Yes, I know! Diplomats are supposed to engage tactful wordcraft to sway their international neighbors to agreed-upon logical conclusions for the benefit of all mediation specialists seated around the negotiation table.
Personally, I am a bit depressed. President Robert Mugabe has resumed "business as usual" after assassinating political opponents and sending others into hiding to maintain his corrupted power structure in Zimbabwe. After running off quickly to Sharm El-Sheik to thumb his nose at the other African Union Summit participants who were picking their noses trying to decide what to do, he managed enough influence to torpedo the recent G8 plan proposed in Japan to institute U.N. sanctions against him. Russia and China led the veto charge in the Security Council vote, much to the embarrasment of the United States and Britain. British PM Gordon Brown had done his best, waving about photos of Mugabe-style carnage preceding the "election". Now we are left trying to figure out how to justify sending millions of dollars in aid to Zimbabwe in the future. Meanwhile, Gordon Brown has not given up the fight and is busy stating his case before a 43 nation summit in Paris.
Interestingly, Mr. Mugabe's self-righteous indignation against "colonialism" by the West on the one hand, remains countered by the dominant outstretched hand on the other side, which still loves to receive U.S. dollars. Sorry, Mugabe, but you really can't have it both ways. Financial aid which subsidizes entrenched corruption should be stopped. The task to remove your name from our national coffers belongs to our elected officials.
Somalia has had their fair share of troubles in recent days. The head of the U.N. Development Program was murdered in gangland fashion leaving a masjid in Mogadishu. Mohamed Qeyre (alternate spelling, Kheire) deputy director of a local aid organization linked to the German organization Bread for the World, also died in a blaze of bullets. No good deed will go unpunished in places like Somalia if the good deed has the scent of an infidel upon it. These maniacs are also in the retribution mode for a successful U.S. strike on a top Al-Qaedah operative from Somalia.
But back to being pissed. Anyone else read the press release from the State Department on July 9th, regarding the Sudan? Have these guys been smoking pot? Hence, my clever blog title.
For several months I have pondered the current state of affairs with 21st century diplomacy. The Horn of Africa is in a steady state of political and economic collapse. Middle East instability with constant regional flashpoints of conflict continues to emerge somewhat like a blood splatter pattern on a wall of violence requiring skilled intelligence analysts to identify who wields the knife. This is the century sporting the newest and most dangerous column of warfare, and it ain't pretty.
My conclusion is that we need an upgrade in diplomatic theoretical models. It is time for a visceral diplomacy policy on some fronts. The term is an oxymoron, of course. Visceral responses are those which precede from coarse or base emotions. But after reading the three paragraph remark on "Anniversary of CPA Implementation", a little visceral copy edit of the press release whilst drinking an expresso double shot will hit the page tomorrow. Let me give the same three bland and senseless paragraphs a facelift using the wordcraft of visceral diplomacy. Some situations are too damn dangerous for us to approach like a tea party with the Queen. We must be willing to steer straight into the approaching storm. Flanking maneuvers and absolute dull-witted response which seeks to coax the bully with false accolades are not the proper tools for all 21st century diplomacy. All legitimate and recognized nations retain the right to exert legitimate force to protect their interests and borders. They do not get a free skate on wholesale slaughter of their own citizens and decimation of their geographic landscape. If nothing else, Zimbabwe, Somalia and the Sudan need a cold hard look, from the standpoint of continued financial investment in those regions.
Please "Google" U.S. Department of State, July 9, Anniversary of CPA Implementation, should you care to read the statement prior to posting in entirety on the blog tomorrow.