Posts Tagged ‘wiki

04
Dec
10

wikileaks revelations embarrass obama! oh yeah?

Cables depict range of Obama diplomacy

NYT: Barack Obama came to office vowing to restore “engagement” — talking and listening to America’s most troubling adversaries and reluctant partners — as a central feature of American foreign policy…..

Now we know, from the granular picture of engagement-in-action that emerges from that trove of 250,000 WikiLeaks cables, many from the first 13 months of the Obama presidency. Mr. Obama’s style seems to be: Engage, yes, but wield a club as well…..

The cables suggest that Mr. Obama’s form of engagement is a complicated mixture of openness to negotiation, constantly escalating pressure and a series of deadlines, some explicit, some vague.

…the cables confirm that the administration has largely fulfilled its promise to give engagement some time to work, even while preparing for it to fail…..

While WikiLeaks made the trove available with the intention of exposing United States duplicity, what struck many readers was that American diplomacy looked rather impressive. The day-by-day record showed diplomats trying their hardest behind closed doors to defuse some of the world’s thorniest conflicts, but also assembling a Plan B.

“When dysfunctional does not begin to describe our political system and institutions,” Prof. Stephen Kotkin of Princeton concluded after sampling the cables last week, “something in the government is really working — the State Department — far better than anyone thought.”

Full article here

WikiLeaks doesn’t tell all

LA Times: The headlines from the WikiLeaks dump of thousands of not-very-classified State Department cables have focused, understandably, on the embarrassment factor: It’s not good for American diplomacy when foreign leaders see what they thought were confidential conversations reprinted on websites and in newspapers.

But the substance is another thing. Take Iran. What do the cables tell us? That the United States has been telling the truth about what it wants from Iran; that the Obama administration desperately wants to find a solution that doesn’t include military action; and that a formidable alliance of other countries, not only Israel but most of Europe and Iran’s Arab neighbors as well, shares the U.S. concerns….

….There is a limit, though, to how much a random assortment of cables can show. From reading every document released about Iran so far, you might miss the most important fact: The Obama administration’s long campaign to increase pressure on Iran is actually showing signs of progress……

….The Obama administration deserves credit for getting as far as it has. Critics dismissed Obama’s offer of engagement with Iran as naive and his reliance on economic sanctions as ineffective. But the sanctions have had bite, and it was engagement that made the sanctions possible. The problem of Iran hasn’t yet been solved, but the administration has made progress, the kind of progress that a collection of leaked cables can’t always convey.

Full article here

Thanks so much for the LA Times link parkrangersuzanne 😉




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