Hillary Clinton Watch

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In a program that ran this morning, I spoke to Michele Kelemen of National Public Radio about Hillary Clinton’s approach to foreign policy and reflected a bit on her policy and personnel choices.
And recently, I also reflected on Hillary Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State thus far in a major profile written by CNN’s Elise Labott.
More soon.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

25 comments on “Hillary Clinton Watch

  1. Sand says:

    Cee: “This is from something called the EU Times. Legit??
    I don’t know if the EU Times is legit? — But usually wary when there’s no author? Also, there is v. v. little information on their ‘About’ page.
    If the story turned up was elsewhere with a renowned investigative journalist as the author then I would take the story a little more seriously.

    Reply

  2. Cee says:

    More on Davis
    Raymond Davis: Insert Your Conspiracy Theory Here
    By Russ Wellen, February 20, 2011
    Pakistan may finally be getting ready to cough up Raymond Davis after the U.S. government employee shot two Pakistanis in an act that might have been too preemptive to be called self-defense. Even though Pakistan’s Dawn reproduced his pay stub, which shows he worked for US Overseas Protective Security Services, the United States sought to extend him diplomatic immunity. The Times of India reports:
    http://www.fpif.org/blog/raymond_davis_insert_your_conspiracy_theory_here

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  3. Cee says:

    Sand,
    This is from something called the EU Times. Legit?
    Davis was captured by Pakistani police after he shot and killed two men in the eastern city of Lahore on January 27th that the US claims were trying to rob him.
    Pakistan, however, says that the two men Davis killed were ISI agents sent to follow him after it was discovered he had been making contact with al Qaeda after his cell phone was tracked to the Waziristan tribal area bordering Afghanistan where the Pakistani Taliban and a dozen other militant groups have forged a safe haven and former CIA agent Tim Osman (also known as Osama bin Laden) is believed to be in hiding.
    Of the actual gunfight itself we can read as reported by the Time News Service which, in part, says:
    http://www.eutimes.net/2011/02/cia-spy-captured-giving-nuclear-bomb-to-terrorists/

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  4. MarkL says:

    I can’t imagine anyone wanting Hillary to run for President now. I thought in 2008 and still think she was far superior to Barak Obama, but after 2 years of watching both of them, that’s like comparing an F student to a D student.
    If she’s working so hard and yet being so ineffective, that’s even worse. At least Obama earns the F without really trying.

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  5. Dan Kervick says:

    Clinton, Obama, Daley, Sperling, Geithner, Donilon, Summers.
    They all mean nothing to me. They don’t speak to me or for me. They are a bland and blind gang of mediocrities that history is about to leave behind, the dimwitted rump end of a neoliberal era that is way past its shelf life and is disintegrating ever more rapidly each day.

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  6. Paul Norheim says:

    Quote of the day – from The Independent (UK)::
    “Addressing the Labour Party conference after 9/11, Tony Blair issued this much-quoted rallying cry. “The kaleidoscope has been shaken. The
    pieces are in flux. Soon they will settle again. Before they do, let us re-order this world around us.” How high-handed those words sound today,
    and how wrong. The re-ordering he spoke of then entailed two costly wars and little else.
    Now, almost a decade on, the geopolitical kaleidoscope has again been shaken. But less than two months from the start of street protests in
    Tunisia, it is increasingly evident how little power “we” have to reorder anything, even that part of the world immediately around us.”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/leading-articles/leading-article-a-new-age-of-uncertainty-with-no-end-in-sight-2220680.html

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  7. Don Bacon says:

    If you want to get out of Afghanistan (and who doesn’t) then you’ll want to get rid of SecState Clinton.
    quoted from Tom Hayden:
    The Obama-Clinton difference is a deep one, appearing before over the Honduras coup and more recently over whether to identify with the street protests in Egypt against Mubarak.
    “In the Afghanistan case, Bob Woodward

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  8. Paul Norheim says:

    I like the ads for Al Jazeera running at the top of this site at the
    moment. But here’s more from, I assume, an independent
    source – well deserved, and free:
    “The recent crisis in Egypt makes clear what many have known
    for a few years now. Al Jazeera is the best major media source.
    The reporting is a little more fearless, the expos

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  9. PissedOffAmerican says:

    AMANPOUR: Madame Secretary, thank you for joining us.
    CLINTON: Thank you for having me.
    AMANPOUR: About Bahrain.
    CLINTON: Uh-huh.
    AMANPOUR: How do you assess Bahrain right now? Is it stable?
    CLINTON: You know, Christiane, we’ve been very clear from the beginning that we do not want to see any violence. We deplore it. We think it is absolutely unacceptable.
    We very much want to see the human rights of the people protected, including right to assemble, right to express themselves, blahblahblahblah….
    http://mondoweiss.net/2011/02/israeli-military-attacks-nonviolent-protest-in-southern-west-bank-village-and-arrests-13-boys-from-village-playground.html
    Israeli military attacks nonviolent protest in southern West Bank village and arrests 13 boys from village playground
    by Adam Horowitz
    The following is a press release from the Palestine Solidarity Project. These arrests are part of an Israeli policy across the West Bank to target children in an attempt to intimidate and harass peaceful protesters:
    Saturday, February 19, 2011, 3pm:
    Thirteen Palestinian boys, all between the ages of 12 and 15, were arrested by Israeli Forces from a playground in the village of Beit Ommar, in the southern West Bank. The Israeli soldiers, supported by a unit of special forces, attacked the children with sound bombs, tear gas, and rubber bullets before making the arrests.
    When several mothers of the children ran to their defense, they were beaten by soldiers and prevented from reaching the area. The families of the children still do not know where they are being held.
    Two hours before the mass arrest, Beit Ommar demonstrators carried out their weekly unarmed demonstration against the nearby Israeli settlement of Karmei Tsur, which is built on land taken from village residents. This week’s demonstration was especially significant in decrying the Israeli Government’s recent decision to continue building settlements in the West Bank, a move that is illegal International Law.
    As in past Saturday demonstrations, Israeli Forces attacked the unarmed demonstrators, who were supported by Israeli and International solidarity activists, with sound bombs and tear gas. This week, soldiers also occupied the house of Husni Za

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  10. downtown says:

    “Where is Berman? Where are our media?”
    I realize this was a rhetorical question. These days, tribal affiliations and nefarious agendas far outweigh moral considerations. Our country has become the epitome of hypocrisy.

    Reply

  11. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Yaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwn…..
    4:54 PM PST, Sunday, Febuary 20, 2011.

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  12. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Tick tock, tick tock, tick tock……
    3:19 PM PST, Sunday, Febuary 20, 2011.

    Reply

  13. Sand says:

    “…Moments after Mr. Davis shot the two men, he called for help, and a vehicle belonging to the American Consulate in Lahore raced to the scene, driving the wrong way on a one-way street. It ran over a Pakistani cyclist, who later died in a hospital…”
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/09/world/asia/09pakistan.html?_r=1&pagewanted=2
    Wonder what he was up to.

    Reply

  14. Warren Metzler says:

    I thank all the previous posters, their information reveals the fraudulence of Hillary. But what wasn’t explicitly stated, which I believe needs to be explicitly stated, is that this woman is a chronic liar; remember her on 60 minutes in the ’92 campaign insisting Bill was innocent of his sexual charges, when we now know for years previously she had extended significant effort to did up dirt on Bill’s sexual partners to keep them silent.
    We need to recognize that she is a chronic liar; probably, by now, literally incapable of telling the truth about any significant issue. And, as a chronic liar, is incapable of promoting an approach that can work; plus always, whether she realizes it or not, promotes approaches that are duplicitous, unworkable in the long run, screw almost all people involved in the situation of which that process is a part of, and end up making that situation worse.
    I mean, my God, sending Marc Grossman, a man proven to have previously been on the Turkish government’s payroll; in other words definitively a crook; to be our chief person for Afghanistan and Pakistan, information which it is impossible that Hillary doesn’t know, cannot be decided (as it was by Hillary) by a person who has a smidgen of decency and integrity.
    She is by no means alone; almost all career politicians are certainly the same; but to promote her as competent, worthy, sincere, genuinely interesting in anyone other than her own self-promotion, is propaganda worthy of despots and former communistic countries publicity arms.
    Until we Americans recognize that our government system has become so corrupt that we predominately hire crooks (even if they have not yet been caught), and that this state is so because most Americans have personally become corrupt; and begin to move to living lives that are based on honesty, clarity, authentic empathy,a desire for excellence and real beauty and refinement, and so forth, we are going to continue down a path that is leading us to total destruction.

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  15. sanitychecker says:

    This is OT but I hope the TWN will let it through its moderation screen.
    Harlan Ullman wrote here a few days ago: “As an accredited diplomat, the Vienna Convention of 1961 guarantees Mr. Davis immunity. From the U.S. and international law perspectives, the case is ironclad…”
    Ironclad? Today we learn from The Guardian that Mr Davis is a CIA agent.
    Surprise, surprise, the US media has kept this under wraps.

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  16. PissedOffAmerican says:

    VETERAN

    Reply

  17. JohnH says:

    Hillary the oblivious:
    “I am very impressed by the progress Bahrain is making on all fronts

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  18. DonS says:

    Cloying. Hagiographic.
    Take Afghanistan. The policy is wrong. “Results”fabricated. Period. Who cares how effectively the cover story is manipulated? Terrific that Obama and Clinton support each other in this obscene lie and failure.
    Guess Ms.Labott is insured excellent access.

    Reply

  19. PissedOffAmerican says:

    ‘Clinton threatened to cancel aid to PA’
    Palestinian President Abbas stresses PA won’t boycott US, after Yasser Abed Rabbo slammed American mediation. Fatah element claims Obama told Abbas no other US president has done more to promote Palestinian issue
    While the Palestinians continue to express their anger over the US veto against a UN vote condemning Israel’s settlement construction policy, new details have surfaced regarding the pre-veto discussions. Fatah elements claimed Saturday that US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton threatened to halt financial aid should the Palestinian Authority not withdraw its draft from the Security Council’s agenda.
    continues……
    http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4030816,00.html
    Speaks for itself, doesn’t it?
    But hey, when Israel spies on us, steals industrial and military secrets, sells those secrets to our enemies and competitors, executes American citizens, bribes and intimidates our elected officials, targets American citizens engaged in peaceful protest, dumps white phosphorous on women and children, steals Palestinian land with impunity, insults and humiliates the President of the United States, murders Palestinian farmers and fishermen, passes racist and hateful legislation targeting Arabs, and deprives millions of people of their security, substenance, and their livelyhoods, THEN THE CHECK IS IN THE MAIL.
    We actually PAY them for this.
    But DON’T YOU DARE challenge Israel’s policies at the UN, or we’ll cut you off.
    Clinton disgusts me. If she is supposed to be a champion of freedom and justice, then those two ideals are dead on the vine.

    Reply

  20. JohnH says:

    Elise Labott’s piece was remarkably unimpressive. So Hillary works hard. That goes with the job. But, pray tell, what has she accomplished?
    Scolding Iran about dictatorship while delivering the speech from a dictatorship? Delivering a speech on the rights of protesters while security guards removed a silent protester?
    http://www.bradblog.com/?p=8360
    Michael Brenner sums it up over at Pat Lang’s blog in piece called “American Flying Blind:”
    “the American tightrope act of simultaneously casting ourselves as the champions of democracy and freedom, on the one hand, and clear eyed realists who are rock solid backers of its friends, on the other, has suffered a disabling fall. Four, it is suicidal to pretend that the United States somehow can revert to the foreign policy perspective ante with just a few tactical adjustments. That is most certainly true in regard to its servile relationship with Israel. Five, the current team calling the shots in Washington is not ready to do anything more than muddle through. From Barack Obama on down, they have neither the insight into the Middle East

    Reply

  21. PissedOffAmerican says:

    “And recently, I also reflected on Hillary Clinton’s tenure as Secretary of State thus far in a major profile written….”
    http://articles.cnn.com/2011-02-16/politics/clinton.sweep_1_egypt-hillary-clinton-phones?_s=PM:POLITICS
    “Major profile”???? What makes it “major”???
    It skirts Clinton’s dismal “diplomacy” that telegraphed the instransigent neo-con narrative she would use to “impose more stringent sanctions” on Iran, (a move she “diplomatically” inserted into the narrative prior to her insincere assertions of a desire to “engage”).
    Her concept of “engagement” included foreshadowing any such “engagement” by stating publically that “engagement” wouldn’t work.
    Thats diplomacy???
    This so-called “major profile” is rife with omissions. Where does the author refer to Clinton’s role in humiliating the President of the United States by failing to react in any substantive manner to Netanyahu’s arrogance and intransigence in regards to the settlements? Where does the author refer to Clinton’s role in discrediting the Goldstone Report? Where is the author’s reference to Clintons casual dismissal, through silence, of Israel’s wanton execution of an American citizen, or her lack of concern for Israel’s targeting of American citizens engaged in peaceful protest in B’iln???
    There is NOTHING “major” about this profile. Shallowly non-committal, it is little more than an ankle deep and needlessly lengthy wade into the safe waters of journalistic say-nothingness, with a mincing content utterly and completely devoid of any analytical depth or substantive conclusions.
    Wig-wag’s recent pet term, comes to mind; “pabulum”.

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  22. Sand says:

    Oh god… after listening to this promotional advert on how wonderful and “skilled” Hills is — please, please don’t tell me she’s looking for higher office… oh god no.
    Grossman, I mean Grossman — What the heck is going on? I want to hear why on earth with **his history** would she pick Grossman, not a fluff piece on her?
    –Why Bush Wants to Legalize the Nuke Trade with Turkey
    Exonerating Neocon Criminals
    by Joshua Frank
    http://www.antiwar.com/frank/?articleid=12265
    –Nukes, Spooks, and the Specter of 9/11
    by Justin Raimondo, January 08, 2008 http://original.antiwar.com/justin/2008/01/07/nukes-spooks-and-the-specter-of-911/
    This supposedly ‘pragmatic’ Administration gets more and neocon-like and creepier by the day.

    Reply

  23. WigWag says:

    It also strikes me that during the height of the crisis in Egypt, Steve and many other sophisticated commentators reported to us that the White House and Foggy Bottom differed on how strongly the Administration should criticize Mubarak and how assertive the President should be in calling for his resignation.
    From what we are told, the White House favored a more muscular approach to criticizing Mubarak while the State Department, sensitive to the perspective of the Saudis, the Israelis, the Jordanians and the Palestinian Authority, favored a more cautious approach.
    Regardless of which position was the correct one, isn’t this evidence that the Clinton State Department and the Obama White House weren’t in lock step with each other? Doesn’t it suggest that there was at least a difference in nuance between the President’s take and the Secretary of State’s take on the Egyptian situation?

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  24. WigWag says:

    “The foreign policy plate is very full and the ‘defining challenges’ for the White House these past two years have not been these nontraditional threats, but rather Iran, Iraq, the Afghanistan War, the Israel-Palestine standoff…For the most part, Clinton’s impact on these issues has been minor — in part because she decided to be the chief validator of Obama, not allowing any distance between his articulated views and hers and keeping her political powder dry, and because she had not developed a real vision yet of what she wanted to pursue.” (Steve Clemons)
    I don’t get it; what does it mean that Clinton is President Obama’s “chief validator?”
    Which Secretary of State couldn’t be described as a “chief validator” of the President they served? Weren’t Condi Rice and Colin Powell “chief validators” of George Bush? What about Madeline Albright or Warren Christopher? For that matter, what about Cyrus Vance, William Rogers or Dean Rusk?
    Isn’t it the job of the Secretary of State to carry out the foreign policy of the President? After all, isn’t it the President who was elected and not the Secretary of State?
    Which Secretary of State, either successful or unsuccessful, has “allowed any distance” between the positions articulated by the President and their own?

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  25. PissedOffAmerican says:

    What comment can be made about a Secretary Of State that IGNORES Israel’s treatment of American citizens engaged in peaceful protest?
    I can’t view many of the links that Steve uses to underscore his points, so often I am commenting in the cold. But I can guess, with some certainty, that Clinton’s indifference to the Israeli’s targeting of American citizens was not mentioned by Steve or his host.
    Clinton, during the posturing for the primaries, was AIPAC’s darling, and as Secretary of State has obviously perfomed to their expectations. Israel, and their agents here, realize fully that Hillary’s tepid condemnations of Israeli attrocities, crimes, and human rights abuses are not offered with any conviction, and do not reflect any intent to deviate from our status quo subservience to Israeli demands and marching orders.
    The veto at the UN, and the laughable excuses offered for that veto, illustrate perfectly how this Administration’s actions belies the conviction of their rhetoric. These mewling spokespeople like Rice state that had they not of vetoed the Resolution, it would result in a “hardening” in the positions of both the Israelis and the Palestinians. Well, how can you “harden” a policy allowing the continued THEFT of Palestinian land?
    Whats a “herdened” Israeli stance look like??? Another series of war crimes like those committed during Operation Cast Lead? Machine gunning protesters at B’iln instead of simply shooting them in the head with lethal high velocity tear gas cannisters?
    Rice’s explanations for this veto are a bad joke, so ridiculous that one wonders if she and Clinton enjoy a chuckle behind closed doors, amused at the clear message it sends to the Palestinians: “You’re screwed, Israel determines United States’ policy, despite the weak platitudes and sympathies we occassionaly drip in your direction”.

    Reply

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