Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Listening to Hillary - the sound of silence?

I just heard a joint press conference by Hillary Clinton and the Brazilian Foreign Minister Antonio Patriota.  During the Q&A Hillary was asked what the USA's position on the situation in Libya was and I was quite amazed to see how lame, how vapid, how completely banal her response was.  I think that this shows that US diplomats are both overwhelmed, clueless and quite frightened by these developments.  They seem unable to offer anything but vague pious statements about freedom, democracy, human rights and the obligatory condemnations of violence.  I also think that the crisis in Libya really frightens them.  Not only does Libya sit on a non-trivial amount of oil, it has a common border with Egypt, whose future is still in the balance: will the puppet-change in Egypt eventually lead to a real regime change?  I would say that it is quite possible.  Hence the clear mix of bafflement and fear which seems to paralyze the otherwise endlessly preaching mouths of US diplomats.

On another (but related) topic: any news from Algeria?  How are bad old Abdelaziz Bouteflika and his minions doing?