Czechs withdraw from US missile-defense plans

posted at 8:45 am on June 16, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

Count the Czech Republic out of any American missile-defense system in Europe.  The Czechs formally withdrew from the missile-defense partnership with the US, prompting one lawmaker in Prague to complain that “the current administration doesn’t take the Czech Republic seriously.”  They see the Obama administration as more concerned with appeasing Russia — at their expense:

The Bush administration first proposed stationing 10 interceptor missiles in Poland and an advanced radar in the Czech Republic, saying the system was aimed at blunting future missile threats from Iran. But Russia angrily objected and warned that it would station its own missiles close to Poland if the plan went through.

In September 2009, the Obama administration shelved that plan and offered a new, reconfigured phased program with an undefined role for the Czechs. In November 2009, the Czech Republic was offered the possibility of hosting a separate early warning system that would gather and analyze information from satellites to detect missiles aimed at NATO territory.

Defense Minister Alexander Vondra told the AP that the Czech Republic wanted to participate but “definitely not in this way.” …

“I’m not surprised by the decision,” said Jan Vidim, a lawmaker in the lower house of the Czech Parliament. “The United States has been and will be our crucial strategic partner but the current administration doesn’t take the Czech Republic seriously.”

Vidim’s remarks reflected concern by many in Central and Eastern Europe that the U.S. interest in resetting ties with Moscow could come at their expense.

Unfortunately, it wouldn’t be the first time that the West ran over the Czechs in their rush to appease a stronger power.

Barack Obama made the infamous “reset button” a cornerstone of his foreign policy in Europe, but he has done so at the expense of the Czechs and Poles.  He canceled the rollout of the missile shield in Poland on the 70th anniversary of the Soviet invasion, apparently without giving the Poles much notice.  After George W. Bush got agreements from both the Czechs and the Poles that cost both governments some political support, Obama has pulled the rug out from underneath both nations on the shield system.  The latest offer to the Czechs was so insulting that Vondra called it a “consolation prize,” no more than “a room or two” with “some screens” to watch.

The Czechs said they are open to more discussions on missile defense with the US, but they made it pretty clear that they’re not terribly interested in dealing with the Obama administration.  “It’s too early to speak of” ideas the Czechs have for missile defense, Vondra announced, a fairly clear indication that they’re not going to cooperate much with the current occupant of the White House.

Gee, I seem to remember a presidential candidate in 2008 who ran on the promise to improve relations with our allies.  Smart power, indeed.

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Gee, I seem to remember a presidential candidate in 2008 who ran on the promise to improve relations with our allies. Smart power, indeed.

If, by “improve” you mean “turn into a fallow brownfield”, you would be correct.

Steve Eggleston on June 16, 2011 at 8:47 AM

In Eastern Europe, Czechs bounce you.

rbj on June 16, 2011 at 8:48 AM

Can’t wait until President Palin comes in and kicks some Russian b*tt in 2013!
This is inexcusable!

Jenfidel on June 16, 2011 at 8:48 AM

“Fool me once…”

itsnotaboutme on June 16, 2011 at 8:48 AM

Canceled Czechs? What’s next? Poles apart? Let’s hope the reset button gets pushed in November 2012.

Drained Brain on June 16, 2011 at 8:49 AM

Meanwhile, the Ruskies were buddying around with the Dinnerjacket guy

Gohawgs on June 16, 2011 at 8:50 AM

Jenfidel on June 16, 2011 at 8:48 AM

You people who love to desperately try to change the subject can be so annoying.

itsnotaboutme on June 16, 2011 at 8:50 AM


After George W. Bush got agreements from both the Czechs and the Poles that cost both governments some political support, Obama has pulled the rug out from underneath both nations on the shield system.

I hope the people of those countries know that it’s not all of us who turning our backs on them, just Obama.

Tony737 on June 16, 2011 at 8:51 AM

The Czechs just need to get more thuggy, start imprisoning and killing their people. That’s how you get President Obama’s respect.

myrenovations on June 16, 2011 at 8:51 AM

I’ve said it before…I’ll say it again: Obama is AWESOME!

search4truth on June 16, 2011 at 8:52 AM

Disarm, DeFriend, Disengage, Destroy the U.S. Economy.

If these are his goals he’s the most successful President in American History and will be well rewarded by his Masters.

ALL HAIL GodBamah!!

PappyD61 on June 16, 2011 at 8:57 AM

You people who love to desperately try to change the subject can be so annoying.

itsnotaboutme on June 16, 2011 at 8:50 AM

What are you talking about?
Not changing the subject in the least!
We can’t change U.S. policy that favors and capitulates to the Russians over free Eastern Europe until we get rid of 0bama and put in conservative President Palin.
It’s just that simple.

Jenfidel on June 16, 2011 at 8:58 AM

Can’t wait until President Palin comes in and kicks some Russian b*tt in 2013!
This is inexcusable!

Jenfidel on June 16, 2011 at 8:48 AM

Reminds me of this quote:

“As an Obama official once told me about the Netanyahu team, with amazement, ‘these guys are actually waiting for President Palin,’” wrote Beinart

I think a lot of our allies who respected America for it’s strength are waiting for maybe Palin or someone else to be a dependable ally once again.

Dongemaharu on June 16, 2011 at 9:00 AM

Someone needs billions and billions in aid as an offer they cannot refuse.

Obama is the Chamberlain of the day……run away!!!!!

Hening on June 16, 2011 at 9:07 AM

I’ve said it before…I’ll say it again: Obama is AWESOME!

search4truth on June 16, 2011 at 8:52 AM

OBAMA is FANTASTIC!!!!!!

PatriotRider on June 16, 2011 at 9:10 AM

Me too tony….we need to get this bonehead out of office

cmsinaz on June 16, 2011 at 9:13 AM

Other than Russia, and possibly the progressive/bankrupt governments of Spain and Greece, are there any European leaders left who aren’t hoping at least privately for a change in leadership in the U.S. next year?

jon1979 on June 16, 2011 at 9:13 AM

This all makes sense if you start from teh premise that Obama thinks america is the problem adn countries like Russia and Iran are teh solution.

Monkeytoe on June 16, 2011 at 9:15 AM

We need to make sure that we get rid of this “smart diplomacy” in 2012. Obama has never missed an opportunity to diss our allies and appease our worst enemies at every stop.

simkeith on June 16, 2011 at 9:23 AM

He’s not leaning on them for campaign money is he?

docflash on June 16, 2011 at 9:24 AM

And he’s not even subtle. It’s one thing to through politically inconvenient people under the bus but this is a whole nation, a strategic ally and a history, to pander to a national that will thwart us at every chance. I guess I’m not smart enough.

Cindy Munford on June 16, 2011 at 9:26 AM

We have one of the most incompetent Presidents in our nation’s history, yet the media is still works feverishly to spin him into a great leader.

The greatest danger to freedom of the press is the American journalist.

bw222 on June 16, 2011 at 9:28 AM

They see the Obama administration as more concerned with appeasing Russia — at their expense:

So how many more of our ‘friends’ are we going to piss off with Barry’s “Smart Power”?

The Empty Suit strikes again.

GarandFan on June 16, 2011 at 9:31 AM

Clearly Obama has no other strategery than to do the exact opposite of Booooosh.

csdeven on June 16, 2011 at 9:32 AM

Vidim’s remarks reflected concern by many in Central and Eastern Europe that the U.S. interest in resetting ties with Moscow could come at their expense.

Just as Øbama is resetting relations with the ME at Israel’s expense.

With a community organizer for a friend, who needs enemies.

petefrt on June 16, 2011 at 9:34 AM

Good for the Czechs. They’re only doing what’s right. The person residing in the Oval Office promised to restore America’s honor. Hardly. The only thing he’s accomplished is proving that the worldview of the chumps who run the Nobel Prize does not work.

paul1149 on June 16, 2011 at 9:36 AM

Jenfidel on June 16, 2011 at 8:48 AM

The only question they have is….”Can Her Majesty Sarah “The Rock Star” Palin see the Czech Republic from the Old North Church and will the Russians hear the shots and bells from there?”

csdeven on June 16, 2011 at 9:41 AM

If it’s true, as the US gov has always claimed, that the purpose of the missile shield is to protect against aggression from Iran then why shouldn’t it accommodate Russia?

Answer: it isn’t true.

Well this is one solid difference between McCain and Obama. McCain as President would not have backed down, I don’t think.

aengus on June 16, 2011 at 9:42 AM

The Empty Suit strikes again.

GarandFan on June 16, 2011 at 9:31 AM

Unfortunately, he’s no longer an empty suit. He’s filled it quite nicely with a steaming pile of shiite.

Big John on June 16, 2011 at 9:48 AM

Bada bump bump bump…. another one under the bus…

/apologies Queen

bloviator on June 16, 2011 at 9:55 AM

Our allies will desert us as they see how weak and ignorant little Bammie is. They will see that we are not a reliable ally. No surprises here.

slickwillie2001 on June 16, 2011 at 10:00 AM

Other than Russia, and possibly the progressive/bankrupt governments of Spain and Greece, are there any European leaders left who aren’t hoping at least privately for a change in leadership in the U.S. next year?

jon1979 on June 16, 2011 at 9:13 AM

Funny, I seem to recall when they were turned off by GW Cowboy policies and hoped for delivery from the one. Darn, Karma sucks! :)

El Coqui on June 16, 2011 at 10:05 AM

The Czechs and Poles are largely Catholic, are they not?

OldEnglish on June 16, 2011 at 10:12 AM

The Czechs and Poles are largely Catholic, are they not?

OldEnglish on June 16, 2011 at 10:12 AM

The Czechs are largely atheist and culturally Catholic. The Poles are largely Catholic.

But what does that have to do with anything?

aengus on June 16, 2011 at 10:19 AM

are there any European leaders left who aren’t hoping at least privately for a change in leadership in the U.S. next year?

Who knows. They might all be, but they’re not going to broadcast it.

aengus on June 16, 2011 at 10:22 AM

But what does that have to do with anything?

aengus on June 16, 2011 at 10:19 AM

Christian nations – not on Obama’s list of friends.

OldEnglish on June 16, 2011 at 10:24 AM

Bongo is our friend. The Czech Republic isn’t.

Sounds like a perfect subject for Palin’s next wtf column.

MNHawk on June 16, 2011 at 10:27 AM

Jenfidel on June 16, 2011 at 8:48 AM

The only question they have is….”Can Her Majesty Sarah “The Rock Star” Palin see the Czech Republic from the Old North Church and will the Russians hear the shots and bells from there?”

csdeven on June 16, 2011 at 9:41 AM

I’d like to give this the response it deserves, but I don’t know how to type a raspberry….

tom on June 16, 2011 at 10:36 AM

That’s okay, at least we haven’t let our other allies down like England…ooops…

right2bright on June 16, 2011 at 10:40 AM

In September 2009, the Obama administration shelved that plan and offered a new, reconfigured phased program with an undefined role for the Czechs.

That’s a Hell of an offer: “Sign here, and we’ll just make up the terms and conditions as we go along.”

Obama figured out that he can’t get away with officially abolishing a purely defensive system to please the hardliners in Russia. So he’s sabotaging it instead.

logis on June 16, 2011 at 10:47 AM

They see the Obama administration as more concerned with appeasing Russia — at their expense:

Strangely, I see the same thing!
NO MATTER – WE MUST GET THIS CREEP, TRAITOR, ISLAMIST OUT OF OFFICE!

Bambi on June 16, 2011 at 11:04 AM

I’ve said it before…I’ll say it again: Obama is AWESOME!

search4truth on June 16, 2011 at 8:52 AM

OBAMA is FANTASTIC!!!!!!

PatriotRider on June 16, 2011 at 9:10 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=suUJpisDGlw

DrRansom on June 16, 2011 at 11:07 AM

Damn, that “reset” is working out well!

Really Right on June 16, 2011 at 11:17 AM

A sad day when the Czechs find Russia more reliable than the United States.

As for ““the current administration doesn’t take the Czech Republic seriously,” the current Administration takes no one seriously unless they can get street cred and cash along the way.

coldwarrior on June 16, 2011 at 11:19 AM

Worst President EVER

Roy Rogers on June 16, 2011 at 11:34 AM

Gohawgs on June 16, 2011 at 8:50 AM

This is who Obama REALLY wants to hang with. Not our allies, but dictators. He’s proven that over, and over with his actions and words.

capejasmine on June 16, 2011 at 11:41 AM

I do not understand this.

We seem to be handling numerous weapons agreements with the Russian Federation very well.

All they wanted (so they said) was some inclusion and technical guarantees.

This system was/is hardly cutting edge. And the Russians seem pretty sane to me. They spend as much time watching MTV as old soviet movies.

Aside from the GREEN PARTY I don’t know anybody over there who wanted it cancelled. And I have been in Poland, Germany and Russia this year. I may have forgotten someplace…

IlikedAUH2O on June 16, 2011 at 11:47 AM

I just got an email. I was not clear, apparently.

Sorry.

What I meant was, only whacko, leftie euro trash, America haters wanted this totally cancelled so don’t go hating the Ruskies unless you ask them. I don’t know that they deserve the check for this one. Not for the total cancellation, anyway. The Euro lefties want all rockets out of Europe. This is their victory, I think. Moreover,

We don’t need another cold war. And you want Putin squaring off against our fearless leader? Ha Ha

IlikedAUH2O on June 16, 2011 at 11:52 AM

When you have an eunuch for a president that is a laughingstock to the whole world, this kind of rebuke to our allies is expected. When the leaders of our greatest adversaries will not stand and acknowledge the presence of “the leader of the free world” as he bows humbly before them, it increases the dangers to ourselves and our allies.

volsense on June 16, 2011 at 12:20 PM

Gee, I seem to remember a presidential candidate in 2008 who ran on the promise to improve relations with our allies. Smart power, indeed.

Are you sure he didn’t say “transform relations with our allies”?

disa on June 16, 2011 at 12:35 PM

“…a fairly clear indication that they’re not going to cooperate much with the current occupant of the White House.

Gee, I seem to remember a presidential candidate in 2008 who ran on the promise to improve relations with our allies. Smart power, indeed.”

Obama didn’t mention he had different “allies” in mind. Obama doesn’t care for any of our traditional allies, they remind him too much of free capitalist democracies. He likes the third world sinkholes of socialist and Islamist depravity. Those are his natural allies, and it shows across the board in policies so-ill-informed, so short-sighted and destructive, that ‘diplomacy” doesn’t apply.

“Smart Power?” Obama is surrounded by leftist academics whose silly notions don’t fit reality and are worse than useless in policy formation. It will take years to undo the damage Neo-Socialist Obama has done to our international standing and relationships.

novaculus on June 16, 2011 at 12:36 PM

Look at the man in the phot – doesn’t he look like he’s reaching out to take the trash bag from his wife?

IlonaE on June 16, 2011 at 12:39 PM

Not the first time indeed…

Obama will do NOTHING to impede iran’s march to the islamic bomb. Obama will order pretensive military in any other country, hamstring any ally, and appease whoever he has to, but hands off iran.

Obama wants credit for ending the Bush war in Iraq, curiosly quiet there lately from Iran wouldn’t you say?

Rea1ityCheck on June 16, 2011 at 1:00 PM

Gee, I seem to remember a presidential candidate in 2008 who ran on the promise to improve relations with our his allies. Smart power, indeed.

FIFY

BobMbx on June 16, 2011 at 1:14 PM

Whatever it’s worth, I’m with you Czech Republic. Obama hates you because of your embracing capitalism and his cowardice in dealing with Russia. In the words of Allen West: “I can’t stand the guy”. I’m Poland, Ukraine and Georgia too, our true allies in Europe.

Daemonocracy on June 16, 2011 at 1:30 PM

The Eastern European former members of the WP made a huge mistake in seeking NATO membership. They should have formed their own military/economic union. Belgium is never going to go to war to save them, and the EU’s economic disaster is going to drag them down too.

slickwillie2001 on June 16, 2011 at 1:59 PM

I’d like to give this the response it deserves, but I don’t know how to type a raspberry….

tom on June 16, 2011 at 10:36 AM

You can use the Spanky and Our Gang response…

“Oh Raspberries!”

csdeven on June 16, 2011 at 2:29 PM

Are there any allies of the US whom the Obama Administration hasn’t tossed under the bus yet?
As for the Czech Republic, they’d be wise to team up with Israeli scientists to further a missile defense system, as the Israelis are loyal to their friends to a fault.

eaglewingz08 on June 16, 2011 at 3:13 PM

Don’t blame them. Very sad indeed.

AshleyTKing on June 16, 2011 at 3:37 PM

The Eastern European former members of the WP made a huge mistake in seeking NATO membership. They should have formed their own military/economic union. Belgium is never going to go to war to save them, and the EU’s economic disaster is going to drag them down too.

slickwillie2001 on June 16, 2011 at 1:59 PM

They still can and should.

AshleyTKing on June 16, 2011 at 3:41 PM

I guess they decided not to wait for Obama to demand that they return to the 1944 borders.

RJL on June 16, 2011 at 4:26 PM

Worst President EVER

Roy Rogers on June 16, 2011 at 11:34 AM

That depends upon what the meaning of ever is…

Don L on June 16, 2011 at 5:35 PM

But… I thought foreign countries were supposed to respect the U.S. with Obama as president instead of Bush?

scotash on June 16, 2011 at 8:36 PM

They still can and should.

AshleyTKing on June 16, 2011 at 3:41 PM

With what?

Uncle Sams Nephew on June 17, 2011 at 10:06 AM