America confirms Mitt Romney was right about Russia in 2012

posted at 8:01 pm on July 14, 2014 by Noah Rothman

A new Pew Research Center survey reveals that Americans now see Russia as the United States’ chief geopolitical rival. This survey represents a stark reversal from 2012 when President Barack Obama zinged Mitt Romney in the presidential debates for making this very claim by asserting that “The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back” (A claim that did not merit a fact check from The Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler until March of this year).

But Americans’ opinions of Russia, which they now consider a “threat,” represents a reversal from even September, 2013, when Obama relied on a proposal submitted by Russian President Vladimir Putin in order to avoid committing to military action in order to contain Syria’s civil war.

Then, only 39 percent of Americans held negative views of the Russian Federation compared with 36 percent who viewed America’s Cold War adversary in positive terms. A Pew survey from November, 2013 showed that 40 percent did not see Russia as “much of a problem” at all. As of March, only 22 percent agreed Russia was “not much of a problem.”

Today, 23 percent of Americans view Russia as the nation’s top geopolitical threat, compared with just 19 percent who say the same of China and 16 percent who award that distinction to Iran.

The Washington Post’s Aaron Blake notes that the terms “threat” and “adversary” have distinct and mutually exclusive definitions, and the differences between those definitions were hotly debated in 2012. Obama got a mild rebuke from Politifact when he claimed that Romney characterized Russia as a “threat” when he actually used the word “foe.” But that distinction seems hollow today when Americans themselves are freely using the term “threat” to describe the challenge a resurgent Russia poses.

Threat1

This interesting image provided by Pew reveals the outlines of a post-American bloc in Asia. Most of the Cold War-era alliances still hold, and nations like Japan, the Philippines, and South Korea continue to view the United States as their greatest ally. Most of that is driven by a widely-shared fear of a rising and aggressive China.

The People’s Republic is, however, not as nervous about its regional adversaries as it is about the challenge presented by the United States. 36 percent of Chinese respondents said the U.S. was their chief threat, followed closely by Japan at 33 percent. Pluralities or majorities in Pakistan and Malaysia now cite China as their chief ally in the world.

And who do the Chinese regard as their greatest ally in the world? Russia.


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Too bad the media will never print any of this.

Tard on July 14, 2014 at 8:04 PM

…so what?…Politburo Press!

JugEarsButtHurt on July 14, 2014 at 8:06 PM

“The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back”

Yep, and we still issue bayonets to Soldiers in the Army. Go figure….

Johnnyreb on July 14, 2014 at 8:06 PM

Romney sure is in the news a lot these days.

Either real interest – or the man has one hell of a Press Agent.

jake-the-goose on July 14, 2014 at 8:09 PM

A broken clock is right twice a day.

Remember Romney’s 3rd and foreign debate with Obama where all the double-talking equivocating self-described “non-partisan progressive” as well as “severe conservative” seemed to do is give constipated smirks and parrot Obama. And remember Romney never recanted his support of the leftists on climate change and gun control, he just employed circumlocutions to try to maneuver his way around those things. And Romney is now full out for amnesty again (as he was in a 2005 youtube): http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/05/30/Mitt-Romney-Not-Healthy-Congress-Hasn-t-Passed-Amnesty

anotherJoe on July 14, 2014 at 8:10 PM

Romney would have made a good President but America would rather have dancing populists than experts at governance.

We ALWAYS get the government we deserve.

HotAirian on July 14, 2014 at 8:10 PM

Romney/McCain 2016!!

BoehnerTears on July 14, 2014 at 8:11 PM

Romney would have made a good President but America would rather have dancing populists than experts at governance.

We ALWAYS get the government we deserve.

HotAirian on July 14, 2014 at 8:10 PM

Yep – +1

jake-the-goose on July 14, 2014 at 8:12 PM

Everyone I knew who voted against Romney said the same thing: “He’s a boring, rich, white guy”.

I guess the ADD, class envy and racism wasn’t apparent to these folks who voted for Obozo BECAUSE HE IS BLACK which he’s not.

Tard on July 14, 2014 at 8:15 PM

Actually, it was one of the few things he was totally wrong about.

vlad martel on July 14, 2014 at 8:15 PM

Can you say that a little louder, Candy?

rogerb on July 14, 2014 at 8:16 PM

As China and Russia build their forces, bams depletes ours. Dude sure knows how to build a third world country.
Too bad all the things that have added up for the cry of impeachment weren’t pounced on by the pubs during the last election. They didn’t want to “offend” anyone. Now they want kudos for Romney being right about Russia.
Romney being right or wrong now, does it matter? Look where we are as a country now.

31giddyup on July 14, 2014 at 8:16 PM

Huh. Candy Crowley was wrong after all. Nice to know.

Judge_Dredd on July 14, 2014 at 8:19 PM

I prefer to say that Obama was wrong, wrong about everything. That is far closer to the truth.

jukin3 on July 14, 2014 at 8:28 PM

Can you say that a little louder, Candy?

rogerb on July 14, 2014 at 8:16 PM

The trough and Obama’s posterior muffle Crowley’s enunciation.

viking01 on July 14, 2014 at 8:35 PM

“The 1980s are now calling to ask for their foreign policy back”

Yep, and we still issue bayonets to Soldiers in the Army. Go figure….

Johnnyreb on July 14, 2014 at 8:06 PM

Just don’t tell John Kerry. That’s so not like the 21st century.

chris0christies0donut on July 14, 2014 at 8:37 PM

Mitt Romney has a six-point lead on President Barack Obama, according to a Gallup poll of likely voters released Wednesday. He leads 51-45 among likely voters, and 48-46 among registered voters, according to a seven-day average.

Gallup’s margin is large among recent polls; seven other national polls released in the last two days show margins varying from +3 Obama to +4 Romney.

The Gallup poll showed Romney at 50-46 on Tuesday and 49-47 on Monday.

The numbers do not reflect Tuesday night’s debate, in which many observers concluded that Obama had a stronger performance than Romney, if only slightly.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/18/mitt-romney-gallup-poll_n_1979318.html

And then Romney gave up during the 2nd debate and that was it, end of story.

NO MORE RINOS, MITT?……..GO AWAY, and take Paul Ryan your Amnesty compadre with you.

PappyD61 on July 14, 2014 at 8:42 PM

Romney sure is in the news a lot these days.

Either real interest – or the man has one hell of a Press Agent.

jake-the-goose on July 14, 2014 at 8:09 PM

Um. ?????

chris0christies0donut on July 14, 2014 at 8:42 PM

Everyone I knew who voted against Romney said the same thing: “He’s a boring, rich, white guy”.

Yeah, everyone was fond of ‘dissing’ him.
But nobody would refuse to BE him, given the chance.
Another twisted example of the crawfish phenomenon, translated from bucket, to subculture, to an entire nation.

Enjoy your devastated economy, porous borders and international laughingstock status, progressives.
No; better still: Own. It. You brought it to fruition.
Remind me to punch one of you in the head at random, next time I have the opportunity.

orangemtl on July 14, 2014 at 8:44 PM

A broken clock is right twice a day.

Which, oddly enough, makes the Commander in Chief less reliable than a broken clock.

orangemtl on July 14, 2014 at 8:47 PM

He was right about everything.

formwiz on July 14, 2014 at 8:48 PM

Which, oddly enough, makes the Commander in Chief less reliable than a broken clock.

orangemtl on July 14, 2014 at 8:47 PM

Sounds about right.

Aizen on July 14, 2014 at 8:49 PM

A broken clock is right twice a day.

Which, oddly enough, makes the Commander in Chief less reliable than a broken clock.

orangemtl on July 14, 2014 at 8:47 PM

As others have said Obama is a broken digital clock…

…so that makes him,er, “present” but not even right twice a day.

viking01 on July 14, 2014 at 8:54 PM

Enjoy your devastated economy, porous borders and international laughingstock status, progressives.
No; better still: Own. It. You brought it to fruition.

Etch-A-Sketch is a progressive.

Romneycare = 0bamacare no matter how many ways you try to spin it.

The US Chamber of Corrupt Crony Capitalism owned the bastid and he doesn’t represent me.

The P.I.G. Stuart Stevens who ran his campaign thinks conservatives are racist. Thanks to him we had the disgrace in Mississippi.

His corrupt plundering consultants deserve to be in jail for their ORCA scam.

The Bain bankruptcy was a disgrace. You are willfully blind.

No; better still: Own. It. You brought the loss to fruition.

Jayrae on July 14, 2014 at 8:58 PM

Too bad he didn’t follow thru with that Pose he’s striking
in the photo…instead, he got pushed around by a fat CNN
moderator…..there’s a lesson here somewhere for future
GOP candidates….

ToddPA on July 14, 2014 at 9:08 PM

While we’re retreading 2012, I still believe Romney outperformed how Gingrich, Paul or Santorum would have fared.

Policy wise, I still prefer Romney to the theocratic Santorum (and this is a phrase that gets tossed around way too much but Santorum is the rare case where it applies, guy would’ve made it illegal to dance on Sundays) and the… Well, come up with a polite way to say “mentally ill” for Ron Paul.

And Gingrich’s politics might have been somewhat preferable to Romney’s, but Gingrich would have been eviscerated as the fat, rich, loudmouth serial adulterer who spent the 90s being mean to everyone for no apparent reason.

Those were our four choices. We don’t live in the alternate reality where, say, Michelle Bachmann ever got more than single digits in any primary.

TaraMaclay on July 14, 2014 at 9:12 PM

Jayrae on July 14, 2014 at 8:58 PM

That entire diatribe can be laid at the feet of what some refer to as a “hagfish”.

Judge_Dredd on July 14, 2014 at 9:31 PM

America confirmed to Mitt Romney on November 6, 2012 that Mitt Romney was not right for America.

It is so sweet to see people wallow in Mittens loss and how he was right about EVERYTHING.

LOL! Thanks for the good time Mittens.

The highlight of the Mittens campaign was the joke of his foreign trip to show his foreign policy chops.

Mittens messed up UK visit. How can you mess up a UK visit — our natural ally. Well Mittens ever the arrogant rich kid could not help himself and pointed out that London did not do as good a job organizing the Olympics as he had done in Salt Lake City.

As a Brit newspaper put it..Mitt Romney’s charm offensive has proved rather more offensive, than charming.

Ned Pepper on July 14, 2014 at 10:02 PM

How can you mess up a UK visit — our natural ally.
Ned Pepper on July 14, 2014 at 10:02 PM

Former natural ally, Neddie, former. Obama took care of that.

Judge_Dredd on July 14, 2014 at 10:06 PM

Former natural ally, Neddie, former. Obama took care of that.

Judge_Dredd on July 14, 2014 at 10:06 PM

LOL! Obama’s successful 2012 campaign manager, Jim Messina, is helping David Cameron, a Tory, get elected.

But, but, but Obama returned Churchill’s bust..LOL!!Oh the horror…

Ned Pepper on July 14, 2014 at 10:22 PM

The interest is real. Mitt needs to run.

Perspicacious on July 14, 2014 at 10:31 PM

Ned Pepper on July 14, 2014 at 10:02 PM

As compared to, say, ObamaTheCommie?

Who is John Galt on July 14, 2014 at 10:38 PM

As compared to, say, ObamaTheCommie?

Who is John Galt on July 14, 2014 at 10:38 PM

Excuse me, ObamaTheCommiePunk?

Add in, ChicagoStyleCommiePunk?

Who is John Galt on July 14, 2014 at 10:39 PM

But, but, but Obama returned Churchill’s bust..LOL!!Oh the horror…

Ned Pepper on July 14, 2014 at 10:22 PM

Yeah. And Clinton was impeached over a BJ in the WH.

Judge_Dredd on July 14, 2014 at 10:39 PM

Polls never actually confirm someone is right. Unless of course the question is, “what do people think that other people think?”

America agrees that Romney was right about Russia. But it was pretty obvious he was right way back then to everyone but Obama supporters and the media (but I repeat myself.)

It’s a shame Mitt Romney was trying to hard to not be disagreeable that night. That “the 1980s want their foreign policy back” remark was a silly response, and should have been replied to more forcefully.

There Goes the Neighborhood on July 14, 2014 at 11:56 PM

I would enthusiastically support another run if Mitt decides to go for it. He would have made a great president! Take a look at his transition plan. Serious agenda for strengthening the economy, national security, and families. Day One of The Readiness Project will impress. Then a 200 day agenda includes working with congress to enact legislation (think Reagan). A cabinet of brilliant accomplished leaders. It excites the imagination to think what this country could be and do with Mitt at the helm. He is can-do guy! Mr Fixit. No one else has his leadership skills. Others may be better at campaigning. But only Obama voters were voting for a campaigner in chief and they sure got one. I voted for a real president. I voted Romney and hope to again.

Lori on July 14, 2014 at 11:57 PM

I would enthusiastically support another run if Mitt decides to go for it. He would have made a great president! Take a look at his transition plan. Serious agenda for strengthening the economy, national security, and families. Day One of The Readiness Project will impress. Then a 200 day agenda includes working with congress to enact legislation (think Reagan). A cabinet of brilliant accomplished leaders. It excites the imagination to think what this country could be and do with Mitt at the helm. He is can-do guy! Mr Fixit. No one else has his leadership skills. Others may be better at campaigning. But only Obama voters were voting for a campaigner in chief and they sure got one. I voted for a real president. I voted Romney and hope to again.

Lori on July 14, 2014 at 11:57 PM

That makes at least four people now….

The rest of us would prefer a conservative.

There Goes the Neighborhood on July 15, 2014 at 12:05 AM

A poll says less than one quarter of Americans think Russia is our chief geopolitical rival, and Rothman thinks this proves Romney was right?

Perhaps Rothman’s favorite subject isn’t history, but he might discover if he bothered to look into it that far more than 23 percent of Americans considered the Soviet Union our chief political rival in the 1980s.

This small plurality of Americans and Romney are both wrong. China, not Russia, is the chief geopolitical rival of the U.S. Beijing rather than Moscow will give America far more trouble over the next thirty years.

Pincher Martin on July 15, 2014 at 12:46 AM

Around the late eighties People were running around saying the Cold War was over. I thought they were out of their minds.

burt on July 15, 2014 at 8:13 AM

Everyone, including the media and most leftist (but I repeat myself), knew that Romney (and the right generally) were correct about Russia.

It has nothing to do with being right or wrong.

Obama, the media, and the left don’t like a powerful, assertive America. It doesn’t matter who the other side is, Russia, China, Iran – they want America to be submissive and “kind”.

Results don’t matter. Only feelings matter.

Around the late eighties People were running around saying the Cold War was over. I thought they were out of their minds.

burt on July 15, 2014 at 8:13 AM

there was always a variant of the Cold War and always will be. Nations have interests and will jostle for power, control, influence. the USSR v. USA “Cold War” seemed different because nuclear weapons were added to the mix, but ultimately, it was the same kind of gamesmanship between powerful nations that has always happened in history.

So, the Cold War with capital letters may have “ended”, but the game will always continue. Only fools (meaning the left) believed that the fall of the USSR meant an end of history and all nations living together as one happy family.

As is always the case, the left ignores history and human nature and instead focuses on dogma and emotions.

Which is why they claim such nonsense as if we “talk nice” to Iran, Iran will do what we want (i.e. “smart power”).

that adults buy into this nonsense at all is entirely mystifying.

Monkeytoe on July 15, 2014 at 8:28 AM

Another interesting feature of that graphic is that communist Viet Nam considers the United States its greatest ally, and communist China as its biggest threat.

jaime on July 15, 2014 at 8:42 AM

Always push for the one that you KNOW you can beat.

REPEAT.

FAIL.

Carnac on July 15, 2014 at 8:48 AM

Romney was correct in all his positions. It doesn’t take hindsight to know that. The fact that he lost and obama was re-elected proves how stupid amerikans are, and with our open border we are getting more ignorant everyday.

earlgrey on July 15, 2014 at 1:49 PM

Are we now relying on the American public to determine the accuracy of geopolitical claims?

Nonfactor on July 15, 2014 at 2:12 PM