Share This Page

American missile defense: Obama's mistake

| Monday, March 18, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Buried near the end of an Associated Press dispatch about the United States deciding to beef up its continental missile defense system to protect against the nut now running North Korea was this salient fact:

President Obama killed the necessary expansion in 2009, part of his dedicated program of foreign policy deferentialism. Now, America is forced to play catch-up.

Thirty long-range missile interceptors are operational in Alaska and California. Last week, citing the new and bellicose threats of Kim Jong-un, the administration said it now will proceed with 14 new ground-based interceptors. They'll be operational in four years, by 2017.

But had Mr. Obama not been singing “I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing in Non-nuclear Har-moe-nee,” those missiles already would have been standing at the ready and likely would have served as a deterrent.

As Heritage Foundation President Ed Feulner reminds, “pre-emptive disarmament” — think of Pyongyang's increased provocations, think of New START's Russia-coddling that allows it to move the goal posts — usually gets you one thing: the enemy ratcheting up its armaments.

And we've not even addressed the European missile defense mess.

We remind the Obama administration of the words of one Grover Cleveland:

The nation that cannot resist aggression is constantly exposed to it. Its foreign policy is of necessity weak and its negotiations are conducted with disadvantage because it is not in condition to enforce the terms dictated by its sense of right and justice.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.