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Spengler

The Cost of America’s Abdication of Power

November 21st, 2013 - 3:07 pm

From today’s Algemeiner:

On a state visit to Moscow Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly asked Russian President Vladimir Putin to assert himself over U.S. President Barack Obama as the main peacekeeper in the Iranian nuclear negotiations, just as Putin did over the chemical weapons in Syria, according to a report on Thursday in Russia’s Kommersant that cited unnamed diplomatic sources.

Kommersant said the deal on the table today from the world powers in Geneva stipulates a six-month suspension of work on Iran’s nuclear facilities, in exchange for releasing $3 billion of frozen assets in international banks and a reduction in sanctions that would provide Tehran with an another $10 billion.

The newspaper cited a source close to the Israeli government as saying, “Netanyahu understands that the deal, insisted on by the United States, will be concluded,” and he sees no way to influence Washington any further in the matter.

“The looming agreement with Iran would have been acceptable two years ago, but not now,” a source close to Netanyahu told Kommersant. “Sometimes a bad agreement is worse than none. North Korea, for example, turned out to acquire nuclear weapons within a month after a written contract” was signed, saying that they wouldn’t.

Its sources said Netanyahu’s goal in the visit to Moscow was to convince the Russian leadership to achieve the maximum possible from Tehran with real concessions formalized in a binding agreement.

“We hope that Russia, as a key member of the negotiating process in Geneva, will be able to change the situation,” the Israeli diplomatic source said, adding that the key concession would be to get tougher control over Iranian nuclear facilities and opportunities to peer within the “secrets of the enterprise.”Iran has said it would not allow full transparency in terms of inspections to its nuclear facilities.

Benny Briskin, director of the Russian Jewish Congress (RJC) and an adviser to Netanyahu for a decade, told Kommersant, ”Moscow has well-developed links with Iran, as well as economic instruments that remain, despite international sanctions.”

 

All of this and more could have been anticipated years ago, as I’ll explain on the next page.

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Top Rated Comments   
The new voting-majority-demographic in America of the un-educated and the ill-educated certainly aren't listening. Those who voted the likes of the busy-busy Obama claque into office - twice - couldn't care less about our technological edge in air power.

They're vindictively "stickin' it to th' man.....meaning sticking it to all previously rational authority.

We're witnessing the politically correct but noxious winds of affirmatively actioning the likes of this multicultural creation named Barack Hussein Obama. He's the symbol of popular rebellion against the "establishment".

The whole foundation of what used to be our America founded upon the sturdy shoulders of hard working and law abiding "straight" [...genderisms don't apply here] folks is no more.

It's gone.


44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
American spinelessness emboldens America's enemies, increasing the liklihood of war and the death of thousands of American kids in the branches of the military.
Weakness—even the perception of weakness—invites war.
Any historian knows this, as does any bully.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
There's nothing wrong with being a "bystander". Given the inconsistency of US policy, it's more than high time for Israel and other allies to put their interests first and stop relying on the US. Being he world's nanny is what helped us get a government intent on being ours.

No matter how much we may object, the demographics of this country have been changed. A country that elects a narcissist (twice) who gives the figurehead of our oldest, allie a $100 ipod full of his speeches simply can not be relied upon. And there is no going back.

It's time to take care of our own interests, those shore to ship Chinese missiles can't sink carriers protecting our coasts.

The adversary to our way of life is no longer communism and Russia, it's islam, yet we backed the muslimes in Yugoslavia while the Russians backed the Serbs who fought them. Now, today, the Russians are putting a halt to building new masques in Moscow.

Instead of pointing fingers at Putin and wringing our hands, we need to take some lessons.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (29)
All Comments   (29)
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The Russians have had serious problems with Islamist fanatics. They must know that a nuclear-armed Iran throwing its weight around would make the situation much worse. But selling technology to Iran brings in lots of money and gives the Russians more leverage in negotiations with the West. So how can they enjoy the benefits of this arrangement without suffering painful consequences?

Step 1, sell Iran everything it needs to develop nuclear weapons. Ignore any sabotage attempts by Israel or the West because they will only force the Iranians to buy even more equipment. Step 2, sell Israel all the information it needs to destroy the Iranian weapons program in exchange for intelligence or technology (e.g. advanced avionics). Ensure that any missiles that might prevent the airstrikes are not delivered until it's just too late to deploy them in time. Step 3, sell the Iranians another load of hugely expensive equipment to start their program again and rebuild their air defences. Rinse and repeat until the suckers run out of money.

Of course, the Iranians might well suspect that the Russians had betrayed them. But "suspect" is not the same as "be able to prove", and proof is not much use if there isn't any alternative supplier available that would be any more reliable. I suggest that the Russian strategy is to make money and increase their power in the Middle East by positioning Russia as a key supplier to both sides in the Israeli-Iranian conflict. It's diplomacy through war-profiteering.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Bush failed to stop nuclear programs in N. Korea and Iran ... a failure for the ages. But primary blame belongs to Obama and his cohorts who undermined and slandered the US effort in Iraq and then went on to appease Iran.

Iraq was not a bad opening move post-9-11 to begin to defang Radical Islam. It even exposed Khan's proliferation network, ended the Libyan nuclear program and intimidated the Iranians suffcienty to suspend their program.

44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
OT: Here is Reagan's take on who killed the Kennedys. Interesting read. New stuff I didn't know about the 1967 six day war.
http://townhall.com/columnists/paulkengor/2013/11/23/who-killed-the-kennedys-ronald-reagans-answer-n1751540?utm_source=thdaily&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=nl
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
THE ONLY THING RUSSIA IS AFRAID OF IS MUSLIM TERRORISTS
Iran doesn't unleash Islamist terrorists against Russia because it relies on Russian weapons and nuclear scientists. OTOH, Russia relies on Iran's purchasing power. It's hard to think of anything that could break apart this relationship -- unless the regime in Iran were completely decapitated AND another country was able to replace Iran's purchases. Hmmmm


After oil, Russia's economy is boosted by the sale of weapons. The only way for Israel to get Russia on its side is to buy more 'stuff' from Russia than Iran does. Even then
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
"America’s rule of the skies may be challenged by its failure to invest adequately in the next generation of American aircraft."

"The United States may cast away its technological edge in air power without a second thought,"

"and the Obama Administration’s sabotage of American interests, we have become bystanders."

Elections have consequences. Are you listening America?



44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Roughly 51% isn't and won't. That number of Obama voters will only grow after the amnesty so matters will only be worse.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
The new voting-majority-demographic in America of the un-educated and the ill-educated certainly aren't listening. Those who voted the likes of the busy-busy Obama claque into office - twice - couldn't care less about our technological edge in air power.

They're vindictively "stickin' it to th' man.....meaning sticking it to all previously rational authority.

We're witnessing the politically correct but noxious winds of affirmatively actioning the likes of this multicultural creation named Barack Hussein Obama. He's the symbol of popular rebellion against the "establishment".

The whole foundation of what used to be our America founded upon the sturdy shoulders of hard working and law abiding "straight" [...genderisms don't apply here] folks is no more.

It's gone.


44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Compassionate Conservative was last seen kissing the ring of that bilious, bulbous gigantic bag of hot air from New Jersey. Not only does the Compassionate Conservative display quixotic stupidity, he engages in plain, old-fashion stupidity as well.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
American spinelessness emboldens America's enemies, increasing the liklihood of war and the death of thousands of American kids in the branches of the military.
Weakness—even the perception of weakness—invites war.
Any historian knows this, as does any bully.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
You're right. American weakness and strict isolationism has drawn the US into war several times over the last century. Certain attempts to fight on the cheap have hurt us badly, like arming and training the Taliban (and Al Qaeda) during the Russian Afghan War and Somalia. The US military is now almost as small as it was prior to WWII and the troops and equipment are worn out while the military budget is being strangled such that troops can no longer train. On top of that, they are being relentlessly hammered with Political Correctness Indoctrination and harassment which is certainly driving many out.

As before the ambitious have taken note and they note the feckless wimp in the White House. It is indeed entirely possible that wars could break out that will clobber us economically and we could do nothing about it. War in the Middle East would cause fuel prices to skyrocket which would crush what's left of the economy, though surely this regime salivates at the thought of how much power they could grab if that happened. If not for that, it would be amusing to let the Chinese and Russians have the Middle East and all the troubles that go with it.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Your premise is, quiet frankly, WRONG. As is the assumption that those of us who don't want to spend blood and dollars "leading the world" in any way favor military weakness.

The Japanese didn't attack us because we were "weak" quiet the opposite, they attacked us because we were the strongest naval power in the Pacific and had taken a belligerent posture towards them vis a vie denying the sale of oil and steal to them. They knew they had to take us out to fulfill their plan, had we been "weak" per your argument they could have simply ignored us.

The Germans didn't attack us at all, we attacked them, repeatedly, in international waters.

And guess what? In neither case was it "isolationists" who got us into shooting wars, just like with WW1 is was "Progressive" interventionists, like the author here.

Schools indoctrinate pupils, always have, always will, today they indoctrinate one way, your post and PacRim Jim's above exemplify the way the schools used to indoctrinate.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
There's nothing wrong with being a "bystander". Given the inconsistency of US policy, it's more than high time for Israel and other allies to put their interests first and stop relying on the US. Being he world's nanny is what helped us get a government intent on being ours.

No matter how much we may object, the demographics of this country have been changed. A country that elects a narcissist (twice) who gives the figurehead of our oldest, allie a $100 ipod full of his speeches simply can not be relied upon. And there is no going back.

It's time to take care of our own interests, those shore to ship Chinese missiles can't sink carriers protecting our coasts.

The adversary to our way of life is no longer communism and Russia, it's islam, yet we backed the muslimes in Yugoslavia while the Russians backed the Serbs who fought them. Now, today, the Russians are putting a halt to building new masques in Moscow.

Instead of pointing fingers at Putin and wringing our hands, we need to take some lessons.
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
Thanks to the Bush administration’s Quixotic stupidity and the Obama administration’s sabotage of American interests, we have become bystanders.

This, becoming bystanders, is called ... ... improvement.

When in a hole, first stop digging. - Murphy
44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
David, perhaps you can shine light on this situation.

You mention ties between the Kremlin and the current Iranian regime; given the light shining on the inhumanity attributable to those who emblem is the crescent moon (I refer to http://twitter.com/MidnightWatcher and http://www.facingislam.blogspot.com) - surely the Kremlin has more on the ball than to jeopardize the long term via the short term.

For, I get it that the deal between Putin and the Oligarchs is that he will not interfere with they making money, as long as they don't interfere with how he governs. But, surely, they can't be that venal to allow such perpetuation of inhumanity. Can they?

44 weeks ago
44 weeks ago Link To Comment
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