“Nice Doggie”

From Massimo Calabresi at TIME:

So did Obama’s non-confrontational response impede progress on resolving the dispute with Moscow over missile defense? Probably not. Given the Democrat’s ambiguous position on the issue, Russia is unlikely to accept any U.S. deal offered in the interregnum after his election. Yet Obama’s “no drama” reaction at least avoided confrontation and bought him some time to pull together a foreign policy team and decide where he really stands on the deployment of missile defense to Europe. As former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage used to say, “Diplomacy is the art of saying ‘nice doggie’ while looking for a stick.”