Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Talking to People Acknowledges their Existence

There are people ought there who disagree with your beloved Blog-O-Fascist. But I, in my wisdom, simply do not acknowledge such people's existence. They don't exist (despite what I just said). I refuse to dignify anybody who disagrees with me by acknowledging their existence.

This is the same technique used by the Bush administration. They were willing to talk to their friends; but unwilling to negotiate with their enemies, as chronicled in an article at Salon, by Laura Rozen.
"We would love to practice diplomacy with people who are worth talking to," said a current Bush administration official who asked not to be identified. "But you've heard it before: Don't reward terrorists by giving them any legitimacy or negotiating with them. Maybe if they came over to the right side of civilization, then there would be something to discuss. There's a way to go about these things. Their way is not the way of normal people."
Unfortunately for the Bush Administration, this view of diplomacy is being challenged by a growing number of people, including some conservatives.
"In diplomacy, you do not negotiate peace with your friends," says former Undersecretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Edward Djerejian, who served as ambassador to Syria and Lebanon during the George H.W. Bush administration. "You negotiate peace with your enemies and your adversaries. That is one of the highest tasks of diplomacy.

"In the Arab-Israeli equation, people often say we have to put pressure on the parties to make peace," Djerejian continued. "There's some truth to that. At the same time, you have to deal with all relevant parties in order to obtain the political buy-in and chart out the common ground to make necessary compromises to come to an agreement. For that, you need dialogue and muscular diplomacy."

"Real conservatives have never minded talking," insists Arthur Hughes, a former ambassador to Yemen under the elder George Bush and former charge d'affairs of the U.S. embassy in Tel Aviv. "It needs to be set up properly, to make sure there is no misunderstanding. But remember when [Reagan's former Secretary of State] George Shultz -- no liberal --convinced Reagan that the PLO in Tunis were fit discussion partners?"
My decision to not acknowledge those who disagree with me has no real consequence; the Bush Administrations disdain for diplomacy has serious consequences.

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