaw and Prague, leave Europe defenseless against Iranian missiles, enhance the Kremlin's stature and diminish U.S. credibility. There is no upside.
Wasn't it Barrack Obama who continuously lambasted George Bush for alienating our friends? Wasn't it Obama who promised to foster new levels of trust abroad, and to build the kind of relationships that lead to strong coalition partners? The same Obama who is constantly giving speeches in foreign countries about how arrogant his country is?
To add insult to injury, the article goes on to explain how Obama is playing nice with the Russians. There is a pattern here of Obama turning a cold shoulder to our friends (Israel, Great Britain) and embracing the bad guys (Hugo Chavez, the Iranian mullahs, Honduran tyrants).