Stratfor ( www.stratfor.com ) is a well-respected source of information on American foreign policy and international relations. They recently posted a video report (link provided below) on strains between the United States and South Korea that deserves attention.
On May 26 2010, this Blog included a posting titled: “North Korea Sinks South Korean Ship”. That week North Korea torpedoed a South Korean naval vessel in international waters killing 46 of its sailors. It was clear by this provocative act that the North was testing President Obama’s “backbone”. His response has not been promising.
Initially the United States indicated that it would send a naval armada to the Yellow Sea for a joint military exercise with South Korean as a display of power and warning to North Korea. After the Chinese protested, America blinked, delaying the exercise and moving it to the East Sea. Now the South Koreans are nervous about America’s commitment to them.
Of more concern is how the North Koreans (and Chinese) will view Obama’s indecisive response. History demonstrates that indecisiveness often leads one side to miscalculate the other’s resolve and this has led to even more dangerous confrontations.
The Obama Administration has shown a strange tendency in its relations with our strongest allies. Relations have been strained with our strongest ally in the Middle East, Israel, as well as our strongest ally in Europe, England. Now South Korea has its concerns. This is not a pattern that instills confidence in America’s foreign policy.