Thursday, December 15, 2005

John Bolton Actively Sabotaging Condoleezza Rice: Finally Shows Real Stripes

December 14, 2005
John Bolton Actively Sabotaging Condoleezza Rice: Finally Shows Real Stripes
Steve Clemons

Several people in high places, both in the State Department and in the United Nations, have commented to me that John Bolton really surprised them when he embarked on his new duties after moving into the Ambassador's apartment at the Waldorf-Astoria.

They said that it was like Bolton had gone to charm school and went out of his way to "meet and greet" everyone, from high-ranking to the lowest of low-ranking staff at the U.N. One senior NGO official and former diplomat told me that the facilitators of the Millennium Summit document process -- about 30 people -- were shocked that Bolton had sought each of them out to say hello and offer a genuine human connection, sort of a "Bill Clinton type thing" to do.

The storm about the Millennium Summit document, and Bolton's 750 suggested line changes, came later, but at least they thought he was a far nicer guy than his critics had described.

Now, it seems that the real John Bolton has boldly stepped beyond the veneer. And true to form, just as he woke up each morning for the first four years of the Bush administration asking what he could do to make Colin Powell's life miserable and, at the same time, doing Vice President Cheney's bidding, John Bolton has now target Condoleezza Rice's efforts to get America back on a more balanced foreign policy track with the rest of the world.

The American Prospect's Mark Leon Goldberg writes the first serious assessment of John Bolton's tenure thus far as the recess-appointed U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations....