Despite the fact that most of the Polish populace has expressed that it does not want the US missile shield to be located in Poland, this has not stopped Polish politicians looking very foolish after having unconditionally endorsed it or believing that the USA was especially interested in Poland per se as it's staunchest ally only for it to be dropped without being directly consulted.
If Obama has seen fit to shelve it for now, at least in Poland and the Czech Republic, this makes those like Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski appear far more fanatical than the US in wanting to have it when, as it turns out, it was not so essential for security after all and could just as well be built anywhere, whether at sea or in the North Pole.
The Missile Shield was never about the security of Poland. It was about advancing US hegemony in Central Asia and to do so it appeared to US strategists that having a missile shield in Poland would ramp up the tensions between it and Russia sufficient to push through bsing it in a place stratically convenient and with a nationalist hatred of Russia that lay deep in history.
For Poland's Sikorski it a blow to his neoconservative plan to make his nation a regional power with a leverage over Eastern Europe and a greater role in promoting its historic influence over Ukraine, Belarus and the Black Sea. That and the profit and prestige to be had from having the missile shield.
Sikorski is very close to the neoconservatives in Washington. He is a member of the American enterprise Institute, a think tank that includes all those who were the architects of George Bush's disastrous invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the most extreme advocates of the Project for the New American Century-Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, David 'Axis of Evil' Frum.
Sikorski, who was not happy about Obama's election victory in the USA, told newspaper Rzeczpospolita, "It is time now for a mature look, stripped of illusions, at our possibilities and our future. I think today we all know that if we are to look to somebody, we have to look to ourselves."
This statement is clear nonsense as Poland has been part of NATO since 1999 and Article 5 means that any attack by Russia on Poland would result in a collective response from all NATO states, so the propaganda about Poland being sacrificed as it was continually throughout its history and especially during the Cold War is simply untrue.
It is true that a significant number of Poles have been continually subject to propaganda which bangs on about Russia being a threat. But far from Russia being so, the USA has also realised that needlessly antagonising Russia could actually set back its plans to carve out deals with putin with regards their oil and gas interests in Central Asia.
The ultimate aim of US policy is to prevent collusion between Russia and Iran and China. The fear of a nuclear Iran is less to do with an arms race, at least one from which the USA does not benefit, but the fear that Beijing will gain more influence and Iran more independence by having nuclear power ( which might be used for contructing a nuclear bomb ).
If the missile shield guaranteed that result the Obama administration would pursue it and it has not ruled out that it is one option amongst many to acheive is geostrategic aims.
With regards Poland, it is seen as a blow to it's pride and to the public diplomacy of Donald Tusk, Sikorski and others who still see Poland's strategic position in outmoded Cold War postures of containing "Russian Imperialism" whilst sending Polish troops to Afghanistan in what is in reality an Imperial War to ensure the construction of the TAPI pipeline.
The Russian threat is always convenient because it means Sikorski, the political elite and a pliant media never have to vex the minds of the Polish people with the reality of the geostrategy behind the war in Afghanistan nor the fact it is part of the same drive to the East in which the missile shield plays a part.
Witold Waszczykowski, deputy head of Poland's national security bureau thus complained "Is it appeasement toward Russia? Is it pragmatism? Is it transactional?"
In reality it is pragmatic and transactional but then there is no reason to complain given that Sikorski is always talking about how in dealing with Russia, Poland is following a 'pragmatic' policy, not least given the amount of trade between Poland and Russia and the fact that prominent Warsaw lobbies favour a realistic policy towards Russia.
All of which makes the bogus historical parallels with "appeasement" redundant because there are no territorial claims to be "appeased" with respect to Russia.
If the missile shield was about only defence against Iran, then Sikorski ought to have had no complaints about US 'betrayal' because the shield can still be operated from seaborne vessels. Yet Sikorski always maintained security against Russia was important. Yet Russia did not threaten to aim its missiles at Poland until Polish politicians agreed to host it.
Sikorski had to create the following pseudo-realistic scenario thus to justify it,
"What you have to understand is that this is purely defensive in nature. The system will only react if we, Nato, are threatened. Should we be fearful of Russia's response? Well, we have always lived in the shadow of Russia."
Yet 'we' does not include all NATO states. It was never the unanimous will of all NATO states to have the missile shield, which makes Sikorski's comments reflect the worst aspects of Polish bravado that Westerners have always criticised, often unjustly, but which do, as with all stereotypes have some basis in fact and in some part of the Polish mentality.
Yet to single out Warsaw for a their one sided view of the missile shield as "defensive" would be to omit the scale of the subliminal propaganda in Britain too. The Guardian's Ian Traynor on reporting that Obama had scrapped the missile shield wrote on September 17 2009,
The shift is a triumph for the Kremlin, which has long and vehemently argued that the shield is aimed at neutralising its intercontinental missiles; Moscow had warned of a return to a cold war arms race, and threatened to deploy nuclear missiles in its Kaliningrad exclave, surrounded by EU states.
It was not a victory for Moscow because the Kremlin was reacting to a neoconservative policy formulated in Washington and based on reheated 'Cold war rhetoric about Russia as the Evil Empire. It was in response to Washington and Warsaw's agressive first move and willingness to resurrect the arms race that it sought to counter the missile shield.
For the very term 'missile shield' ignores the fact that the base could easily be used for offensive postures. It remains 'defensive' only as part of a longer term offensive strategy of projecting NATO and US power deep into the Eurasian Heartland, just as the British Empire sought to in its day through repeated attempts to control Afghanistan.