Posted: 1:23 am ET
State/HR recently sent a Frequently Asked Questions to newly promoted OCs concerning the differences between being an FS-01, the highest rank in the regular Foreign Service, and as OC, the starter rank in the Senior Foreign Service. The FAQ talks about pay, bidding, EERs, benefits, and of course, promotions. And then there’s this question, and apparent answer:
Q: When are promotions from FS-01 to OC effective?
Answer: Promotion boards issue a list in the fall of officers “recommended” for promotion from FS-01 to OC, OC to MC and MC to CM. However, all promotions into and within the Senior Foreign Service must be vetted by the White House, confirmed by the Senate and attested by the President. This process can take several months. Promotions into and within the SFS are effective the first pay period following Presidential attestation. However, you may start bidding as an OC as soon as the promotion list is released by the board.
Yo! You know this is nuts, right? The White House can barely vet its own staffers, and it will now vet all promotions of FSOs into and within the Senior Foreign Service? With one exception that we are aware of (and we’ll write about that case separately), this WH vetting requirement is new, and yes, we remember the “improved” vetting required by the SFRC back in 2015 (SFRC Bullies Diplomats Up For Promotion to Self-Certify They Have Not Been Convicted of Any Crime). Is the WH also vetting all senior promotions out of the Pentagon? Who’s going to be doing this and what does this vetting includes? Also whose great idea was this, pray tell? Will State/HR and A/DGHR soon say that this vetting has always been done by the White House since the beginning of whatevs?
Posted: 12:10 am ET
On March 26, the U.S. Embassy in The Hague officially opened with a ribbon cutting ceremony and lots of scissors. The officials listed below helped cut the ribbon according to the embassy website.
- Minister of Social Affairs and Employment Wouter Koolmees
- Mayor Frank Koen of the city of Wassenaar
- Mayor Pauline Krikke of the city of The Hague
- Ambassador Peter Hoekstra
- Ambassador Kenneth D. Ward, United States Permanent Representative to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)
- Ambassador William Moser, the Principal Deputy Director of the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations
- Representative Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ), Chairman, U.S. House Committee on Appropriations
- Representative Bill Huizenga (R-MI), Co-Chair, Congressional Caucus on the Netherlands
- Representative Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Ranking Member, U.S. House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia and Emerging Threats
- Representative John Carter (R-TX), Chairman, U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security
- Representative Lloyd Doggett (D-TX), Ranking Member, U.S. House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Tax Policy
- Executive Director of the EUR-IO/EX Director Robert S. Needham
One person missing is Nicole Nason, the Assistant Secretary for Administration (A), and as of last week, the person apparently also now in charge of the Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations (OBO). See her one-line official bio here as “A” overseeing twelve offices and OBO (currently unlisted).
— US Embassy The Hague (@usembthehague) March 26, 2018
All the best to @usembthehague & @usambnl in your new Embassy in Wassenaar. We look forward to continue the long-lasting relationship between the United States and the Netherlands! 🇳🇱🇺🇸 #Diplomacy pic.twitter.com/uoGoX1AqR2
— Netherlands Embassy 🇺🇸 (@NLintheUSA) March 26, 2018
En de ambassade is geopend. pic.twitter.com/4sBjwIfHoL
— Maarten Brakema (@Abrakemabra) March 26, 2018
Posted: 12:06 am ET
— U.S. Embassy London (@USAinUK) March 27, 2018
Tonight we're lighting up our embassy in patriotic red, white and blue as we welcome friends to celebrate our new home in London! pic.twitter.com/hafjB2i4E4
— Ambassador Johnson (@USAmbUK) March 27, 2018
Spectacular new US Embassy opens officially in Nine Elms: 1,000 workers, wonderful Thames views and, I’m guessing, only pub on American diplomatic estate. Cultural sensitivity @USAmbUK pic.twitter.com/VD53042BHL
— Sir Simon McDonald (@SMcDonaldFCO) March 27, 2018
Delighted to be at the official opening of London’s new and impressive US Embassy. Attended by so many from both sides of the Atlantic who make the enduring, deep and special relationship real. @USAmbUK pic.twitter.com/aoBEfadUwC
— Tobias Ellwood (@Tobias_Ellwood) March 27, 2018