Obama Administration Ignores Russian Nuclear Violations

The United States has always failed to understand Soviet strategy and mindset. They sign treaties not because they will abide by them, but because they know the United States will.

“Treaties are like pie crusts, they are made to be broken” – Vladimir Lenin

Russia is covertly developing and testing nuclear missiles in violation of the 1987 Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty and the Obama administration to date has failed to hold Moscow accountable, according to arms control specialists.

“The Russians have basically violated every major treaty they’ve ever entered into, certainly every major weapons treaty,” said Sen. Marco Rubio (R., Fla.), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations and Intelligence Committees. He is also a leader of a Senate arms control group.

The Free Beacon first reported in October that a Russian test of a new missile, the RS-26, violated the INF treaty. The accord prohibits ballistic missiles with ranges of 5,500 kilometers (3,415 miles) or less, and cruise missiles with ranges less than 500 kilometers (310 miles).

Last month, the New York Times reported that the Obama administration notified NATO allies that Russia’s new R-500 cruise missiles violated the accord.

On Feb. 6, three House committee chairman—Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R., Calif.), Rep. Ed Royce (R., Calif.), and Rep. Mike Rogers (R., Mich.)—stated in a letter to the president that there is “compelling evidence” Moscow is “in material breach and circumvention” of the INF treaty.

Rubio said State Department officials have dismissed the Russian treaty violations by saying that continuing to hold arms talks with Moscow is more important and a sign of progress in often-chilly U.S.-Russian relations.

“And I think that’s a very dangerous worldview,” Rubio said.

The Obama administration has failed to address the treaty violations and also did not notify U.S. allies until news of the breach was about to be made public, Rubio said. The lapse undermined U.S. reliability and credibility with its allies.

Rubio said he is very worried about the national security impact of the reported INF violations and the administration’s failure to regard them seriously, adding that U.S. allies in Europe increasingly view the United States as an unreliable partner.

Other Russian INF violations include development of a nuclear-capable Iskander M short-range ballistic missile, covert retention of the Soviet-era Skorost intermediate-range ballistic missiles, and the nuclear ground strike capabilities of several Russian surface-to-air and anti-missile systems, he said.

“If you put all of this together, it’s a very disturbing pattern, and it is a very serous threat to our allies,” Schneider said.

The noncompliance problems are made worse by what Schneider called the administration’s “very weak compliance policy.”

“We knew about this cruise missile in late 2011 and didn’t raise it with the Russians until May 2013,” he said, noting that the annual State Department arms compliance report also omitted the violation.

Schneider said the Russian missiles represent a “quite considerable capability that should not exist” because of the INF treaty. “You really can’t divorce arms control from compliance,” he said.

Full article: Obama Administration Ignores Russian Nuclear Violations (Washington Free Beacon)

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