In a smart, disheartening piece in The New York Times Magazine last month, Robert Worth surveyed the frustration of American diplomats who signed up to engage the world — even dreamed of changing it — and now find themselves encumbered by the safeguards and protocols of a risk-averse Washington. It is hard to change the world when you live in a fortress and travel in an armored motorcade. The article was prompted, of course, by the death of J. Christopher Stevens, the ambassador killed in a Sept. 11 jihadi attack on the American mission in Benghazi, Libya.
Comments: This is one of the most remarkable and thought proving articles I have read in the NY Times. Keller realizes the dangers, mostly played down by State Department as not only effecting diplomats, but the reporters sent into harm´s way with them. He sees the need for their boots to be on the ground, as Washington does get some of its intel from what is being reported in a given region. And, that the next trained generation of media must balance the story with security to get it.
OMG! Next thing you know, Keller is going to suggest that "media" question "facts" that come out of the mouths of Obama spokesmodels. Hold on their, partner, that´s awfully close to committing journalism. You know, that thing they supposedly teach at Columbia? No? Don´t remember?
I would settle for ambassadors representing the US as is.. Not doing end runs , gun runs, money bundling, black ops .. All seemingly from a rogue concept of US interests..we do not topple governments, advise thugs and terrorists, enable drug dealers..an embassy is to mediate our interests abroad.. Not go off piste with their unsavory ideals and "making a difference" bs.. That is for college professors indoctrinating mushy skulls safely on campus or ows bonfires...
What reprehensible, despicable garbage. There are so many lies here I want to hurl. This loser Keller first lies like a Stalinist when he claims that Stevens’ death was no big deal and "goes" with the territory. Imagine if exactly this event had occurred while George W. Bush was president. Keller and his merry cabal of apparatchiks in the LSM would have demanded Bush be impeached immediately; like yesterday. The frenzy, hate and hysteria would have been so over the top as to be an obscenity. The goal would have been to create a national crisis.
Too bad for Keller and his posse that the reality is this murder of an American Ambassador was the direct result of Yo´ bama´s incompetence. And Keller and the gang have constantly screamed that any mention of that fact or even Susan Rice´s name is racist and driven solely by Republican hate filled extremists. Welcome to America 2013.
The theatrics employed by the conniving policy tactics of the current, ´leadership,´ and devious Congressional manipulators are apparently attempting to build a house of cards, which seems about to collapse. Not only are American diplomats in peril around the planet but ALL people seem less safe & Less free everywhere as the world has rapidly become more unfriendly, even violent, during the past 4 years. The bad guys seem to be on the move intemidating Life & Liberty. Such lefty political opportunists always prey on the most helpless and they apparently sense weakness EVERYWHERE now.
But then, is that turn-of-events any wonder when the lefty/libs of the world throughout the past 40 years have sang & demanded peace & love but the results of their song-&-dance are in now & have turned out to be exactly the opposite?! From local communities to the various countries and the communal UN, there is decay, decadense and cruelty among even formerly civil peoples as a result of these same ditzy lefty/libs´ politics! Lefty/libs have now even claimed tenure in the universities, media and apparently inside the USA beltway but, ´´Peace,´´ AND prosperity are nowhere to be seen, as both obviously are to be found in the opposite direction!
Leftists are ignoring history as they again march toward wrong direction. Their bogus statist illusions &, ´siren songs,´ have proved time & time again to be totally phony. And good people are dying now, in our time, because of their redundant bad leadership.
US Secretary of State John Kerry reiterated on Sunday that Israel will be safer the day the recently-reached deal on Iran´s nuclear issue is implemented. Kerry, addressing the Brookings Institution´s annual Saban Forum, recognized Israel´s concern over Tehran´s disputed nuclear ambitions, saying the possibility of a weaponized nuclear Iran stood as an existential threat to Israel. "We will not allow Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon. Period. Not now, not ever," he said.
Los Angeles - The California health exchange says it´s been giving the names of tens of thousands of consumers to insurance agents without their permission or knowledge in an effort to hit deadlines for coverage. (Snip) Officials with Covered California, the exchange set up in response to the federal health law, said they began providing names, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses if available this week in a pilot program. They said they thought it would help people meet a Dec. 23 deadline to have health insurance in place by Jan. 1. The state doesn´t know exactly how many people
The “feminist nightmare” is recurring. Unbowed by Politico labeling her with this epithet a couple of weeks ago, Michelle Obama continues to do what her critics regard as frightening behaviors. Last week, she assaulted independent women by showing off the White House Christmas decorations. “Our goal is for every room and every tree to tell a story,” she explained to an audience of military families in the East Room, where her two-tone gray dress matched the silver ornaments on the trees. She spoke of Christmas trees made from stacks of books (“they’re very cool!”) and described the “first dog display”
Anyone who’s ever gone on a diet is told to lay off the booze because it’s high in calories. And that, of course, must make it very fattening indeed. Go onto the NHS Direct website, and you’ll be told a glass of wine contains as many calories as a slice of cake. Or if you prefer beer, the British Nutrition Foundation reminds you two pints are roughly the equivalent in calories to a full glass of single cream. So you may be surprised to learn that there’s no scientific evidence whatsoever to support the idea that alcohol makes you on weight. That’s hugely counter-intuitive, I know, because alcohol certainly is said to contain lots of calories.
President Barack Obama sounded a nostalgic personal note Sunday night and offered a rare self-assessment while criticizing congressional Republicans as an "impediment" to governing during the start of a West Coast fundraising tour for the Democratic Party. Obama told donors the sight of Mt. Rainier illuminated by a setting sun was particularly special because it reminded him of his mother, who attended high school in the Seattle area. "I feel the spirit of my mom," he said. He also attempted to contrast himself with Republicans who control the House of Representatives, saying they are "more focused on positioning themselves for
Los Angeles - Rather than thanking a list of friends and colleagues, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis used their American Music Awards acceptance speech to send a message of tolerance on Sunday night. Ben Haggerty, the rapper known as Macklemore, accepted the award for favorite rap/hip-hop album, then quoted Martin Luther King Jr. in a live satellite feed from the rap group´s latest tour stop. "Due to the fact that we are in Florida tonight accepting this award I want to acknowledge Trayvon Martin and the hundreds and hundreds of kids each year that are dying due to racial profiling and the violence that follows it," he said.
China and India’s success in weakening the latest global warming agreement created friction with other developing nations that are seeking to step up the fight against climate change. The two countries insisted on single-word changes for a deal at a United Nations conference involving 190 nations on Nov. 23. Instead of making “commitments” to roll back fossil fuel emissions, they signed up for “contributions,” a formulation that allows more flexibility in their action. Those last-minute revisions at a meeting that ran overtime by almost 30 hours underscored the reluctance of China and India to join in the sort of emissions
Washington - Hobby Lobby, a chain of crafts stores, closes on Sundays, costing its owners millions but honoring their Christian faith. The stores play religious music. Employees get free spiritual counseling. But they do not get free insurance coverage for some contraceptives, even though President Obama’s health care law requires it. Hobby Lobby, a corporation, says that forcing it to provide the coverage would violate its religious beliefs. A federal appeals court agreed, and the Supreme Court is set to decide on Tuesday whether it will hear the Obama administration’s appeal from that decision or appeals from one of
A historic agreement on Iran´s nuclear programme was made possible by months of unprecedented secret meetings between US and Iranian officials, in further signs of the accelerating detente between two of the world´s most adversarial powers, it emerged on Sunday. The meetings ran parallel to official negotiations involving five other world powers, (Snip) The Obama administration asked journalists not to publish details they had uncovered of the secret diplomacy until the Geneva talks were over for fear of derailing them. The Associated Press and a Washington-based news website, Al-Monitor, finally did so
Tokyo - Japan’s foreign minister on Sunday refused to recognize China’s newly claimed air defense zone over disputed islands, signaling that Japan would not back down as tensions increased in the maritime dispute. China on Saturday said its “air defense identification zone” would give it the right to identify and possibly take military action against aircraft near the islands in the East China Sea. The uninhabited islands are administered by Japan but claimed by China and Taiwan. China’s announcement appeared to be the latest step in what analysts have called a strategy to chip away at Japan’s claims of control of the islands.
Seattle - Boeing´s ties to the Pacific Northwest date back more than a century, when William Boeing purchased a Seattle shipyard that would become his first airplane factory. In recent years, however, those ties have been fraying, first with the company shifting its headquarters to Chicago, (Snip) In the contract vote late Wednesday, The International Association of Machinists District 751 rejected the proposal with 67 percent of the votes. Union members who called for a no vote did so in protest of Boeing´s push to end a traditional pension plan and increase their health care costs.
"Character is what you do when no one is watching." It´s a bit of a trite saying, attributed to coaches, motivational speakers and fortune cookie authors (by the way, whose idea was it for fortune cookies to replace predictions with treacly aphorisms from the "Successories" reject pile?). Still, the expression´s popularity illustrates the power of the idea behind it. Character is what you do when the only controlling authority is your conscience. Because young people do not yet have fully formed characters, they often need incentives beyond exhortations to do the right thing.
More young men in California rise in pitch at the end of their sentences when talking, new research shows. This process is known as "uptalk" or "valleygirl speak" and has in the past been associated with young females, typically from California or Australia.But now a team says that this way of speaking is becoming more frequent among men.The findings were presented at the Meeting of the Acoustical Society of America in California. "We found use of uptalk in all of our speakers, despite their diverse backgrounds in socioeconomic status, ethnicity, bilingualism and gender," said Amanda Ritchart, a linguist at the University of
DAVID CORN: I saw a president who remains frustrated with the political-media culture that he has to work within, and that he´s looking to rally people, students here, and supporters, and people within the media. CHRIS MATTHEWS: But David Corn, you skeptic. He came to us today. He came amongst us. CORN: He´s trying to rally people behind this vision that he´s been promoting for a couple years. FINEMAN: By the way, he did it the end here, today, Chris, not by defending specifics, but by explaining why he´s in the game to begin with. And I don´t know about you, he´s
The most curious thing of all about the November jobs report released on Friday was the huge drop in the unemployment rate — and the fact that the Labor Department chose not to disclose that the data going into that figure are under investigation for falsification. On Nov. 19, I broke the news in my column that the Census Bureau, which collects data that goes into the jobless rate on behalf of Labor, had caught one of its enumerators fabricating interviews in 2010. The culprit said back then (and to me during an interview) that he was told to do so by
Denver - A baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex ceremony must serve gay couples despite his religious beliefs or face fines, a judge said Friday. The order from administrative law judge Robert N. Spencer said Masterpiece Cakeshop in suburban Denver discriminated against a couple "because of their sexual orientation by refusing to sell them a wedding cake for their same-sex marriage." The order says the cake-maker must "cease and desist from discriminating" against gay couples. Although the judge did not impose fines in this case, the business will face penalties if it continues to turn away gay
7. On the U.S. war with Iraq: “If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don’t care for human beings.” Via cbsnews.com 6. On Israel: “Israel should withdraw from all the areas which it won from the Arabs in 1967, and in particular Israel should withdraw completely from the Golan Heights, from south Lebanon and from the West Bank.” Via jweekly.com 5. On the U.S. war with Iraq: “All that (Mr. Bush) wants is Iraqi oil.” Via cbsnews.com 4. Mandela on Castro and the Cuban revolution: “From its earliest days, the Cuban Revolution has also been a
How do you get your arms around the catastrophe known as Obamacare? Is it even possible? At this point, I’m not sure it is. The list of individual disasters which threaten to ruin one-sixth of the U.S. economy and what has been, up until now, the best healthcare system in the world is exhaustive, and exhausting. The examples I will identify here barely scratch the surface. First but by no means foremost, we have the supposedly new and improved HealthCare.gov. Except it’s not, even the visible part. Stories still abound of people still failing to get in or to get through the enrollment
The question all week long was this: Who are you going to believe, an illegal alien or the president of the United States of America? Obviously, if it’s a president who once went by an alias, Barry Soetoro, you go with Uncle Omar, 100 percent, no questions asked. And so it was that the White House finally admitted to another, uh, misstatement — despite previous denials, Barack/Barry did sleep on his beloved Uncle Omar’s couch in Cambridge when he first moved here to attend Harvard Law School (speaking of which, we’re still waiting to see the president’s grades and his LSAT scores). But the
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has announced a new five-year strategic plan to improve safety for elderly drivers and passengers. Although they are statistically among the safest on the road, the number of older drivers is increasing dramatically — and with it, that group´s numbers of injuries and deaths. Since 2003, the population of older adults, defined as age 65 and older, has increased by 20% and the number of licensed older drivers increased by 21% to 35 million in 2012, according to NHTSA. Last year, NHTSA reported that 5,560 people older than 65 died and 214,000 were injured
Former President Bill Clinton shared an anecdote regarding Nelson Mandela and the aftermath of his impeachment Friday on CNN. Clinton revealed shortly after the “impeachment business” finished on Capitol Hill, Rep. Henry Hyde (R., Ill.) who managed the impeachment trial requested a meeting at the White House. The former president granted the meeting out of lessons of humility and forgiveness he learned from Mandela, he said: BILL CLINTON: I remember one day, oh, about a month after the whole impeachment business was over, Henry Hyde, who had run the whole show, unbelievably enough, maybe a few months after, it was
One definition of a pathological liar is someone who lies where the truth would serve just as well. When President Obama’s uncle, Onyango Obama, was arrested in 2011 for drunk driving, the truth — that Obama had stayed with his uncle years earlier for several weeks as a Harvard law student — would have served the president just fine. No potential Obama voter would have held it against him that an uncle he had stayed with two decades earlier was picked up for DUI. Yet the White House went with a lie, claiming that Obama had never met his uncle. Now that
Although the jobless rate in November fell to its lowest level since he took office, President Obama called on Republican lawmakers Saturday to spend tens of billions on unemployment benefits that are set to expire this month. “It shouldn’t be a partisan issue,” Mr. Obama said in his weekly address. But he said the “economic lifeline” is in jeopardy. “All because Republicans in this Congress — which is on track to be the most unproductive in history — have so far refused to extend it” Mr. Obama said. If Congress doesn’t act before lawmakers leave on their holiday break, about
Many people could die as extreme weather becomes common. There will be more freak winds like the October storm, which killed four people. Heatwaves will be lethal and the sea level will rise, leaving coastal towns at risk of being swamped by storm surges. Sir Brian Heap, president of the European Academies Science Advisory Council, said he felt “obliged” to issue the warning after a new study by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. It comes on the back of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, which has killed more than 5,000 people. Sir Brian said: “Given the tragic events this