Archive for diplomacy

100 Years Ago This Summer, the Great War Began - Has Putin Taken Us Back?



Noted historian Jon Meacham proposed just that, going even further to speculate that we are once again, as a country, purportedly Leaders of the Free World now, re-engaged in The Big Game.

And Putin never looked happier.

No progressive wants to hear this. It's an arguable victory for the hopeful Military Industrial Complex fiends, never mind a clear throwback to Ron Ron Reagan's Star Wars daze.


Maddow, per usual, had a revelatory conversation with Nina Kruscheva about the Regressive Right and Putin headlines.

However, Putin isn't making it easy to try to have a different viewpoint from Fvx Nation and give the guy a slim chance. No progressive wants to be on the same side of the soapbox as Limpbaugh, Hannity and Coulter, either.

And lawd knows that soon we will all have another stellar new media site to muddy up with lots of liberal traffic … La Palin is launched … an Online News Channel.

Of her own.

Like Op-rah.

But more like the Anti-Oprah.


Have a gander at Here Ya' Go GOP-Tea … Pay For Palin


Can we blame Putin for that too? I don't know why not, they have so much in common and she can practically see him undressing from her vaunted A-las-kan porch. And you know as the General Election gets closer, the Regressive Right wants Putin to be as scary a foe as possible … the GOP think they win every security and defense contest.

From Ronan Farrow's messnbc daily roster.

Let's prove the fools wrong. Can you imagine Ted Cruz making foreign policy decisions with Putin also a president he has to interact with?

Dr. Seuss ain't going to cover those situations, Cruz. Or *GASP* Palin herself, there are already PAC's and this channel is nothing but publicity.



When Will We Learn, McCain Is Not A Diplomat?


Oops I did it again

It takes a big (wo)man, not necessarily a good (wo)man, to admit he/she's made a mistake. John McCain this weekend proved he's that (wo)man. He's admitted what we've all known for years -- he means well, but is prone to exaggeration gaffs.

So in the spirit of fairness, I'm willing to say John simply got caught up in the moment, took some time to reflect on his own actions of the past and decided Obama's handshake with Raul Castro wasn't the disgraceful act of "appeasement" on par with the Neville Chamberlain/Adolph Hitler handshake. Time to get past that.

With that settled, I think it's about time that the US Government reconsider it's policy of sending McCain and usually his personal valet Senator Lindsay Graham on official "fact finding" trips to political 'hot spots' on behalf of this country. This hawk and his sidekick have never found a place where they didn't feel the US should make it a flashpoint for war.

They were early and multiply times visitors to Iraq where we escalated our efforts there -- remember the "surge" of troops?

They visited Syria and voted against Obama's using peaceful means to negotiate the chemical weapons disarmament.

McCain made a number of official visits to Israel where each time the middle east country announced increased anxiety over Iran which lead to threats of a possible unilateral Israeli strike on their warring neighbor. McCain went so far as to refer to then current Iranian leader this way according to NBC news:

McCain made a joke comparing Iranian leader Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to a monkey.

The Arizona senator even more recently has been vocal on pushing new sanctions against Iran which would most certainly derail the peaceful efforts to negotiate a shutting down of the nuclear weapons development program in Iran despite pleas by Secretary of State John Kerry to allow unfettered negotiations to take place. 

Now today we find McCain (without his Graham valet) once again off to a foreign land as an official envoy, this time in the rioting Ukraine.

In all these these cases, the McCain visits have turned out, by his actions once he returned, to be the opposite of our best interests. How many times must this old warhorse be sent to gather intel and report back? It's not as if his efforts have netted us any qualitative or even quantitative findings. He may be a good guy, and his military background -- at least in years spent as a prisoner of war -- is laudable. But like the accountant today who forgoes contemporary computer technology to prepare your taxes, he's slow, prone to human error and basically just out of it. He's got his old ways and refuses to change with the times. Rather than input data in a computer and have it instantly analyzed and metadata mined for multiple uses, he's still got the pencil, a paper spreadsheet (with coffee stains) and a hand-pull adding machine at his side.

We'll all be served when he finally signals his retirement. He doesn't need to be put out to pasture just yet, but he certainly doesn't need to be our eyes and ears on the ground surveying our next possible moves in volatile locations. He could help us best by passing on his knowledge in improving the standards of living and assistance to soldiers returning from service as well as issues affecting our growing aging population.

Internation diplomacy needs a bit more than just having served for a long time or a Senator singing "Bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb, bomb Iran."

It takes someone who thinks before he speaks. What it needs is diplomacy, not mockery. And lately, Senator McCain has proven he's doting with emotional lust for one final battle, not one grand peace. Let's stop putting our worst foot forward. Let's start putting our best.


Live Streaming Video- National Memorial Service for Former South African President Nelson Mandela, President Obama To Speak 4:00a EST




Video- CBS's Bob Schieffer to GOP Rep.: Is Iran Deal ‘Diversionary Tactic’ for Obama Admin?


Got those RNC talking points right up there in the teleprompter eh Bob? Via.


Video- President Obama Makes a Statement on Iran 11/23/13



Poll-itics: Two polls that will drive the GOP crazy(er)


GOP crybaby

Via a couple of email alerts from CNN:

More people say Republicans in Congress rather than President Barack Obama would be responsible if the federal government shuts down starting Tuesday because of a bitter partisan battle over the new health care law, according to a new CNN/ORC International poll.

With just hours before funding for the federal government runs out at 12:01 a.m. ET Tuesday, the poll showed that most Americans also think congressional Republicans are acting like "spoiled children" in this fiscal fight, with the public divided on whether the president is acting like a spoiled child or a responsible adult.

The poll was conducted for CNN by ORC International September 27-29, with 803 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.

And this:

Three out of four Americans favor direct diplomatic negotiations between the U.S. and Iran in an attempt to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons, with 21% opposed, according to a new CNN/ORC International poll.

President Barack Obama spoke on the phone Friday with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani -- the first direct conversation between leaders in Washington and Tehran since 1979 -- raising the possibility a deal can be reached over Iran's nuclear program.

The poll was conducted for CNN by ORC International September 27-29, with 803 adults nationwide questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus 3.5 percentage points.


VIDEO-- Historic DiplObamacy: "I was watching the man that I voted for in 2008, very proudly."


credit where credit is due

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Rachel Maddow made an appearance on "All In with Chris Hayes" to comment on the remarkable series of historic events that all took place in one day:

Rachel: Can we start with the hash tag with the hashtag "will"?  "Will"! It *will* happen! Not "Yes, we can."  "Yes, we will"! *Did* happen! Amazing.

Chris: It was amazing this happened and it did feel like this was a huge issue in the 2008 campaign. What Barack Obama did in that campaign was turn into the tough position, which was "Yeah, I'm going to talk to Iran," and here we are five years later and he's talking to Iran.


Rachel: None of that would have happened had the Obama administration not pursued the course he took as a candidate.

One great milestone, one great sort of benchmark person to watch here is always John McCain because John McCain has never met a war he didn't like, and John McCain's response to the prospect of the U.N. Security Council resolution, which we apparently now have, was that it made him sad. He did not want this to be resolved diplomatically. He did not want Syria's chemical weapons to be resolved without a war, that made him feel sad, and what's amazing about that is that it's just him. That's a bizarre view to have. And the rest of the country doesn't have it with him.

Chris: I was watching it unfold when John Kerry came before the nation when he made this passionate argument for strikes. This is a train wreck. The president is gonna lose the vote in Congress, I think it's a bad idea substantively to do this. I don't think it's going to work, I think it's going to make things worse.

I can't believe I'm sitting here a week later and there is a binding enforceable UN Security Council resolution with Russia voting for it in which Syria's gonna turn over their chemical weapons... an incredible diplomatic victory.

Rachel: Yes, on the day that the American president speaks to the Iranian president for the first time since 1979. ... To have them all happening at once, to have sort of "Diplobamacy" bearing fruit in this dramatic way, I mean I guess this is the way these things happen... You quietly work on these things for a very long time, then all of a sudden, when opportunity is available, things happen all at once, this is watershed stuff. This is historic.


...What you need to know as an American government is that we need competent governance, we need people who are good at diplomacy all the time and working at it even when it seems hopeless, because sometimes it takes 34 years for that phone call to happen, but when it happens, you better have done the work along the way because those opportunities come along very very rarely.

Chris: And to bring it back to Syria, that was what was most remarkable about Syria, was that when the opportunity presented itself, the president took it.

Rachel: Even if it kinda came from a weird place. I don't care if John Kerry meant say that in that way at that moment, when the opportunity arose, they they were on it. ... You gotta be ready.  Preparation is 99% of taking advantage of the right opportunity. I'm very very proud of our diplomatic capacity on a day like this.