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TGIF: April 1, 2011 Public Appointments for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

April 1, 2011


And Happy April Fool’s Day.

It’s snowing here in Boston, so someone or something is having a good laugh at our expense.

11 Comments leave one →
  1. PYW permalink
    April 1, 2011 10:20 am

    OT: There’s an amusing blog post on the right from Andrew Sullivan whining about the administration not following the War Powers Act. Yes, that’s the Andrew Sullivan who thought Obama was going to be the second coming. Just a tad bit of buyer’s remorse there, Andrew?

    • April 1, 2011 2:10 pm

      Yeah, some are beginning to realize that the Obama doctrine is actually similar to the Bush doctrine- expansive view of executive power, covert wars not authorized by Congress, increased use of drones in Pakistan, lots of latitude given to the CIA and military to do God knows what.

      The Nobel committee should be embarrassed that they gave Obama the Nobel Peace Prize. If anyone is feeling remorse it should be them. Think of all the people around the world who risk their lives fighting for democracy, human rights etc. and they give it to the POTUS a few months after he takes office?

      I really think the Nobel Committee gave him the award after he gave his Cairo speech- I have to check the timing of that speech vs. when they announced he won, but I bet it checks out. To give Obama credit in one area- he gives a great speech- but unfortunately he’s not so good on the follow through. After he gave his speech in Cairo I really thought “wow, maybe he’s serious about charting a new course in the Middle East, maybe this admin. will try to be more of an honest broker.” After that speech his approval rating in the Muslim world shot up- clearly many Arabs thought just like I did at the time. But again, not only did he not follow through he took major steps backwards, particularly with respect to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Now his approval rating in the Muslim world is in the crapper and some may say “so what?” but look around at the change throughout the region- it matters.

      Glenn Greenwald over at Salon (he writes primarily about legal aspects of national security, foreign policy and the war on terror) voted for Obama but I give him credit for being consistent- he slams liberals who act as an apologist for Obama policies that they criticized under Bush. He stands on principle rather than refusing to admit that Obama has adopted some of Bush’s most questionable policies. Some Obama supporters refuse to acknowledge that.

  2. April 1, 2011 2:21 pm

    For a great example of Greenwald taking Obama to task about his hypocrisy, see his commentary from yesterday:

    Greenwald is a lawyer and one of the things I like about his arguments is that he supports them with actual evidence- people can disagree about what the evidence means, but he doesn’t just throw up a commentary based on his emotional response to something and as I said above, he’s consistent- if it’s wrong when someone you don’t like does it, it’s ALSO wrong when someone you like does it- that can be applied to anything- politics, human rights, discrimination, etc.

    • PYW permalink
      April 2, 2011 6:11 pm

      thanks for posting this, stacy.

  3. April 2, 2011 9:42 pm

    Interesting. We still have about 50K troops in Iraq, and we are doubling our embassy staff there. That is the largest embassy in the world, even before doubling staff.

  4. Carolyn-Rodham permalink
    April 2, 2011 9:55 pm

    This is interesting, coming from Bronner:

    • April 3, 2011 8:27 am

      Yeah, I saw that. There’s really not much news there other than to say that Israel will try to get the US to throw sand in the gears of any Palestinian attempt to have a state recognized in September. I’m sure the US will be more than happy to help. Lets be honest, there is no real reason for Peres’ trip- all this could be done by telephone. This is a photo op.

      The real story is how the international community- including our allies in Europe, are getting increasingly frustrated with the U.S.’ role in resolving the conflict. I think it’s pretty clear to everyone who is even moderately objective that the US can’t be an honest broker while also having a policy of doing whatever Israel wants, whenever Israel wants even if it scuttles the peace process or even if it violates long-standing US policy. Time is running out and the EU and South America know it. The thing is, the US will never willingly give up it’s role as the overseer of peace negotiations precisely because we are concerned that some other country or group of countries (even the Quartet) might try to pressure Israel into making some concessions and agreeing to the long-standing framework (not to mention prior obligations under previous agreements- something which Israel is in violation of) regarding what a two state solution would look like.

      • Carolyn-Rodham permalink
        April 3, 2011 11:05 am

        I agree the US is no longer a credible mediator, but what seemed interesting/new to me in Bronner’s piece was that he seems to ackknowledge that with or without the US, Israel isn’t going to be able to bully it’s way out of this one — the General Assembly and, more importantly, historical events in the Middle East are not on Israel’s side.

  5. April 3, 2011 12:48 pm

    @Carolyn- Israel has been able to bully it’s way out of everything else. Maybe I’m missing something, but can’t the US step in and do what it always does- block the Palestinians? I’m not an expert on the UN but it seems like nothing of real importance can go forward without the approval of the security council and our “special” relationship with Israel seem to revolve around us keeping them from every having to be held accountable in an international arena like the UN. Can a Palestinian state be created just by going to the General Assembly?

    I’ll be honest, I’m beyond fed up with Israel. I really put a lot of faith in this administration’s ability to be more of an honest broker and I feel stupid for having believed that. This administration has turned out to be no different than any other administration when it comes to Israel.

    Another HUGE international flotilla leaves for Gaza in May- there will be a US flag ship- I actually was looking to see if there were still spots available because I have become so disgusted that I would consider going on one, but I’m a little late to the game and seats are taken.

    Israel is trying to get the US and the UN to somehow prevent this flotilla from taking off- you can bet that will be on Simon Peres list of things to talk about. Also on the list will be giving them more $$ to keep them safe from all those uppity Arabs marching in the streets for democracy. Another item on the list of things to talk about with Obama will be preventing the Mideast Quartet from proposing parameters for a final status agreement. Once again the role of the US on the Quartet seems to be to protect Israel from ever having to do anything.

    I never thought I’d say this but I actually agree with Aaron David Miller- the Mideast Peace process is nothing but a false religion that provides cover for Israel to continue expanding its territory while the US loses legitimacy in the international arena due to it’s self defeating need to act solely as Israel’s lawyer.

    I never thought I’d say this either but I am starting to think that it’s time to pay the piper- careful what you wish for, you just might get it. I’m starting to agree with my Palestinian and Jordinian friends that a two state solution is pretty much impossible now so it’s time to talk about a one state solution that DOESN’T include apartheid. This is the logical consequence of decades of illegal settlement building. I don’t really care anymore about Israel’s demographic concerns or ethnic purity issues. If they are/were so concerned they should have accepted the Arab Peace Initiative. To me it’s no longer the Jewish state, it’s the state of Israel, home to the world’s Christians, Muslims and Jews.

    • Thain permalink
      April 3, 2011 1:16 pm

      I agree. It’s sort of crazy to think a two state solution can be banged out at this point when all the land for the second state is disappearing every day.

      Another HUGE international flotilla leaves for Gaza in May- there will be a US flag ship- I actually was looking to see if there were still spots available because I have become so disgusted that I would consider going on one, but I’m a little late to the game and seats are taken.

      I didn’t realize another Flotilla was taking off soon. I for one am glad you won’t be on it because Israel has said that this time around they will use more force (!) including snipers to shoot people on the decks (as opposed to gunning them down from 12 inches away I guess) and attack dogs. Given the US won’t reign Israel in, it’s pretty much suicide to go on a flotilla. If we were talking about an aid ship going to N. Korea or China or Burma or any other country the US would be outraged if people were killed but we’re in a sorry state right now. Besides, you’d be labeled a terrorist because you know, anyone who sets foot on a humanitarian ship bound for Gaza is a terrorist 😉

  6. stacyx permalink*
    April 3, 2011 8:01 pm

    @carolyn- sorry I didn’t read the Bronner article more thoroughly- he makes clear that the vote would take place in the General Assembly not the Security Council, so if that’s the case, then there may be nothing that the US can do to prevent them from recognizing a Palestinian state. Of course, Israel can still refuse to end the Occupation and just become even more isolated while dragging us down with them…

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