At The Financial Times: Edward Luce comments on President Obama’s Afghanistan re-evaluation, refracted through the career of Richard Holbrooke by Political Reporter

On top of the manufactured political melodrama of the President’s courage in his act of re-evaluation/self-repudiation of his past commitments, we are then subjected to Mr. Luce’s long and unconvincing apologia for the un-lamented ‘diplomatic’ career of Mr. Holbrooke. Mr. Luce must have been one of the elite who watched ‘The Diplomat’, in a preview for Washington taste makers, or should this cadre be called the followers of an ever evolving Political Orthodoxy ? Proving that movies are not about rational discussion, or anything like reason, but about the imperatives of propaganda. World War I and Hollywood are inextricably linked in their campaign against the Hun!

Holbrooke was a professional bully, not a diplomat. His successors are Susan Rice, Victoria Nuland and R2P zealot Samantha Power: not a very impressive legacy except to those whose eyes have been opened by the revelation of The Diplomat. Others have explored Vietnam with greater honesty and reliability: but for the reader that has found Mr. Luce comments of interest, or even compelling, the book for you is ‘The Georgetown Set, Friends and Rivals in Cold War Washington’ by Gregg Herken. This is readable gossip masquerading as history. Available on November 24, 2015 in paper.

Although Mr. Holbrooke doesn’t appear in these pages, his political precursors, as deeply committed agents of The American Empire, provide an entertaining, if dispiriting , narrative that sets the stage for Mr. Holbrooke’s ‘diplomatic’ career.

President Obama’s ‘act of courage’ in his self-repudiation/re-evaluation becomes lost in Mr. Luce’s act of political adoration of Mr. Holbrooke. As others have cogently argued  ‘The War on Terror’ has evolved into a new 30 Years War, and can we then view Samuel P. Huntington’s ‘Clash’ as a prophecy of an American Policy technocrat?

Political Reporter

About stephenkmacksd

Rootless cosmopolitan,down at heels intellectual;would be writer. 'Polemic is a discourse of conflict, whose effect depends on a delicate balance between the requirements of truth and the enticements of anger, the duty to argue and the zest to inflame. Its rhetoric allows, even enforces, a certain figurative licence. Like epitaphs in Johnson’s adage, it is not under oath.'
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.