What a curious approach to diplomacy our President has chosen for Iran. Having promised to meet them with no preconditions back in ’07 as a candidate, President Obama has decided to deploy a “missile shield to protect American allies in the Gulf from attack by Tehran.” How far we’ve come in our journey with Obama’s “on the job training” gig. Too bad he doesn’t care as much about our allies in Eastern Europe…but I digress:
The US is dispatching Patriot defensive missiles to four countries – Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Kuwait – and keeping two ships in the Gulf capable of shooting down Iranian missiles. Washington is also helping Saudi Arabia develop a force to protect its oil installations.
American officials said the move is aimed at deterring an attack by Iran and reassuring Gulf states fearful that Tehran might react to sanctions by striking at US allies in the region. Washington is also seeking to discourage Israel from a strike against Iran by demonstrating that the US is prepared to contain any threat.
Given Iran’s recent threat to “deliver a harsh blow to “global arrogance” on February 11″ (along with all the other kooky things they say and do) this might seem a reasonable precautionary measure.
But this is not a reasonable President.
The timing here is spooky; Iran makes a veiled threat, Obama announces a record Defense budget and quickly follows up with plans to significantly deepen funding for nuclear weapons work. There are obviously “conditions on the ground” that are dictating what Obama has to do, but the instinctive reflex to continue putting it on Gorge W. Bush’s shoulders continues to entertain (emphasis mine):
The deployment comes after Obama’s attempts to emphasise diplomacy over confrontation in dealing with Iran – a contrast to the Bush administration’s approach – have failed to persuade Tehran to open its nuclear installations to international controls.
The move is a continuation of the military build-up begun under former president George W Bush. In the past two years, Abu Dhabi has bought $17bn (£11bn) worth of weapons from the US, including the Patriot anti-missile batteries and an advanced anti-missile system. UAE recently bought 80 US-made fighter jets. It is also buying fighters from France.
Obama’s ’07 assertion that “Iran’s support for militant groups in Iraq reflected its anxiety over the Bush administration’s policies in the region” and his repeated insistence since that time that Bush’s aggression against Hussein made Iran mad at us to begin with translates into Obama’s Persian Gulf conundrum thusly: “Because George Bush stood against bad guys, now I have to keep standing against bad guys.”
Dick Cheney was the man behind Bush right? Why NOT have Bush be the man behind Obama? Seems reasonable enough to me at least…it’s worked well for Obama so far.