With the New START treaty ratified, the Obama administration can turn its attention to the real source of nuclear instability among the great powers: China's buildup of conventional ballistic missiles. The latest destabilizing system is China's anti-ship ballistic missile, the "carrier killer" that the head of the U.S. Pacific Command, Adm. Robert Willard, deemed operational last week.
During the many upcoming Sino-American summits, including a state visit by President Hu Jintao, the Obama administration should begin pressing China to join the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty and stop its missile buildup.
Why are China's missiles the greatest source of unease? Because there are no defensive answers that do not risk an immediate escalation of tensions - and Beijing's missile force is soon likely to have the ability to ground Pacific-based U.S.… Seguir leyendo »
The Obama administration's worldview is still emerging, but its policies toward Russia and China are already revealing. Its Russia policy consists of trying to accommodate Moscow's sense of global entitlement. So far that has meant ignoring the continued presence of Russian forces on Georgian territory, negotiating arms-control agreements that Moscow needs more than Washington does and acquiescing to Russian objections to new NATO installations -- such as missile interceptors -- in former Warsaw Pact countries. An aggrieved Russia demands that the West respect a sphere of influence in its old imperial domain. The Obama administration rhetorically rejects the legitimacy of any such sphere, but its actions raise doubts for those who live in Russia's shadow.… Seguir leyendo »
The North Korean launch of its Taeopodong-2 missile and its second nuclear test have laid bare the paucity of President Obama's policy options. They have exposed the futility of the six-party talks and, in particular, the much-hyped myth of China's value as a partner on strategic matters. The Obama administration claims that it wants to break with the policies of its predecessor. This is one area where it ought to.
After decades of diplomacy and "probing" Pyongyang's intentions, one thing is clear: Kim Jong Il and his cronies want nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them. What will dissuade them?… Seguir leyendo »