Putin Predicts Republican Opposition to Arms Control Treaty

Obama sets up a “signing ceremony” in April when Congress has not even approved it? What an arrogant, despicable “Dictator-in-Chief”.

Hardly any information on the upcoming  Arms Control Treaty. Then, when I saw that Putin didn’t think the Republicans would go for it, my curiosity got the better of me. Digging deep, what to my surprise, the treaty has not been revealed. Ah, Healthcare Reform redux…. we just won’t get to see it till after the fact. http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/63385

Reports abound that Senate Republicans will fight the treaty, but outside of websites dedicated to the professional arcana of arms control and diplomacy, there is almost no discussion of the reasons why

Those reasons matter. The ones summarized by the Heritage Foundation on Thursday –- missile defense, verification, and modernization of the U.S. arsenal –- are particularly troubling given that we don’t have a published treaty text yet. The language outlining what we’re signing up for hasn’t been made public; there has been no opportunity for open debate on its particulars or its rigor.

I would add two other troubling issues to those raised at the Heritage blog. An important point of concern in the U.S. involves the limitation on delivery platforms (missiles, aircraft, and submarines) that was announced this week. The limit of 800 platforms per side sets a boundary on America’s conventional capabilities. It also implies an agreement to parity with Russia in that regard: an effective reversal of George W. Bush’s policy in negotiating the 2002 Moscow SORT Treaty.

The other disputed issue is the handling of missile telemetry data. It was one of the main sticking points for negotiation as little as a month ago. If Russian agreement has been obtained, it’s likely that the U.S. position is the one that has softened. Readers can get a sense of the specifics on that here; basically, the way ahead appears to be acceding to Russia’s desire to revert to encrypted telemetry.

These issues seem to have evaporated without an overt explanation. That circumstance puts the Washington Post’s uniquely careful narrative in an informative light. The Post points out that the Russians were frustrated enough three weeks ago to propose breaking the talks off for a month. Obama’s White House pressed for a resolution, however –- and this week the White House appeared, in the Post’s words, to have been “surprised” when the Kremlin announced the breakthrough in negotiations. The sense is hard to avoid that the Russians got the concessions they wanted and rushed out with an announcement to preempt further haggling. http://www.commentarymagazine.com/blogs/index.php/j-e-dyer/267146

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