Obama says no to missile shield in Europe - Macleans.ca
 

Obama says no to missile shield in Europe

George W. Bush’s defense system is scrapped


 

In “one of the biggest national security reversals by the new administration,” Barack Obama announced Thursday that he would call off the sophisticated missile defense program in Europe planned by George W. Bush – instead putting in place a more modest system aimed at intercepting short to medium-range missiles. “President Bush was right that Iran’s ballistic missile program poses a significant threat,” Obama told reporters, referring to the original rationale behind the plan. But he said new intelligence indicates that Tehran is more likely to develop short or medium-range missiles than intercontinental ones – something his new plan better guards against. Not everyone is happy. “Scrapping the U.S. missile defense system does little more then empower Russia and Iran at the expense of our allies in Europe,” said Republican representative John A. Boehner of Ohio. But Defense Secretary Robert Gates – a Republican first appointed by Bush – insists the new proposal “provides a better missile defense capability than the program [he] recommended almost three years ago.” Anticipating anxiety in Europe over the switch, Obama arranged a late-night call to the Czech PM and early-morning conference with Poland’s PM.

The New York Times


 
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Obama says no to missile shield in Europe

  1. Weren't John Manley, Frank McKenna and even Paul Martin (for a while – before he wasn't) for Canada being part of this?

  2. Not to mention Steve, Stock etc. And worse tthe Conservatives claimed Canada needed to be part of it for filthy lucre and not because they love militarising the Arctic.

  3. Poor Poland…invaded to the day 70 years ago…

    • Actually many people in Poland and even more people in the Czech Republic were against the Missile Defense System (58% of Poland according to The Wall Street Journal, 2/3 of the Czech Republic according to BBC News).

      Russia insisted that the missiles were going to be used as a deterrent against Russia, and the United States denied this, saying that it would be used against "Rogue States" like Iran, even though the radar wouldn't be able to reach Iran. After Russia asked to be involved and place some stations in Russia instead of the Czech Republic, the United States refused, angering Russia. The Missile Shield would've done more harm than good. The Russians are now happy, the U.S. is happy that it won't be wasting money on a useless system, and the Poles and Czech's are happy that they won't be the front-line on Russia's/U.S.'s chess game.

      • The Polish government had to go against the will of it's own people to do this, plus it had to go against Russia, plus it had to go against the anti-American EU, plus it sent soldiers to Iraq, plus it now sends them to Afghanistan, plus it provided secret sites for CIA renditions further angering the EU.

        And now the Americans say, well, thanks for the help, old chap. And I guarantee that both the Polish government and the Polish people are upset. The Americans stirred up a whole bunch of trouble for Poland, then changed their minds like a bunch of petulant 2-year olds.

        The missile shield was to be a symbol for Poland (which is why Poland agreed to it,and Iraq, etc.) It was to send a message to Russia that Poland is an ally of the United States, so don't try anything funny.

        And yes, almost exactly 70 years ago, on September 17th, 1939, the Soviet Union enacted the secret part of it's non-agression treaty with Nazi Germany and attacked Poland's defenseless eastern border.

  4. we should try to boost trade with russia so they aren't as much of an enemy …once the economies are more interlinked conflict is nearly impossible ..like china and usa ..usa needs cheap goods, china needs jobs,,,what a deal

  5. Maybe if we adopt a Detente policy towards Eastern Europe, the Russians will leave Poland alone. No one's ever tried that before, right? No wait…

    Weakness invites attack. Major wars start when naifs like Obama think they can placate a greedy regime by abandoning its neighbors.

    • There's a difference between weakness and rationality.
      The missile defense shield was a boondoggle. So far as I'm aware the military has only been able to successfully destroy one test missile, and that's when they knew its exact trajectory, course, timing, and did not equip it with anything that might jam the incoming missile.

      Far better off spending the money on something that might actually work to protect lives, rather than antagonize potential foes.

      • Incorrect. They've had at least 19 successful tests in 23 attempts. This link reported that as the status in July, and since then I think they've done one more shoot-down test in the Pacific.

        Defeating counter-measures is an additional hurdle, but one step at a time. Ten years ago leftists were arguing that missile defense was impossible because it amounted to hitting a bullet with a bullet. Now that that's been done 19 times, people should realize that all technical hurdles can be overcome once the political will is present.

        I can't think of any better way to protect lives than by rendering nuclear missiles useless. And in any case, a commitment was made to the Poles and the Czechs.

      • Incorrect. They've had 19 successful tests in 23 attempts. This link reported that as the status in July, and since then I think they've done one more shoot-down test in the Pacific.

        Defeating counter-measures is an additional hurdle, but one step at a time. Ten years ago leftists were arguing that missile defense was impossible because it amounted to hitting a bullet with a bullet. Now that that's been done 19 times, people should realize that all technical hurdles can be overcome once the political will is present.

        I can't think of any better way to protect lives than by rendering nuclear missiles useless. And in any case, a commitment was made to the Poles and the Czechs.

      • That's incorrect. They've had at least 19 successful tests in 23 attempts. CNN reported this in July, and since then I think they've done one more shoot-down test in the Pacific.

        Defeating counter-measures is an additional hurdle, but one step at a time. Ten years ago leftists were arguing that missile defense was impossible because it amounted to hitting a bullet with a bullet. Now that that's been done 19 times, people should realize that all technical hurdles can be overcome once the political will is present.

        I can't think of any better way to protect lives than by rendering nuclear missiles useless. And in any case, a commitment was made to the Poles and the Czechs.

      • That's incorrect. They've had at least 19 successful tests in 23 attempts. CNN reported this in July, and since then I think they've done one more shoot-down test in the Pacific.

        Defeating counter-measures is an additional hurdle, but one step at a time. Seven years ago leftists were arguing that missile defense was impossible because it amounted to hitting a bullet with a bullet. Now that that's been done 19 times, people should realize that all technical hurdles can be overcome once the political will is present.

        I can't think of any better way to protect lives than by rendering nuclear missiles useless. And in any case, a commitment was made to the Poles and the Czechs.

        • "all technical hurdles can be overcome once the political will is present."

          What is that, like, the epitaph of neoconservatism?

          "a commitment was made to the Poles and the Czechs."

          Except the Poles don't want it. Neither do the Czechs.