The Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto today asked readers if they could come up with plausible areas of the “international crisis” to which Sen. Biden referred in his remarks over the weekend. Below is one thought:
Based on timing, etc., I’d have to think that the context is Venezuela and a Venezuelan Missile Crisis.
Obviously the Pentagon has been briefing the Senate committees on the Russian activities there. Biden would have that fresh in his mind.
For Putin not to test Obama (certainly not a JFK, who actually distinguished himself in war), would be uncharacteristic. Putin needs to investigate what, if anything, Obama would do in a Russian invasion of Ukraine. Venezuela is, for Putin, an expendable pawn in that investigation.
Certainly no European nation can resist a Russian invasion its own, or the EU “countries” on their own. Of course, Obama will describe moral equivalency, wring his hands a bit and do – nothing. In either (both?) Venezuela or Ukriane.
For America not to respond to significant Russian provocations in its own back yard would signal to Putin a green light to invade Ukraine. And as soon as he threatened to turn off the EU’s energy supply (in winter – remember Biden said 6 months… look for early February), they’d roll over and hand it to him.
Arguably much of America would think the response to a Russian missile installation in Venezuela would be of no moment. The vast majority of the Left think America always wrong, and won’t fight for anything anyway, and many in a leaderless Right would not get real excited about taking on a possible nuclear exchange over the banana republic Venezuela has allowed itself to become. Both would be incorrect.
Absent a leader willing to stand-up to Putin and kick him out, which Obama so obviously is not, Russia will have a serious forward base here in the Western hemisphere. Perhaps even more importantly, the rest of S. America would see American weakness and move toward a Russian empire, socialism, and the lack of freedom and liberty that always attends Russia and socialism.
The poverty that is endemic to socialist countries (why Europe is irrelevant today) will crash onto poorly-managed South American economies almost instantly. If you think illegal immigration is a problem now, remember that nearly all come to the US for the chance to succeed; think of how high it would become once S. America began turning communist.
Once Russia consolidates bases in Venezuela and Ukraine it is difficult to see any way not to have a new Cold War – that will be hot in many more places than we can cover in a very short time. Syria. Israel. India/Kashmir/Pakistan. The idea that China, too, would not move to capitalize on these events is naive.
So all we need to have for a 1960s redux with more powerful weapons and more larger and aggressive countries spread over both hemispheres, coupled with a leadership ignorant of history and unable and unwilling to resist a new Russian Bear is — elect The One and The Mouth of the Senate.