Category Archives: Russia

Barack Obama, Not Ready For Prime Time

The Russian invasion of the sovereign State of Georgia exposed just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the capacity and capability of the rookie, Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL), to protect and defend the interests of the United States.

So when Obama’s first reaction to Russia’s military invasion of Georgia was wishy washy, and over the course of three days evolved into something more like John McCain’s (and my) reaction on day one, you have to grade Obama’s ‘3a.m. phone call’ with an F.

Does Obama’s grasp, or lack thereof, of Russian and European conditions make you feel secure? Electing Obama is really electing his hundreds of advisers that tell him what to do and how to react, because he has no clue.

Monica Crowley writes about Obama’s foreign relations experience. How’s this for the chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on European Affairs? Have you seen this reported anywhere?

Obama’s utter lack of experience and even interest in Russia and its “near abroad” has surfaced in two ways.

First, he took a trip to Russia in 2005 in order to talk to Vladimir Putin about decommissioning Russian nuclear weapons. The Kremlin is still laughing at that one. Of course, that doesn’t stop Obama from wanting to decommission AMERICA’S nuclear arsenal. To set an example, of course. More laughter from Moscow.

Second, for the past year and a half, Obama has been the chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s Subcommittee on European Affairs. And guess what? He’s never held a policy hearing. No meetings, no witnesses, no testimony, no nothing. This is why Obama himself is a “know-nothing” on what is turning out to be a central issue for the United States, our allies, and for the campaign. But Senator Clueless never bothered to take an interest in Europe or Russia. He just wants your kids to speak Spanish and for you to refrain from visiting Europe to keep our “ugly American” quotient down.

Then there is this short list in experience compared to McCain, for the one campaigning to become Commander In Chief. Military: McCain 26 years, Obama 0. Congress: McCain 22 years, Obama 143 days.

related links: Monica Crowley, Senator Clueless | Russia Chooses War Over Diplomacy

Georgia's President Saakashvili On Russia's Invasion

In his own words, President Mikheil Saakashvili describes what is going on in his country and why. In light of everything going on in Georgia, don’t come away thinking that it won’t affect us here in the United States. Among the first targets that Russia sought to destroy, was Georgia’s oil port. If you still do not believe that oil is the lifeblood of not only our economy but of the world economy, you better think again. But this is not a war for oil. This war is for the future of freedom in Europe.

As of this writing, Russia has pressed on beyond the disputed territories in Georgia. In this David and Goliath war, Russia seems hell bent on its old ways of military imperialism. This time in a democratically elected government State.

From today’s Wall Street Journal, President Saakashvili’s comments begin . . .

As I write, Russia is waging war on my country.

On Friday, hundreds of Russian tanks crossed into Georgian territory, and Russian air force jets bombed Georgian airports, bases, ports and public markets. Many are dead, many more wounded. This invasion, which echoes Afghanistan in 1979 and the Prague Spring of 1968, threatens to undermine the stability of the international security system.

Continue reading Georgia's President Saakashvili On Russia's Invasion

Russia Chooses War Over Diplomacy

One day, we are looking forward to the start of the Olympic Games. Then, out of nowhere, we are looking at war between Vladimir Putin’s Russia and the sovereign State of Georgia. This is a hard dose of medicinal reality that the free world must swallow, and deal with.

The suddenness of Russia’s air attacks and tank incursions against Georgia should be the wake-up call to the world that Russia is back to its old self. One could argue whether they had ever really changed, given their turning away from the concept of freedom and democracy under Putin’s first administration. Now in his second administration (under a different name), their idea of diplomacy between countries is military force, not the United Nations.

Russia uses the United Nations when it suits them, and blows them off when it doesn’t. Fact is, the U.N. is not capable of doing anything to solve this conflict. They have no experience in standing up to Russia in any fashion. If there is anything that I can agree with Putin about, it is the ineffectiveness of the United Nations to the point of their irrelevance in world affairs beyond serving as a global meals-on-wheels. The fact that he hasn’t taken whatever his gripe is with Georgia to the United Nations first, is proof of that. There hasn’t been any U.N. resolutions on the matter. Not eighteen, as in Iraq. Not even one.

This episode also makes the case for a new outlook on global security in some geopolitical organization of States other than the United Nations. Not to mention how our own presidential candidates and political parties view our role in the world and how do deal with people like Putin and countries like Russia that seem hell bent on shooting first.

And speaking of our candidates for president, all those who think that there will be unanimity in how to proceed please raise your hand. Peace through strength has been tried and worked. This is a time, if there ever was one, where the United States needs to be speaking with one voice, not just for the sake of Georgia and States like them, but for the world.

Change Chavez Can Believe In

Women protest in front of riot police officers during a demonstration against Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez in Caracas, Wednesday, Aug. 6, 2008. Hundreds of Venezuelans protested against a Supreme Court ruling barring a list of mostly opposition candidates from running in state and local elections in November. (AP Photo/Fernando Llano)

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is making preparations for state and local elections in November by turning back a referendum Venezuelans passed in December 2007. He has blacklisted all his political opponents. The target of Hugo Chavez is freedom and democracy, and citizens are taking to the streets in protest.

Just before his ability to make laws without the approval of legislators expires, temporary powers given to him 18 months ago, Chavez made 26 decrees that effectively neuter any chance for democracy to bloom, paving the way for a communist state. Speaking of the protesters . . .

Chavez said in a speech Wednesday night that their concerns are grossly overblown. “This is a democracy. They call me a tyrant – tyrants govern without laws. We’re making laws, and all those laws are for the benefit of the country,” Chavez said.

No doubt taking tips from his communist buds Vladimir Putin and Fidel Castro, Chavez’s idea of change is from a socialist state (he has already nationalized key industries in Venezuela) to a communist state.

link: Venezuelans Protest Chavez’s New Socialist Push

related link: A Change in Chávez?

Today’s Special: Fearing Freedom & Islamic Pedophilia

Some images certainly are worth a thousand words. Some don’t need explaining. Some do. Take Time Magazine’s ‘Person of the Year’ and UNICEF’s ‘Photo of the Year’ for example.

2007 Person of the Year, Vladimir PutinRussian President Vladimir Putin, selected as Time Magazines ‘Person of the Year‘ for 2007 evokes a certain disdain from people who love freedom. Putin fears freedom. Freedom is a bad word in Putin’s Russia. (The pose for this picture looks eerily familiar.)

Putin has jailed and assassinated journalists and political opponents. He has used his country’s oil and natural gas resources as blackmail towards his neighbors, formerly part of the old Soviet Union. His administration was complicit in the United Nations’ OFF (Oil For Food) program, taking Saddam’s bribe money to bypass sanctions. He is not a cooperative participant in limiting Iran’s nuclear ambitions in enriching uranium. And lately, he is laying the groundwork to remain in a position of power in Russia after his term as president expires by becoming a ‘Prime Minister.’

I concur with President Bush on Time Magazine’s selection. . .

At a news conference today, Bush said the magazine honored Putin for being a consequential leader, but added, the “question is, consequential to what end?” Bush said the key will be what Russia looks like 10 years from now.

For those who would bow to the wishes and jurisdiction of the United Nations, consider this picture. It was selected by UNICEF as the Photo of the Year. UNICEF Photo of the Year for 2007

The groom, Mohammed, looks much older than his 40 years. The bride, Ghulam, is still a child; she just turned 11. Photographer Stephanie Sinclair, who took the photo last year in Afghanistan, asked the just-turned 11 year old bride what she felt on the day of her engagement.

“Nothing,” said the girl, according to Sinclair. “I do not know this man. What am I supposed to feel?”

She’s about to feel what it is like to be raped and treated as a slave. UNICEF is a part of the United Nations that does a lot to feed and care for children around the world. However, they are woefully absent in putting an end to pedophilia in the Islamic world. In fact, putting an end to this practice is not even on their agenda. Just look at their ‘World Fit For Children‘ declaration published Dec. 13, 2007.

UNICEF Deputy Executive Director Kul Gautam said . . .

“This short but powerful declaration calls for the pursuit of a common vision to ensure the well-being of all children with a collective sense of urgency.”

Ask that 11 year old girl how she feels now, if she is still alive. The ‘optional protocols’ by member states is all gums, no teeth. No mention of this barbaric practice of selling children to be brides. To wit . . .

3. We reaffirm our commitment to the full implementation of the Declaration and Plan of Action contained in the outcome document of the twenty-seventh special session of the General Assembly on children, entitled “A world fit for children”, recognizing that their implementation and the fulfillment of obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Optional Protocols thereto and other relevant international instruments are mutually reinforcing in protecting the rights and promoting the well-being of all children. In all our actions, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration.

The track record of the United Nations in corruption, child abuse, rape, and pedophilia ought to be enough to repulse its members, and reason enough to suggest they move their headquarters to a country that is not offended by their actions, or, in this case, inaction.


Today’s Special

News of Venezuela’s referendum which would crown the hemisphere’s idiot, Hugo Chavez, as dictator for life, and usurp the democracy movement is sounding all too familiar. Too close to call. Opponents are acting confident that they won by an 8 percent margin. The government has not released the results yet. Will be interesting to see what Chavez does if he loses.

UPDATE: 1-hour later: Chavez loses referendum 51% to 49%. OK, now stand back and watch how well Chavez takes this news.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin did what Chavez hoped to do. His political party won by a landslide. Of course, it helps when you only allow the opposition (pro-Western) party on the tightly controlled state airwaves and characterize them as provocateurs in the pay of foreign overlords. Scaring voters of a ‘western plot’ also helps.

A small victory for democracy in Hong Kong. But we’ll take it.

Things aren’t going well in Iowa for Sen. Hillary Clinton. Aside from polling second to Sen. Barack Obama in Iowa, she was booed by a group of 3000 fellow democrats in Des Moines when she spoke in favor of comprehensive immigration reform. Iowans correctly read that as nothing more than lipstick on a pig named ‘ amnesty.’ I read that as Iowa democrats are not liberal like she is. It highlights her arrogance, not leadership, to even go there after seeing how badly and how broadly the country rejected Bush’s comprehensive plan.

And qualifying for the Most Ridiculous Item Of The Day, the media comes to her aide in the aftermath of the hostage ‘crisis’ in one of her campaign offices like this.

When the hostages had been released and their alleged captor arrested, a regal-looking Hillary Rodham Clinton strolled out of her Washington home, the picture of calm in the face of crisis.

and this explains why.

It was a vintage example of a candidate taking a negative and turning it into a positive. And coming just six weeks before the presidential voting begins, the timing could hardly have been more beneficial to someone hoping to stave off a loss in the Iowa caucuses and secure a win in the New Hampshire primary.


Aid Begins To Arrive In Bangladesh

Saudi Arabia and the United States lead the way in relief to the devastated areas. Oh, and nothing from Venezuela, Iran, China, or Russia. As usual, that ‘evil,’ (according to the hemisphere’s idiot, Hugo Chavez) United States responds with ships and helicopters to act as the delivery agent and coordinator.

How bad is it?

The confirmed death toll stood at over 3,100 but officials feared it could run into many thousands after all the victims in isolated areas were accounted for.

The head of the Bangladeshi Red Crescent, a part of the global Red Cross federation, said he believed between 5,000 and 10,000 people had died.

Price Controls Don’t Work

Ever hear that the fix is worse than the problem? Due in no small way to the ‘save the planet’ hysteria, bio-tech industries have driven the cost of basic foodstuffs up worldwide. That’s when, sure as gravity, the law of supply and demand inserts itself and the four, or six, or eight cylinder cars you drive begin to compete with your four, six, or eight family members for fuel/food.

And again, sure as gravity, politicians will call for price controls to ‘solve’ the problem. I am not aware that price controls have ever effectively altered the law of supply and demand. What they lead to is more shortages of supply. When the $20 loaf is forced to be sold at $2 via ‘price controls,’ that $2 loaf will disappear. IE. its $2 only if you can find one. Witness the empty supermarket shelves in Venezuela where the hemisphere’s idiot, Hugo Chavez, put price controls in effect for his oil rich country. That is exactly what Vladimir Putin will get when he does it. You can’t expect a communist to understand how markets react to supply and demand, but his motivations are more sinister. He is motivated by an upcoming election, not feeding his people.

Putin is just trying to save his administration’s popularity before the parliamentary elections in December.

Russia is introducing Soviet-style price controls on some basic foods in an effort to prevent spiralling prices from denting the Putin administration’s popularity ahead of parliamentary polls in December . . . to freeze prices at October 15 levels on selected types of bread, cheese, milk, eggs and vegetable oil until the end of the year.

He is more interested in himself and his party than his country. Not unlike the behavior of Democrats in Washington.

Putin’s Caspian Summit

They didn’t tackle their biggest problem, like who owns what of the Caspian Sea? But Putin wants an agreement on a defensive alliance against foreign military forces or attack on any single member of the Caspian Summit. OK, he’s acting paranoid, but he’s just getting tight with Iran while keeping the Caspian Sea off limits to all vessels not under a member state’s flag. This is Putin’s move to put more distance between Iran and any supply route that the U.S. might use in case they need to pay a visit to Tehran.

And then there’s this gem from Tehran Times. A sister paper to the New York Times I think.

First Vice President Parviz Davudi said on Wednesday

that the Iranian government is willing to develop relations with other countries and foster political, economic and social cooperation with all countries excluding the illegitimate regime of Israel.

From the reporting of the summit it seems that Putin is driving the bus.