Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search


Rice To Powell - Trading Credibility for Certitude

Rice To Replace Powell -- Trading Credibility for Certitude

By Angie Pratt

No one argues that Colin Powell isn't a man of integrity. When Colin Powell speaks the truth is expected. His sincerity is not questioned. His facts are expected to be facts, not hyped spin. That's why when he gave his speech to the UN about the existence of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq it was taken as being generally true.

At the same time, it is also a recognized fact that Colin Powell is the odd boy out at the Bush frat-house. His words while spoken with conviction were his and, as was shown numerous times, not necessarily those of his neoconservative boss. His diplomatic, reasoned approach has constantly been pushed aside for the "might makes right" approach of the far right ideologues that dominate the Bush administration.

By accepting Colin Powell's resignation and replacing him with Condoleezza Rice, George Bush is trading credibility for certitude.

No one argues that Condoleezza Rice doesn't have the full faith and backing of George Bush. She is a confidante of Bush. Her neoconservative credentials are impeccable. The fact that she speaks for the Bush administration will not be in doubt.

All will immediately know that her words are those of the White House. And her diplomatic parties will be well served from soup to nuts and from Brahms to Brahms -- a Brahms contemprorary prehaps said it best -- "a pedestal without a statue."

As such, Condoleezza Rice's new job is to front the Bush administration foreign policy positions to the world. In so doing, she will ride shotgun over the neoconservative philosophies that are replacing the tried and true method of "winning friends and influencing people" with "like it or lump it" diplomacy. "You're either with us or against us" is pretty self-explanatory.

The problem, of course, is she has no credibility. The whole world saw her spin away about WMDs last June on "Meet the Press" where her quote on the screen refuted what she had just said. For a short moment she was at a loss for words. We all know that her words have nothing to do with the truth but are all about PR.

So . when Condoleezza Rice takes over management of the U.S. leadership of the world, she will do so with an iron fist and not a velvet glove nor even a velvet tongue. You don't need the truth when you have force. You don't need to be right when you don't admit you're ever wrong. You don't have to be conciliatory when you don't care what others think.

The Fort Worth Star in its endorsement of Bush for president in October said that it did so because it thought that Bush would this time be the moderate he had claimed to be, the centralist that they thought they had endorsed in 2000. The Star was by no means the only newspaper that showed this same kind of naivete. It's about time that the United States wakes up to the fact that the Bush administration is radically to the right of center. It's about time that the United States realizes that past actions are a better predictor of the future than fairy stories from Bush loyalists.

The rest of the world already knows this. They have already come to grips with this reality. The fact that Condoleezza Rice is now going to be in charge of the State department is of no surprise to them.

"New blood!" "Bah Humbug!" The Bush Administration is quite happy with itself and sees no reason to change. Condoleezza Rice's nomination to be Secretary of State is simply further truth that it's going to be a cold four more years in foreign relations where other countries will be treated like domestics.


Angie Pratt is an Arkansas writer with an abiding interest in politics

© Scoop Media

Top Scoops Headlines


Werewolf: Living With Rio’s Olympic Ruins

Mariana Cavalcanti Critics of the Olympic project can point a discernible pattern in the delivery of Olympics-related urban interventions: the belated but rushed inaugurations of faulty and/or unfinished infrastructures... More>>

Live Blog On Now: Open Source//Open Society Conference

The second annual Open Source Open Society Conference is a 2 day event taking place on 22-23 August 2016 at Michael Fowler Centre in Wellington… Scoop is hosting a live blog summarising the key points of this exciting conference. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Politicising Of The War On Drugs In Sport

It hasn’t been much fun at all to see how “war on drugs in sport” has become a proxy version of the Cold War, fixated on Russia. This weekend’s banning of the Russian long jumper Darya Klishina took that fixation to fresh extremes. More>>


Binoy Kampmark: Kevin Rudd’s Failed UN Secretary General Bid

Few sights are sadder in international diplomacy than seeing an aging figure desperate for honours. In a desperate effort to net them, he scurries around, cultivating, prodding, wishing to be noted. Finally, such an honour is netted, in all likelihood just to shut that overly keen individual up. More>>

Open Source / Open Society: The Scoop Foundation - An Open Model For NZ Media

Access to accurate, relevant and timely information is a crucial aspect of an open and transparent society. However, in our digital society information is in a state of flux with every aspect of its creation, delivery and consumption undergoing profound redefinition... More>>

Keeping Out The Vote: Gordon Campbell On The US Elections

I’ll focus here on just two ways that dis-enfranchisement is currently occurring in the US: (a) by the rigging of the boundary lines for voter districts and (b) by demanding elaborate photo IDs before people are allowed to cast their vote. More>>

Ramzy Baroud: Being Black Palestinian - Solidarity As A Welcome Pathology

It should come as no surprise that the loudest international solidarity that accompanied the continued spate of the killing of Black Americans comes from Palestine; that books have already been written and published by Palestinians about the plight of their Black brethren. In fact, that solidarity is mutual. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news