April 20, 2015
A Major Media Fail

None of what follows is news in the sense that it has never been reported before. It is news in the sense that most Americans, due to a combination of incompetence, laziness and spinelessness on the part of our media, are completely unaware of it. Proof of this is the almost universal outrage over Putin’s actions (reactions, more accurately) in the Crimean crisis. Pay special attention to what George Kennan said below. As usual, he was right. And to what Clinton did. As usual, he was wrong.

From the campaign trail on Oct. 22, 1996, two weeks before he defeated Bob Dole for a second term as president, Bill Clinton used NATO enlargement to advertise his assertiveness in foreign policy and America’s status as the “world’s indispensable nation.” Clinton bragged about proposing NATO enlargement at his first NATO summit in 1994, saying it “should enlarge steadily, deliberately, openly.” He never explained why.

President Clinton, thus, reneged on the pledges made by Baker to Gorbachev and Shevardnadze. Clinton lamely called upon Russia to view NATO’s enlargement as an arrangement that will “advance the security of everyone.”

Clinton’s tough-guy-ism toward Russia was, in part, a response to even more aggressive NATO plans from Clinton’s Republican opponent Bob Dole, who had been calling for incorporating Poland, the Czech Republic and Hungary as full members of NATO and had accused Clinton of “dragging his feet” on this. Clinton was not about to be out-toughed.

Those three countries joined NATO in 1999, starting a trend. By April 2009, nine more countries became members, bringing the post-Cold War additions to 12 – equal to the number of the original 12 NATO states.

Clinton made what quintessential Russian specialist Ambassador George Kennan called a “fateful error.” Writing in the New York Times on Feb. 5, 1997, Kennan asserted: “Expanding NATO would be the most fateful error of American policy in the entire post-cold-war era.

“Such a decision may be expected to inflame the nationalistic, anti-Western and militaristic tendencies in Russian opinion; to have an adverse effect on the development of Russian democracy; to restore the atmosphere of the cold war to East-West relations, and to impel Russian foreign policy in directions decidedly not to our liking.”


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Posted by Jerome Doolittle at April 20, 2015 02:00 PM
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We are just as blind about Iran. Didn't they take our embassy personnel prisoner? Yes. Didn't we orchestrate the over throw of Mohammad Mosaddegh, their democratically elected president, and replace him with the scummy Shah? Yup. Didn't Carter take the advice of Nelson Rockefeller and his disgusting toady Kissinger, and arrange for the deposed Shah to take refuge in Panama? Didn't we shoot down an Iranian airliner in the Gulf and then Bush I gave a medal to the captain of the boat that shot him? Etc., etc. You could go on forever. We never learn that actions have reactions.

Posted by: Phillyboy on April 21, 2015 7:29 PM

"Clinton’s tough-guy-ism toward Russia" was bad enough, but just imagine the kind of dick-swinging the other Clinton is going to have to engage in during the current campaign to convince everybody she is tough enough. She has already promised to "obliterate" Iran and giggled about the US assassination of Ghadafi. It can only escalate from there.

Posted by: Tim on April 22, 2015 10:25 AM
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