In These New Times

A new paradigm for a post-imperial world

Posts Tagged ‘Obama agenda’

Face it, Obama. Without Assad, you’ve got no strategy in Syria

Posted by seumasach on January 26, 2015

Gelb, president emeritus and board senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), recommends “a strategy that includes Assad and Iran as the key players in countering the jihadis.” All in all, this article provides great insight into the conflicts within the US administration, specifically between the Pentagon and the State Department.

Leslie H.Gelb

The Daily Beast

22nd January, 2015

If the administration does not come up with a clear plan to defeat the jihadis and end the Syrian war, Congress should not sign on to it.

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Moscow will not allow new cold war

Posted by seumasach on January 21, 2015

TASS

21st January, 2015

MOSCOW, January 21. /TASS/. Russia will not allow a new cold war as it is impossible to ensure global security through unilateral actions, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told an annual press conference on Wednesday.

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Obama takes heat for not attending ‘anti-terror’ Paris rally

Posted by seumasach on January 13, 2015

This is rather reminiscent of the Obama administration’s boycott of the funeral of Margaret Thatcher.

RT

12th January, 2015

President Barack Obama and other US officials are receiving criticism for not attending Saturday’s ‘Unity March’ in Paris. The rally included more than 40 world leaders who showed solidarity with 17 victims of multiple attacks last week.

 

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Obama renounces imperialism

Posted by seumasach on January 4, 2015

“America’s never been in the business of colonizing other countries and grabbing their resources; we’ve never been in the business of bullying folks into doing things that we can’t do for ourselves. Where we have done that, by the way, it’s never worked out all that well. That’s not our best tradition.”

NPR

29th December, 2014

NPR’s wide-ranging interview with President Obama covers recent executive actions on Cuba and immigration, race relations in the U.S., health care, the midterm elections and extending democracy in the Middle East.

See full interview

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Obama calms Russia ties

Posted by seumasach on January 4, 2015

“Clearly, President Barack Obama has set his mind on a grand strategy to involve Russia to commence a keen search for conflict resolution in Ukraine and Syria and to put the necessary underpinnings in place for an agreement with Iran.”

M.K.Bhadrakumar

Indian Punchline

3rd January, 2015

The New Year has got off to a flying start with four diplomatic tracks leading the way – four seemingly different, yet interconnected, tracks. They relate to the Iran nuclear issue, Ukraine, Syria and the overarching crisis in Russia’s relations with the West.

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Rapprochement with Russia?

Posted by seumasach on January 4, 2015

When dealing with Western intelligence sources it is necessary to separate the wheat of a grudging realism from the chaff of hubris, self-righteousness, unconscious irony and sheer stupidity. The latter render this article amusing, even hilarious, but it does have a serious core. A little translation is required to arrive at that core.

Thus the paragraph beginning “Russia would fully comply with the September Minsk agreement on Eastern Ukraine” can be translated as follows:

While continuing to pretend that Russia is behind the Ukraine crisis rather than ourselves we must reward Russia by calling her to do what she has been trying to do all along: stabilize the situation through the Minsk agreement. Kiev on the other hand must stop destabilizing the situation.

The paragraph beginning “NATO would continue to strengthen its deterrent posture in Eastern Europe to hedge against increased risk to its members.” translates as:

In order to placate our imperial outposts in Eastern Europe and prevent the collapse of NATO we must make some token deployments there.

The paragraph beginning “As part of a broader deal, Ukraine would have to recognize publicly that it is not currently prepared for NATO membership.” translates:

Ukraine will never be part of NATO!

The paragraph beginning “Russia would have to accept a closer Ukrainian relationship with the European Union—as well as deepen its own.” translates:

We need a trilateral EU-Russia-Ukraine agreement- the same agreement we torpedoed, along with our European stooges, when we launched this crisis.

The paragraph beginning “The West would have to make a firmer commitment to supporting internal reforms in Ukraine.” translates:

We must get the Europeans to bailout Ukraine

“Reviving the Group of 8, NATO-Russia Council, and other channels as part of a comprehensive deal would help. So would high level E.U.-Eurasian Union meetings.”

This is an astonishing statement which requires no translation!

RAND

December, 2014

The ruble’s dramatic decline threatens to plunge Russia into a full-scale economic crisis. President Vladimir Putin has attempted to minimize the difficulties and deflect blame toward the West, but the problem is serious and no one is to blame but Mr. Putin himself. His efforts to destabilize Ukraine have brought painful sanctions upon Russia, reinforced its dependence on oil, and isolated its economy.

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Inside Obama’s secret outreach to Russia

Posted by seumasach on January 4, 2015

Josh Rogin

Bloomberg

31st December, 2015

President Barack Obama’s administration has been working behind the scenes for months to forge a new working relationship with Russia, despite the fact that Russian President Vladimir Putin has shown little interest in repairing relations with Washington or halting his aggression in neighboring Ukraine.

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Iran trumps Saudi project in Syria-Iraq

Posted by seumasach on January 4, 2015

M.K.Bhadrakumar

Indian Punchline

2nd January, 2015

A grudging admission that Saudi Arabia has lost out to Iran in the regional rivalry is apparent in the opinion piece by a senior editor in the establishment daily Asharq Al-Awsat. The hubris that money can buy anything or anyone in Washington, the triumphalism that the Islamic State spells the doom for the Iranians, the over-confidence that Sunni-Shi’ite schism transcends regional politics – all these Saudi assumptions have gone horribly wrong. In retrospect, 2014 stands out as the year the Saudis lost the plot.

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Israel’s Iran bluster won’t unnerve Obama

Posted by seumasach on November 12, 2014

M.K.Bhadrakumar

Indian Punchline

12th November, 2014

Between optimism and pessimism stands ‘cautious optimism’ in the lexicon of diplomacy. But ‘relative optimism’? Yet, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Rybakov, one of the sharpest minds in the Moscow diplomatic armory, would have weighed his words with care and ingenuity when he remarked on Tuesday following the 2-day talks of the P5+1 and Iran talks in Muscat, Oman, that he is “relatively optimistic” about a nuclear treaty being concluded by the November 24 deadline. He added: “The glass is half full; (but) it’s not half empty.” 

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Resetting U.S.-China Relations

Posted by seumasach on November 11, 2014

“Chinese leaders have put forward a new model of “major-country relationship” between China and the United States, an intellectual framework for resolving one of the greatest puzzles in international history — how to avoid falling into the so-called Thucydides trap, the often-cited cycle of struggle between rising and established powers.”

NYT

11th November, 2014

President Obama arrived in Beijing on Monday for a meeting of the AsiaPacific Economic Cooperation forum. He will meet with China’s president, Xi Jinping, at length on Wednesday. The occasion is a vital opportunity for the two presidents to reset the relationship between the nations.

 

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The audacious Mr Putin

Posted by seumasach on May 25, 2014

Cailean Bochanan

25th May, 2014

Prince Charles is only the lunatic fringe of so many in the West who like to characterize Vladimir Putin as a ruthless and ambitious dictator hell-bent on his goal of refounding the Soviet Union. But if he is ruthless and ambitious why would he limit himself to such a mediocre and fruitless goal?
His latest statements as reported by RT deserve careful attention:
“I really would not like to think that this is a beginning of a new Cold War,” he said speaking with the heads of the world media at St. Petersburg International Economic Forum. “I think this is not going to happen.”
As for the Western sanctions against Russia, “I think that they are absolutely counterproductive, not based on a fair attitude to existing problems, and driven by a desire to impose on Russia international relations developments that do not correspond either with international law or with mutual interests. They certainly do not correspond with Russian interests,” Putin said.
Isolation of Russia is “impossible,” Putin stressed, adding that there is a “mutual dependence” between Russia with both the US and EU.
Not only is there no hint here of the reconstitution of the Soviet sphere but there is no suggestion of the much-touted turn from the West towards an Eastern alliance. The truth is that Putin, as a man of great ambition, is not reckoning on having to choose between East and West, between the BRICS and the US and EU: he aims to choose both.
A little thought shows that a mere Russia-China(BRICS) alliance is inadequate from the point of view of Russian interests. The strategic tensions with the West would remain unresolved and would continue to distort Russia’s internal development. Excessive and badly required resources would continue to be poured into defense to counter threats such as missile defense and ongoing NATO destabilization programs. Russia’s natural trading relations with Europe , especially Germany, would be disrupted. This would be far from the win/win scenario so wished for and so required.
The holy grail for Putin is a strategic partnership with Washington. This is not only of mutual interest but the key to the historic imperative of ending war, hot or cold. It may appear to be a laughable goal given the current media-generated anti-Russian frenzy but let us hope that deeper trends are at work and that the coming collapse of the US economy is focusing Obama’s mind marvelously and that he is coming to see a strategic partnership with those hitherto presumed to be America’s enemies as a drowning man sees his rescuers.
Of course, the obstacles to such a resolution are great. The death of an empire whose tentacles are everywhere is a prolonged and obscure agony. The hydra has many heads and there are countless agendas which have been heavily invested in: five billion dollars, apparently, in the current Ukraine fiasco alone. But I suspect Russia have strategic depth in Ukraine and that the new president, Poroshenko, will be a disappointment to the West’s war party.
With a diplomatic solution in sight in Ukraine and the West’s contras in retreat in Syria and Venezuela the air will begin to clear, the smoke of war to dissipate and the two most prominently left standing will be Putin and Obama. Certainly, next to Putin’s grandmaster role, Obama cuts a rather forlorn figure but in his role of commander -in-chief he has recognized the unwillingness of the US military, as opposed to the various agencies, to engage in further futile and destructive war. This was the minimum required of him and he has duly delivered(touch wood!).
We will then see that there is no contradiction between the Eurasian Union( the economic reunification of the post-Soviet space), the Lisbon to Vladivostok economic space(hopefully, we might be allowed in too, once Prince Charles has apologized) and strategic partnerships between the US and the BRICS. This is the win/win scenario, nothing short of the unification of humanity itself and the only scenario worth the audacity of hoping for.

Posted in Coup d'état in Ukraine | Tagged: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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