European Leaders Dismiss Obama – Trip All Show No Substance

World Agenda: Nicolas Sarkozy puts Barack Obama in the doghouse.


French President Sarkozy is pouring cold water on President Obama’s efforts to recast American leadership on the world stage, depicting them as unoriginal, unsubstantial and overrated. Behind leaks and briefings from the Elysée Palace lies Mr Sarkozy’s irritation at the rock-star welcome that Europe gave Mr Obama on his Europan tour earlier this month.

The American President’s call “to free the world of the menace of a nuclear nightmare” was hot air, Mr Sarkozy’s diplomatic staff told him in a report. “It was rhetoric – not a speech on American security policy but an export model aimed at improving the image of the United States,” they said. Most of Mr Obama’s proposals had already been made by the Bush administration and Washington was dragging its feet on disarmament and treaties against nuclear proliferation, the leaked report said.

“The French President is annoyed by what he sees as the naivety and the herd mentality of the media,” said a journalist who is privy to Elysée thinking.

The French president described the NATO meeting this way, “at the Nato summit in Strasbourg, Mr Obama was meekly yielding to Turkey’s refusal to endorse Anders Fogh Rasmussen as the alliance’s new Secretary-General. It took pressure from Mr Sarkozy and Chancellor Merkel of Germany to stiffen him up and change his mind.”

Mr Obama’s favour for Ankara has irked but also helped Mr Sarkozy as his Union for a Popular Movement campaigns for European Parliament elections in June. Mr Sarkozy slapped down the US President on French TV after he publicly called for Turkish entry to the European Union.

Mr Sarkozy’s Europe Minister, accused Washington of backing the northern and eastern EU members by wanting to turn the union into a mere free-trade zone. France and Germany are sticking to their vision of the “political” Europe.

Leave Turkey’s bid to join EU to us, Nicolas Sarkozy warns Barack Obama

The love-in between Nicolas Sarkozy and Barack Obama proved short-lived after the French President warned his US counterpart yesterday to keep his nose out of the issue of Turkey’s membership of the European Union.

President Obama used his first EU-US summit, on the eve of his visit to Turkey, to encourage European leaders to embrace the Muslim country and “anchor it in Europe”. However, Mr Sarkozy, a long-standing opponent of full membership for Turkey, rebuffed the US leader in language that seemed to sour the revival of Franco-US relations.

Barack Obama fails to win Nato troops he wants for Afghanistan

Barack Obama made an impassioned plea to America’s allies to send more troops to Afghanistan, warning that failure to do so would leave Europe vulnerable to more terrorist atrocities.

The Continent’s leaders turned their backs on the US President.

Britian’s Gordon Brown was the only one to offer help. He offered to send several hundred extra British soldiers to provide security during the August election, but even that fell short of the thousands of combat troops that the US was hoping to prise from the Prime Minister. The British move is a temporary one, intended to allow Obama to “save face” and limit his embarassment over being rebuffed. “The plan is to withdraw them once the election is over.” Mr Brown said. “That the extra troops were only supposed to provide a temporary uplift.”

The derisory response threatened to tarnish Mr Obama’s European tour.

Obama’s presidential charm offensive failed to move fellow Nato countries.

Obama’s G20 dream fades amid European hostility

Hopes of leading the world out of recession at next month’s pivotal summit in London were undermined yesterday when European leaders flatly rejected calls for a further massive stimulus package.

The London meeting risks being overshadowed by a dispute between Europe and the US over public spending. A series of leaders at an EU summit led by Angela Merkel, the Germany Chancellor, refused yesterday to go along with American calls for greater borrowing and spending by Europe.

“We are doing enough,” said Mirek Topolanek, the Czech Prime Minister, whose country holds the EU presidency.

Merkel, the Germany Chancellor stated, ““It is not time to look at more growth measures. I disagree with this idea completely. The existing measures must work. They must be allowed to develop,” she said.

The Obama Administration was further embarassed by the timing of the North Korean Missle Launch, while the President was in Prague to meet with NATO leaders.

As the Chicago Tribune reported: PRAGUE — President Barack Obama, condemning North Korea’s missile launch, today called for a strong international response to deter future advancement of its nuclear program.
“They, I think, have taken a provocative action,” Obama said before heading into a scheduled meeting with the president of the European Union in Prague. “It creates instability in their region, around the world.” “North Korea broke the rules, once again, by testing a rocket that could be used for long range missiles,” Obama said in his speech. “”Words must mean something . . . The world must stand together to prevent the spread of these weapons.”

He didn’t really say, “Words must mean something”, did he. The Obama Administration was proven impotent in this regard. Despite the “huffing and puffing” the Obama Administration could not even get the United Nations to convene an emergency meeting of the Security Council to “reprimand” North Korea for its actions.

“The United Nations Security Council met in a hastily called session to consider official condemnation of the launch, but ended the meeting with no immediate action”.,0,6990607.story

After three hours of talks Sunday afternoon, the Security Council issued a brief statement saying members would spend the next couple of days discussing how to respond to the North Korean launch.,0,6990607.story

An additional “face saving device” for Obama was attempted. “The United States reportedly has floated the idea of a new resolution that would toughen the travel ban and asset freezes on officials involved in the North Korean missile program. But no draft resolutions were being circulated.” The Chinese and Russian envoys are said to have resisted, with at least one member balking at a statement that would even express “concern” over the launch, according to a Western diplomat.,0,6990607.story

In a last attempt at “face saving” the Obama Administration stated that they would rely on future “6 party talks”. “The administration wants to continue the six-party talks and, “through the process, have them [North Korea] come to understand it’s in their interest” to follow the rules, said the official, who requested anonymity.”,0,6990607.story

The six-party talks aim to find a peaceful resolution to the security concerns as a result of the North Korean nuclear weapons program. There has been a series of meetings with six participating states: the People’s Republic of China; the Republic of Korea (South Korea); the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea); the United States of America; the Russian Federation; and Japan.

Eight days later, long after the NATO meeting had ended, the Security Council met. The statement that was issued was “The statement was a weaker response than a U.N. resolution, which was sought by and the United States but was opposed by China and Russia.”,0,2139015.story

North Korea’s response?

North Korea says it will boycott 6-party talks, restore nuclear facilities
SEOUL, South Korea – North Korea vowed Tuesday to restore its nuclear facilities and boycott international talks on its atomic weapons program to protest the U.N. Security Council’s condemnation of the country’s rocket launch.

Obama’s european tour? All show, no substance.

Reminds me of a friend’s recent outing to hear an internationally famous Band. The friend shelled out over a $2,000 for two primo seats. The following Monday I asked him over coffee, “so how was the sound system at the concert?”. His love of the band is based on the bands music, specifically the lyrics. In his younger years, my friend dabbled as a lead singer in a band with some regional success. My friend’s response, “the pyrotechnics were unbelievable”. I asked again, “and how was the sound system”. His response, “it really sucked”. Now, my friend knew the venue had bad acoustics to begin with, still his response was, “it sucked”.

All show, no substance.

Obama knew his “venue” in europe, his visit was all show. America needs substance.

Georgia President Pushes For NATO To Speed Up Membership

TBILISI, Georgia —  Georgia’s president says he hopes a visit from NATO’s chief will accelerate his nation’s drive to join the Western alliance.

Mikhail Saakashvili said Monday that Georgia and NATO should work hard to show that Georgia is on track to join what he called the “Euro-Atlantic family.”

He said that is Georgia’s proper and rightful place.

NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer criticized Russia but spoke cautiously in opening remarks before a NATO-Georgia meeting.

Georgia’s president has angered Russia with his pursuit of NATO membership. Last week he said Russia went to war to keep Georgia out of the alliance and warned NATO not to let Moscow get its way through force.,2933,422621,00.html

NATO CHIEF WARNS MOSCOW, “You have no Veto on Georgia’s Membership”

Nato Chief Says Alliance Will Continue To Expand

TBILISI, Georgia —  NATO’s chief said Tuesday the Western alliance will continue its expansion despite Russian opposition and warned Moscow that it has no veto on Georgia’s bid to become a member.

In a strong message of support for Georgia after its debilitating war with Russia, NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer said “the road to NATO is still wide open” and Russia could not break the alliance’s ties with the former Soviet republic through military action.

“The process of NATO enlargement will continue, with due caution but also with a clear purpose — to help create a stable, undivided Europe,” he said in a speech at Tbilisi State University during a two-day visit.

“No other country will have a veto over that process, nor will we allow our strong ties to Georgia to be broken by outside military intervention and pressure,” he said. “Georgia has a rightful place in this Europe.”

De Hoop Scheffer condemned Russia’s recognition of the two separatist regions in Georgia, saying its sovereignty and territorial integrity must be respected. He also called on Moscow to tone down its rhetoric in the wake of the war.

Reflecting NATO’s precarious position, however, he said NATO is “not in the business of punishing Russia” and does not want to be. “Punishing Russia is not the way forward. The way forward, really, is to help Georgia,” he said.

De Hoop Sheffer said NATO would not accept Russian demands that it choose between Russia and Georgia.

He said NATO still wants to work with Russia but stressed that it had put some ties on hold until Moscow complies with a cease-fire deal and withdraws its forces to positions they held before the war erupted Aug. 7 in separatist South Ossetia.

Georgia has angered Russia with its drive to join NATO. The alliance in April declined to take a key step toward membership for Georgia but assured the nation that it will eventually join.

Earlier on Tuesday, de Hoop Scheffer met with Georgia’s parliament speaker during the second day of a visit that comes with thousands of Russian troops on its soil, more than a month after a war that has caused mounting confrontation between Moscow and the West.

De Hoop Sheffer said he and the NATO ambassadors of all 26 allies were in the ex-Soviet republic wanted “to show solidarity with its people, to show that we stand by them as they work to reshape their country and take their proper place in the European and Euro-Atlantic community.”

He said it was “fitting” to be meeting in Georgia’s colonnaded parliament building, the hub of the peaceful Rose Revolution protests in 2003 that ushered President Mikhail Saakashvili to power and set the country firmly on a pro-Western path.

The parliament speaker, Saakashvili ally David Bakradze, said that while the government party faces strong opposition, the country is united in its desire to join NATO and integrate with the West.

On Monday, de Hoop Scheffer and Georgia’s prime minister signed documents creating the new NATO-Georgia Commission conceived in the wake of the war to emphasize alliance support for Georgia and oversee further relations.

The NATO leader also condemned Russia’s use of “disproportional force” and emphasized NATO’s demand that Moscow withdraw to positions its forces held before the fighting erupted, complying with a cease-fire deal brokered by French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

Under a supplemental agreement Sarkozy reached last week, Russia has pledged to withdraw its forces from Georgian territory outside South Ossetia and Abkhazia, within 10 days of the deployment of EU monitors expected to be in place by Oct. 1.

But Moscow has said it will maintain nearly 8,000 troops in South Ossetia and Abkhazia for the foreseeable future. The U.S. and European Union say that would flagrantly violate the commitment to withdraw to pre-conflict positions.

Russia has adamantly opposed NATO membership for Georgia, whose location straddling a key westward energy route for Caspian and Central Asian oil and gas supplies gives it outsize geopolitical importance.

Georgia has emerged as a major focus of a struggle for influence, pitting a resurgent Russia against the United States and the European Union amid relations that have become increasingly frayed over the past decade.,2933,423103,00.html

NATO is a Treaty Organiztion with 26 Member Countries. The Organization is pledged to the mutual Defense of its Members. Current Member Countries include: Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States.

NATO has helped keep the peace in Europe for 60 years.

Why Georgia & Ukraine belong in NATO – NATO Keeps Peace In Europe for 60yrs – 26 Member Countries

Surrogates for the Obama campaign are attacking Governor Palin for suggesting that Georgia and the Ukraine be admitted to NATO. (North Atlantic Treaty Organization). These surrogates fail to note that most of Georgia’s and Ukraine’s neighboring countries have already been admitted.

NATO was established precisely for the threat currently being posed by the New Soviets in Eastern Europe. NATO,  through the promise of a common defense of all members, kept Western Europe safe from Soviet aggression for 60 years. 

On 29 March, 2004, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia formally became members of NATO, bringing the membership count to 26 Countries.

Formed in 1949, NATO was set up largely to discourage an attack by the Soviet Union on the non-Communist nations of Western Europe.

THE FIRST 15 MEMBERS  WERE: Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States. 

Hungary, Poland and the Czech Republic joined in 1999.

Artile 5 of the NATO Charter promises, “the use of the members’ armed forces for “collective self-defense”. Palin’s detractors fail to note all 26 NATO countries would be required to come to the aid of Georgia or Ukraine if they were attacked.

Attacks by Obama surrogates to the use of a well stablished, multinational, Treaty organization to provide safety and security to Georgia and the Ukraine is nothing more than a cheap political ploy intended to tarnish Governor Palin and diminish her credibility. Where were these surrogates when the 12 former Communist or Soviet Satellite Countries were admitted to NATO over the last 10 years. Their silence was deafening.    

Palin Interview on ABC – Georgia, Ukraine and Nato

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