"Our Country!
In her intercourse with foreign nations may she always be in the right;
but right or wrong, our country!"

    --Commodore Stephen Decatur

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

You Can't Hug With Nuclear Arms

The Associated Press reports that President Obama has announced a grand new strategy which would, "lessen the role nuclear weapons play in America's defense planning."  This should not be terribly surprising, because Obama campaigned on an anti-nuclear platform, but upon closer inspection, his new policy is truly shocking.
Under the new plan, the U.S. promises not to use nuclear weapons against countries that don't have them.  The policy would not apply to states like North Korea and Iran, however, because of their refusal to cooperate with the international community on nonproliferation standards.
President Obama's idealism is nothing less than breathtaking.  The world has enjoyed more than 50 years of relative peace because we have the deterrent power of nuclear weapons.  The article observes that Obama is departing from the policies of his predecessor, but America's nuclear policy has been unchanged going back to Truman.  We have always held out the option to use nukes.

Consequently, only a few despots have been crazy enough to invade their neighbors, and although the United States has always responded to such incidents with conventional force, the threat of nuclear annihilation makes most world leaders think twice.  Moreover, many of our allies rely on the protection of the American "nuclear umbrella."  If Japan and Germany can no longer rely on our nuclear arsenal for protection, how long will it be before they start to build their own weapons?

America already has a credibility problem on the world stage.  After the fiasco of backing the wrong side in Honduras, encouraging Argentina to re-invade the Falklands, and publicly snubbing Israel's Prime Minister, one could be forgiven for thinking that it couldn't possibly get any worse.  President Obama thrives on making headlines, but he does so at the expense of American influence in world affairs.  More and more, the headlines are becoming a terrible joke.

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