Tuesday, February 13, 2007

U.S. Agreement With North Korea Represents Failure Of Military Options For Bush Administration

The Bush Administration probably reluctantly signed on the six party agreement with North Korea as a result that the military options were off the table with the continued problems in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Some like former UN ambassador, John Bolton, are very unhappy with this political reality. But this is what it is.

The fact of the matter is the Bush administration came into power with dreams of wholesale regime changes for governments that it wanted to change in 2000 such as Iraq, Iran, Syria, Libya, Sudan and Somalia. But with military power so misused in the grossly failed mission in Iraq, and the continued problems in Afghanistan where NATO is still well short of supplying the promised needed manpower, there is no U.S. manpower really left over for the more serious nuclear issues with North Korea and Iran, so at some point diplomacy becomes the reality for both hostile nations.

In reality, previous administrations would have found diplomacy, not military action the first resort. With the Bush Administration, who flexed it's military muscle way too much in such a reckless manner from so early on, this option is now effectively off the table for many situations except for the most grave emergency.

The lesson in all of this is the wise use of the military option. For years with previous administrations, careful diplomacy, not war. with the old former Soviet Union had proved itself the right option. Not because of wisdom in the Bush Administration, but because of political reality, the diplomacy option, not the military one now becomes the first option for serious vexing foreign policy problems.

Some think that Mr. Bush is ramping up for another war with Iran. But this is not likely. His powder is likely to remain dry because he squandered the proper use of U.S. military power so early on. Now only a future role for some sort of negotiations or diplomacy remains.


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