Prince Talleyrand Talks “Not getting hands dirty” and Hostage Diplomacy with US Senate

 

Via Prince Tallleyrand (retired statesman) with commentary on diplomacy and world affairs and goes by ‘surtout, pas trop de zèle’ by way of introduction:
“So far as one can tell, there are no major diplomatic initiatives, negotiations, or plans awaiting delivery. Those boxes are ticked, with one botched announcement of a submarine deal with Australia and Britain, and another, more badly botched withdrawal from Afghanistan. The president and the secretary did not escape criticism in those instances but neither man got his hands too dirty.
Not getting hands dirty so far appears to be the main principle at play. There is an effort being waged by a special envoy, a boyhood friend of the secretary, to salvage the Iranian nuclear deal. There is another effort waged by a special envoy, a diplomat pulled out of retirement, to keep a larger regional conflict from breaking out in East Africa. There is yet another effort waged by a special envoy, the director of the Central Intelligence Agency, to stand between Russia and Ukraine as the two nations threaten to go to war. There is another such envoy, a holdover from previous administrations, overseeing diplomacy towards Iraq and Syria. And there is John Kerry shuttling around the world battling climate change.
About the only major effort engaging the highest levels of the administration directly is its hostage diplomacy with the US Senate over the confirmation of presidential nominees.”
Hostage diplomacy, indeed! My favorite post remain that thing about porcupines and strategic ambiguity.
Read more here.