Beware of open microphone! It might pick up something you didn’t mean for other people to hear. President Obama was unaware that a microphone was recording him when he asked outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev Monday for “breathing room” until after the November 2012 election. It would be at that point that negotiations on missile defense could resume in earnest.


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“On all these issues, but particularly missile defense, this, this can be solved, but it’s important for him to give me space,” President Obama told Mr. Medvedev at the end of their 90-minute meeting. The “him” is apparently a reference to incoming Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Mr. Medvedev replied, “Yeah, I understand. I understand your message about space. Space for you…”

Here’s what’s disturbing about this muted conversation. “This is my last election,” President Obama said. “After my election, I have more flexibility.” The Russian leader responded, “I understand. I transmit this information to Vladimir.”

Let me do my best to translate this for you:


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