OUR OPINION: MILITARY STRENGTH
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Barack Obama met in Washington Monday, following an appearance over the weekend by the president at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC). AIPAC is a Jewish lobbying group that functions in the U.S. on behalf of Israel. The president cautioned the gathering of pro-Israel supporters to tone down the rhetoric that has focused on attacking the multiple nuclear sites in Iran. He said, “For the sake of Israel’s security, America’s security, and the peace and security of the world, now is not the time for bluster.”
Obama contends that all of the saber rattling pushes the price of oil higher on the world market, giving Iran and its radical Islamic leaders more money to spend on developing their nuclear arsenal.
His administration is hopeful that full sanctions against the Islamic Republic will cause diplomacy to win out. If diplomacy fails to convince Iran to abandon its nuclear ambitions, the president told AIPAC attendees that Israel is free to defend itself against Iran. That statement leaves the door open for a preemptive strike against Iran.
While Israel contemplates its options against Iran, Syria continues to be a hot spot of civil war. It has been reported that Saudi Arabia has entered the fray on the side of Syria’s freedom fighters, increasing the odds of toppling the dictator President Bashar Assad. The Sunni Saudis and Qatar have supported the efforts of the uprising in that Middle East country that has been hostile toward Israel.
Not to be left out of the Middle East power struggle, newly elected Russian President Vladimir Putin has agreed to defend Iran and Syria in the event of Israeli aggression. Such a pact with several Islamic states puts Russia in position to regain its position in world politics amid Putin’s pre-election promises to return Russia to its Soviet Empire strengths politically and militarily. Such pacts will further alienate the Israeli state.
In response to Putin’s Russia gaining strength on the world stage, China, the most populous nation in the world, and a growing world power, has committed to spending $10.6 billion more in 2012 over its 2011 military spending. China’s increased military spending is causing jitters in the Far East and on the world stage. Border disputes between China and India, Japan and Taiwan are surfacing as the big Red Army asserts itself in that region. It is worth mentioning that China is a staunch ally with Syria’s Assad regime. On Sunday, the Chinese government called for a cease-fire and warned of foreign intervention in the Syrian civil war.
Not to be left out of the international fracas, North Korea’s newest dictator, Kim Jong Un, has been saber rattling and attempting to intimidate his neighbors to the south. In an move to affirm the North’s military supremacy over the south, Kim Jong Un said, “If there is a fight erupting, our military and people will have the enemy kneeling before us to sign not a truce this time, but a document of surrender.”
Not since the Cold War has America been confronted with worldwide instability and the possible eruption of military conflicts on so many fronts. All of the world hot spots are spontaneously combusting while this administration is advocating major cuts in U.S. military spending. One might contend that now is not the time to disarm America while so many of her enemies are rearming for war.