Monday, June 07, 2010

Obama in tune

"Good news for the European Union

by JAVIER SOLANA 08/06/2010

"Time and again in our Nation's history, Americans have risen to meet — and to shape — moments of transition. This must be one of those moments."
With these sentences begins the U.S. National Security Strategy announced on May 27 before the Congress. The strength of this position paper lies therein that it is consistent with the policy we have seen in these 16 months in office: dialogue, international commitment, non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament .
The strategy clearly breaks with that of its predecessor and offers a broad conception of what it means for the president's national security.

Facing the great challenges of our time, Obama has positioned himself with a comprehensive doctrine. The security strategy is almost a national strategy. Its line of action exceeds the hegemonic and unilateral paradigm of his predecessor and is a commitment to upholding international law. The fact is especially remarkable when we remember that during the previous presidency, the United States did not sign any of the major treaties.

It keeps the idea of serving a historic mission: that of assuming the important contribution of the United States to ensure global security. It shows a special distance in form and substance in that how his predecessors in the White House have understood it. Obama says that the era of American hegemony is over. In a world with different centers of power and different interests, challenges require global cooperation.

The focus on safety extends its view and proposed the three D: diplomacy, defense and development as inseparable parts of a whole. The military dimension of foreign intervention loses its privileged status and allows for conflict prevention, peace maintenance and stabilization. In the fight against terrorism, it abandons the vision underlying predominantly military in the war on terror and embraces a vision that focuses visible on the role of intelligence. For the first time, it accurately referes to individuals who pose a threat to American security. United States is not at global war against terrorism or religion but at "war with a specific network, Al Qaeda and its terrorist affiliates." In that war information resources are uniquely necessary.

To ensure national security, the strategy is robust to admit, without yielding to the isolationist temptation that "our strategy starts by recognizing that our strength and influence abroad begins with the steps we take at home" Obama departs both for humanitarian intervention and the attempt to export democracy by force. There is no better way to export the values of democracy when they are reinforced internally. Thus, an economic policy to cope with debt and the deficit is configured as a bastion of this strategy. The commitment to quality education, innovation, technology, energy and health care system is more effective and accessible for all parts and reinforces the approach of leading by example in their own policies. In this sense, it is consistent with the decision to remove the international Guantanamo limbo which was, how I remember, one of the first initiatives of his presidency.

Among the international experts, this vision does not have unanimous support. The two main criticisms, the lack of clarity in the strategy and less emphasis on traditional power-refers to the loss of influence, power and American leadership. This reflects positions that can not see that the current nature of armed conflicts no longer meet the classical logic of military victory or defeat. The war in Afghanistan and the complex network that represents the situation in Iraq have highlighted the importance of a comprehensive approach. Military action can not be seen as the only success variable. A successful strategy must make use of civilian resources, a model that has been advocated by the way, by the European Union. We are facing a new policy affecting the states and societies in the long run. The path to be followed passes through strategic patience and tenacity, which are the virtues of the future. It is not possible to perceive changes overnight, but in the end the results achieved will be better and more lasting.

This way of seeing the world is in tune with effective multilateralism advocated by the European Union. It recognizes the value of the policy of alliances, gives greater importance to the civilian dimension to the military front, stresses the value of dialogue and the need to strengthen international institutions to deal with common threats and challenges such as climate change , armed conflicts, pandemics or transnational crimes. So this is good news for the European Union. Not only an opportunity to strengthen transatlantic ties, but is a solid step toward solving the challenges of the XXI century. And to prepare us better for tomorrow's world."

(in a changed English version: published June 10 in the Scotsman:)

By mentioning the three "D"-strategy Javier Solana refers to a 2008 paper from Reuben E. Brigety, II, Director of the Sustainable Security Program at the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Reuben sits also in the Council of Foreign Relations. The Center for American Progress - funded among others by George Soros - is headed by John Podesta, who is also - like Javier Solana, Strobe Talbott and Wolffenson adviser at the Brookings Institute Link. Podesta is also mentioned as having contributed to the Brookings Book I have mentioned before, called

"Power and Responsibility -Building International Order in an Era of Transnational Threats"

a strategy paper that credits Strobe Talbott and Javier Solana for the "leadership on the project and the tenacity and energy they have shown us in tackling the complexities of revitalizing global governance"(p.xix) Link So with his article, it looks as Javier Solana is basicly expressing his happiness that the (common?) strategy on global governance has also been succesfully implemented into Obamas security policy. Good news?

stay tuned!


addentum june 9: "It will be their world. Others, who are at street level, we're occupied with other things. So, with all due respect, go you to guano. As if we did not have enough with the reviews carried out by his brother Louis, the Picolet of honor! " reacted a writer after La Gazeta in Spain Link

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