S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Confusion reigns

Iran may be wondering about U.S. intentions toward their country. Our two nations seem to be going around in circles. Senator Jack Reed of Rhode Island characterized the current administration's mixed military and diplomatic messages to Iran as "confusing." To quote from a story on what Senator Reed was talking about, this is by Karen DeYoung for today's Washington Post (includes their links),

Standing two weeks ago aboard a U.S. aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf, 150 miles off the Iranian coast, Cheney said he wanted to "send a clear message to our friends and adversaries alike" that the administration will protect its interests and honor its commitments. Arab states have pressed for U.S. protection of oil supply routes. Yesterday, nine U.S. warships sailed through the Strait of Hormuz toward Iran to begin an unannounced exercise in international waters.
At the same time, the State Department recently succeeded in getting President Bush's authorization to hold direct talks with Tehran on the situation in Iraq -- something the president had repeatedly said he would not permit without a change in Tehran's behavior. The U.S. and Iranian ambassadors to Iraq are due to begin a dialogue in Baghdad on Monday.
The Middle East must also be wondering. I would expand Senator Reed's characterization to include the entire Middle East region. Our current president (OCP) regularly adds to the confusion by conflating Al Qaida with Iraq, by arbitrarily declassifying intelligence information, by authorizing covert operations against Iran and approving overt naval operations in the Persian Gulf. OCP has often distorted the truth to justify the war against Iraq, and he is still doing that to this day. .OCP wants to reveal secret information for his own purposes, but condemns such revelations by the press. "Carrot and stick" approaches to foreign relations are a tried and true tactic, but such efforts must be handled with much skill, not so clumsily as is the normal case in this administration.
The result of such ineptitude and unsophisticated strategies is the current cauldron of conflict in Middle East. Since the turn of the century, the region and our own U.S. interests have been very poorly served by the Bush administration. But I am not nearly as confused about what to do in the Middle East as Congress seems to be at this point. Congressional leaders' strategy sould be to continue to send OCP war funding bills with accountability included. Each presidential veto then makes the lack of support for the troops the president's responsibility, not the lawmakers'. It is just as simple as that. And the American people would understand that behavior. There would be no confusion about who is responsible for abandoning the military. It has always been the Bush administration that is actually doing that, while making false claims of support.
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My “creativity and dreaming” posts today at Good Second Mondays are about reposting previous "creative" entries at Bloglegion to the more stable Blogger platform.


betmo said...

they don't necessarily know what they are doing- ever. they have a private agenda that they are working on- and everything else is incidental. i don't think that the middle east is supposed to get better in their plan. i plan to hunker down and be as self sufficient as i can before the other shoe drops.

Carol Gee said...

It is scary to confront the thought that our survival depends on self-sufficiency, though that surely ups the odds. The other thing, for me, is my optimistic thought that the mere passage of time is on our side. There is around 15 more months of our current president's time in the oval office. We can perhaps anticipate a Democratic president with a plan for improvement of the nation's situation. We can assume that by itself can insire hope. Thanks, belatedly, for your comment, as always.