You know it’s bad when the Russians are elated over cancelled weapons programs.
Russia has dropped plans to install missiles near Poland after the Obama administration signalled a change in US attitude to the region, a Moscow military official has reportedly said.
The official suggested that Mr Obama’s White House had made clear it would not prioritise executing the Bush administration’s plan to install a missile defence shield in Poland and the Czech Republic.
An unnamed official in the Russian military’s general staff said: “The implementation of these plans has been halted in connection with the fact that the new US administration is not rushing through plans to deploy” elements of its missile defence shield in eastern Europe, according to the Interfax news agency.
Vladimir Putin, the Russian Prime Minister, had warned that the US shield – which the Bush White House said was necessary to defend against potential attacks from the Middle East – would be interpreted by Moscow as a direct provocation. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/russia/4369027/Russia-drops-missile-plans-due-to-Obama-change-to-US-attitude.html
The Czechs and Polish got on board after Russia’s invasion of Georgia. There is justifiable concern over Russia’s recent stomp into neighboring countries.
Hat Tip to John McKittrick at Closing Velocity: http://closingvelocity.typepad.com/closing_velocity/2009/01/breaking-moscow-rolls-obama-euro-missile-defense-apparently-shelved.html
John gives a break down of the events which led up to Obama’s failing of his ‘first test’:
Bush secures NATO cooperation on missile defense. April 2008
Poland wavers on basing interceptors and the Lithuanian alternative. June 2008
Poland quickly gets on board after Russia invades a neighbor. August 2008
Russia threatens to target the Poles and Czechs with ICBMs and rapidly expands espionage in the Czech Republic even though the 10 planned interceptors are no threat to the Russian strategic arsenal of over 2,000 ICBM warheads. September 2008
Obama wins the election. Within hours, Medvedev announces plan to deploy Iskander missiles to Kaliningrad. November 2008
All 26 NATO members unanimously reiterate support for European missile defense. Outgoing Missile Defense Agency chief candidly discusses Russian opposition. December 2008
US successfully intercepts an ICBM with a larger, more complex version of the same interceptor planned for Europe. December 2008
Russia responds with juvenile gunboat diplomacy in the Caribbean with a warship passing through the Panama Canal. December 2008
Russia then yanks 900 tanks out of Kaliningrad, the first twist in a transparent series of spastic Good Cop, Bad Cop charades. December 2008
Visiting Poland and Czech Republic, Democrat Rep. Tauscher says “I am unwilling to dig holes in Poland and fill them up with untested rockets.” Obama now has all the Congressional aircover he needs. December 2008
Russia offers to axe new ICBM development plans if we axe European missile defense. December 2008
Russia announces plans to redeploy nukes to former-Soviet republic Belarus. December 2008
There’s a pattern there. Stop reacting to the new Soviet-style tactics, and Dmitry Medvedev, the Russian President, (aka Vlaimir Putin’s sockpuppet) is free to pick up where his Kremlin predecessors left off.
The next time Russia invades another country over the desire to join NATO, we’ll see what other weapons program Obama shit-cans.