Remember More: Beirut Bombing Victims

“This Cedar Of Lebanon Tree Grows In
Living Memory Of The Americans Killed
In The Beirut Terrorist Attack And All
Victims Of Terrorism Throughout The World

Dedicated During The First Memorial
Ceremony For These Victims
Given By No Greater Love
October 23, 1984
A Time Of Remembrance”

Richard M. Gannon in “The Bombing of Embassy Beirut, 1983″ (Embassies Under Siege. Washington, DC: Brassey’s, 1995) writes about Robert Dillon who was US Ambassador to Beirut in 1983:

“In the early afternoon of April 18, 1983, Ambassador Robert Dillon was preparing to leave his eighth- floor office of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut when a suicide bomber in a pickup truck swerved into the embassy compound from the busy roadway outside. The driver reached a point next to the building before detonating his deadly cargo, killing 17 Americans, 32 Lebanese employees and 14 embassy visitors and passersby. Once colleagues had removed debris that had fallen on him, Dillon made his way down the side of the hollowed-out structure. He immediately set to work trying to reestablish a functioning but much truncated embassy, while Lebanese and Americans worked desperately to meet emergency medical needs and rescue any survivors. U.S. Marines, deployed at the Beirut International Airport in response to the tumultuous events in Lebanon during the previous year, rushed to the scene and provided security.”

Six months after the embassy bombing, on October 23, 1983, a suicide bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut claimed the lives of 241 Marines, sailors and soldiers.

This week marks the annual commemoration ceremony at the U.S. Embassy in Awkar honoring those who lost their lives serving the United States in Lebanon. The ceremony presided by Ambassador Michele J. Sison occurred adjacent to the granite memory on the Embassy grounds. This memorial honors the fifty-two Lebanese and Americans who died April 18, 1983 when the former Embassy was bombed, the nine who died September 20, 1984 bombing of the Embassy annex, the 241 U.S. servicemen who were killed in the October 23, 1983 bombing of the U.S. Marine Corps Barracks, and those who were lost in other tragic incidents from 1976 to 1995. The memorial is an enduring reminder of the sacrifices made by so many who believed in the relationship between Lebanon and the United States.

The US Embassy Beirut Memorial is here.

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Remember More: Beirut Bombing Victims

“This Cedar Of Lebanon Tree Grows In
Living Memory Of The Americans Killed
In The Beirut Terrorist Attack And All
Victims Of Terrorism Throughout The World

Dedicated During The First Memorial
Ceremony For These Victims
Given By No Greater Love
October 23, 1984
A Time Of Remembrance”

Richard M. Gannon in “The Bombing of Embassy Beirut, 1983″ (Embassies Under Siege. Washington, DC: Brassey’s, 1995) writes about Robert Dillon who was US Ambassador to Beirut in 1983:

“In the early afternoon of April 18, 1983, Ambassador Robert Dillon was preparing to leave his eighth- floor office of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut when a suicide bomber in a pickup truck swerved into the embassy compound from the busy roadway outside. The driver reached a point next to the building before detonating his deadly cargo, killing 17 Americans, 32 Lebanese employees and 14 embassy visitors and passersby. Once colleagues had removed debris that had fallen on him, Dillon made his way down the side of the hollowed-out structure. He immediately set to work trying to reestablish a functioning but much truncated embassy, while Lebanese and Americans worked desperately to meet emergency medical needs and rescue any survivors. U.S. Marines, deployed at the Beirut International Airport in response to the tumultuous events in Lebanon during the previous year, rushed to the scene and provided security.”

Six months after the embassy bombing, on October 23, 1983, a suicide bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut claimed the lives of 241 Marines, sailors and soldiers.

This week marks the annual commemoration ceremony at the U.S. Embassy in Awkar honoring those who lost their lives serving the United States in Lebanon. The ceremony presided by Ambassador Michele J. Sison occurred adjacent to the granite memory on the Embassy grounds. This memorial honors the fifty-two Lebanese and Americans who died April 18, 1983 when the former Embassy was bombed, the nine who died September 20, 1984 bombing of the Embassy annex, the 241 U.S. servicemen who were killed in the October 23, 1983 bombing of the U.S. Marine Corps Barracks, and those who were lost in other tragic incidents from 1976 to 1995. The memorial is an enduring reminder of the sacrifices made by so many who believed in the relationship between Lebanon and the United States.

The US Embassy Beirut Memorial is here.

Where, oh where are the diplomats going to get a break?

Laura Rozen of The Cable yesterday had a piece on forthcoming ambassadorial announcements:

“The Obama administration hopes to make a batch of announcements of its picks for “first-tier” embassies all at once in the coming weeks, including London, Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Moscow, Delhi, Beijing, Tokyo and Ottawa, The Cable hears.”

Okay, probably no surprises in the names we’re hearing or that they have political connections with the Obama Administration or Hillary campaigns. It might come as a shock to you that these top diplomatic missions will have political appointees at their helm instead of career diplomats. But don’t be too shocked, this is so totally in line with the practice from both Democratic and Republican administrations in the past.

Let’s see — for the US Embassy in London — the last three ambassadors were political appointees:

  • Robert H. Tuttle (2005-2009) – George W. Bush
  • William S. Farish (2001-2004) – George W. Bush
  • Philip Lader (1997-2001) – Bill Clinton

How about Paris? Are you kidding? The last three ambassadors to France were also political appointees: Craig Roberts Stapleton, Howard H. Leach, and Felix G. Rohatyn.

Brussels? We had Sam Fox, Tom C. Korologos, Jeffrey A. Marcus (nomination not acted upon by the Senate) and Stephen Brauer – all non-career, political appointees.

Berlin? We had William Robert Timken, Jr., and Daniel R. Coats, who were political appointees under the Bush II Administration. A. Elizabeth Jones, a career diplomat whose nomination of Feb 22, 2000 was not acted upon by the Senate, and John C. Kornblum, also a career diplomat who was ambassador from 1997-2001 under the Clinton Administration.

New Delhi? We had David Mulford, Robert D. Blackwill and Richard Frank Celeste – all political appointees.

Beijing? We had Clark T. Randt, Jr. (2001-2009) during both Bush II terms and Joseph W. Prueher (1999-2001) under the second Clinton term. Both non-career appointees.

Tokyo? We had John Thomas Schieffer, Howard Baker, Jr. and Thomas S. Foley, all political appointees.

How about next door, in Ottawa? That’s David Wilkins and Argeo Paul Cellucci during the Bush II second and first term respectively and Gordon G. Giffin during Clinton’s second term. All non-career political appointees.

Where, oh where are the career diplomats going to get a break? Maybe Moscow? It gets kind of cold there…

Among these “first-tier” embassies mentioned, only Moscow had career diplomats assigned to it in the last four ambassadorial appointments between 1996-2008: John Beyrle, William J. Burns, Alexander P. Vershbow and James Franklin Collins.

There’s a rumor that Ambassador Beyrle may be asked to stay. Hmmn…. one out of nine is not that bad, is it? Wait! Wait! That’s only a rumor, don’t break the champagne yet. If the career folks get to keep Moscow and maybe another post like Berlin, then it is permissible to celebrate. It’s been awhile since they got 2 out of 9. But if the Spaso House in Moscow goes to Stephen Colbert – I think hyperventilating would be an understandable reaction.

What? Oh, the “last-tier” embassies? Don’t worry, they all go to career diplomats.

Where, oh where are the diplomats going to get a break?

Laura Rozen of The Cable yesterday had a piece on forthcoming ambassadorial announcements:

“The Obama administration hopes to make a batch of announcements of its picks for “first-tier” embassies all at once in the coming weeks, including London, Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Moscow, Delhi, Beijing, Tokyo and Ottawa, The Cable hears.”

Okay, probably no surprises in the names we’re hearing or that they have political connections with the Obama Administration or Hillary campaigns. It might come as a shock to you that these top diplomatic missions will have political appointees at their helm instead of career diplomats. But don’t be too shocked, this is so totally in line with the practice from both Democratic and Republican administrations in the past.

Let’s see — for the US Embassy in London — the last three ambassadors were political appointees:

  • Robert H. Tuttle (2005-2009) – George W. Bush
  • William S. Farish (2001-2004) – George W. Bush
  • Philip Lader (1997-2001) – Bill Clinton

How about Paris? Are you kidding? The last three ambassadors to France were also political appointees: Craig Roberts Stapleton, Howard H. Leach, and Felix G. Rohatyn.

Brussels? We had Sam Fox, Tom C. Korologos, Jeffrey A. Marcus (nomination not acted upon by the Senate) and Stephen Brauer – all non-career, political appointees.

Berlin? We had William Robert Timken, Jr., and Daniel R. Coats, who were political appointees under the Bush II Administration. A. Elizabeth Jones, a career diplomat whose nomination of Feb 22, 2000 was not acted upon by the Senate, and John C. Kornblum, also a career diplomat who was ambassador from 1997-2001 under the Clinton Administration.

New Delhi? We had David Mulford, Robert D. Blackwill and Richard Frank Celeste – all political appointees.

Beijing? We had Clark T. Randt, Jr. (2001-2009) during both Bush II terms and Joseph W. Prueher (1999-2001) under the second Clinton term. Both non-career appointees.

Tokyo? We had John Thomas Schieffer, Howard Baker, Jr. and Thomas S. Foley, all political appointees.

How about next door, in Ottawa? That’s David Wilkins and Argeo Paul Cellucci during the Bush II second and first term respectively and Gordon G. Giffin during Clinton’s second term. All non-career political appointees.

Where, oh where are the career diplomats going to get a break? Maybe Moscow? It gets kind of cold there…

Among these “first-tier” embassies mentioned, only Moscow had career diplomats assigned to it in the last four ambassadorial appointments between 1996-2008: John Beyrle, William J. Burns, Alexander P. Vershbow and James Franklin Collins.

There’s a rumor that Ambassador Beyrle may be asked to stay. Hmmn…. one out of nine is not that bad, is it? Wait! Wait! That’s only a rumor, don’t break the champagne yet. If the career folks get to keep Moscow and maybe another post like Berlin, then it is permissible to celebrate. It’s been awhile since they got 2 out of 9. But if the Spaso House in Moscow goes to Stephen Colbert – I think hyperventilating would be an understandable reaction.

What? Oh, the “last-tier” embassies? Don’t worry, they all go to career diplomats.