They don’t come much uglier than George Bush’s nominee as the next US
ambassador to the United Nations, John Bolton. A bully, a
neo-conservative of the most objectionable kind, he is loathed in the
State department, where he’s currently an under secretary. It is
whispered in Washington that Bush has nominated him for the UN job on
the advice of Condoleezza Rice who wants him removed as far as possible
from the policy making area of her department. She of all people
understands the hatred the US enjoys in many parts of the world and her
hope is that at the UN he will have to take instructions from her – if
he doesn’t its a case of one strike and he’s out.

It should never be forgotten that Bolton once said there should be only
one member of the Security Council – the US. He was loudly applauded by
his friends on the Lunar Right at the time, but with Bush and Rice
pretending to be good guys, they don’t want this kind of talk repeated
in the world forum.

Whatever the outcome, Bolton represents the dangerous and ugly side of
American politics – whose leaders are the cabal of Bush, Cheney and
Rumsfeld. The defence Secretary yesterday had the gall to warn Iraq’s
new leaders to be wary of corruption as they form a new government –
rich coming from one the perpetrators of the mayhem and violence
prevalent in Iraq since the US invasion where corruption at the highest
US levels is now rampant.

In any case, corruption throughout the Middle East takes
many forms and it will be a long time before a US-led occupation force
in Iraq will remove it. Perhaps the Americans could start being honest
and tell the world how many civilians have been slaughtered since their
onslaught began and how many children are starving and malnourished
under their new benevolent regime. Removing the corruption of silence
and hyperbole on those two subjects alone might set a good example to
the fledging government of the world’s newest democracy.

Peter Fray

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