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Negotiation is not appeasement


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Yesterday, Bush misused Israel's 60th anniversary to launch a thinly veiled political attack against Barack Obama, calling anyone who would talk with an enemy or potential enemy an appeaser. Not only is this inappropriate conduct for a head of state to get into domestic politics in this manner in a foreign venue, but Bush as usual is wrong.

Neville Chamberlain's policy of appeasement amounted to sitting by while Hitler's Germany took over Czechoslovakia. The problem was not that Chamberlain was talking with Hitler, but that he wasn't doing anything to stop him.

Appeasement is letting someone have something in the hope that he will be satisfied and stop. Of course that is unwise, but it is not the same thing as negotiating or conducting diplomacy.

Fortunately, Bush's cowboy diplomacy will end in a few months. I am looking forward to an intelligent foreign policy under President Obama, which really protects us instead of advancing the interests of the oil companies.

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Guest Loki

The extremists hate us; it is that simple. They don't hate us any MORE because of Bush; they hate our way of life. Nothing about that will change through dialogue, or meeting with them as equals. I am not suggesting military action, only that negotiations with this individual will be fruitless.

If Obama "offers" nothing, realistically, why would Ahmenijad take the meeting? Unless, he is promised something, I simply don't see him sitting to talk. At that point, I'm certain his (Ahmenijad) feelings will be abundantly clear, to some.

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Yesterday, Bush misused Israel's 60th anniversary to launch a thinly veiled political attack against Barack Obama, calling anyone who would talk with an enemy or potential enemy an appeaser. Not only is this inappropriate conduct for a head of state to get into domestic politics in this manner in a foreign venue, but Bush as usual is wrong.

Neville Chamberlain's policy of appeasement amounted to sitting by while Hitler's Germany took over Czechoslovakia. The problem was not that Chamberlain was talking with Hitler, but that he wasn't doing anything to stop him.

Appeasement is letting someone have something in the hope that he will be satisfied and stop. Of course that is unwise, but it is not the same thing as negotiating or conducting diplomacy.

Fortunately, Bush's cowboy diplomacy will end in a few months. I am looking forward to an intelligent foreign policy under President Obama, which really protects us instead of advancing the interests of the oil companies.

http://clarusvisum.blogspot.com/2008/05/bu...fires-back.html

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Guest 2smart4u
Yesterday, Bush misused Israel's 60th anniversary to launch a thinly veiled political attack against Barack Obama, calling anyone who would talk with an enemy or potential enemy an appeaser. Not only is this inappropriate conduct for a head of state to get into domestic politics in this manner in a foreign venue, but Bush as usual is wrong.

Neville Chamberlain's policy of appeasement amounted to sitting by while Hitler's Germany took over Czechoslovakia. The problem was not that Chamberlain was talking with Hitler, but that he wasn't doing anything to stop him.

Appeasement is letting someone have something in the hope that he will be satisfied and stop. Of course that is unwise, but it is not the same thing as negotiating or conducting diplomacy.

Fortunately, Bush's cowboy diplomacy will end in a few months. I am looking forward to an intelligent foreign policy under President Obama, which really protects us instead of advancing the interests of the oil companies.

"President Obama" ?? That ain't gonna happen, sweetie.

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You Negotiate with Terrorists, or a Hostile Nuclear Power, the Same way you "Negotiate" with a Hostage taker. From a Position of Power. The Bad guy knows there is going to be one of two ultimate Outcomes..He's going to walk out in custody, or he'll be carried out in a bag. He might get a Pizza, or to talk to the Media, or to his family, but the everyone knows that the Hollywood version o the Bus arriving, and the plane waiting at the airport is just that.. Hollywood. We Negotiated with the Sovs from that Position of Power.. it was called "Mutually Assured Destruction" They didnt want to Die, and WE didnt want to die, so we talked. That doesnt work with Fundamentalist Islamicsts if it takes 1,000,000 Martyrs to defeat the Great Satan, and bring about the new Caliphate..No Problem we can always breed more. But no, it'll again be "We can have Peace in our time" History DOES repeat itself, and apparently the "Leaders" never bother to pay attention.

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"President Obama" ?? That ain't gonna happen, sweetie.

As true as your claim about Guiliani being the next president. :)

McCain hasn't even been able to break 80% of the vote in any state, even AFTER becoming the presumptive nominee! :huh: Meanwhile, Democratic voter turnout records are being shattered nationwide.

You're living in dreamland, sweetie. You'll be in for a rude awakening in November. :)

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The extremists hate us; it is that simple. They don't hate us any MORE because of Bush; they hate our way of life. Nothing about that will change through dialogue, or meeting with them as equals. I am not suggesting military action, only that negotiations with this individual will be fruitless.

If Obama "offers" nothing, realistically, why would Ahmenijad take the meeting? Unless, he is promised something, I simply don't see him sitting to talk. At that point, I'm certain his (Ahmenijad) feelings will be abundantly clear, to some.

You don't know whether negotiations will be useful until you try. When the stakes are this high, we have to try. There is no cost to talking, and potentially much to gain, including avoidance of war. And if a foreign leader refuses negotiations, then we'll know where he stands, and that's useful information.

Negotiations will not convince the other side that they are wrong. As usual, Bush has put up a straw man for political purposes. But we might be able to show them how aggression against us is not in their interests. No one understands this better than Israel, which has been negotiating with its sworn enemies throughout its history. For them it is a matter of survival. For us, it's no less wise. This is diplomacy 101 all over the world. Everyone know this. When the cowboys in the Bush administration turned their backs on it, all they proved was that they were intent on going to war. What amazes and disgusts me is that the American people were gullible enough to go along with Bush and the neocons.

And you're wrong. The extremists hated us before Bush, but they hate us even more because of what he has done. And it isn't just the extremists who hate us now. This arrogant man has done more damage to our country, especially our standing in the world, than all our other presidents combined.

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Guest 2smart4u
As true as your claim about Guiliani being the next president. :)

McCain hasn't even been able to break 80% of the vote in any state, even AFTER becoming the presumptive nominee! :huh: Meanwhile, Democratic voter turnout records are being shattered nationwide.

You're living in dreamland, sweetie. You'll be in for a rude awakening in November. :)

We'll see.

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Guest Paul
You Negotiate with Terrorists, or a Hostile Nuclear Power, the Same way you "Negotiate" with a Hostage taker. From a Position of Power. The Bad guy knows there is going to be one of two ultimate Outcomes..He's going to walk out in custody, or he'll be carried out in a bag. He might get a Pizza, or to talk to the Media, or to his family, but the everyone knows that the Hollywood version o the Bus arriving, and the plane waiting at the airport is just that.. Hollywood. We Negotiated with the Sovs from that Position of Power.. it was called "Mutually Assured Destruction" They didnt want to Die, and WE didnt want to die, so we talked. That doesnt work with Fundamentalist Islamicsts if it takes 1,000,000 Martyrs to defeat the Great Satan, and bring about the new Caliphate..No Problem we can always breed more. But no, it'll again be "We can have Peace in our time" History DOES repeat itself, and apparently the "Leaders" never bother to pay attention.

You're right about negotiating from strength. It's revealing how some of Senator Obama's detractors make this observation as though he's saying something different, even though he is not.

You're also right that negotiations probably are less effective with the Islamic fundamentalists. They're mainly on the run, think they have nothing to lose, are extreme and uncompromising in their views (traits shared in large measure, though to a lesser degree, by some fundamentalists in our own country), and therefore probably can't be negotiated with. But Obama isn't proposing to negotiate with them. He is proposing to negotiate with heads of state, who do have much to lose. You're shifting the terms of the argument, responding to a point no one is making. So your point is not well taken.

As for custody and body bags, I wonder if you actually thought about that before you wrote it. If we took foreign heads of state, ambassadors and negotiators into custody following negotiations, no nation would ever trust us to negotiate again. That would weaken every country in the world, and irreparably damage international relations, which could never be fully repaired. Even terrorist entities know better than that. If they ever did want to come to the table, we would have to consider it, just as Israel negotiated with Arafat, whom it considered to be a terrorist leader - and he had no nation.

Think about what you're writing. Just because it sounds real tough doesn't mean it makes sense. Sounding as tough as possible is a major part of our problem these past few years and under this administration. It's not even a good strategy, let alone the best one.

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Guest Loki

The extremists hated us before Bush, but they hate us even more because of what he has done. And it isn't just the extremists who hate us now. This arrogant man has done more damage to our country, especially our standing in the world, than all our other presidents combined.

Pardon me, but what do I care if people willing to kill themselves in order to kill us "hates us more"? The fact that they are willing to die for their cause only reinforces my belief that negotiation will be pointless. The teachings in the Wasabi schools that preach this radical ideology have been in place for too long. Bush is just someone for you people to point a finger at. Remember, after we left Somalia, bin Laden declared the US to be a paper tiger who didn't have the will to stand and fight. It was this perception of weakness that emboldened al Qaeda, not anything from the last 7 years.

As for damaging the country, I go for "Peanut head" Jimmy for questioning current foreign policy on foreign soil. If you think Bush is bad, you would think I'm worse; I would have tried Carter for treason.

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Guest Paul
The extremists hated us before Bush, but they hate us even more because of what he has done. And it isn't just the extremists who hate us now. This arrogant man has done more damage to our country, especially our standing in the world, than all our other presidents combined.

Pardon me, but what do I care if people willing to kill themselves in order to kill us "hates us more"? The fact that they are willing to die for their cause only reinforces my belief that negotiation will be pointless. The teachings in the Wasabi schools that preach this radical ideology have been in place for too long. Bush is just someone for you people to point a finger at. Remember, after we left Somalia, bin Laden declared the US to be a paper tiger who didn't have the will to stand and fight. It was this perception of weakness that emboldened al Qaeda, not anything from the last 7 years.

As for damaging the country, I go for "Peanut head" Jimmy for questioning current foreign policy on foreign soil. If you think Bush is bad, you would think I'm worse; I would have tried Carter for treason.

If you had any sense, you would realize that the difference between 1,000,000 terrorists who hate the USA, versus 10,000,000 terrorists who hate the USA, versus 100,000,000 terrorists who hate the USA is enormous. It's bad enough there are ignorant people in the world blinded by their ideologies and their fundamentalism, without our giving them good reasons to hate us. If you had any sense, you would care, because numbers matter.

And you're wrong, Bush isn't just someone we point the finger at. That's Clinton, and also Carter, and you're the one doing it. You may not like what Carter does, but it does not damage our country. We're stronger than that.

Bush is the worst president in our history, the only president who has ever done anywhere close to this much damage to our standing in the world, to our economy and to the very fabric that holds our country together. He's a complete disaster, and your party is going to pay the price for getting him elected, deservedly so.

It does you no credit that you refuse to listen to anything, ever. I suggest you look at the latest poll numbers.

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The extremists hated us before Bush, but they hate us even more because of what he has done. And it isn't just the extremists who hate us now. This arrogant man has done more damage to our country, especially our standing in the world, than all our other presidents combined.

Pardon me, but what do I care if people willing to kill themselves in order to kill us "hates us more"? The fact that they are willing to die for their cause only reinforces my belief that negotiation will be pointless. The teachings in the Wasabi schools that preach this radical ideology have been in place for too long. Bush is just someone for you people to point a finger at. Remember, after we left Somalia, bin Laden declared the US to be a paper tiger who didn't have the will to stand and fight. It was this perception of weakness that emboldened al Qaeda, not anything from the last 7 years.

As for damaging the country, I go for "Peanut head" Jimmy for questioning current foreign policy on foreign soil. If you think Bush is bad, you would think I'm worse; I would have tried Carter for treason.

If you don't care what other people think of us, then there's no reason for you to care what Jimmy Carter says. You're saying two contradictory things, and you don't have a clue you're doing it.

If you'll think about why you're doing it, you'll realize that all your "thinking," is organized around your ideology. You can't think intelligently that way, and you're not, and it shows.

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The extremists hated us before Bush, but they hate us even more because of what he has done. And it isn't just the extremists who hate us now. This arrogant man has done more damage to our country, especially our standing in the world, than all our other presidents combined.

Pardon me, but what do I care if people willing to kill themselves in order to kill us "hates us more"?

Because Bush's blunders have made it easier for those groups to RECRUIT MORE MEMBERS.

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As for custody and body bags, I wonder if you actually thought about that before you wrote it. If we took foreign heads of state, ambassadors and negotiators into custody following negotiations, no nation would ever trust us to negotiate again. That would weaken every country in the world, and irreparably damage international relations, which could never be fully repaired. Even terrorist entities know better than that. If they ever did want to come to the table, we would have to consider it, just as Israel negotiated with Arafat, whom it considered to be a terrorist leader - and he had no nation.

Think about what you're writing. Just because it sounds real tough doesn't mean it makes sense. Sounding as tough as possible is a major part of our problem these past few years and under this administration. It's not even a good strategy, let alone the best one.

You know Paul, as much as I disagree with your views on most things..I've NEVER been given a reason to question your intelligence before. Considering the SPECIFIC example I used, Vis-a-Vis the Hostage Taker, I Thought it was clear that those options were in THAT Context. If this is an example of your Reading Comprehension skills, please let me know Exactly WHAT kind of Law you practice...so I can be sure to go elsewhere if I need services of that Genre.

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Guest Keith
The extremists hated us before Bush, but they hate us even more because of what he has done. And it isn't just the extremists who hate us now. This arrogant man has done more damage to our country, especially our standing in the world, than all our other presidents combined.

Pardon me, but what do I care if people willing to kill themselves in order to kill us "hates us more"? The fact that they are willing to die for their cause only reinforces my belief that negotiation will be pointless. The teachings in the Wasabi schools that preach this radical ideology have been in place for too long. Bush is just someone for you people to point a finger at. Remember, after we left Somalia, bin Laden declared the US to be a paper tiger who didn't have the will to stand and fight. It was this perception of weakness that emboldened al Qaeda, not anything from the last 7 years.

As for damaging the country, I go for "Peanut head" Jimmy for questioning current foreign policy on foreign soil. If you think Bush is bad, you would think I'm worse; I would have tried Carter for treason.

If anyone should be tried for treason it should be the enitre Bush administration.

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You know Paul, as much as I disagree with your views on most things..I've NEVER been given a reason to question your intelligence before. Considering the SPECIFIC example I used, Vis-a-Vis the Hostage Taker, I Thought it was clear that those options were in THAT Context. If this is an example of your Reading Comprehension skills, please let me know Exactly WHAT kind of Law you practice...so I can be sure to go elsewhere if I need services of that Genre.

Cheap shot, and in fact you used three examples. Here's what you actually wrote.

You Negotiate with Terrorists, or a Hostile Nuclear Power, the Same way you "Negotiate" with a Hostage taker. From a Position of Power. The Bad guy knows there is going to be one of two ultimate Outcomes..He's going to walk out in custody, or he'll be carried out in a bag. He might get a Pizza, or to talk to the Media, or to his family, but the everyone knows that the Hollywood version o the Bus arriving, and the plane waiting at the airport is just that.. Hollywood. We Negotiated with the Sovs from that Position of Power.. it was called "Mutually Assured Destruction" They didnt want to Die, and WE didnt want to die, so we talked. That doesnt work with Fundamentalist Islamicsts if it takes 1,000,000 Martyrs to defeat the Great Satan, and bring about the new Caliphate..No Problem we can always breed more. But no, it'll again be "We can have Peace in our time" History DOES repeat itself, and apparently the "Leaders" never bother to pay attention.

The discussion is about Obama's willingness to negotiate with countries like Iran. No one who has any sense would take a foreign head of state into custody after agreeing to conduct negotiations. If you're arguing that we shouldn't negotiate with bin Laden, no one is saying that we should.

If you hadn't muddled up your own point, it might have been better understood.

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Guest Paul
You know Paul, as much as I disagree with your views on most things..I've NEVER been given a reason to question your intelligence before. Considering the SPECIFIC example I used, Vis-a-Vis the Hostage Taker, I Thought it was clear that those options were in THAT Context. If this is an example of your Reading Comprehension skills, please let me know Exactly WHAT kind of Law you practice...so I can be sure to go elsewhere if I need services of that Genre.

Some people would say that you have ample reason to question my intelligence just by virtue of my continuing to post here. However, in the post to which you refer, you cite three examples, not just one. You say that it is appropriate to treat all three in the same way, but that’s not true.

A hostile nuclear power, or any foreign nation, is not treated the same way as a hostage taker or a terrorist. My point was, and is, that if we did that, we would accomplish nothing, would anger that leader’s nation all the more (they would just put someone else in charge) and we would show the world that we cannot be trusted to negotiate in the customary fashion. That would disrupt our relations not only with rogue nations, but with all nations, and it would damage diplomacy for a very long time, perhaps forever.

Very specific understandings and protocols apply to international diplomacy, which are essential to the maintenance of peace and stability throughout the world. Shaky as peace and stability may sometimes become, they would be non-existent without diplomacy. While these rules of engagement might seem silly to outsiders, international chaos would result without them.

Nations cannot negotiate with other nations they don’t like, but also carve out exceptions for nations they really, really don’t like. If you were not making that point, then you should not have included hostile nuclear powers in your post, or argued that they are to be treated the same as hostage takers and terrorists.

So while I may not be all that smart, that particular post is not evidence of it.

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Guest Loki
If you had any sense, you would realize that the difference between 1,000,000 terrorists who hate the USA, versus 10,000,000 terrorists who hate the USA, versus 100,000,000 terrorists who hate the USA is enormous. It's bad enough there are ignorant people in the world blinded by their ideologies and their fundamentalism, without our giving them good reasons to hate us. If you had any sense, you would care, because numbers matter.

And you're wrong, Bush isn't just someone we point the finger at. That's Clinton, and also Carter, and you're the one doing it. You may not like what Carter does, but it does not damage our country. We're stronger than that.

Bush is the worst president in our history, the only president who has ever done anywhere close to this much damage to our standing in the world, to our economy and to the very fabric that holds our country together. He's a complete disaster, and your party is going to pay the price for getting him elected, deservedly so.

It does you no credit that you refuse to listen to anything, ever. I suggest you look at the latest poll numbers.

A personal attack from you, Paul. What a shock. The post wasn't about the literal numbers of those that hate us; but rather the root cause. Just for the record radical Islam started long before Bush, don't tell anyone I told you, you can take the credit for the observation.

You blame Bush and Republicans all the time. I blamed Carter for imagining he ever even had a foreign policy; let alone one with any accomplishments. (Please don't mention Camp David w/ Israel and Egypt. The credit there goes to Begin and Sadat, who was killed for it. And, if memory serves me, wasn't there a certain Al Qaeda leader involved in that plot??) But, yes, I brought up Carter and you called me on it; completely, AGAIN, ignoring the fact that you pointed the finger first. Yes, Virginia, you are the hypocrite.

As for listening, you're not the first to suggest I'm stubborn, (I prefer the more euphmestic . . . principled), but it will be a cold day in hell (OOPS, a reference to a higher power, so sorry!) before I use poll numbers as a means to formulate my own opinions. BTW, you're not exactly Gandhi when it comes to listening to opposing points of view.

I will engage in useful debate, but will not answer to posts where YOU call me "ignorant" or other personal insults. I would think a grown man would be above such things. See, I can admit when I'm wrong, I thought you were educated and able to apply reason, I was wrong.

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Guest Loki
If anyone should be tried for treason it should be the enitre Bush administration.

Bring something to the debate other than the Democrats talking points, huh.

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Guest Keith
Bring something to the debate other than the Democrats talking points, huh.

It is what it is. If you can't handle it then that is your problem. Are you better off now than you were 8 years ago?

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Guest Paul
A personal attack from you, Paul. What a shock. The post wasn't about the literal numbers of those that hate us; but rather the root cause. Just for the record radical Islam started long before Bush, don't tell anyone I told you, you can take the credit for the observation.

You blame Bush and Republicans all the time. I blamed Carter for imagining he ever even had a foreign policy; let alone one with any accomplishments. (Please don't mention Camp David w/ Israel and Egypt. The credit there goes to Begin and Sadat, who was killed for it. And, if memory serves me, wasn't there a certain Al Qaeda leader involved in that plot??) But, yes, I brought up Carter and you called me on it; completely, AGAIN, ignoring the fact that you pointed the finger first. Yes, Virginia, you are the hypocrite.

As for listening, you're not the first to suggest I'm stubborn, (I prefer the more euphmestic . . . principled), but it will be a cold day in hell (OOPS, a reference to a higher power, so sorry!) before I use poll numbers as a means to formulate my own opinions. BTW, you're not exactly Gandhi when it comes to listening to opposing points of view.

I will engage in useful debate, but will not answer to posts where YOU call me "ignorant" or other personal insults. I would think a grown man would be above such things. See, I can admit when I'm wrong, I thought you were educated and able to apply reason, I was wrong.

For starters, before you can complain about being personally attacked, you have to reveal your identity. As long as you post anonymously, you haven't much of a complaint.

As for the substance, you wrote this: "Pardon me, but what do I care if people willing to kill themselves in order to kill us 'hates us more'?" My point is, you should care, and the numbers do matter. That may not have been your point, but it is mine. You can't just write off the particulars of the terrorist threat just because we're not to blame for some or all of its causes. People in power may be dealt a hand, but then they have to play it; how they play it matters.

I blame Bush and the current crowd of Republicans because they are a complete disaster. There is no precedent for this in our history. They have tanked the economy, diminished our standing in the world, ignored our infrastructure, turned a surplus into a deficit to make the super-rich even richer, neglected our failing educational system, wasted hundreds of billions of dollars (is it a trillion yet) on an endless war over oil profits, ripped enormous holes in the Constitution, peddled division among the American people and tried to solidify their power forever by disenfranchising millions of voters and establishing a corrupt electoral system with no paper trail. Nixon was corrupt, but he was nothing like this, and at least in his time some Republicans were responsible. Nixon had a China policy that made sense and an economic policy that at least tried to understand the modern economy. That is not true today. The most characteristic features of the current Republican party are its ownership by the super-rich, its pandering to the religious right and to racism, its complete disdain for the Constitution and the law, and its unashamed promotion of willful ignorance.

If you expect me to change my mind, then make an intelligent point. If you don't care that our actions have increased the number of anti-American terrorists in the world, then I say that you are a fool. What do you care? You're anonymous.

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Bring something to the debate other than the Democrats talking points, huh.

What else do you call our country's leader admitted to being unconcerned about the man who orchestrated an attack on this country, but treasonous?

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