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Sunday, April 03, 2005

Bolton letters

Earlier this week, the AP reported that 59 (later reports say 62) former American diplomats signed a letter calling for the rejection of neocon John Bolton as US Ambassador to the UN:
"He is the wrong man for this position," they said in a letter to Sen. Richard Lugar, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, which must consider the nomination before it goes to the full Senate for confirmation. Lugar has scheduled hearings for April 7.

"We urge you to reject that nomination," the former diplomats said in a letter obtained by The Associated Press and dated Tuesday.
The stories I've read name a few of the signatories, but I cannot find a list of them all. One known to me is Spurgeon Keeny, who was deputy director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency under the Carter administration.

In response, 65 Bolton supporters have signed a letter urging his nomination. The list of names includes some well-known (if notorious) figures: Former DoD Secretary (and Iran-contra convict, subsequently pardoned) Caspar Weinberger and former CIA Director (and purveyor of dubious Saddam/9-11 link) James Woolsey:
Bolton supporters said his stance "reflects a clear-eyed necessity of the real limits" of accords with other nations that demand one sided terms from the United States.
The Washington Post story has the money quote from the second letter:
It suggested that critics of Bolton's positions on arms control treaties are "misdirected" because his views "are identical" to those of Bush and that "their differences seem to be with a man twice elected by the American people to design and execute security policies, rather than with one of his most effective and articulate officials in advancing those policies."
Apparently, all 8 Dems on the Senate Foreign Relations committee intend to vote against Bolton. The committee includes 10 Senators from the majority Republican party.

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