Monday, January 29, 2007

How to become a foreign policy expert in 3 days

Da speaker speaks.... After her weekend trip to the Middle East, Pelosi holds firm to her belief that withdrawing troops is the answer to success in Iraq.

"We owe them better policy. We owe them better initiatives,'' Pelosi said after meeting the past three days with scores of U.S. troops and military commanders, as well as the top political leader in each of the three countries.


Pelosi said the prime mission of the trip was to offer support for the troops, whom she said were quite interested in meeting with the delegation.

"Our purpose was to salute our troops and commend them for their patriotism, their sacrifice, and the sacrifice of their families.''

Offer support? From all I understand, our troops want to win. And I don't see that Ms. Pelosi's "plan" to withdraw from Iraq does whit to "support" the troops desire to win. Instead, it's a stamp of approval and good "House"keeping seal of approval for failure. Winning is not an option.

Well fear not... When Pelosi and her cronies-in-arms-for-failure pull out our troops, Iraqis are not left alone in their quest for security. Iran is waiting in the wings to provide the military and economic support that the US Congress is so reticent to give.

This would, of course, be the same Iran who has no vested interest in a chaotic Iraq, and swears they aren't meddling in the so-called "civil war". Uh huh....

Of course, what's even more amusing to me is that the woman, who hasn't been to the region for two years, spends three days there and figures she knows more than the WH, who consults with military strategists and Iraqi officials daily. What chutzpah. Like one could become an expert on the situation in three days?

The same group of bozos did put a seal of approval on the WH requested $10 bil for Afghanistan tho. Interesting that they don't mind the UN/Nato countries not following thru on their pledges to send troops and support coalition forces in that war. They can place demands on the Iraqis, but not on the UN & NATO? Like what's up with that?

More nonsense from the SFGate (isn't that aptly named...) blurb.

In addition to Pelosi, lawmakers traveling in the group were Reps. Tom Lantos, D-San Mateo, chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee; Ike Skelton, D-Mo., chairman of the Armed Services Committee; John Murtha, D-Pa., chairman of the subcommittee that oversees the Pentagon's appropriations; Nita Lowey, D-N.Y.; and Dave Hobson, R-Ohio.

Lantos reiterated Pelosi's opposition to Bush's war plans.

"What we saw and heard in Baghdad leaves me even more convinced than before that the administration's 'stay the course' approach will only lead us deeper into disaster,'' Lantos said. "Placing more troops in harm's way in order to shore up a failed policy is unconscionably reckless and only compounds the mistakes already made.''

I hardly think a strategy to surge troops for a clear, hold rebuild campaign to insulate the Iraqi Parliament from violence is "stay the course". In fact, unless Congress forces our troops out of the region by cutting off the money, then who is actually promoting a "stay the course" strategy but the "no victory in Iraq" group themselves? And that includes all too many wimp-assed Republicans who place election hopes above doing what's right.

Speaking of "da speaker"... remember that open, honest and ethical Congress? Per the not-so-conservative USAToday, it appears that
Pelosi and a couple other Dems are called on the carpet for failure to disclose their positions as officers of family charities.

WASHINGTON — U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and two other prominent Democrats have failed to disclose they are officers of family charities, in violation of a law requiring members of Congress to report non-profit leadership roles.

Rep. Rahm Emanuel of Illinois, the fourth-ranking House Democrat, and Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana also did not report they serve as family foundation directors, according to financial disclosure reports examined by USA TODAY.

All three foundations are funded and controlled by the lawmakers and their spouses, and do not solicit donations from outside sources.

It gets better.

Pelosi spokesman Brendan Daly said Friday the speaker will amend her reports. He said it "was an oversight" that she had not listed her position dating back to 1992.


Bayh spokeswoman Meghan Keck said it was "simply an oversight" that he did not disclose his charity role. Bayh has since amended his reports, Keck said.

Emanuel, chairman of the House Democratic Conference, does not believe the law requires him to disclose his foundation post, spokeswoman Kathleen Connery said. "We believe we're following the instructions of the (ethics) committee exactly right, but if we're not, we'll amend our report," she said.

An "oversight". The hip new language for the elistist "DOH!", no doubt. But you have to love Rahm's defiance of the need to do so. Ethics my arse. Obviously Emanual's thoughts are "we don't need no stinkin' disclosures!" LOL

Ah yes.. a new election, new leadership, same ol' corrupt Congress with a different mouthpiece.

Off planet, please....

And while we're on the subject of self-proclaimed experts... Let's check out Quentin Peel's (Financial Times) blind acceptance of Malaysia's PM accusation that it's US policies that have radicalized "moderate" Muslims.

Moderate Muslim countries face a greater threat from terrorism than western countries, but all nations must urgently address the causes of that terrorism instead of concentrating on the symptoms, according to Abdullah Badawi, prime minister of Malaysia.

World Muslim opinion had been radicalised by western policies in the Middle East, including the failure to resolve the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, and the invasion of Iraq.

“Trying to resolve terrorism without examining its root causes is like trying to fertilise the fruits and not the roots,” he said.


“What is happening now in the Middle East has made even the moderates angry. That is not good.”

What is it with everyone that they think terrorist and radical Islamic scum began the day GWB took office?

For the history challenged, read back on a chronology of terrorists attacks by radicals starting back in 1961. Note that after 1995, the increased documented attacks skyrocket.

Also note that this particular report ends with 911, not yet adding Mali, Spain, London and other attacks since that time. But what is obvious is that if US policies are to blame for radicals' behaviour, it's sure been going on a long time, increasing in boldness and intensity.

And is this type of statement supposed to be justification for their murderous ways and third world caliphate goals? Bunk.

To end on an "up" note for a change.... I am just about bowled over on our local "fishwrapper", The Oregonian's opinion piece by David Reinhard, that points out the Democrats' lack of enthusiam at the SOTU for victory in Iraq.

"On this day, at this hour, it is still within our power to shape the outcome of this battle," he said. "Let us find our resolve, and turn events toward victory."

What Bush said wasn't especially significant. What members of Congress did most certainly was.

At the call for "victory," Republicans and a handful of Democrats stood and cheered. The great bulk of Democrats, however, sat silent and still, including Madame Speaker.


It's one thing to oppose a war and vote against its authorization. That's honorable enough. It's one thing to oppose Bush's "surge" into Baghdad and believe the plan won't work. That's understandable enough at this hour. But it's another thing not to want it to work, not to want "victory" for your country and its soldiers -- especially given the grim alternatives that defeat will bring. That's just unspeakable.

Well I'll be..... the very progressive Oregonian could see this clearly as well, AND find it deplorable? Could it be there's hope for the American populus after all?


Gledwood said...

What's your opinion on Condoleeza Rice??

International stateswoman? Or gawky overgrown teenager?



MataHarley said...

Sorry for the slow response, Gledwood. I saw the question the day after you posted, was swamped with making a living, and only now can get to it. My apologies.

And truth is, it's a question I had to ponder anyway. I wasn't bowled over by Condie as choice of SOS in the beginning. She's a tad wordy and long winded when dealing with statements to the general public for my tastes (better than Kerry, mind you, but still wordy).

Then again, it's hard to have an opinion. For on what do I gauge my judgement of her effectiveness? Most of Condie's work is done behind doors, dealing with foreign diplomats. I am not privy to those meetings, so few of us can see her in action at her job.

Were I to base it on results of her performance, there wouldn't be an SOS who passed muster in history. They are tackling trying to smooth relations between nations that have been warring since before the US was created.

That said, I can also say that I haven't found her overtly offensive with worthless actions, touting of meaningless "successes"... such as Madeline "Notsobright" with her photos ops with the tubby N. Korean dictator and their BS nuke proliferation pact which was never honored by that country. Nor did Ms. Notsobright keep her eyes on their actions after the fact.

So I would suppose that, at this point, I find Condie refreshing in many ways. She's a strong, no nonsense woman with her feet on the ground in reality. I would suspect that, in private negotiations, she holds her ground with grace and eloquence.

And I also don't believe the woman is a puppet to the WH either. She strikes me as the kind of woman who, if she didn't have like kind attitudes on the WOT and ME situations, she'd be out of there.

Thus, I'll opt for "Int'l Stateswoman" over the "gawky teen" choice you gave me. However I don't think she's a canon and cannot perform miracles in diplomacy either. However I believe she is a great spokeswoman for our country, and show the great diversity we truly have in our citizenry.