The Honeymoon Is Over
Much of the appeal of the Obama campaign for those who supported it revolved around the contention that if the erstwhile Senator from Illinois were elected President, we would instantly see a significant improvement in relations between America and the rest of the world. Those who believed this obviously did not take into account the possibility that the protectionism of the Obama Administration might tick | Read More »
Just What Kind Of Deal Is This?
An agreement has been reached between Robert Mugabe and opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai that allows the latter to join a government of national unity in Zimbabwe. The terms of the deal are . . . well . . . take a look: ROBERT MUGABE, the Zimbabwean president, will have the power to dismiss his arch-opponent from a government of national unity even though the two | Read More »
Heckuva Job, Obama Administration
The President who promised us that he would re-engage the world and put to the side the supposed unilateralism and arrogance of the Bush Administration has raised hackles across the world with the news that the Obama Administration is pushing for “Buy American” provisions in the new stimulus act. Now, the Administration appears to be backtracking on this utterly protectionist proposal. And a good thing | Read More »
What this problem needs is another bureaucrat!
Newly anointed Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced two new “special envoys” to handle the problems of Israel/Palestine and Afghanistan/Pakistan. Yet again the solution to our problems is a new layer of bureaucracy to an already infinitely complex foreign policy apparatus. So I guess we can think of these envoys as new “czars” of peace. The question remains, however, don’t we already have Undersecretaries and | Read More »
I Haven’t Blogged About Zimbabwe Recently . . .
So let me make up for it by noting this story, which indicates that the prospects for power-sharing between Robert Mugabe’s murderous little clique and the opposition, headed by Morgan Tsvangirai are . . . well . . . not that good: Since a power sharing pact was signed on September 15 last year Robert Mugabe and Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition Movement for | Read More »
Just A Reminder
The incoming White House Counsel disapproves of the nomination of the Secretary of State-designate. Really. It’s true: Turning his powers of persuasion against Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Craig issued a blistering foreign policy critique of the former first lady that began, “When your entire campaign is based upon a claim of experience, it is important that you have evidence to support that claim.” Clinton stalwarts were | Read More »
Trade Diplomacy: Foundering
So reports Daniel Ikenson. I disagree with the contention that Congress’s activities “whiff Rumsfeldian” because Donald Rumsfeld was a heck of a lot more adroit than the House Ways and Means Committee will ever be under current leadership in dealing with the international community on the issue of trade policy. In any event, as Ikenson references, this is the kind of arrogant foreign policy-making that | Read More »
“The Electorate’s Lips Say ‘No,’ But Their Eyes Say ‘Yes!'”
Having lost a national referendum to remove term limits on the office of the Presidency, Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez has decided to . . . well . . . hold a national referendum to remove term limits on the office of the Presidency. The man is nothing if not determined. Of course, the determination is to remove all vestiges of democracy from Venezuela, but that is | Read More »
A New Favorite Blog With A Particularly Valuable Blog Post
Shadow Government is a new Foreign Policy group blog that will provide alternatives to many elements of the Obamaian foreign policy vision. A good resource for Republicans and others standing in general, loyal opposition to the incoming Administration who want to work to formulate a foreign policy platform that can, if necessary, take on the incoming Administration on a number of issues. This post, written | Read More »
At Last! Something Resembling A Russia Policy!
There were reasons why I was happy to see that Robert Gates would continue on as Defense Secretary in the incoming Obama Administration. This article touches on one of them: A longtime Russia analyst during his years with the CIA, Gates today sees Moscow as less of a threat than do many inside and outside the U.S. military establishment. On PBS’s “Charlie Rose Show” Dec. | Read More »
A Lousy Start To 2009 . . . For Ukraine And For Much Of Europe As Well
For those who still have doubts concerning Russia’s desire to bully its neighbors, I refer you to this story, which reveals the degree to which Russia is willing to go to show just how much hegemonic power it can exercise over other former Soviet states–and by extension, over Europe itself: Russia was preparing to turn off gas deliveries to neighbouring Ukraine on Thursday, raising the | Read More »
When passages like the one contained in this story appear in discussing the most recent eruption of conflict between Israel and Hamas, you know that Hamas may well have stepped in it: There were protests and demonstrations against the offensive throughout the Arab world, as well as in several European capitals. In the occupied West Bank as well as in Israel, Palestinian demonstrators clashed repeatedly | Read More »
John McCain and Joe Lieberman have written a very good editorial on Iraq policy, in which they point out that thanks to the implementation of the surge and the counterinsurgency strategy–again, let us note that the President-elect and Vice President-elect opposed both of these policies and have not yet admitted error–there is an opportunity for bipartisan consensus to be created at long last when it | Read More »
And This Would Be Taunting
Memo to the international community: Robert Mugabe is double-dog daring you to do something about his incompetence and tyranny: Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe’s president, on Friday vowed “never” to bow to external pressure to step down and said no African country had the courage to send troops in to oust him. Addressing the annual congress of his Zanu-PF party in Bindura, the 84-year-old autocrat – in | Read More »
The Russian Government’s Stalin Fandom
It’s been happening for quite a while but it is worth noting anew. One can only imagine just how enraged Vladimir Putin would be if Angela Merkel tried to rehabilitate Hitler. This is no different. Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. And of course, one cannot learn from history if one is not properly taught it in the first | Read More »