More Amateur Hour from the White House Foreign Policy Team
So what sort of "change" has ObamaTeam been up to this week?
For starters, Obama has a "new approach to nuclear security," or at least that's how the New York Times puts it. Here's the money line from the NYT article: For the first time, the United States is explicitly committing not to use nuclear weapons against nonnuclear states that are in compliance with the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, even if they attacked the United States with biological or chemical weapons or launched a crippling cyberattack. What are these people in the White House smoking? The new policy is known as the Nuclear Posture Review, and it removes all ambiguity from the conditions under which the U.S. would or would not use nuclear weapons. Who is the brilliant strategist who thought up that one?
Victor Davis Hanson, a military historian, examines Obama's "posture review" in his article, "A Noble, Bad Idea," saying that the new nuclear policy is "ill-timed and ill-conceived": Obama’s fallback position has come down to something like this: “Why get a nuke, when we won’t use one against you—no matter what you do to us? But get a nuke—and all bets are off.” He apparently views such reasoning as superior to the existing presumption that could be condensed as: “Don’t dare get a nuclear weapon, much less consider using one, since the consequences for you will be too terrible to contemplate.”
Hanson calls the Nuclear Posture Review (NPR) part of Obama's "utopian vision," nobly intended but deeply concerning since it comes, not from an old hawk like Reagan or Bush, but instead from "one who has apologized, bowed, and backpedaled abroad in courting enemies like Syria and Iran while snubbing old friends such as Britain and Israel."
Heritage Foundation, which states that the Russians "clearly still see their nuclear weapons as the cornerstone of their defense, no matter how much President Obama wishes it were otherwise. Moscow has no interest in diminishing its own nuclear arsenal, but it is perfectly happy to allow the Obama administration to weaken the U.S. deterrent until it is on equal footing with Russia’s currently mediocre might." Dr. Utopia will not find his dream world of unicorns, rainbows, and a nuclear-free zone. Instead, says Heritage, "President Obama's nuclear weakness will only give America’s enemies every incentive to advance their own programs. The President’s arms control “road” is more likely to lead to a new arms race, rather than to “zero.”
Another article at Heritage refers to Obama's unrealistic agenda and the signing event today of the new START treaty in Prague with Medvedev as "deeply flawed" and one that merely sets the stage for the bigger show, the "theater production" on April 12-13, the non-proliferation summit in Washington. Heritage calls the whole mess "ambition enveloped in naïveté, wrapped in inexperience."
Continuing on (wow, it's been quite a week for ObamaTeam--I think I liked them better when they were bogged down with O-Care), in the "words matter" category, ObamaTeam has decided to ban words like "Islamic extremism" from the central document outlining the U.S. security strategy. Who is responsible for the change in the lexicon? Evidently someone named Pradeep Ramamurthy, head of the administration's Global Engagement Directorate, which according to Fox News is a four-person National Security Council team that Obama launched last May with little fanfare and a vague mission to use diplomacy and outreach "in pursuit of a host of national security objectives." "Do you want to think about the U.S. as the nation that fights terrorism or the nation you want to do business with?" Ramamurthy said. Are you serious?
A Google search doesn't turn up a whole heck of a lot about this important actor on ObamaTeam; I can't even find a photo of him that I can verify as being this Pradeep Ramamurthy. How old is this guy? What's his background? However, I did find this quote from Pradeep from November 2009, posted at America.gov, a statement he made during a webchat with people from places like Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Algeria, etc. This is from Pradeep: We are interested in developing a more comprehensive relationship with Muslim communities around the world and pursuing partnerships in areas of mutual interest. This is partly driven by the recognition that many of the challenges we face today can only be addressed through partnership, and we want to be a partner.
Update. I just sent an email to the tipline at Breitbart's Big Journalism, hoping someone either knows something about this guy or will do some research on him.
Update #2. Michelle Malkin's column just reminded me of a bumper sticker I once saw that made me fall down laughing: