Secretary Clinton Delivers Remarks Before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee

Posted by DipNote Bloggers
June 23, 2011

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton appeared before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to discuss civilian efforts in Afghanistan on June 23, 2011. Secretary Clinton said, "...As the President said last night, the United States is meeting the goals he set for our three-track strategy in Afghanistan and Pakistan. The military surge has ramped up pressure on al-Qaida and Taliban insurgents. The civilian surge has bolstered the Afghan and Pakistani governments, economies, and civil societies, and undercut the pull of the insurgency. The diplomatic surge is supporting Afghan-led efforts to reach a political solution that will chart a more secure future.

"All three surges -- military, civilian, and diplomatic -- are part of the vision for transition that NATO endorsed in Lisbon last December and that President Obama reaffirmed last night. As he said, Afghans must take responsibility for their own future.

"Today, I want to amplify on the President's statement and update you specifically on our civilian efforts. And I also look forward to answering your questions about the road ahead. Because despite the progress, we have to stay focused on the mission. As the President said, “We have to put al-Qaida on a path to defeat, and we will not relent until the job is done.”

"First, let me say a word about the military effort. Last night, the President explained his plan to begin drawing down our forces next month and transitioning to Afghan responsibility. I will leave it to my colleagues from the Defense Department to discuss the specifics. But the bottom line, as the President said, is that we have broken the Taliban's momentum. So we do begin this drawdown from a position of strength.

"With respect to the civilian surge, we greatly appreciate the attention that this committee has devoted to it. Because improving governance, creating economic opportunity, supporting civil society is vital to solidifying our military gains and advancing our political and diplomatic goals.

"Since January 2009, we have tripled the number of diplomats, development experts, and other civilian specialists on the ground in Afghanistan, and we have expanded our presence out in the field nearly six-fold. And these new civilians have changed the way we do business, focusing on key ministries and sectors, and holding ourselves and our partners to higher standards.

"And there should be no doubt about the results of our investment, despite the very difficult circumstances that you all know so well. Economic growth is up, opium production is down. Under the Taliban, only 900,000 boys and no girls were enrolled in schools. By 2010, 7.1 million students were enrolled, and nearly 40 percent of them girls.

"Hundreds of thousands of farmers have been trained and equipped with new seeds and other techniques. Afghan women have used more than 100,000 microfinance loans. Infant mortality is down 22 percent.

"Now, what do these numbers and others that I could quote tell us?

"First, that despite the many challenges that remain, life is better for most Afghans. And the Karzai government has many failings, to be sure. But more people, in every research analysis we are privy to, say they see progress in their streets, their schools, their fields. And we remain committed to fighting corruption and strengthening the rule of law in a very challenging environment.

"The aim of the civilian surge was to give Afghans a stake in their country's future and provide credible alternatives to extremism and insurgency. It was not nor was it ever designed to solve all of Afghanistan's development challenges. Measured against the goals we set and considering the obstacles we faced, we are and should be encouraged by what we have accomplished.

"And most important, the civilian surge helped advance our military and political objectives. Let me just offer one example. Last November, USAID began funding the reconstruction of irrigation systems in Wardak province, providing jobs for hundreds of workers and water to thousands of farmers. In March, just a few months ago, insurgents demanded that the people abandon the project and support the spring offensive. The people refused. Why? Because they asked themselves, “Should we trade new opportunities for a better life for more violence and chaos?” Frustrated, the insurgents threatened to attack the project. Local shuras mobilized and sent back a clear message: “We want this work to continue. Interfere and you will become our enemy.” And the insurgents backed down.

"We have now reached the height of the civilian surge. Any effort of this size and scope will face considerable logistical challenges. And we have worked hard in the last two and a half years to strengthen oversight and improve effectiveness. We have, frankly, learned many lessons, and we are applying them. And the efforts of our civilians on the ground, working in some of the most difficult conditions imaginable, continues to be nothing short of extraordinary. Looking ahead as the transition proceeds, we are shifting our efforts from short-term stabilization projects, largely as part of the military strategy, to longer-term sustainable development that focuses on spurring growth and integrating Afghanistan into South Central Asia's economy.

"Now, the third surge is our diplomatic surge. It is diplomatic efforts in support of an Afghan-led political process that aims to shatter the alliance between the Taliban and al-Qaida, end the insurgency, and help to produce more stability. To begin, we are working with the Afghans on a new strategic partnership declaration that will provide a long-term framework for bilateral cooperation and NATO cooperation, as agreed to, again, at Lisbon. And it will bolster Afghan and regional confidence that Afghanistan will not again become a safe haven for terrorists and an arena for competing regional interests.

"As the President said last night, this will ensure we will be able to continue targeting terrorists and supporting a sovereign Afghan Government. It will also provide a backdrop for reconciliation with insurgents who must meet clear red lines -- they must renounce violence, they must abandon al-Qaida, and they must abide by the constitution of Afghanistan, including its protections for women. As I said in February in the speech I gave outlining this strategy, those are the necessary outcomes of any negotiation.

"In the last four months, this Afghan-led political process has gained momentum. Twenty-seven Provincial Peace Councils have been established in Afghanistan, and the Afghan High Peace Council has stepped up its efforts to engage civil society and women, even as it also begins reaching out to insurgents. And let me underscore something which you will not be surprised to hear me say, but I say it not because of my personal feelings but because of my strategic assessment: Including women and civil society in this process is not just the right thing to do; it is the smart and strategic thing to do as well. Any potential for peace will be subverted if women or ethnic minorities are marginalized or silenced. And the United States will not abandon our values or support a political process that undoes the social progress that has been made in the past decade.

"But we believe that a political solution that meets these conditions is possible. The United States has a broad range of contacts at many levels across Afghanistan and the region, that we are leveraging to support this effort, including very preliminary outreach to members of the Taliban. This is not a pleasant business, but a necessary one, because history tells us that a combination of military pressure, economic opportunity, and an inclusive political and diplomatic process is the best way to end insurgencies. With bin Ladin dead and al-Qaida's remaining leadership under enormous pressure, the choice facing the Taliban is clear: Be part of Afghanistan's future or face unrelenting assault. They cannot escape this choice.

"Special Representative Marc Grossman is leading an active diplomatic effort to build support for a political solution. What we call the Core Group -- Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the United States -- has met twice and will convene again next week. At the same time, we are engaging the region around a common vision of an independent, stable Afghanistan and a region free of al-Qaida. We believe we've made progress with all of the neighbors, including India, Russia, and even Iran. Just this past Friday, the United Nations Security Council voted unanimously to support reconciliation by splitting its sanctions on al-Qaida and the Taliban into two separate lists, underscoring that the door is open for the insurgents to abandon the terrorists and choose a different path.

"We welcome these steps, and for the United States the key diplomatic priority and indeed a lynchpin of this entire effort is closing the gap between Kabul and Islamabad. Pakistan must be part of this process. Earlier this month, the two countries launched a joint peace commission and held substantive talks at the highest levels. Also, very significant, was the full implementation on June 12th of the Transit Trade Agreement, which will create new economic opportunity on both sides of the Durand Line and lay the foundation for a broader vision of regional economic integration and cooperation. This agreement started being negotiated in the early 1960s. It therefore took decades, including great, heroic effort by the late Richard Holbrooke and his team. But the trucks are now rolling across the border.

"I recently visited Pakistan and had, as we say in diplo-speak, very candid discussions with its leaders. The United States has clear expectations for this relationship, and as President Obama said last night, the United States will never tolerate a safe haven for those who kill Americans. We are looking to Pakistan to take concrete actions on the goals we share: Defeating violent extremism, which has also taken so many innocent Pakistani lives; ending the conflict in Afghanistan; and securing a stable, democratic, prosperous future.

"Now, these are obviously tough questions to ask of the Pakistanis and there are many causes for frustration. But we should not overlook the positive steps of just recent weeks since May 2nd: Counterterrorism cooperation continues and several very key extremists have been killed or captured. As I told the Pakistanis, America cannot and should not try to solve Pakistan's problems; they have to eventually do that themselves. But nor can we walk away from this relationship and ignore the consequences, for all the reasons that Senator Lugar outlined in his opening statement: Pakistan is a nuclear-armed state sitting at the crossroads of a strategic region. And we have seen this movie before. We have seen the cost of disengaging from the region. As Secretary Gates, who was there at that time, has stressed, we cannot repeat the mistakes of 1989.

"That's why it's important we have the resources to continue implementing our strategy. The State Department is following the Pentagon's model and creating a special emergency fund -- an Overseas Contingency Operations account -- that separates normal operating costs from extraordinary wartime expenses. Now, I will hasten to say we are painfully aware of today's fiscal reality. And I know that it is tempting for some to peel off the civilian and diplomatic elements of our strategy. They obviously make fewer headlines; people don't know as much about them. And it would be a terrible mistake, and I'm not saying that just for myself, but as our commanders on the ground will tell you, the three surges work hand-in-hand. You cannot cut or limit one and expect the other two to succeed.

"Ultimately, I believe we are saving money and, much more importantly, lives by investing now. And let's not forget: An entire year of civilian assistance in Afghanistan costs Americans the same amount as 10 days of military operations."

You can also read Secretary Clinton's remarks here.

Related Entry: President Obama Delivers Remarks on the Way Forward in Afghanistan

Comments

Comments

Paul
|
Wisconsin, USA
June 23, 2011

Paul from Wisconsin writes:

I think Secretary Clinton will have to be more of a presence on the international front than before. It is mainly because we do not know how Panetta will lead or how effective he will be. It may take him a while to build his team and have them to buy-in to the way he is going to lead it (Forming, Storming, Norming, Performing ,and Transforming: 5 phases of Teambuilding).

Greg S.
|
Texas, USA
June 24, 2011

Greg S. in Texas writes:

I would like to answer the question from the Secretary of State to the U.S.Congress about whose side are you on. They are on our side. These are our representatives, we are Citizens of the U.S.A. The congress is doing exactly what we the people have asked of them. Follow the law or resign the office for which you barely hold. Get out of Libya now! You didn't ask the people through the U.S.House to go to war. You broke the law.

Elliot R.
|
Utah, USA
June 24, 2011

Elliot in Utah writes:

I thought the speech before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee was great.

June 24, 2011

W.W. writes:

I would like to answer the question from the Secretary of State to the U.S.Congress about whose side are you on. They are on our side. These are our representatives, we are Citizens of the U.S.A. The congress is doing exactly what we the people have asked of them. Follow the law or resign the office for which you barely hold. Get out of Libya now! You didn't ask the people through the U.S.House to go to war. You broke the law.

she52
June 24, 2011

S. writes:

Libya and Libyans belong to the past now...move on...

Napoleon Elba's Estate for the colonel! If He feels sick He will be free to get a plane and go in tripoli Hospital Built and runned by Europeans.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 24, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

W.W.

Sec of State Clinton does not make decisions to go to war or engage in hostilities, that is the President's job.

Second, she only implements his foreign policies through the power of her office, and in keeping Congress informed she is doing her job by inspiring our representitives to think, rather than be subject to ill informed ignorance on any given subject concerning America's relationships around the world.

So I think it's a little "over the top" for you to be suggesting she should resign for doing her job effectively.

Ghaddafi is like a rabid dog running around the neighborhood and needs to be put down to safeguard the population, one way or another.

That's the real issue here, and that job's not done yet.

Now, whatever international lawyer that decided the word "all" invoked by UN resolution stating "all neccessary measures" didn't include targeting this mass murderer directly as a facet of the "command and control" infrastructure of the regime was a bleeding idiot and should be fired from his job, because whoever it was didn't bother to look up the Webster's dictionary definitioon of the word.

Leave it to lawyers when trying to save lives to tell you "we can't do that legally."

And watch as an idiot proves himself to be one.

It's like all the common sense was driven from their souls in law school or something.

All I can say is if the President wants to cherry pick from the tree of legal opinion, he might not want to be grabbing unripe fruit.

EJ

several32
June 24, 2011

S. writes:

For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

Freemen
June 24, 2011

F. writes:

America is as divided a nation as any other. The nature of division makes for great weakness and ultimately failure.

Many have died for the idea of freedom; long before the founding of America.
America has failed to honor freedom; the very spark that gave birth to your nation. America, a truly free America is not a republican America or a democrat America. It is not a country where one groups values supersedes another group. An America devoted truly to freedom is a nation with pathways and roads for all. An America without fear.

Your nation was founded with the ideas of wise men, paid for in blood, sacrifice and sweat of so many– hundreds of years later freedom still eludes the nation; so viscerally viewed by the divisions of today.
Freedom must be more than words on paper, it must be something tangible, something felt, something believed.

Instead of groups fighting for dominance of their respected views; America should be standing together; respecting one another; providing paths for one another. If Americas success depends on the downfall or failure of others then your future is lost.

Religion, fearful of gay marriage and other issues; passing judgment on others; it is an insult to your own beliefs to take liberties with judgment; when the judgment does not belong to any of you. All it does is create division, hate and disturbances. Is this the path that God would have you walk? To divide his creation? Is this the Christian, Muslim or Jewish way, if so it seems you have all lost your faith.

The problems of every nation from Afghanistan, Europe, the Americas, and Africa are the same; they only play out superficially in different ways creating what is an illusion of difference. Illusions that the blind and misguided purchases lock stock and key.

Honoring freedom is not by subverting others, honoring freedom is not creating division. No, freedom is born out of a great gift of freewill; perhaps Gods greatest gift to creation (for those that believe). God does not force you to be a Muslim, Christian, Jew – we are not even forced to believe, if we so choose. We have that right to make that choice and it is ours from birth.

However so many, even religions take liberty, subvert and dominate this freewill; leading to divisions in their own respected communities and the wider society at large. Leading to the destruction of life.

When we honor freedom; we honor freewill. We do this best by first acknowledging that we do not all believe in the same thing. We honor it best by providing a multitude of pathways for us to pursue; giving back choice and responsibility to each person.

Freedom is not anarchy or doing what you want, when you want. More importantly it is about responsibly and with dignity recognizing others freedoms and respecting them; even if you disagree. By doing this we each not only protect what we believe but we truly become guardians of freedom.

The nexuses where we differ should be points where the greatest catalyst for opportunity reside not points of division. When we learn to embrace our divisions and turn it into opportunities for peace and success we honor freedom.

At the end of the day no one and no written law will ever change an individual’s belief. No bullet or bomb can conquer belief. The only way forward is walking together in freedom.– In Afghanistan, Asia, Europe, Africa, Mid east the Americas what divides us needs to be torn down. We tear these divisions down best by unity.

What fool does not cherish their own freedoms? What fool thinks by destroying another’s freedom they can keep their own?

America’s greatest power is not in her bombs. It is in her belief in freedom and every American citizen’s ability to honor it. When peoples in America democrat, republican, every religious denomination and unbelievers alike can stand in their streets together and with one voice unite under this small ideal of freedom – Make no mistake it will send shockwaves around the world like this earth has never seen. It will do for America what no bomb or bundle of cash could do.

It will provide the light needed in so many nations that are flickering to stand with you.

If you are a teacher, student, CEO, banker, single mother, clergy, politician, judge, white, black no matter who you are, what you are or what you believe; stand united under the banner of freedom honoring one another and with one voice let it be known your commitment to it and all those that have lost their lives because of the suppression of freedom.

This is America’s true power, unleash it and globally watch the light shine. Watch the changes that will envelope the world. Make history or let history make you.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 24, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ S.,

Or if one perfers to think of it, the struggle is in fact between the sane vs. the insane, and in this duality of all things considered, leaves the mystisism completely out of it.

Evil isn't born from the absence of light in some spirit world, it is manifest due to the absense of empathy in the here and now in the real world.

EJ

charge62
June 24, 2011

W.W. writes:

@ EJ

..in other words I meant to say that light not only furnishes to those that see the power of visibility but it also provides for their generation and growth and nurture though it is not itself generation. ... In like manner, then ... the objects of knowledge not only receive from the presence of the good their being known, but their very existence and essence is derived to them from it, though the good itself is not essence but still transcends essence in dignity and surpassing power

blue47
June 24, 2011

W.W. writes:

@ EJ

and also When [the soul] is firmly fixed on the domain where truth and reality shine resplendent it apprehends and knows them and appears to possess reason, but when it inclines to that region which is mingled with darkness, the world of becoming and passing away, it opines only and its edge is blunted, and it shifts its opinions hither and thither, and again seems as if it lacked reason

nature42
June 24, 2011

W.W. writes:

@ EJ

the light not only furnishes to those that see the power of visibility but it also provides for their generation and growth and nurture though it is not itself generation. ... In like manner, then ... the objects of knowledge not only receive from the presence of the good their being known, but their very existence and essence is derived to them from it, though the good itself is not essence but still transcends essence in dignity and surpassing power

When [the soul] is firmly fixed on the domain where truth and reality shine resplendent it apprehends and knows them and appears to possess reason, but when it inclines to that region which is mingled with darkness, the world of becoming and passing away, it opines only and its edge is blunted, and it shifts its opinions hither and thither, and again seems as if it lacked reason

palgye
|
South Korea
June 24, 2011

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Afghanistan in order to support economic, rather than just aid, and now, by providing preferential treatment to companies - but most blame, then who is wondering whether to invest to create the foundation for industrial development .- to think. Therefore, a reliable, if not to prepare for crisis, foreign capital and labor invested, the bank is deemed necessary. Now include the administrative force of the efficiency of 30-40% of funds committed performances are personally think that shows.

For economic independence until you have the minimum facilities of a centralized planned economy, under the supervision of a foreign concept to introduce rapid growth and provide assistance to the people of Afghanistan, how to think. - I know that there is a side effect, leaving the position where investors pay to get tired, than most people think that to find a way to satisfy.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 25, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ W.W.,

That was an interesting read, thanks for the perspective.

You know it is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, and thanks to the USAID director Rajiv Shah, there's a sat. photo of the Korean peninsula posted today on site which would kind of take what I said to the next experiential reality.

Wheras; "Evil isn't born from the absence of light in some spirit world, it is manifest due to the absense of empathy in the here and now in the real world."

The photo would seem to reveal that the absense of light in North Korea is in itself a manifestation of a lack of empathy on the part of its leadership;

"http://blogs.state.gov/index.php/site/entry/korean_peninsula_usaid#Comments"

Conversely, he makes a pretty strong case that having the empathy to render a nation development assistance definately has a few shining examples.

Best,

EJ

maybe83
June 25, 2011

W.W. writes:

America is not a divided nation it is just bipolar.

Then there are society or nations with a 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 12 polarity

Which one is the most democratic now?

palgyeq
|
South Korea
June 25, 2011

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Drugs and the Taliban have a responsibility to protect them from somebody I think. Living in a clean and abundant food and hope for the future of these religions and ways of thinking to overcome the reality is I think it'll help. Hilti full score of the tools that are considered safer. Ever, be applied to real-Do you have an idea?

Afghanistan, primarily on a kibbutz, youth and girls in local agriculture and animal husbandry and, in the early stages of economic development, industrial technology needed jeonsuhaeju with the form of a boarding school, very grossly pictured trying to start, that he spoke in the past . Agriculture is important, but Afghans love lamb (mutton) and the skills to farming. Together a lot of agricultural land barren, the land of Israel feel that is similar.

PS Nowadays, the oath of office prior to 2009 it was with Obama, cocky talk, I will faint. Now, I hear stories of the Secretary of State bowl, impressed but, once the U.S. housing problems and, slowly, how to recover the cost to the people of a particular region jeokyonghaebo Let's take that? Once a stable residence, stable lives for people - the majority - believe that more effort. If you do not have a regular residence, even wander north, tend to give up everything has gotten to think. If you are not comfortable with the administration, Congress is trying to gamble, what about?

palgye
|
South Korea
June 26, 2011

Palgye in South Korea writes:

Dependent on other countries' economic and, to support the manufacturing industry in the United States thought it was a way of life, would not believe it, but, by now, once a crisis - economic - would come to expect, (in accordance with bueseoui reform and crisis fatigue overlapped) 12 +1 country I was saying it, even now, in foreign countries and certain areas by activating the game, to use their products to developed countries, the game quickly and temporarily, what about that in a good way to circulate?

Jan N.
|
Florida, USA
June 25, 2011

Jan N. in Florida writes:

I am a senior, a long-time admirer of Mrs. Clinton. I think she is doing everything (that I know of) just right. I simply wish she would get her "old" hairstylist back and get rid of the long locks - they make her look 10 years older.

John
|
Canada
June 25, 2011

John in Canada writes:

@ WW

Funny (laugh)- bipolar nation – not sure but I think if it (usa) was (bipolar) it could move in a direction other than circles (perhaps a new physco babble name would be better) – Democratic nation – given most nations political machines seem to move out of step with the majority of people they represent - -well I’m not certain we have all that much democracy anywhere.

When the majority of the will of the people ceases to be served, democracy becomes a word and nothing more.

No matter what political flag is flown these days taxes are going to the roof, spending power is going down and futures are being flushed down the toilet. From Washington – London-Rome-Shanghai –

Different political machines same result. So what difference is there in political flags when they end up at the same place? Or better yet, what is the common denominator for the failure?

@ S “For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” Sounds better in Latin but none the less as applicable then as now – but people today don’t think like this to much anymore. Ephesians 6:12

@ EJ – empathy is indeed powerful but should be applied in equal measure or it looks insincere.

All the aid (empathy) means little when we remain silent on Syria, Saudi Arabia, Chagos Island and on and on - we provide the fodder for those we fight and fuel the fanatic ideology. (Some hypocrisy can be played to advantage, and then there is some that just damages)

Mrs. Clinton does a good job with what she has to work with and the actors she has to deal with. I wouldn’t want the job or some of the unreasonable blame.

USA-THE T.
June 26, 2011

T.D. writes:

USA -- THE WORLD BIGGEST TERRORIST!!!!!!!

provide67
June 26, 2011

W.W. writes:

@ John in Canada

Finally we are flying here

Why Y'ALL worry about taxes...

don't be afraid
do not Fear
Open Your Heart Open your Mind Open your soul

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 26, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ John,

Folks haven't "been silent on Syria", folks just haven't gotten around to kicking Assad's a$$ yet.

"..we provide the fodder for those we fight and fuel the fanatic ideology."

Wrong sir! When the taliban hand a bag with a bomb in it and ask this unsuspecting little girl to walk it over to a police vehicle in Afghanistan and then remotely detonate it, and her.., I think it's pretty obvious that it's not we who are providing "fodder" but rather the innocent who are at the request of terrorists who by their nature of being terrorists posses no spark of empathy for otherwise they wouldn't do what they do.

It would be impossible for the US to "fuel" such a mindset, for the simple fact of the matter is that anyone that has an issue with US policy can always form a lobby and try to get policy modified...just ask the Isrealis.

You don't need a gun to change US policy, otherwise everyone would be at war with us and we'd be as a people; rolling on Washington armed to the teeth in our pickup trucks ( now modified into "technicals") to "lobby" Congress, or just send them packing...(sic).

( somday I hope the dept of State compiles this work in progress they're publishing for me - "The Cure for Political Stupidity and/or How Not to Go To War With America" - on this blog as the book's being written and take the "best of" and put it in hard-cover and print a million copies...I'll be happy to donate the work and my end of the proceeds
(author's royalties) to USAID, if folks are brave enough to take on the task of editing my typos.

There's a "two-track" strategy involved;

The first is to achieve the universal recognition that we are all dysfunctional, the second is the process of getting over it.

I may be "too old and slow" to fight this war according to the DoD, but I intend to put and end to it, and don't tell me one individual can't make the difference. Especially when he's not shy about asking the powers that be for all the help he can get, while speaking truth to power without reservation or an editorial staff to assist me in this decade long task of inspiring folks to think.

Some have found it to be a worthy effort and a pretty entertaining read so far.

Keep this up John and our conversation may become fodder for policy...(chuckle).

You never know who reads these things...

Best,

EJ

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 26, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

I should add a thought to the subject of my post to John in Canada; in that bin Laden was the greatest "under achiever" of all time.

As an individual of great wealth, and a measure of influence, having taken issue with America's armed presence in Saudia Arabia and the region after Saddam's removal from Kuwait, he could have invested his money and influence in a lobbying effort in Congress and gotten better results than trying to force the issue with making war upon us.

For he apparently got exactly what he did not want, which is our sustained presence in the entire Muslim world.

There's "political stupidity" and there's "terminal stupidity"; as more often than not there is no dicernable practical difference in the results between the two when making war on America.

One can simply leave it to ethical infants to prove the case.

EJ

John P.
|
Greece
June 26, 2011

John P. in Greece writes:

@ Eric in New Mexico

Let me just humor for a couple of lines.

Too much talks no works. Where the final draft is? (LOL)

Besides, the way you already donate every single cent of the book loyalties it will be impossible for me to run a marketing campaign and reach the 1M copies target. As your communication consultant, this is my final warning! (LOL)

However, I wouldn’t care about the typos. All the readers who love you in this blog, we admire and marvel your brain and ideas, certainly not your spelling, which anyway is also great; especially when you don’t drop your coffee over the keyboard.

I see that you are attempting to “advice” terrorists about how their “strategic thought” should be. (Chuckle)

But, I think that you’re wasting your time EJ.

If someone is medium you can make him big.
If someone is big you can make him huge.
If someone is huge you probably can make him huger…

Terrorists are stupid. There is nothing you can do!

John
|
Canada
June 26, 2011

John in Canada writes:

@ Eric in New Mexico - Under Achiever OBL may well be – However this guy seems to have made a fool of many – how many security services around the world chased this guy?

All that technology, man power, fire power brought to bear for years? How much money and additional lives were spent to finally get him?

A fly can bite the ass of the ox but in the end, the ox can’t do much about the fly. The little bird that sits on the ass of the ox easily eats the fly helping both the ox and the bird. There is a natural effective synergy that requires very little resources or energy. Effective and smart is the name of the game.

I believed then as I do now that dealing with these types (fundamentalists) requires a little more sophistication, strategy and the right execution.

Surely you would agree that if you can get the job done with minimal expenditure and time; this is good thing?

I don’t know about you but if I have rat in my house – I wouldn’t blow up my own house to kill it.

As to what this guy wanted, I think he wanted to destroy America (and the west) in whatever way? Or am I wrong?

How well is this endeavor (war) playing out at home right now in every sense including financially? Looks like this loser is still, after death getting everything he wanted; causing cost and disruption one way or another (not to mention the destruction of freedom –probably your greatest asset as a nation). Something Republicans and Democrats might think about before hurling fodder at one another.

In the end these people have a dangerous ideology, they are a threat to their own people– bullets and bombs will only do so much – usually just disperse them.

Typos -heck between my bad eyes, fat fingers, auto correction that has a mind of its own and a family who nags me to get off the computer when they see me type ( I’m lucky to bash anything coherent out) I’m waiting for computers that I can just talk too, none of this last century typing business.

Got to go, my appointed time is up. Your wit towards topics make me chuckle keep it up.

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 26, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ John P. in Greece,

(Cont..)

Date: Wed, 19 Sep 2001 03:41:03 -0600
>To: "secretary@state.gov">From: Eric J.
>Subject: "Powell doctrine"-Exit options
>> Dear Mr. Secretary,

It seems logical to me when looking at the rebuilding of Germany and Japan after WW2, why we haven't been targets of terrorism by these former enemies, it may also be logical to view the rise of Hitler as a direct result of the sanctions imposed opon Germany at the end of WW1. I agree that the war that has been declared opon us will take time, and cost much to win. I hope you will forgive my being so bold as to propose the following; Based opon the fact that the people of Afghanistan have no self-determination of their fate, and are at the mercy of the Taliban(or who-ever controls them), and given the fact so many are abandoning the country in fear, it seems to me that this mission must be a liberation, not a reprisal, I mean by this that we perform surgery-heal the patient(Afghanistan).

In order to retain support, especially throughout the Arab world, for a sustained presence in the region, it will be necessary to address the humanitarian needs of the refugees immediately to;

A.Show compassion in the midst of our wrath.

B.To prevent further human suffering due to terrorist acts opon us.

I will base the following on the assumption that the military surgery undertaken will remove the cancer in a similar fashion as in WW2-unconditional surrender.(*)

Given the resulting void in government structure, and to avoid setting up what might be viewed as a "puppet" government, I propose this as an alternative: Restore the government prior to the Soviet invasion, most of that ruling family is in exile. (although a monarchy,it held democratic ideals despite the influence of the Soviets and had no clue about the Soviet agenda until too late) . I have only my gut instinct to go on,but the "northern alliance" might agree to this as it would bring the country full circle, bringing hope again and the ability to function as a distinct political entity in the U.N.

In addition I believe that the whole premise by which we may safely exit the situation with the goals in hand is this; If the average Afghan citizen can say they're better off than they were before the Taliban took over, and having the world's help rebuilding, not only will the world respect us, but we'll give them nothing to hate us for in the future.

The massive response with food, shelter, clothing to the refugees prior to any action against the Taliban or bin Laden will immediately let the world know without a doubt that we consider them victims of terrorist aggression, and that our mission is to rid them of this and restore sanity. If we do this right, the long term prognosis will be a full recovery from a terminal illness. Afghanistan may need a decade of peace to achieve this. The stability necessary for this can only come from the people's desire to be at peace, and a hope for the future.

(*) Unconditional surrender in this case does not require use of nuclear weapons to achieve objective, if used, all support will evaporate, and the objective(long term)is lost. I believe it's logical given the terrain, that this may have been considered, hopefully only for a fraction of a second.

I must apologize for not having introduced myself. I'm a house painter, a trade which allows me to have way too much time on my hands to think about things. Father to two girls who stop traffic unintentionally. Granddad Jette worked on the bomb with Oppenhiemer, therefore my interest in history and sociology, and partially my reason for this e-mail. The other is to help if I can.

In closing, and on the off chance that you may find it significant, or lends perspective, I had the following dream about six weeks ago.

Arafat and Sharon were sitting at a table, as if on cue, they both pasted bumperstickers to their foreheads so the other could read it.

(there was some problem with verbal communication).

Both stickers said,"We're all dysfunctional-Get Over It"

Truth is, Mr.Secretary, I laughed so hard in my dream, I woke myself up. I'm gratified to hear that a cease-fire has been called.

Best wishes and Godspeed,

EJ

-end-

Besides John, It's time I got busy on the sequal..."Change we can live with."

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 26, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

@ John P. in Greece,

Well my friend, this whole deal as a public/private partnership has been on "spec.".

As has the concept of interactive government.

By "spec." (short for speculation), it is like painting a house for someone betting they'll sell it and pay you

for your time and materials, which I rarely do except for someone I can really trust.

Your cut?, that's different from author's royalties so don't worry. I've already put in a good word for you as

having what it takes to handle the marketing for the entire Med/ MENA region, as well as all of Eurasia.

Now you have to understand why the Dipnote staff would be willing to work overtime to get this ready to put out in

an actual book form as an "official publication".

You realize of course they publish all kinds of things written by folks who work for the gov. ( and we the people

thereby ) , but until this blog they never ever published public opinion, let alone an -official, physical, hold it

your hand and touch it- work, by a member of the public; in support of their policies generally in a robust debate

with a whole bunch of other citizens around the world.

Something that cannot be done via twitter.

So I'll offer you or any other contributor the same deal that the terrorists do, but rather than imortalize

yourself in infamy seeking 72 virgins on spec, I can safely offer you imortality by the written word, on spec of

peace of mind in the hereafter, with the State dept's permission of course.

And if the State dept. grins and says "let's do this!" it will be because they are doing it on spec for their kids

and everyone else's kids because they remember their joy.

Your timing is impeccable, as this book started with us in its inception; The book might as well end here with us;

As it was written, so has it produced results, and as I said this was all done on spec. starting a decade ago upon briefly visiting the eternal purgatory of the status quo by "remote viewing" (sic) ;

(Cont..)

land31
June 27, 2011

W.W. writes:

Well Good News The Libyan conflict is coming to a peaceful end

Eric
|
New Mexico, USA
June 28, 2011

Eric in New Mexico writes:

John P. in Greece,

One small afterthought...I can understand why you are in a rush for a "final draft"...I've guessed your "ulterior motive" (chuckle)...teargas and protests in Greece, I'm thinkin' you'd be thinkin' of giving a promo-copy to your government perhaps?

I mean hey! Who needs money when life is a beach and you can tilt at prone statues of Greek godesses laying out in the sand, eh?

Save me a reservation, I intend to win the Powerball lottery this week...See you soon!

EJ

John P.
|
Greece
June 28, 2011

John in Greece writes:

@ Eric in New Mexico

You mean that I’m lying beyond what is evident, revealed, or avowed, especially being concealed intentionally so as to deceive?
Yes! That I am! (LOL)

As a Med/MENA & Eurasia regional marketing officer (chuckle), I would not send the manual about “political stupidity”, but the sequel: “terminal stupidity”. I mean this “flight EJ manual” which says that: “Don’t stall, you’ll fall”.

P.S1.: Even if you don’t win the Powerball Lottery, you will always have an “open Visa” here in Greece, or the “Region” (LOL), although I don’t personally know you and never met. It’s a question of respect and “virtual” friendship. I'll be glad to see you!

2. I read your post about the N-situation in NM and I watched the local news here. I wish you the best about this nuclear threat. Do your best guys…

Best Regards!

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