Russian President Putin understands what the free world does not: Whoever won’t fight jihad outside his home will be forced to fight it inside his home.
US President Barack Obama delivered an impressive speech at the United Nations General Assembly on Monday. He knows how to talk. Military power alone will not solve the problem in Syria, he said, and presented a vision of peace and comradeship. He asked Iran nicely not to shout “Death to America,” because it won’t bring them jobs, and expressed his hope that those who hope for its extinction will maintain the nuclear agreement and turn the world into a safer place. Just like that. There is no doubt that he is a believer.
While Obama talks, Vladimir Putin acts. After the Crimean Peninsula and Ukraine, Russia has reached Syria. The Russian president is creating an axis which includes Iran, the Bashar Assad regime in Syria and Hezbollah, and the free world is standing by. In fact, there are even signs of support for Putin. He may succeed in doing to the Islamic State organization what the free world is not even dreaming of doing.
Russia is a midget compared to the United States. The former world power’s national product is $2.1 trillion, compared to Britain’s 2.6 and 17.4 in the US. But power means nothing when there is no interest in using it.
This isn’t just about military intervention. When former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, a clear friend of the US, faced a domestic crisis, Obama actually rushed to support the regime’s opponents. In the conflict between the current president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, and the Muslim Brotherhood, Obama stood mainly by the “brothers,” in the name of democracy of course. The message to the leaders of the Third World in general and to the Arab world in particular was clear: Don’t expect America’s support.
Putin is positioning himself in this place in order to signal the opposite to the Third World: I support my allies, no matter what they do. Pedantries of democracy and human rights are appropriate for the European Union and the American administration. I have interests.
In other words, a little power being used is worth much more than a lot of power which no one plans to do anything with. What is the neighborhood bully worth if he adopts the role of the neighborhood fool?
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Ben Dror Yemini | Ynet News