The Preemptive Strike Doctrine
Clear and Present Danger
If an individual, or the United States as a sovereign nation is aware of a building danger to security or safety, is the optimal plan to wait until it is a clear and present danger before dealing with it? Common sense would seem to dictate that the line separating danger and imminent danger is extremely fine, and that waiting is in no way consistent with the premise of either personal or national security.
As an individual you would work the problem through the system to try and contain it. As a nation facing entities and regimes that seek to inflict as much damage and destruction as possible on innocent men, women and children, the solution is more complex. And yes, this solution may in fact require the use of military force to take that threat out.
The Preemptive Strike Doctrine was put in place by the Bush administration in 2002 with the expressed purpose of giving the United States the right to protect, not only our citizens, but our allies around the world from the ever increasing threats that exist. It stated that the United States had the right to deal with a building threat to security in addition to a threat that presented a "clear and present danger" Unfortunately for all involved, because it was implemented by President Bush, it is a pariah that President Obama wants to eradicate.
Obviously, Iran is the textbook case for the fine line that we have to walk. There is a quickly building danger posed to world security by the Iranian nuclear program. Our "allies" in the fight to end or contain this threat, Russia and China, are not true allies. In fact, China and Russia have their own agendas, which will prevent them from taking any real action against this regime. China has a need for the Iranian oil to fuel its 6% plus economic growth. Russia has economic ties to Iran and is in fact helping them in building its’ nuclear infrastructure and missile defense system. This very missile defense system will make dealing with the nukes problem, when it does become a clear and present danger, that much more difficult to deal with. Is waiting for this point in the best interest of United States national security?
The Obama Doctrine
This apparent method of the Obama administration for dealing with threats to the United States and our friends around the world has become clear. Ominously clear. It is the idea of diplomacy first and second, with the implementation of sanctions and deal making together with our supposed allies to gain the help needed to deal with the problem third. The fallacy of this plan?
You cannot enter into substantive and valid negotiations with when the other party to those negotiations is a rogue regime with the stated goal of destroying our allies and the U.S. You cannot implement economic sanctions against a government who does not have the vested interests of its' own population at heart. Additionally, when your partners in imposing the sanctions will most likely not abide by them, this method of containing the threat will fail. China and Russia have clearly stated that they do not favor sanctions at this time.
At the same time, through the Obama Doctrine premise of appeasement, the United States has portrayed itself as the polar opposite of Bush. Weak and willing to give up most anything to achieve our goals in ways that will make them unachievable. We gave up missile defense in Poland and Czechoslovakia to appease the Russians with the understanding that they would back sanctions, and they did not.
Our allies in this fight against global threats, as well as Iran and North Korea, do not respect weakness, but they will take full advantage of it. For the Russians under acting leader Putin, they will get whatever they can from the United States, and in return most likely never come through on their side of the bargain. For Iran, they will play the game and dance the dance, stringing us along while continuing on the way to a nuclear capability.
What the Obama Doctrine does not seem to account for is that rhetoric, flowery speech and empty threats do not scare anyone. Anyone, except for those around the world who see it for what it is: “Clear and present danger" to the United States itself. In the end, those nations who live under a daily threat to security will be forced to take matters into their own hands, act unilaterally, and pay a price to ensure national security.
What the Obama Doctrine needs to account for is that in the world today, the emphasis has to be on a pragmatic approach to events, and not an approach designed to simply be "not George Bush." While the far left may endorse that, the rest of us will pay the price.