Christopher Hill is dancing over the eviscerated Neocon ideology as John Bolton loses control and his moustache quivers uncontrollably.
I guess that todays announcement answers the question we posed a month ago.
Hill has been amazingly successful at tamping down the threat of a nuclear North Korea, but the greatest test is looming...Will North Korea give up their Plutonium stockpile and pledge to make no more weapons from it?It appears the answer to the "how long" question turned out to be "long enough."
That is the $64,000 dollar question.
How long can Hill maintain his perch on the tightrope? He has managed the impossible thus far - he has managed to commit actual diplomacy while dealing with an administration that finds peaceful resolution of conflict anathema, and will only accept a diplomatic solution if there is no other alternative.
All the while, chickenhawk Übermensches have awaited his failure with bated breath, and the administration has been less than pleased with his successes. Indeed, they have denied him plaudits he richly deserved, just to remind him who works for whom.
Some days, you just get some good new. This looks like one of them. And the popping sound you hear? That is the sound of wingnut heads exploding. And fans of diplomacy popping champaign corks. There is quite a bit of that, too.
The indispensable Steve Clemons had this to say about todays announcement.
I am particularly gloating over the fact that todays announcement bolsters Obama's foreign policy plans and undermines John $idney's "bomb Iran/endless war" agenda.
This is huge news -- and is a giant step in putting US-North Korea relations on a new and more constructive track. This is a success for the Bush administration -- and more importantly for Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian & Pacfic Affairs Christopher Hill who has been a punching bag for former US Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton who has been spitting on Hill's deal-making for the last year.
There are still a lot of questions ranging from the interesting issue of North Korea cooperation with Syria's alleged nuclear facility that was destroyed by Israel and other issues -- but when President Bush gave Colin Powell the positive nod in the first week of April 2003 to proceed with the Six Party Talks, Bush and Cheney ignored Iran's offer of a structure for normalized US-Iran relations the very same week in 2003.
The contrast in circumstances between where America is today with North Korea and where we are with Iran is vital to note. We 'engaged' North Korea and blew it with Iran.
Congrats to Christopher Hill, John Negroponte, Condoleezza Rice, the former Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs R. Nicholas Burns and his successor William Burns. And for those who want to knock China around, they should know that this entire process was impossible without China's impressive, collaborative diplomacy.
Barack Obama's inclination towards engagement with problematic leaders around the world now is now buttressed by an experience of the George W. Bush administration. Too bad so much of the rest of America's foreign policy portfolio didn't get this same kind of attention.