Rice At The Piano, Bush With American Idol Singers ... Don't Iraq, Iran, Israel, Deserve Full-Time Attention?
Maybe I just don't understand the importance of what's happening in the Middle East.
Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice left a 15-nation "crisis talk" on the fight between Israel and the terrorist group Hezbollah to play piano at the annual gala dinner of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN).
Rice must have had the crisis talks on her mind, though, for while others at the gala dinner did silly shtick, she played a somber composition.
"It is not a time that is frivolous. It is a serious time. I will play something that is in accordance with my serious mood," she said.
Rice is due back in the Middle East on Saturday to negotiate terms for a U.N. resolution aimed at the fighting between Israel and Hezbollah. Her travel plans were dictated by an agreement reached today between President Bush and British Prime Minister Tony Blair, at which time the two agreed any plan to end the fighting must address long-running regional disputes to be effective.
Bush found time in his busy schedule to meet today with the finalists from Fox's American Idol. It was the first time contestants from the hit television show met the president, the Associated Press noted.
Participation in the ASEAN gala dinner is a tradition of sorts (Colin Powell sang a Village People song at the 2004 gala). And part of Bush's job is photo ops with successful sports teams and celebrated Americans.
But shouldn't these less important events be treated as ... less important? We have wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and a crisis in Israel. You have conservative pundits talking about this being the beginning of World War III, while others are suggesting we may need to attack Iran.
Jon Stewart, earlier this week on The Daily Show, asked Sen. John McCain (R-AZ): "President Bush has been very clear that, through his leadership, he has made the world safer. My question to you is simly this: how much safer can the world afford to have him make us?"
McCain didn't answer the question. Between piano recitals and visits with American Idol singers, I wonder whether the Bush Administration thinks making the world safer is a full-time job.