Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Foreign Policy Amateurs

It stuns me that there are people who think Condi Rice is a competent diplomat. Particularly when I see things like this line in a Jerusalem Post story on the conflict in Palestine:
Abbas's aides said he decided to travel to the Gaza Strip after receiving warnings from Israel and the US that he must resolve the case of Shalit as soon as possible or face more sanctions and military operations. According to one aide, Abbas even turned down a request from Washington to dismiss the Hamas government and to reinstall his Fatah party.
The only expertise of our current State Department appears to be in the field of making bad situations worse. Do they honestly expect a political moderate to take on Hamas at a time when Israel is killing Palestinians in droves and has locked up Palestine's democratically elected government? Is this what they view as an opportune time to have their closest ally in Palestine stick his neck out? The JPost story goes on to describe how the Israeli campaign in Palestine, combined with their apparent defeat in Lebanon, has boosted Hamas' standing and forced Abbas to politically realign himself nearer to Hamas. After months of Hamas desperately trying to get Fatah to join a unity government with them in order to create political legitimacy for their government, now Fatah appears to be pushing for a unity government and Hamas is playing coy, not sure that they want to share the limelight. Well done folks, well done.


Veritas ad Infinitum said...

I am not a huge fan of Condi, but I think you might be a tad harsh in attributing this to her. The best I can tell, everything in the Bush administration is micromanaged by the "pols," and so this may well have been an edict that Condi had to deliver. I recognize that she is considered part of the "inside crew," but that does not mean her views take primacy on matters of foreign relations--notwithstanding that she is the SOS.

Ok--that said, I wonder whether Condi has in fact adapted herself to the modern scene of international politics. As I understand it, she is steeped in the Cold War dynamic, and I wonder whether she is in fact contributing to the current mess by failing to recognize that the GWOT operates under different rules.

Veritas ad Infinitum said...
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