Friday, July 16, 2010

Richard Holbrooke

I've always had the greatest respect for Richard Holbrooke. His skill set in diplomacy and statecraft has proved to be unparalleled. He certainly delivered the goods during the Wars of Yugoslavian Dissolution. And I always thought he was this generation's Best and the Brightest.

But I'm not buying an 8½ year-old war from him.

To get his non-verbal cues in his sale pitch, skip ahead in this video to 2.33:

Here are the money lines he's putting across the table to Rachel Maddow:


Why we're in really matters. we're in Afghanistan because if we fail in Afghanistan, it will have a direct, immediate danger to us. it will increase Al Qaeda's worldwide reach. they will come back with the Taliban in all likelihood and they will gain a worldwide success, which will be very dangerous for our national security interests so we have to be clear, the American public needs to be clear on why we're in Afghanistan. this is not Vietnam. a war which I participated in as a state department civilian when I entered the government. this is not the Balkans. it's not Iraq. this is quite different. this one relates directly to our safety at home.
We tried to do counter insurgency in Vietnam, too. pretty explicitly. you look back at those efforts, all those years ago, do you really have confidence that a foreign country can help create a state somewhere else, that we really can stand up an Afghan government?
I think we can, if ? we do it right. the fundamental difference is the one you and I have already mentioned. it matters to our homeland security. Vietnam did not, although at the time, the administrations in power did say it did, but they were wrong.... it's a process which is not easy, and you only embark on it if you decide that it is absolutely critical for the u.s. national interests, which it is.
Rachel's not buying this antique Déjà Vu counter-insurgency war. Neither am I.


  1. You have more respect for this guy than I do.

    He sold out to the Cheneyites years ago and is not to be trusted.

    When I saw him on Rachel's show, I thought "fraud" was written all over his face. There wasn't one moment of true gravitas from him.

    None of these military-promoting guys are to be trusted.

    They are all bought and paid for.


  2. I agree with Suzan. Holbrooke aka "The bulldozer".
    He earned that nick name in the Balkans.
    He is a uber Neolib. He has his position thanks to the chicken-war-hawk-Shillary. His main objective is to Balkanize the region, including Pakistan. He is a saboteur.
    He belongs to the Zbig, Albright, Kissinger camp.
    He is way over his head on this, and should be retired to the Bilderberg Hotel as soon as possible.
    Here is a take on his La La Land

  3. This isn't the same Richard Holbrooke that I remember/respected. War inevitably makes us all stupid, I guess.

  4. I saw that interview with Rachel. I felt he was nuts and the Rach knew it. She seemed a bit uncomfortable and in disbelief.
    Pardon me but we're so F**ked......

  5. Kudos to Reality Zone's link. And a high five to Tim. What do I come away from Holbrooke's

    "Vietnam did not, although at the time, the administrations in power did say it did, but they were wrong...."

    Bald-faced irony?

  6. Maddow hasn't 'bought' the Afghani war since I've listened to her. These are no reasons for continuing on in that war.

    We need to make our minds' known to our 'politicians' ... call them, email them. If it's consistent and large enough, they get itchy about the ramifications of not listening. Well, Democrats do all the time... GOP only prior to elections ... like now.
    It's taking an action..... :-(

  7. Like LBJ lost Cronkite, BHO has lost Maddow. It's over.