Sunday, November 21, 2004

No Peaceniks Allowed 

Courtesy of our distinguished colleague Michael Miller at Public Domain Progress: The Telegraph (UK) reports that, as late as last week, Colin Powell was hoping to postpone his resignation for a year or so because "he saw the chance of progress on the [Middle East] peace process." Unfortunately, the old whore's definition of "progress" did not coincide with the President's:
Colin Powell, the outgoing US secretary of state, was given his marching orders after telling President George W Bush that he wanted greater power to confront Israel over the stalled Middle East peace process.

Although Mr Powell's departure was announced on November 15, his letter of resignation was dated November 11, the day he had a meeting with Mr Bush . . . .

"The clincher came over the Mid-East peace process," said a recently-retired state department official.

"Powell thought he could use the credit he had banked as the president's 'good cop' in foreign policy to rein in Ariel Sharon [Israel's prime minister] and get the peace process going. He was wrong" . . . .

Vice-president Dick Cheney and his fellow hardliner, John Bolton, an under-secretary of state to Mr Powell, are both understood to have lobbied Mr Bush to replace him.

They wanted to make Iran's alleged nuclear bomb aspirations and support for Islamic terror groups the foreign policy priority for the new administration and believed that Mr Powell would back away from a confrontational approach.

The two are frustrated that Britain, France and Germany are still seeking a diplomatic deal with Teheran rather than backing an immediate UN Security Council resolution condemning Iran and threatening sanctions . . . .

Mr Powell is to be replaced by Condoleezza Rice, the national security adviser and close confidante of Mr Bush.

Mr Bolton's predicted promotion as her deputy is a further signal that the president wants to conduct foreign policy without the "moderating" influence and popular public face of Mr Powell.

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