Wednesday, October 31, 2007

I agree with Dr. Cole

It is time to close the United States embassy in Iraq.

The reasons are so very myriad there is a certain "where do I even start?" element to it all...

Maybe with the State Department's utter failures of leadership thus far? With rampaging mercenaries under contract to the State Department who murder civilians at will and receive grants of immunity routinely from a State Department that lacks the authority to grant it?

How about with the fact that the embassy complex that was supposed to be finished in June is still not ready to be occupied, and has been plagued by corruption, shoddy workmanship, scandal and allegations of fraud and criminal misconduct?

How about the fact that the State Department is having so much difficulty filling postings to Iraq that officers are being recalled from other stations and posted to Iraq against their will.

This is unconscionable.

Our diplomats with the State Department are the face of America abroad, and they represent some of our most dedicated public servants. The career officers serve faithfully through all administrations, apolitically. They represent America abroad, not the president in office.

They are the ones who understand the cultures and languages and customs of other countries. They do the real work of diplomacy for little money and less recognition. They deserve better than to be forced to make a Hobson's Choice - between posting to a war zone, or chucking their careers. There is no curtain number three, Monty.

Not only is this tactic on behalf of the administration grossly unfair to the foreign service officers, it is damaging to the overall health of the diplomatic corps in the long run.

If career foreign service officers start leaving in droves, it will take the better part of two decades to repair the damage that such an exodus will cause.

Contact your Senators and Representatives immediately and tell them you oppose the forced posting of Foreign Service officers to Iraq.

I'll give Dr. Cole the last word (read the whole thing):
The Democrats have been facing the dilemma that they are blocked from doing much about Iraq. This is something they can do. Cut off funding for the embassy and force most of the diplomats home. This is the way to start ending the war.


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