23 June 2005

Send Bolton to the Sudan! Please???

As I previously telegraphed, the topic is John R. Bolton.
Why him? Why now? Why are some legislators that I otherwise
respect (e.g. Sen. John McCain) supporting him? And just... why?

When I think of the United States' Representative to the United Nations, I picture a kindly gentleman schooled in the subtleties of statesmanship. I imagine an atmosphere of negotiations, where an economy of international relations is transacted in the coin of prudently chosen words of goodwill.

The stark reality callously betrays my idealism.

I did some diggin' around on the 'net. At first I wasn't sure where to start. I'd been following the story in the NYT, and outside of overt support from the left (esp. Cheney) there hasn't yet been any significant reasons given why this thug should be Representative to the United Nations. Without a clear motive and no significant clues in the news articles I had little to start with. I didn't bother trying conservative websites, they'd only rehash the say-nothing tagline the White House has been using. The past usually makes a good starting point for understanding the current situation. So, who were the previous Reps to the U.N.?

A quick search reveals that John C. Danforth was the last Representative, with a tenure of 6 months (????), and before him John D. Negroponte. Those are interesting names, and we got more Johns' than a whorehouse already!

Go ahead and read up on Negroponte first, I'll wait right here.
All of a sudden his new job as Spook Master makes more sense, doesn't it?

The important part for this discussion is that for 2001-2004 (when, for his faithful dervice, he got shipped off to darkest Iraq!) he was W's point man for trying to bully the Security Council into going along with resolutions against Iraq. Aha! The plot thins! Now Bolton makes sense! Also bully-boy would be helpful to the Neo's for the upcoming expansion of the U.N. Security Council. More members means the U.S.'s influence on the council will be diminished. So the conservatives came up with a plan - we'll support you as a candidate for the Security Council if you agree to not gaining veto power until a later date. Much later.
Here's yet another situation at the U.N. Bolton should be well prepared for.

Danforth doesn't fit this picture though. I like this guy. He's written several opinion peices since resigning from his U.N. post. Often suggesting that conservatives are only hurting themselves by going along with the Christian extremists.

Here's an article that I found really interesting though:
It has been an important time to be in this position, especially as we attempt to enlist greater U.N. participation in the future of Iraq, and as we advance the interest you have personally shown in helping the desperate people of Sudan."

"the interest you have personally shown" ???
Having read this man's writings, and thinking what I do about W - I think that was a swipe!
W is personally interested in not being accused of ignoring the Sudan conflict, but otherwise I am sure his attention flags.

It seems clear that Danforth's experience as a mediator in the Sudan was poor preparation for the dissonance of the U.N. I rather think he would have resigned (or been asked to resign) from the U.N. had his wife not been ill.

So that's why Bolton.
W needs someone who can bully the security council and threaten the Islamic nations that think that terrorism is a 'right'. If he has any spare time, he can go back to trying to force Dr. El Bardei, ther head of the IAEA to resign. Man's gotta have a hobby I guess.

The good news is that, much like Negroponte, Bolton doesn't have much hope of being appointed by the Senate. They only caved on Negroponte a few days after 9/11.

So there's still some hope for a bright future.

21 June 2005

Ahhhhhh, the pain!

Its been a while, so I apologise for the lull.

I have scarcely done anything but work, so I didn't have much to blog about. What I did percieve happening politically, and did intend to blog about - W losing his mandate, some republicans wriggling free of the party straitjacket, and Dr. Frist made to look bullheaded (W-esque) by 7 'rogue' Reps forging a compromise with 7 Dems - was all covered fairly succinctly in the New York Times. In fact, so many things are going not quite so well for our Cheerleader-in-Chief that I may well reduce the effort and requency of my disaffection.

Many years ago (early 1990's I think) I was watching the NFL draft on ESPN. They had the 'war room' cams going at several team headquarters, including for Jerry Jones' Dallas Cowboys. Now, I suppose that there must be many people with good things to say about Jerry Jones. I can only recall how upset Russell Maryland was when he was told (camera footage of Jerry talking to Russell, who had put down the weights he was lifting and was visibly upset) by Jerry that his contract WAS being restructured so that Jerry could raise the money to offer a one-year contract to some baseball player. On this particular draft day, Jerry wasn't getting what he wanted. I gathered that he had been trying hard to trade up into the top 8 picks or so (I think they were coming off of a Super Bowl victory, making the task that much harder). It was simply not happening. So there was Jerry, on live TV, losing his cool in a fit of frustration in his war room. It was beautiful.

I loved it. It was much better than 'Cats'. I laughed. I cried laughed. I want to see it again and again.

I want to believe that somewhere, in the White House, W is having a fit. Just like that. That bullheaded, obstinate man that we caught a glimpse of during the first debate with Kerry when he let his cool facade slip. He's punting the designer wastebasket and flinging poll results across the room.
Ahhhhhhhh. Such a wonderful image.

I do have something to blog about today.
You may have noticed in the past - um, I probably blogged about this previously - that I was at a significant loss for why a Neocon policy maven like Bolton would be nominated as Representative to the United Nations. More to the point, why would he want to go there??
It would seem to me that he would be happier in the State Department bullying analysts and skimming secret communiques.

So, I did me some of that thar interweb suff'rin.

It had suddenly occurred to me to compare Bolton to previous Reps to the U.N. I found what I was looking for. Not quite a smoking gun, but enough to satisfy me.

I don't recall who the Rep to the U.N. was under Clinton. W nominated John Negroponte early in 2001. His reputation... or..

hmmm, time got away from me again.
I'll finish this Tomorrow as a separate blog entry.
However, heres a chance for you kids to try and guess what I know.

John Negroponte UN Rep 2001 - 2004, then sent to Iraq as ambassador
John C Danforth UN Rep 2004, resigned after 6 months

Gentlemen, start your browsers.