Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Rice Bows Out. California Wins.

At first, Condoleezza Rice appears humble.  Amid considerable criticism of Rutgers University's decision to give a platform to one of the architects of Gulf War II, Ms. Condoleezza graciously decided not to give the commencement speech in spring 2014 at New Jersey's state university. Now according to Politico 

It is a testament to the dormant state of California’s once mighty Republican dynasty that the only GOP candidate either party gives a shot at capturing Barbara Boxer’s Senate seat upon her retirement next year is the one who is resolutely refusing to run: former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Last week, Rice topped a statewide Field Poll of 18 potential candidates, drawing the support of 49 percent of likely voters, compared with 46 percent for state Attorney General Kamala Harris, the only declared Democratic candidate so far. That sparked a fresh flurry of speculation about a Rice candidacy — and the latest emphatic denial from her chief of staff that she has any interest in the race.

Evidently, unless her arm is twisted, the woman affectionately called "Condi" (isn't that sweet!) will not be running for a US Senate seat from California.

Wise decision, that, not to relinquish what little credibility is still attached to the former National Security Adviser and Secretary of State.  On January 10, 2003 Secretary Rice gravely warned "there will always be some uncertainty about how quickly he can acquire nuclear weapons. But we don't want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud." She played a leading role in trying, largely successfully, to convince voters of the likelihood that Iraq had an active nuclear weapons program. But it's not only that Rice was grotesquely wrong about Saddam Hussein's intentions. In March, 2013 the newspaper of the University of Texas-Austin reported

Two days before the 10th anniversary of the start of the Iraq War, a conflict that resulted in the deaths of 4,488 U.S. soldiers and thousands of civilians, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice reaffirmed her support for the war and the ouster of former President Saddam Hussein.

“I would have overthrown Saddam Hussein again,” Rice said to a packed house at the Lady Bird Johnson Auditorium on Monday.

No, Ms. Rice, you did not overthrow Saddam Hussein- the American military overthrew him, Then you and the other propagandists, and architects, of an arguably unprecedented American foreign policy fiasco thoroughly botched the aftermath (Colonel Lawrence Wilkerson with Lawrence O'Donnell in 2013, video below),

The adventure itself was based on false pretenses, and the reconstruction of Iraq suffered because of the rush to war and the blithering incompetence of the Administration, Condoleezza Rice included.

ISIL probably never would have arisen without the Bush's Administration invasion of Iraq. But even before we were alerted to this newest threat in the Middle East, at the time of the Rutgers commencement controversy, Juan Cole summarized 

As for Iraq, she left it a broken country, with hundreds of thousands dead, 2 million displaced abroad, 4 million displaced internally, likely 400,000 badly wounded, where car bombings and sniping still take some 800 lives a month and where radical Sunni al-Qaeda affiliates have established themselves and Iran-linked radical Shiite militias have free play. She hinted around at an al-Qaeda link to Iraq before she invaded it, but there was none. She brought al-Qaeda to Iraq and it has killed far more Iraqis than the 3000 Americans whose lives it took on September 11. Iraq never had anything at all to do with al-Qaeda, but she made it a scapegoat so as to get at its petroleum resources.

Yet, Ms. Rice still claims the overthrow of Saddam Hussein was strategically beneficial to the United States,  She is either delusional, lying, or less aware of foreign policy than your typical dogcatcher, who fulfills one of a many jobs- including US Senator- Condoleezza Rice shouldn't be trusted to perform.

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