Opinion – Putin, champion of the Shias | The Economist – John Gelmini

Vladimir Putin is interested in the defence of Russia from jihadists, terrorists and countries which want its mineral wealth or global domination. To do that he will form alliances with whoever he needs to.

So he is ‘Champion of the Shias’ not by ideological choice as the Economist headline suggests but by expediency and hard-headed calculation.

President Obama has failed this foreign policy test by claiming to want two contradictory outcomes, toppling Assad and putting Isis to the sword.The reality is that toppling Syria, Iran and then Russia is the real objective, and by pretending otherwise Obama, has been caught out by Putin who understood America’s real objectives and pre-empted her by force of arms.

Putin is increasingly gaining popularity at Obama’s expense. Putin is a man of action – Obama’s a ditherer.

John Gelmini

Pentagon funding bill on Obama’s desk: $600 mln to Syrian rebels, $300 mln to Kiev — RT USA

English: This graph shows the inflation-adjust...

English: This graph shows the inflation-adjusted defense spending of the United States federal government from 1962 to (forecasted) 2014. It is derived from the FY2010 “President’s budget” Historical tables (Table 3.2—OUTLAYS BY FUNCTION AND SUBFUNCTION: 1962–2014), adjusted using CPI inflation data. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to Russia’s RT news agency, the US government‘s defense funding bill for 2016 includes some lavish support to rebels in Syria and lethal aid to the current Ukrainian government.

Source: Pentagon funding bill on Obama’s desk: $600 mln to Syrian rebels, $300 mln to Kiev — RT USA

Whilst there is obviously bias in the article, it is based on evidence. It leaves the reader with an uneasy feeling about the effectiveness of US defense spending.

Personally, I am surprised that the effectiveness of Obama’s foreign policy and military spending decisions does not receive greater attention.