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"Losing my faith in humanity ... one neocon at a time."

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Rewards continue for the dishonest and incompetent

posted by Jazz at 2/17/2005 11:30:00 AM

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I'm about as cynical as they come when matters of the Bush White House are under discussion, but even I didn't see this one coming. Bush has named John Negroponte to the nation's top security position.

"John's nomination comes in an historic moment for our intelligence services," Mr. Bush said in a ceremony at the White House. He said intelligence was now "the first line of defense" in the war on terrorism.

"John brings a unique set of skills to these challenges," Mr. Bush said in a ceremony at the White House.

Well yes indeed, Mr. President. Let's take a look at those "unique skills", shall we?

In case you don't remember John, allow me to refresh your memory. He was our ambassador to the UN back during Bush's rush to war in Iraq. One of the key things that Bush felt he needed during that period was a UN resolution authorizing him to attack the country. The UN, of course, balked at that. At the time, however, they still believed there were WMD's there and wanted Saddam to be more open to inspections. They did not, however, have any intention of giving Bush an open invitation to launch a war.

That's why, when the resolution to call on Iraq to be more agreeable to inspections came up for a vote, John was sent in. The other members of the Security Council didn't care for the "face serious consequences" clause in the resolution. Negroponte went and had individual meetings with each of the members, and later gave a speech to all of them at once, assuring them that there was "no automaticity" in the resolution. He promised them, in the name of the United States, that the resolution did not mean that failure to comply would result in a US attack, but that it was a "two step process" and the issue would be revisited in the UN.

Now, of course, we know that Bush never had any intention of honoring that promise and was just playing the UN for pawns in his preparations to launch the war. But John was a key part in getting the deal sealed. Is this is just the guy we want in charge of all of our intelligence resources?

Outside the Beltway is reserving judgment on John for now, but ponders questions about his complete lack of background in any intelligence capacity, or in running any sort of large umbrella organization like this.

So, this brings up the question in the subject line. Negroponte appears to have very little in the way of qualifications for this extremely important position. His "claims to fame" in both his tenure as UN ambassador and occupation honcho in Iraq resulted in dubious "success" at best. So what is the motivation for handing him this post? Could it be anything beyond the loyalty that George W. Bush values over all things?