Archive for the ‘honeymoon’ Category

Obama’s First Major Foreign Crisis Brewing?

March 9, 2009

North Korea could launch a long range missile at any time, and according to Jae-Soon Chang of the Associated Press, “Analysts say the regime is trying to grab President Barack Obama‘s attention as his administration formulates its North Korea policy.”

Iran tested a new missile this last weekend.

Iranian clerics watch the launch of a Shahab-3 ballistic missile ... 
Iranian clerics watch the launch of a Shahab-3 ballistic missile outside Qom in 2006. A top Iranian military commander said that the country has missiles that can reach the nuclear sites of its arch-foe Israel.(AFP/File/null)

The Jerusalem Post reported Sunday that Israel’s Military Intelligence chief Maj.-Gen. Amos Yadlin, who told the cabinet on Sunday that Iran had “crossed the technological threshold” and that its attainment of  nuclear military capability was now a matter of “incorporating the goal of producing an atomic bomb to its strategy.”

More U.S. troops are headed to Afghanistan which Evan Thomas of Newsweek has already dubbed “Obama’s War.”

CNN on North Korea:
http://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/asiap
cf/03/08/nkorea.launch/index.html

Jerusalem Post on Iran’s nuclear effort See:
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid
=1236269373103&pagename=JPost%2FJP
Article%2FShowFull

And the Independent Newspaper in Britain warns that “This year both American and British officials have become increasingly open about their fear that Pakistan – which has nuclear weapons under the control of a military at least to some extent open to extremist influence – is a greater danger than Afghanistan.”

And all of this includes Russia.  Despite Hillary Clinton and Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov playing nice last weekend, and an apparent plea from Mr. Obama for Russian help with the Iran problem, it is by no means certain that Russia will be helpful.

Russia cut off heating oil to Europe this winter over a dispute with Ukraine and Vladimir Putin threatened another cut-off just last week.  Just last summer saw Russian tanks and troops in South Ossetia and Georgia — just as Georgia was making noise about joining NATO.

Since President Obama’s inauguration, Russia has been testing Mr. Obama and his administration rigorously and continuously.

“Mark my words,” Democratic vice presidential nominee Joe Biden warned last October. “It will not be six months before the world tests Barack Obama like they did John Kennedy. The world is looking.”

“Remember I said it standing here if you don’t remember anything else I said. Watch, we’re gonna have an international crisis, a generated crisis, to test the mettle of this guy.”

Time is runing out on Obama’s “Honeymoon,” and the economy is no longer the only entre on the plate.

John E. Carey
Wakefield Chapal, Virginia

Related:
North Korea Warns: Shoot Down Our Satellite Will “Prompt Counterstrikes by the Most Powerful Military Means”

Obama says US is losing war in Afghanistan and hints at Taleban talks

Pakistan: The Greatest Threat
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/worl
d/asia/pakistan-the-greatest-threat-16397
79.html

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Russia, U.S. Missile Defense Dispute

Russian Relations With U.S., Europe Improve: But Putin, Medvedev Understand Strength, Power More than Diplomacy

 Russia Sees Obama, U.S., Others As “Weak,” “Naive”
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Israel Ponders War on Iran; Obama, Russia HaggleRussia Testing Obama: Just as Biden Predicted
.
Russia building anti-satellite weapons

 Russia: Medvedev Pushing Putin Out?

Russia Verifies “American, Western Weakness”

Russia Sees Obama, U.S., Others As “Weak,” “Naive”

Mr. Obama and Russia
NYT Editorial: Russia only understands strength….

 Chutzpah: Admire Russia’s Arrogance
Russia, Obama and the Strategic Chess Tournament

homewhiteningcare.org/

Iranians walk past a replica of a Shahab-3 missile on display ... 
Iranians walk past a replica of a Shahab-3 missile on display in Tehran. The Fars news agency says Iran has “successfully” tested a new air-to-sea missile with a range of 110 kilometres (68 miles).(AFP/File/Atta Kenare)
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Obama’s Honeymoon In Hell

March 8, 2009

On the most important issue of the day, the NEWSWEEK Poll shows that close to two thirds (65 percent) of the public say they are very or somewhat confident that Obama will be successful in turning the economy around. That’s down just a little from the 71 percent who felt that way before he took office. Still, overall perceptions of the economy remain solidly negative, with 84 percent saying the national economy is in poor shape and just 3 percent viewing things positively.

From Newsweek

Read the rest:
http://www.newsweek.com/id/188002

Related:
Stimulus Too Late, Wasteful, Reckless; Toxic Assets and Banks Still Unaddressed

Recession on track to be longest in postwar period

Obama’s Next Challenge: Iran, Israel, Russia? It’s Here Now

Honeymoon Lost, Stimulus Too? Many Liberals Dismayed

February 5, 2009

This stimulus bill is just a mess, and I sense the tide of opinion is swinging away from it as currently constituted. It’s not only people like me, but also writers ranging from Bob Samuelson to Jeffrey Sachs, to editorial boards ranging from The Washington Post to The Philadelphia Inquirer who are critical of the hodgepodge nature of the thing. What’s the matter with a big payroll tax holiday? Helps the working class. Works fast. Can be shut off when the time comes.

By David Brooks and Gail Collins

The New York Times:
http://theconversation.blogs.nytime
s.com/2009/02/05/is-the-honey
moon-over/

Obama’s Honeymoon is Over

February 4, 2009

It is never just one thing that causes us to say, “It’s over.”  It wasn’t just Daschle and his taxes.  It was also Geithner and his taxes and Killefer and her taxes and Richardson and his grand jury and a few lobbyists named to top jobs.

But more importantly it is the stimulus and the other players on the world’s stage.

Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) said today, “It doesn’t treat the disease; just the symptoms.” 

He’s a doctor.

Coburn also said of the stimulus bill, “I don’t think the president has read it.”

Coburn said the stimulus will probably pass “but it won’t work, it won’t be successful.”

In Russia, President Medvedev gave Kyrgyzstan a $2 Billion loan and asked them to close the U.S. air base on their soil….

That air base feeds the U.S. and NATO war effort in Afghanistan…..

Iran has launched a satellite and North Korea says it will launch a rocket that can hit the U.S.

So now the BBC agrees with our assessment that the Obama honeymoon is over….

Related:
Many Obama Plans Could Suffer As Players End Their Seasons, Situations Change

******************

By James Coomarasamy
BBC News, Washington

It was beginning to look rather awkward for President Obama.

To have one high profile nominee – Treasury Secretary, Timothy Geithner – reveal a tax problem was bad enough.

But when it emerged last Friday that his Health and Human Services Secretary-designate, Tom Daschle, had failed to pay around $130,000 (£90,000) in taxes on a car and chauffeur he had been provided by a business associate, a pattern of careless vetting seemed to be emerging.

And Tom Daschle was not just any nominee.

The popular former Senate Majority Leader was, in many ways, Barack Obama’s Washington mentor.

Inside knowledge

It was Mr Daschle who persuaded the young man (who began his US Senate career just as Mr Daschle was ending his) not to delay his run for the White House.

And it was Mr Daschle who provided him with key inside knowledge and key members of staff – especially in the early caucus state of Iowa – to help him get there.

This closeness explains, perhaps, why the initial reaction of the President and Senate Democrats was to stand by their man.

On Monday, President Obama said he “absolutely” backed Mr Daschle.

Read the rest:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7868753.stm

The BBC article ends:
The significance of Tuesday’s decision may recede with time, but it was undoubtedly Barack Obama’s worst day in office.

One that looks like the end of an initial honeymoon period for a President who has raised expectations to a level that is already proving hard to meet.