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Posted by on Sep 26, 2009 in International, Media, Miscellaneous, Places, Politics, War | 4 comments

Obama’s Delusionary March Toward Utopia: Rzeczpospolita, Poland

As we’ve all heard by now, Western Europe is relieved, and Eastern Europe is aggrieved, over President Barack Obama’s decision to scrap Bush-era missile shield bases in Poland and the Czech Republic.

This article by Marek Magierowski of Poland’s Rceczpospolita offers a good sense of how Poles view the decision.

So why did Obama do it? Magierowski gives three reasons:

“First, the Americans came to recognize that Iran will not soon be able to threaten Europe with its rockets – let alone the United States. Secondly, they decided to sacrifice the shield on the altar of good relations with Russia. Thirdly, they ultimately concluded that land bases in Eastern Europe are too expensive.”

So far so good – that all sounds fairly reasonable. Then comes the angst over being, as many Poles feel, ‘thrown under the bus’ as they say:

“That step may mean the beginning of a chillier epoch in Polish-American relations. The promise of further collaboration on a new system Defense Secretary Gates proposed may apply in 2015 at the earliest. In 2015, Barack Obama may no longer be president, or Robert Gates, Defense Secretary. A new system may come about … or not. Apart from that: what Polish prime minister would now sign an agreement with the U.S. government without fearing, a few months later, of being left out in the cold?”

Later, highlighting the reputation for bad judgment accrued by the U.S. intelligence services, Magierowski goes on to focus on Polish fears:

“What if Russia, in exchange for reducing its nuclear arsenal, also demands that Washington stop promoting the pro-Western ambitions of Ukraine and Georgia? Or suppose the Kremlin insists on a greater role in shaping the strategy of NATO? What if turns out, however, that Iran is closer to building a nuclear weapon than we think? Closer, for example, than it seems to the CIA, which let us recall was surprised by the outbreak of the Yom Kippur War [1973], the Iranian Revolution or the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. Nor did it predict the collapse of the Soviet Union; it shamed itself on September 11, 2001 and then found “unshakeable evidence” of the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

“What if this time again, the CIA’s outstanding analysts and spies (among whom 72 percent speak exclusively English) are wrong?”

Translated By Halszka Czarnocka

September 18, 2009

Poland – Rzeczpospolita – Original Article (Polish)

The Americans have opted out of building an anti-missile system in Poland and the Czech Republic for three reasons.

First, they came to recognize that Iran will not soon be able to threaten Europe with its rockets – let alone the United States. Secondly, they decided to sacrifice the shield on the altar of good relations with Russia. Thirdly, they ultimately concluded that land bases in Eastern Europe are too expensive.

READ ON AT WORLDMEETS.US, your most trusted translator and aggregator of foreign news and views about our nation.

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Copyright 2009 The Moderate Voice
  • Leonidas

    We still have the option/threat of placing missile in Poland later, in fact, as far as I know thats still the plan. We need Russia’s help with Iran if we can get it in the present. If delaying deployment until 2015 can get it, its likely worth it. Outside of the headlines, you can probably be that we are doing things for the Poles. There are rumors flying and even some from some signifigant sources.

  • DLS

    Naive, utopian idealism is the happier, sappier side of the post-1960s Left. (The other, darker side is the self-and-self-nation-loathing anti-USA-and-Western deliberate antagonism and contrariness.)

    In this case, it may not have been so much cowering before Russia as it was acceding to the post-1980 stance against strategic ballistic missile defense, as well as strategic defense of the West (especially of the USA) in general. (The “boondoggle” and “failed concept” arguments always were transparent as well as hypocritical.)

    Interestingly, any cowering before Russia (after all, it’s not only the Czechs and Poles that were taught a harsh lesson about libs running the USA, but the Georgians and Ukrainians, too) may or may not have an additional motivation: Easing relations between European neighbors of Russia and Russia, to better ensure confidence in deliveries from Russia of the


  • shannonlee

    The Poles are upset about the loss to their economy, nothing more. As members of the EU, they are completely protected from Russia. They’ll get over it.

  • rudi

    Leonidas and DLS – The Polish public isn’t enamored with the Reagan Star Wars boondoggle:

    Poland is now one of the very few places in Europe that prefers former President Bush to Obama.

    This is not true. It is not even remotely true. As that Economist article I mentioned the other day told us, Obama has a higher approval rating in Poland than Bush did last year. As I noted Saturday, almost half of Poland welcomed Obama’s decision to scrap the proposed missile defense program. Less than a third opposed the decision. No doubt the 31% that had a negative reaction looks back at the Bush years more fondly, but it is simply untrue that Poland as a whole prefers Bush to Obama. It’s as if a foreign columnist based his analysis of American public opinion regarding the Iraq war in 2006 on what top officials at the Pentagon were saying. When less than a third of the population opposed Obama’s decision and less than half of Poland viewed Bush favorably, it is ridiculous to speak as if most Poles loathe Obama or suddenly long for his predecessor. Cohen makes this mistake because he confuses a certain segment of Polish elite reaction for the views of all Poland. He accuses Obama of snubbing Poland, but most Poles do not feel slighted.

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