Pioneer Editorial: A true test of Obama foreign will
A child likes to test his boundaries with his parents to see how far he can go. That's not unlike the rogue nations of the world --notably Iran and North Korea --which now are testing the boundaries allowed by the new U.S. administration under President Barack Obama.
Last week, President Obama outlined his policy to the nations of the world in an address to the United Nations.
His basic message: The United States can no longer serve as the world's policeman. Cooperation from all nations must be at the forefront if there is to be successful containment of global terrorists and in seeking world peace.
That world cooperation will also be needed to keep in check nuclear proliferation, especially among the rogue nations.
The president reiterated those positions in his weekly radio address on Saturday.
"To prevent nuclear weapons from falling into the hands of terrorists, the Security Council endorsed our global effort to lock down all vulnerable material within four years," he said. "We reaffirmed the basic compact of the global non-proliferation regime: all nations have the right to peaceful nuclear energy; nations with nuclear weapons have the responsibility to move toward disarmament; and nations without them have the responsibility to forsake them."
The response from Iran's president was a long-winded attack on the United States and an assertion that Iran has the right to do what it pleases, even if that threatens the safety and security of other nations.
The United States, the United Kingdom and France revealed that Iran has been building a secret nuclear facility to enrich uranium, a key ingredient in nuclear weapons. "This is a serious challenge to the global non-proliferation regime, and continues a disturbing pattern of Iranian evasion. That is why international negotiations with Iran scheduled for Oct. 1 now take on added urgency," the president said.
The diplomatic approach, which candidate Obama campaigned on, will now be put in play. It's a dangerous game, and the United States must be at the ready to take action should this country's security be put at risk. But President Obama's call for cooperation must heeded by the world community in order for the diplomatic approach to work.
"These are the urgent threats of our time. And the United States is committed to a new chapter of international cooperation to meet them," the president said Saturday.
President Obama's call for united action will be the defining moment of his administration in foreign policy. The true test will come with what the rogue nations will do under a unified effort. It also will be a defining moment if they choose to continue their errant ways and cause the world to become less secure.