Obama’s Little Red Button

Not even sure where to begin with this one. The New York Times is reporting that President Obama said “the reset button has worked,” a reference to “the administration’s early promise to ‘reset’ the bilateral relationship after several years of bickering over a variety of issues from missile defense to Kosovo.” President Obama met with Russian President Dmitri Medvedev during the Asia-Pacific summit in Singapore.

To refresh your memory, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gave Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov a symbolic “button” to “underscore the Obama Administration’s readiness to ‘press the reset button’” in relations between the U.S. and Russia. Of course, you may also recall the “reset button” was an embarrassment as the inscription actually meant “overload” or “overcharged” instead of reset.

This is a bold statement, but it doesn’t jibe with reality. As we’ve noted here, here, and here, relations with Russia seem entirely one-sided, and if we had a score card, Russia would be running up the score.

I wonder if this will haunt Obama the way former President George W. Bush’s quote about Vladimir Putin’s soul did throughout his presidency.

President George W. Bush: “I looked the man in the eye. I found him to be very straightforward and trustworthy. We had a very good dialogue. I was able to get a sense of his soul; a man deeply committed to his country and the best interests of his country.”  (President George W. Bush, Joint Press Conference, 6/16/01)

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