© Getty Images.
Diplomacy Update
Overselling and (So Far) Under-delivering

From Syria to Iran and to the Israeli-Palestinian negotiations, Secretary Kerry’s boosters have managed to cleverly market his moves as genuine achievements.

Published on: February 2, 2014
show comments
  • Brian Stahl

    Kerry is chasing the wind in Israel. Netanyahu’s government is unwilling to budge on any important matters barring any domestic or foreign reason to do so, and a super-ambiguous FAPS will end with both sides violating each other’s understanding of the document. This is what happened during the “decade of peace talks” in the 90’s and it ended with greater distrust on both sides, and worsened Israeli-Palestinian relations.

  • Fat_Man

    “the ridiculous GOP accusation that she was guilty of some heinous dereliction of duty in the Benghazi September 2012 debacle.”

    She lied. She knew what happened and she lied, and she is still lying. She lied straight faced to the parents of the dead guards. She is a liar, and she should be shunned by every honest man.

    • Kavanna

      And every honest woman, for that matter.

  • Kavanna

    “Underdelivering” is polite. The fact is, Kerry’s a flop, and his president’s policies are just an endless string of costly failures. The costs are borne by others, so it has limited domestic impact. Unlike Bush, Obama is not even capable of recognizing his own failures for what they are. Kerry did admit just today that Obama’s Syria policy (and, by implication, his Iran policy) is, in fact, a failure. At least Kerry is better in that respect.

    But, with his crude “goycott” threats against Israel, Kerry has proved that he’s on-board with a thuggish administration and president — the Chicago way — everybody under the bus!

    He’s just proven again what was so evident in 2004, that he’s a patrician airhead with intellectual pretensions. Never forget what transpired in 2004: Kerry was desperate to hide his Yale transcript, not because of his record in Vietnam, but because he didn’t want it revealed that he did no better as a student than “that dumb cowboy,” Shrub.

  • Anthony

    “Connecting the dots is rapidly becoming a lapsed craft” in more ways than foreign policy (statecraft and diplomacy). The hypothetical 98% are casual observers vis-a-vis most significant socio-economic matters I would hazard (and violation of INF Treaty is big deal and warrants more than casual notice).

  • johngbarker

    If Professor Garfinkle were to offer a course called, “How the world really works.” which books would the students be assigned?

  • ljgude

    My sense is that both Hillary and Kerry would have pursued quite different foreign policies as president. They have both found themselves trying to execute the policies of a post colonial college professor. I thought Hillary got suckered into trying to execute a foreign policy she never would have pursued herself and ended up looking grumpy and constipated. But she may be dumber than I think, because i remember seeing her expressing shock that our friends had done this (Benghazi) to us. But perhaps she was just lying to protect her boss. Kerry looks like he did running for president – going through the motions without really getting what he is doing. I have heard his say some reasonably intelligent things on CSPAN when he was just a Senator, so maybe he is not as bad as he appears. Obama seems to me to have zero understanding that military power and diplomacy are complementary. I think Adam nails that one beautifully. I think we are in for three more years of undermining American power and conspicuous failure to pursue American interests.

  • cammo99

    The author is curt in assigning any responsibility to Hillary for an absence of action prior to and during the Benghazi attack. She must bear some of the responsibility, the problem is she like her boss were too busy trying to evade what they did wrong to learn anything and then make real progress. As for the inanity that the DNC is out to get Hillary, she is still the DNC’s best pick for a Presidential run, they haven’t hung her out to dry yet.
    The main problem with this analysis is its omit of the role Obama’s pro-Islamic policies play even in that it helps explain why Obama is courteously following along sucking the wake of the Russian Navy. Pro-Islam policy ignored risks taken in Libya, ignored the presence of Al-Qaeda cells, ignores Morsi’s Muslim brotherhood’s relationship and its implications in imposing draconian sharia law and replaces civil courts, and this report ignores the very real progress that has been made to characterize Israel as an apartheid state while the PA regularly commits violence to as great a degree on its own citizens, whether in firing live ammo into rioting and stone throwing crowds or ignoring violence committed in the name of honor and Allah. Watching the pro-Islamic policies of Obama move forward is like watching a blind man stumble about in a room where all the furniture has been moved.
    While Obama acts as the great power loser at the beginning of the 21st Century the Russians are only too happy to have their oil ventures with the Kurds go forward, supply the Egyptian Army with weapons in place of American delays, while securing berths for their Navy in Alexandria, they have turned the balance for Iran, Assad and have managed to negotiate an oil contract with Turkey in which they will provide 100% of their needs. A necessity created by the ignored Russian invasion of Georgia negating the Israeli, Georgian, Turkish, and Stan nations aspirations to share in oil derived from their own pipeline.
    Obama must be in hog heaven oops, did mean to pen him with unclean beasts. But he has enabled Islamic Revolutions and the rebirth of the Russian dream of greater presence in the region and its own ability to project Naval Power in this vital oil region simultaneously the author got that much dead right.

© The American Interest LLC 2005-2018 About Us Masthead Submissions Advertise Customer Service
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.