Thursday, July 27, 2006

Rice Offers The New Face Of American Foreign Policy (And It's Not Happy)

"Oh, I so don't want to be here."

"I can't believe what we have wrought."

"This is the longest day of my life."

You could come up with a lot of captions for this photo, taken following a 15-nation "crisis talk" on the fight between Israel and the terrorist group Hezbollah, which failed to produce much of anything -- not even an agreement to call for a ceasefire.

This is the face of American foreign policy, at least for the current news cycle. Ineffectual, defeated, frustrated at the lack of consensus.

What's worse, Rice left the crisis talks in Rome to fly to Malaysia. She didn't rule out a return trip to the Middle East.

Back in 1973, President Nixon's Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger, spent roughly 40 consecutive days conducting “shuttle diplomacy” — meeting repeatedly with each party — to negotiate “disengagement agreements" between Israel, Syria, and Egypt following the Yom Kippur War. Rice barely spent 40 hours this week.

In sports parlance, Kissinger threw a complete game, while Rice failed to record a single out.

The U.S. can, and should, do better. Whatever Rice had intended to do in Malaysia can be handled by Assistant Secretary David Welch. Rice needs to change the face of American foreign policy now.

19 Comments:

Anonymous trinity said...

David, your comments illustrate so well the drastic difference between the mindset of the two sides with regard to how to respond to the current state of affairs in Lebanon.

What you want is for our government to interfere with Israel's military efforts against Hezbollah, while I, on the other hand, am extremely relieved to see that the Bush Administration has no intention of pressuring Israel to accept a ceasefire.

There will be plenty of time for talking once the Israeli military has secured enough of Southern Lebanon to constitute an acceptable buffer zone. This is a great opportunity to clean out as much of the radical group, Hezbollah, as possible, which not only will end the immediate threat to Israel, but will also be a blessing for the people of Lebanon, who have been denied the benefits of living in a sovereign nation.

The Arab world does not support Hezbollah's unprovoked attack upon Israel. It is recognized for what it is, an attempt by Hezbollah, Hamas, i.e., Iran and Syria, to provoke Israel into a larger conflict with it's neighbors. Hopefully, this time the plan will have backfired, and ironically, end up exposing Iran as the dangerous threat to world peace that it is.

2:29 AM  
Blogger thewaronterrible said...

I think what JABBS was talking about was Rice's failure to reach any consensus on the ceasefire issue or win any support for the Bush Administration's position.
So she just threw up her hands and high-tailed it for Malaysia.
Rather than seeking consensus, The Bush Administration foreign position appears to be one based on wild hope and speculation things will work out like they have planned. If not, hell, let future administrations deal with it.
In Iraq such policy has been a demonstrated failure.
Even mainstream news reports have characterized Rice's foray in the Arab world as fruitless and a waste of time.
America can do better.

9:43 AM  
Anonymous MrToffeeLovesYa said...

Trinity, my amigo, you have returned! I have been educating the liberals on this site single-handedly, and it hasn't been easy.

Trinity is absolutely correct. The Bush Administration doesn't want to pressure Israel into any old ceasefire, especially since it's winning against the Hezbollah terrorists. It would be like expecting the U.S. to commit to any old ceasefire against the Iraqi insurgents. What's the point?

Wake up, liberals. The only meaningful ceasefire is a meaningful ceasefire. A non-meaningful ceasefire, even one that lasts for a while, won't solve the problems in the Middle East.

Sure, Kissinger spent a lot of time going back and forth in 1973, and Warren Christopher spent a lot of time going back and forth in 1996. But what did all that effort get? Not much. Pow!

Do the math, liberals. Conservatives support Secretary Rice. They understand that whether she spends weeks in the Middle East or just a day, it won't change anything unless Iran and Syria agree to stop backing Hezbollah and Hamas.

And since they aren't going to agree to that, there's no chance for a meaningful ceasefire. And since the U.S. doesn't want any old ceasefire, conservatives applaud Rice's decision to come late, stay for just a day or two, and then leave.

And Rice did say she'd go back if things changed. If Iran or Syria says they'll stop state-sponsored terrorism, you know Rice will be on the first plane to Beirut, assuming there's still a place to land.

"Hopefully, this time the plan will have backfired, and ironically, end up exposing Iran as the dangerous threat to world peace that it is."

Right, buddy bud. Conservatives know that with Iraq out of the picture, that only leaves Iran and North Korea in the "axis of evil."

Wake up and smell the reality, liberals. Once the Bush Administration brings lasting peace to a newly democratic Iraq, the obvious next step is to do the same for Iran. That's what you're hearing from right-minded pundits like Bill Kristol, and you have to assume that if Kristol is saying it, someone within the Bush Administration is saying it, too.

C'mon, liberals. The "war on terror" is a long-term game plan. Conservatives listen to the Bush Administration, and have agreed that it's better to fight these wars "over there" instead of "over here."

The sooner Liberal America appreciates how conservatives think, the better. Then liberals can answer when conservatives ask "are you with us, or are you against us?"

10:49 AM  
Anonymous rob of wilmington, del. said...

Seriously, MrToffee, what kind of crap is this?

Wake up and smell this reality: You don't make any sense.

11:34 AM  
Blogger thewaronterrible said...

"Liberals" do not rally behind the conservative position because it it lacks common sense. Call it a neocon pipe dream.
Maybe Toffee believes the U.S. can bankroll and continue to expend troops forever on an endless war in the Middle East.
Reality says otherwise.
There's no evidence Bush policies in the Middle East have done anything to pacify the Arab world or Iraq or has made any substantive strides towards a more democratic and peaceful region.
The situation only appears to have grown worse. The Iraq conflict has only empowered the Shittes in Iran behind Hezbollah.
Conservatives resort to the "fighting them over there so we don't have to fight them over here" argument.
The State Department clearly reports that global terrorism has grown significantly worse under Bush foreign policies. Just don't bother conservatives with such facts.
Let's see. We have the latest flare up over Israel, the uprising of Hezbollah, increasing insurgency violence in Baghdad, the resurgence of the Taliban in Afghanistan, the London subway bombing last year, Al Queda ranks reported to be growing larger in number and operating in more countries than before 9-11, Bin Laden and his top officials continuing to make tapes, Rice accomplishing nothing on her Middle East "junket."
These are the evidences Bush is on the right path!? I just don't see it.
America can do better.

12:17 PM  
Blogger Joe said...

According to reports I read Condi Rice while in Malaysia met with Asian dignitaries and played a musical piece on the piano for them (she’s a classily trained pianist). It made me wonder if she played the same musical piece that Nero played while Rome burned.

12:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Maybe she played the same tune, "Nearer, My God to Thee," as the Titanic sunk.

12:38 PM  
Anonymous trinity said...

rob of wilmington, del. said...
"Seriously, MrToffee, what kind of crap is this?"


It's just some more of MrToffee the liberal's intolerable writing style. I find it beyond annoying, which is why I rarely respond to him.

As far as Sec. Rice goes, I think some of you are missing the point. The fact that the 15 nation talks failed to come up with a consensus for an immediate ceasefire in itself is a very positive and encouraging sign, in view of the fact that a ceasefire is probably the last thing in the world that anyone should be pursuing.

If a terrorist group operating out of Mexico or Canada committed an act of war against America, I highly doubt that we would be rushing to sign a ceasefire agreement before disarming the group responsible for that act. The very idea that some nations support that idea, although very unfortunate, is hardly any surprise, since anti-Semitism is alive and well in the world.

UN resolution 1559, which called for the government of Lebanon to rid the country of militias such as Hezbollah, resulted in Israel's withdrawal from Lebanon. Israel willingly gave up their buffer zone in Southern Lebanon for the promise of land for peace. The trouble with this "solution", is that it never works. Most UN resolutions do not. (Think Iraq)

To continue in this vein of thinking will only ensure that eventually, the Jew-haters will get their way, and Israel will be forced to negotiate itself into oblivion. Somehow I do not see this as an acceptable solution, although it's clear that there are many who hunger for this outcome.

So despite the respectful admiration and awe that some libs still seem to hold for prior efforts to solve the Mid-East problem, I think it's pretty clear that the time has come to try something different. After all, the very definition of insanity is
doing the same thing over and over again, with the expectation of getting a different result.

I would ask that you guys consider this for a moment. If today, all of Israel's enemies would lay down their arms and accept her existence, we would have a lasting peace. If, on the other hand, only Israel agreed to stop taking action to defend itself, as a sign of good will, no such peace would ever result.

Israel was at peace with her neighbor, Lebanon. Obviously, radical elements within Lebanon, supported by Iran and Syria, wanted to destroy that peace. Now it's up to Israel to finish the job. That you guys can't see the simple truth of what I'm saying boggles my mind.

12:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's a leap of logic that can be extrapolated to Rice may be having trouble being taken seriously.
In a completely objective and factual analysis, Media Matters quotes published statements by conservative pundits Fred Barnes, Bill Kristol and Charles Krauthammer stated prior to the U.S. Iraq invasion to clearly show that their predictions turned out to be completely wrong on how Iraq would turn out long before the present time.
mediamatters.org/items
/200607270007
Of course, the pundits echoed similar wrongful rosy predictions and assessments by Bush Administration officials.
But as Media Matters also evidences, the media is now giving these very same pundits credibility, without any proper context, for their predictions and recommendations on the Hezbollah/Israel situation.
!?!
We have Toffee up there, for example, suggesting everyone should take Kristol seriously.
?!?
Conservatives see no problem here?

1:06 PM  
Anonymous trinity said...

Anonymous said...
"We have Toffee up there, for example, suggesting everyone should take Kristol seriously."


Anonymous, after reading all of his posts, how can you not be aware that MrToffee is one of you? He's a lib, just like yourself.

He must think he's being witty or something by writing the way he does. I guess he's half right, anyhow. lol Half-witty, half-wit.....get it? :rolleyes:

1:15 PM  
Anonymous Angelina's Evil Twin said...

Trinity, you're the only one saying MrToffee is LIBERAL.

Could it be that you're just EMBARRASSED at how STUPID ANOTHER CONSERVATIVE BLOWHARD sounds?

If MrToffee is a liberal, WHY DOES HE MAKE FUN OF LIBERALS?

2:27 PM  
Anonymous trinity said...

Angelina's Evil Twin said...
"Trinity, you're the only one saying MrToffee is LIBERAL.

Could it be that you're just EMBARRASSED at how STUPID ANOTHER CONSERVATIVE BLOWHARD sounds?

If MrToffee is a liberal, WHY DOES HE MAKE FUN OF LIBERALS?"


You're kidding, right? lol Wow! No offense, Angelina, but now you've really got me wondering about the collective liberal IQ.

3:04 PM  
Blogger thewaronterrible said...

Half-wit?
I'm still clearing the smoke, Trinity, but I don't see a hell of a lot of difference between Toffee and your positions on the Israeli conflict.
Kind of gets me wonderin' about that collective conservative IQ.

3:49 PM  
Anonymous Angelina's Evil Twin said...

All MrToffee talks about is CONSERVATIVE POSITIONS and how WONDERFUL they are. And every time you write something, MrToffee is first to AGREE WITH YOU.

What other conclusion is there?

3:58 PM  
Anonymous ken grandlund said...

Rather than insist that Rice change the face of American foreign policy, I would suggest that that replacement begin with Rice herself. She is no more a statesman than Bush is an intellectual.

4:44 PM  
Anonymous trinity said...

If MrToffee were actually a conservative, which he obviously (to me at least) is not, I think I might have felt obligated to apologize for subjecting the posters here to his dopey, juvenile, obnoxious, sarcastic comments. But he's not a fellow-conservative, so I won't. I can't help it if some of you are too obtuse to realize it.

Also, I couldn't help but notice that nobody here bothered to respond to any of the points I brought up in my 12:58 pm post. As usual, you guys engage in a lot of criticism of the Bush Administration, (Yap Yap Yap) but you hardly ever commit to putting your own personal beliefs down on the record to show where you stand on issues.

Do you guys stand for anything at all? Or do you just like to complain about everything, all the time? You seem to have a desire for an immediate ceasefire between Hezbollah and Israel, but don't say why or what you think that might mean to Israel and the rest of the world.

12:58 PM  
Anonymous trinity said...

I noticed you're all still complaining and whining on other threads. It definitely is what you do best. And I still don't have a clue about what you think about the Middle East situation. All you can say is that Bush, Rice and everybody else who's involved aren't doing it right. lol

Here we finally have a president who has the courage, the intestinal fortitude to try to change the Middle East for the better, and he gets accused of kicking that can down the road for future administrations to deal with. You don't even get the irony of that statement.

Then again, you don't even get that MrToffee is a lib, so I don't know why I'm surprised. One thing for certain is that some people "get" what we're dealing with here, i.e. the nature of this enemy, and some people do not. Most, if not all of you, do not, and sadly, that does make it a lot more difficult to do what needs to be done.

1:17 AM  
Blogger thewaronterrible said...

Trinity, I was going to write a long essay, but I'm feeling pretty lazy right now and am supposed to be working on my job.
So I found this new column in the Washington Post pretty much matches my views on why Bush's practically one-sided idea of defeating Hezbollah only looks good on paper and has little basis in reality. (Did somebody say Iraq?).
http://tinyurl.com/jhhbd
I am sick of Bush pipe-dream diplomacy that would have the world engaged in war forever.

2:50 PM  
Anonymous trinity said...

Still waiting for you libs to explain, since you seem to be in favor of an immediate ceasefire, how it would benefit Israel to agree to it.

I read that article, twot, as as I could have predicted, it contains abolutely no solutions to the problems Israel (or the rest of the world for that matter) is facing from the Islamo-Fascists who want to annihilate her.

The guy admits that we are on the side of right, yet cannot bring himself to get behind the effort. He would rather navel gaze and wring his hands over the fact that anti-Semitic Europe and most of the rest of the world doesn't really care what happens to Israel.

Well, too damn bad, because we do. God knows, if Israel had to count on the rest of the world for its existence, guess what? It would have ceased to exist a long time ago.

5:31 PM  

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