Saturday, April 11, 2009

Unintended Consequences

James Lewis has an interesting post about the Somali pirates on the American Thinker website. In the post he compares the pirates' taking of a US-flagged ship and holding it's captain hostage after the ship's crew retook the ship with the Iranian "students" taking US Embassy employees hostage in 1979. Mr Lewis is concerned (as am I) that the appeasement-approach that President Carter took in 1979 will be repeated by the present administration; prompting a number of unintended consequences.

According to Mr Lewis, while President Obama "may think this is a 'distraction'. The rest of the world sees it as a test. And so, far Obama is flunking. " Unfortunately, Mr Lewis has this one right. He goes on to explain that US weakness, even if it's only perceived weakness, will have consequences. Some of those consequences will be more than unfortunate or unintended. Some of those consequences could be disastrous.

"If Obama fails to take action, watch for Russia to make a move on the Ukraine. China will get more aggressive toward Taiwan. Iran will openly throw sandals at Obama effigies, and the rest of the world will realize -- uh-oh, no more cop on the international beat. North Korea will launch another missile over Japan -- pardon me, another satellite launch will somehow go astray, heading toward Hawaii.

That means one of two things: either the aggressors start winning, or somebody else has to play the international cop -- the role the United States has carried for sixty years.

So who do you want to play the world's cop?

Russia will happily volunteer do it for Europe, since Europe won't do it for itself. China could squeeze concessions from Japan and South Korea to stop the Norks [North Koreans]. And in the Middle East it will either be Israel -- which can protect the Arab countries from nuclear attack by Iran -- or it will be the mad mullahs of Qom. I would guess that the Israelis will bomb Iranian nuclear facilities, with the covert help of Arab Gulf states. "

Nature abhors a vacuum. Without a strong US, with a strong leader who has a strong will to protect US citizens and their property, someone else will step into that vacuum. Unfortunately, it may be someone with interests adverse to ours. As Mr Lewis says, "Welcome to the age of American weakness. The whole world, we were told in the last eight years, wanted to bring the US down a notch or two. Well, just be careful what you wish for."

UPDATE: Well, it seems that US sailors tried, and failed, to rescue the ship captain held hostage. It will be interesting to know why they were unable to rescue the captain and how these third-world pirates were able to repel sailors from one of the most capable, well-trained Navies in the world. I wonder if the rescue party was so hamstrung by extremely restrictive rules of engagement that they couldn't effectively do their job. Or, it could be the operation was "managed" by their political "masters" to the point that there was no way these extremely competent sailors could adjust to the situation as they may have needed to do. Most of all, I wonder if we'll ever know the truth of why the rescue attempt failed. What I do know is that a failure gives hope and incentive to these pirates, as well as to others who want to bring this Country down. A failed rescue may be as bad as no rescue.

UPDATE #2. Wonderful news! The Captain has been rescued by Navy Seals, who also killed 3 of the 4 pirates and captured the survivor. Along with the rest of the Nation, I'm happy that this has ended well.

No comments: