A Malediction Permitting FiskingIt seems that our struggle to destroy terrorism and establish some sort of freedom and dignity for the Iraqi people has born excellent fruit, in the form of getting rid of a Neville Chamberlin wannabe in our Foreign Service.
U.S. Diplomat's Letter of Resignation
Published on Thursday, February 27, 2003 by the "http://www.nytimes.com" U.S. Diplomat's Letter of Resignation by John Brady Kiesling The following is the text of John Brady Kiesling's letter of resignation to Secretary of State Colin L. Powell. Mr. Kiesling is a career diplomat who has served in United States embassies from Tel Aviv to Casablanca to Yerevan.
Dear Mr. Secretary: I am writing you to submit my resignation from the Foreign Service of the United States and from my position as Political Counselor in U.S. Embassy Athens, effective March 7. I do so with a heavy heart. The baggage of my upbringing included a felt obligation to give something back to my country.
Massive bio-war epidemics apparently being No. 1 on your list. Your choice of words is enlightening as well. “Baggage?” “felt obligation?” What a relief it must be to get away from such noxious and constraining ideas as patriotism and classical liberalism in favor of toadying to dictators and those who would appease them.
Service as a U.S. diplomat was a dream job. I was paid to understand foreign languages and cultures, to seek out diplomats, politicians, scholars and journalists, and to persuade them that U.S. interests and theirs fundamentally coincided. My faith in my country and its values was the most powerful weapon in my diplomatic arsenal.
Where, exactly, was “Craven Surrender to Totalitarians” taught to you as an “American Value?” I can well guess, but we have already seen that you are impervious to ugly facts..
It is inevitable that during twenty years with the State Department I would become more sophisticated and cynical about the narrow and selfish bureaucratic motives that sometimes shaped our policies. Human nature is what it is, and I was rewarded and promoted for understanding human nature. But until this Administration it had been possible to believe that by upholding the policies of my president I was also upholding the interests of the American people and the world. I believe it no longer.
Young Werther strikes his forehead and swears off his foolish infatuation with factual reality in favor of a “diplomatic order” ruled by dictators and thugs. It is not surprising that John-Boy’s cynicism vanishes when it comes to the U.N.’s corruption and oil money shenanigans with regard to the “Oil For Food” program, or France’s with TotalFinaElf and Chirac’s promotion of the Osirik reactor.
The policies we are now asked to advance are incompatible not only with American values but also with American interests. Our fervent pursuit of war with Iraq is driving us to squander the international legitimacy that has been America’s most potent weapon of both offense and defense since the days of Woodrow Wilson. We have begun to dismantle the largest and most effective web of international relationships the world has ever known. Our current course will bring instability and danger, not security.
...says Kiesling the Quisling. “International legitimacy...since the days of Woodrow Wilson?” God in heaven, I’d have to write a book to expose this idiot’s willful lies. Old Europe treated Wilson like an idealistic bumpkin schoolteacher in favor of a punitive “peace” treaty that poisoned the Wilsonian order at its roots, in addition to calling for violations of national sovereignty that could not get it passed in the Senate. It only wanted the U.S. to act in the inter-war period so that it could blame the evil AMMEERRRRICANS for the costs of dealing with Hitler and Mussolini. When France and Britain abdicated their responsibilities to defend Europe, it was with the whine that the whole thing was America’s fault for not acting as a slavish lackey in the League of Nations, taking out the trash that -they- caused to collect in Germany and Italy and which they had no stomach to deal with. Did you notice, ladies and gentlemen, how America is both evil when it minds its own business and minimizes its foreign intervention -and- when it involves itself in world affairs? Catch-22, you just can’t beat it.
Well, after WWII, we did go all multilateral and diplomatic. What was our reward? France openly projectile-vomited in our face. The Germans were double-minded about the threat of war and the British Labour Party devolved into a screaming pit of anti-Americanism (as PM Blair is having to deal with now). There were constant chants of US OUT OF EUROPE NOW! (“Please, don’t go...please don’t go”) and waves of anti-US sentiment for the horrid hell-spawned crime of rebuilding Western Europe and opposing the spread of Communism. THAT was our reward, Johnny, and it’s our reward today from the filthy ingrates that you abase yourself to.
The sacrifice of global interests to domestic politics and to bureaucratic self-interest is nothing new, and it is certainly not a uniquely American problem. Still, we have not seen such systematic distortion of intelligence, such systematic manipulation of American opinion, since the war in Vietnam. The September 11 tragedy left us stronger than before, rallying around us a vast international coalition to cooperate for the first time in a systematic way against the threat of terrorism.
Unless by “international,” you count Great Britain, Australia (after Bali) and countries outside the Franco-German Axis of Collaboration with Hussein, the whole idea is a joke. We have had some success in the Arab world and Pakistan, but the NATO countries invoked Article 5 after 9/11 and then collectively did jack-flop.
But rather than take credit for those successes and build on them, this Administration has chosen to make terrorism a domestic political tool, enlisting a scattered and largely defeated Al Qaeda as its bureaucratic ally. We spread disproportionate terror and confusion in the public mind, arbitrarily linking the unrelated problems of terrorism and Iraq. The result, and perhaps the motive, is to justify a vast misallocation of shrinking public wealth to the military and to weaken the safeguards that protect American citizens from the heavy hand of government. September 11 did not do as much damage to the fabric of American society as we seem determined to so to ourselves. Is the Russia of the late Romanovs really our model, a selfish, superstitious empire thrashing toward self-destruction in the name of a doomed status quo?
Ooohh, you mean that Saddam hasn’t praised the efforts of the 9/11 terrorists, invaded his neighbors, provided cash bounties for suicide bombers, openly idolized Hitler and Stalin, deliberately pursued nuclear and bio-chemical weapons (actively using the latter in contravention of international law both in warfare and on his own putative citizenry) and called for the re-establishment of a Caliphate in Bagdad? To answer your question, no, we’re waking up to the fact that -superstitiously- invoking “international law” and waving pieces of paper at the likes of Saddam and Lil’ Kim to make them stop being “baddies” is part of a “doomed status quo” that will not stand.
We should ask ourselves why we have failed to persuade more of the world that a war with Iraq is necessary. We have over the past two years done too much to assert to our world partners that narrow and mercenary U.S. interests override the cherished values of our partners. Even where our aims were not in question, our consistency is at issue. The model of Afghanistan is little comfort to allies wondering on what basis we plan to rebuild the Middle East, and in whose image and interests. Have we indeed become blind, as Russia is blind in Chechnya, as Israel is blind in the Occupied Territories, to our own advice, that overwhelming military power is not the answer to terrorism? After the shambles of post-war Iraq joins the shambles in Grozny and Ramallah, it will be a brave foreigner who forms ranks with Micronesia to follow where we lead.
The stupidity continues. Ramallah is a shambles because the -Palestinian inhabitants- have made it so by engaging in an insane racist intifada that‘s against their own best interests. Grozny is a shambles because it is still *an active war zone.* Iraq is going to be rebuilt using its own oil money, which will not be hidden away in no-accountability secret UN bank accounts. It’s too bad that Johnny wasn’t born 20 years earlier so that he could resign over Reagan’s “cowboy” approach to Soviet diplomacy.
We have a coalition still, a good one. The loyalty of many of our friends is impressive, a tribute to American moral capital built up over a century. But our closest allies are persuaded less that war is justified than that it would be perilous to allow the U.S. to drift into complete solipsism. Loyalty should be reciprocal. Why does our President condone the swaggering and contemptuous approach to our friends and allies this Administration is fostering, including among its most senior officials. Has “oderint dum metuant” really become our motto?
We have disdain for those who, like France and Germany, claim to want us to work for peace and security through multi-lateral means while taking every effort to -destroy- those laws and agreements through anti-American motivated obstructionism. The fact that administration officials are willing to call them out for this indicates that they are both intelligent and self-respecting, things that Kiesling apparently prostituted away years ago. As for “Let them hate us, if they fear us,” they already hate and fear us and have done so since 1945, despite the fact that we have spent both blood and treasure to protect them. I don't like the concept of being hung for a wolf instead of a lamb, but it would at least stop the hypocrisy of "I'm not really against Americans" and the general anti-American ingratitude we see in Europe and elsewhere. If you review the history of the last half-century, these punks DON’T have the courage to protest people who actually intend doing them harm (it wasn't -cool- to protest against the Soviets, don't you know?), choosing instead to besharny their staunchest supporter.
I urge you to listen to America’s friends around the world. Even here in Greece, purported hotbed of European anti-Americanism, we have more and closer friends than the American newspaper reader can possibly imagine. Even when they complain about American arrogance, Greeks know that the world is a difficult and dangerous place, and they want a strong international system, with the U.S. and EU in close partnership. When our friends are afraid of us rather than for us, it is time to worry. And now they are afraid. Who will tell them convincingly that the United States is as it was, a beacon of liberty, security, and justice for the planet?
Not you, apparently. Greece is rife with leftist anti-Americanism. I’m sure that their professional diplomats blew smoke up your fundament, given your obvious tin ear to factual reality, and would gladly retire to their chambers laughing to tears at the news of new terrorist attacks on this country as long as they were out of the way.
Mr. Secretary, I have enormous respect for your character and ability. You have preserved more international credibility for us than our policy deserves, and salvaged something positive from the excesses of an ideological and self-serving Administration. But your loyalty to the President goes too far. We are straining beyond its limits an international system we built with such toil and treasure, a web of laws, treaties, organizations, and shared values that sets limits on our foes far more effectively than it ever constrained America’s ability to defend its interests.
Yes, it really limited North Korea from going nuclear and a vicious and openly fascistic dictator from getting more accolades and protection than the United States. It is France,. Germany and the rest of the Axis of Weasels that show contempt for international law, world security and genuinely effective multi-lateral action. If you didn’t have irreversible cranial-rectal inversion, you’d be able to see that.
I am resigning because I have tried and failed to reconcile my conscience with my ability to represent the current U.S. Administration. I have confidence that our democratic process is ultimately self-correcting, and hope that in a small way I can contribute from outside to shaping policies that better serve the security and prosperity of the American people and the world we share.
You’re resigning because U.S. civil service laws prohibit making open political statements, like this one. As an aspiring Quisling, you’re small beer. This country has survived the Commanding General of the U.S. Army being a traitor and a paid spy in the employ of Spain (Gen. James Wilkinson A greater traitor than Arnold ), you won’t matter much. In a way, I must apologize to Wilkinson and Arnold for the filthy and invidious libel which would compare them to you. They, at least, were straightforwardly mercenary in their treachery and spared us the loathsome, Pecksniffian hypocrisy of your mendacious letter cited above. In conclusion, let me quote a real patriot, Samuel Adams:
If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquillity of servitude than the animating contest of freedom, - go from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains sit lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen!