- The Washington Times - Thursday, February 26, 2009

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

COMMENTARY:

“Mark my words. It will not be six months before the world tests Barack Obama like they did John Kennedy.”

Forget about six months, the foreign affairs insults arrived within three weeks of Barack Obama’s presidency. And with the economy dominating the news cycle, very little attention has been paid.

Let’s take them one by one:

Insult One: By far the most important insult to the Obama administration came last week. Shortly after U.S. special envoy Richard Holbrooke visited Pakistan, the country surrendered to the Taliban and al Qaeda, putting the entire world in danger.

In a shocking abdication of responsibility, the Pakistani government now says the Taliban has the authority to impose Shariah law in the northern part of the country. This means the Pakistani government is allowing these terrorists to do whatever they want, and that will include continuing their attacks on American forces in neighboring Afghanistan.

This is huge. And President Obama would be wise to respond quickly and punish the Pakistani government. They have thrown in with terrorists and killers, and the United States cannot accept that, nor should any responsible country.

Insult Two: The government of Kyrgyzstan is closing the U.S. air base on its soil. That air base supplies NATO forces in Afghanistan. Again, this is huge.

The reason the base is being closed is because Russian tyrant Vladimir Putin doesn’t like America assisting nations like Poland and Ukraine in their defense strategies. So Mr. Putin, whom the Kyrgyzstan government fears, has succeeded in hurting NATO’s war against the Taliban. Nice.

Insult Three: It comes from Iran. No surprise here. While the mullahs yak about talking with Mr. Obama, they continue to fast-track nuclear weapons. A report by the Institute for Science and International Security says that Iran could have weapons-grade nuclear material this year. So there is now an urgency to the situation, and Mr. Obama must respond quickly or the nuke genie will be out of the bottle.

Finally, Insult Four: Crazy Kim Jong-il, the leader of North Korea, celebrated his 68th birthday last week by threatening a nuclear missile test.

Again, because of the terrible economy, many Americans have no idea all of this stuff is going on, but there is no question that Mr. Obama is being tested and that villains are watching closely to see what he will do.

In that speech last October, Mr. Biden also told Americans to “gird your loins.” I’m not exactly sure what that means vis-a-vis foreign policy, but it doesn’t sound good. I also don’t know whether Mr. Obama is “girding” right now, but he had better be doing something.

Bill O’Reilly is a nationally syndicated columnist, host of the Fox News show “The O’Reilly Factor” and author of the book “Who’s Looking Out For You?”

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