Tag Archives: foreign policy

Not a sea change, but a step. Maybe an important one.

Wow. This is as of 5:00 pm Tehran time. The yellow is votes for Rouhani, the only ‘moderate’ candidate for President in Iran’s elections.

ipos-iranelection-results

So Putin goes there and hints Romney is a fool

Oh, nice, even more – from Dependable Renegade (who finds all the good stuff):

Thank-you! – Vladimir Putin thanks magical panties enthusiast The Willard Mechanism for saying that Russia remains the US #1 geo political threat, because it solidified his missile defense argument:

“I’m grateful to him (Romney) for formulating his stance so clearly because he has once again proven the correctness of our approach to missile defense problems,” Putin told reporters, according to the Russian news agency RIA Novosti.

“The most important thing for us is that even if he doesn’t win now, he or a person with similar views may come to power in four years. We must take that into consideration while dealing with security issues for a long perspective,” he said, speaking after a meeting with Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic, according to Interfax news agency.

What price will Romney pay? Foreign service corps is piling on

Romney’s rash statement last night is being widely criticized:

Foreign Policy Hands Voice Disbelief At Romney Cairo Statement

“Bungle… utter disaster…not ready for prime time… not presidential… Lehman moment.” And that’s just the Republicans.

Mitt Romney’s sharply-worded attack on President Obama over a pair of deadly riots in Muslim countries last night has backfired badly among foreign policy hands of both parties, who cast it as hasty and off-key, released before the facts were clear at what has become a moment of tragedy.

Romney’s statement . . . came just before news that the American Ambassador to Libya had been killed and broke with a tradition of unity around national tragedies, and of avoiding hasty statements on foreign policy. It was the second time Romney has been burned by an early statement on a complex crisis: Romney denounced the Obama Administration’s handling of a Chinese dissident’s escape just as the Administration negotiated behind the scenes for his departure from the country.

Evangelicals aren’t the only ones who are down with Israel at war

When you have $22 billion, giving ten million to a guy to publicly advocate for the cause of your lifetime is cheap, especially if he salutes and does it. Sheldon Adelson got his money’s worth with Newt.

In December, Gingrich proclaimed the Palestinians “an invented people.” Israel’s Haaretz daily reported later that month that Adelson approved of the remarks. And Gingrich has said that one of the first executive orders he would sign if elected president would move the American Embassy to Jerusalem.

That embassy pledge isn’t new in American politics. But Gingrich also said that Isreal’s official capital, Jerusalem, must be defended as such. I’m not certain what that means, but I’ll guess that it’s a call to reject sharing the city, a negotiating point in all peace talks. He simply dismisses the fact that Jerusalem is central and foundational and sacred to all three Abrahmic relligions. (Fine from a private citizen, but reckless from a public politician running for Presdient.)

Adelson is an ardent Zionist who advocates for the U.S. to adopt the most hard line policies on Israel, stuff even Netanyahu rejects – the kinds of positions opposed by large numbers of Israelis, perhaps even a majority. Positions that ignore danger, shut down negotiatios and invite war.

At least, he doesn’t pretend. He puts his money where his mouthpiece is. And there’s plenty more where that ten million came from.

Dear Elvis, do we never learn from history?

As the Islamists of 1979 were overthrowing their government, Jimmy Carter opened the door to a terrified Shah, citing ‘legitimate medical reasons’.  There was political pressure from the Right to do so as Iran had been a US client state since our CIA (with the Brits) overthrew the last democratically elected Iranian government in 1953.

It went so well that irate Iranian students stormed the US Embassy in Tehran and took 52 Americans hostage, holding them for 444 days.

Now the president of Yemen,  Ali Abdullah Saleh, is being admitted – for ‘legitimate medical reasons’. (The link doesn’t confirm that the decision has been made, but The NY Times says it’s a done deal.)

As Peter, Paul and Mary asked so many years ago, “When will we ever learn, when will we ever learn?”.

Stuff: trees, blogging, Condoleezza Rice

That Christmas tree? The one in a pail of water out in the carport? That one? Intact, looks lovely, has perky, sweet smelling pine needles. And it would be perfect if . . . . now I’ve bought trees for that spot for 17 years and I know the right size. I can pick out the right tree four rows in under the tent – from the street. That’s how well I know the right size to buy and lug home.

I bought the wrong size.  Yesterday’s curse was strong.

The holidays have started to intrude on my prefered pace of life, which is slow. Very, very slow. There’s likely to be light blogging till I put my foot down or have a burst of energy.

Meanwhile, you’ve heard this:

ONE of the great tropes of Republican criticism of Barack Obama is that the president goes around the world apologizing for America’s past misdeeds. “Have we ever had a president,” Mitt Romney asked in a foreign policy speech this summer, “who was so eager to address the world with an apology on his lips and doubt in his heart?”

But did you know this?

 In a major speech in Cairo in 2005, Condoleezza Rice, then Mr. Bush’s secretary of state, said that “for 60 years, my country, the United States, pursued stability at the expense of democracy in this region here in the Middle East — and we achieved neither.” What was she doing if not apologizing on behalf of the United States — and vowing to put an end to a pattern of misguided policy?

Maybe it’s a black thing.

Maybe we could open one so we could close it?

According to a tweet from NBC News’ Jamie Novogrod, [Michelle] Bachmann responded to the recent raiding of the British embassy in Iran, by saying that if she was President, she would close down the U.S. embassy there.

Oh, what the hell . . .

Oh, and her short list for VP? Trump, DeMint and Rick Santorum. Unbeatable!

Let’s just pin the tail on the donkey. Now, that’s leadership!

From the transcript of Cain’s interview at the Milwakee Journal-Sentinel

He defended his view that presidents and presidential candidates don’t need to be immersed in the fine print of world affairs – they simply need to be leaders who can surround themselves with the right people and sift through their advice.

“I’m not supposed to know anything about foreign policy. Just thought I’d throw that out,” he said, a dig at his critics.

So he’s saying he will make decisions on which advisor to believe, and he doesn’t need any personal knowledge to evaluate that advice. Okay.

“I want to talk to commanders on the ground. Because you run for president (people say) you need to have the answer. No, you don’t! No, you don’t! That’s not good decision-making,” said Cain.*

Having the answer is not good decision-making. Doing what someone else has decided is good decision-making. Okay that too.

The constant iteration ‘I’ll listen to the commanders on the ground’. is nonsense. The generals’ job is to determine a strategy to fulfill the mission as defined by civilians, in the person of the CinC.  (Has there ever been a general for whom more troops and more weapons is not the answer to everything?)  That statement almost always goes unchallenged.

*I guess the man means: I’m not supposed to know anything about the Constitution.

Huh?

Today, the President of the United States (through an administration person) opined in a Congressional hearing that Gaddaffi will prevail in Libya.

We’re not supposed to say stuff like that. Is anyone home?

The tide is out , w-a-y out

I’m heading off to the Miami Book Fair shortly, but let’s see if I’ve got this straight.:

A Republican leader of the US House of Represetntatives has just told the head of a Foreign Country not to pay attention to the words or actions of the President of the United States, that the Republican caucus in Congress will protect said Foreign Country from any Official Foreign Policy of the United States of America.

I think I got that right. Yeah.