Thursday, September 17, 2009

Shuster Objects to Obama’s Decision to Deny Missile Shield to our East European Allies

Congressman Bill Shuster, a member of the Armed Services Committee and the Co-chair of the House Azerbaijan Caucus, released the following statement in response to reports that the Obama Administration will shelve the deployment of a missile shield in Poland that would have protected key allies from attack from Iran and checked the expansion of Russian dominance in Eastern Europe:

“The decision by the Obama Administration to cancel the deployment of missile defenses to Poland stands as a historic and unwelcomed turn-around in America’s strategic posture and our commitment to support the fledgling democracies of post-Soviet Eastern Europe. At the same time, the decision hands Russia a propaganda victory, emboldens hardliners in the Kremlin and sends a message to Iran that we are not serious in stopping their ballistic missile program.

The President’s decision comes hand in hand with a downgrading of the ballistic missile threat from Iran. I cannot understand how the President sees it acceptable to downgrade the Iranian threat the same week as French President Szarkosy publicly stated that French intelligence knows with ‘certainty’ that Iran is working on completing a nuclear weapon.

The Obama Administration is taking a very risky gamble with missile defense. By appeasing Moscow, we have increased the danger of Russian imperialism for millions of innocent Poles, Czechs, Georgians, Ukrainians and Azerbaijanis and we have shown our hand to the Iranians, who continue to defy international pressure on their nuclear program.

The agreements we make with our allies should be worth more than the paper they are written on. I urge the President to reconsider this faulty policy.”

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