Wednesday, June 16, 2004

Diplomats and Military Commanders for Change

As I anticipated in one of yesterday's post, today a bi-partisan group of 27 well-respected retired diplomats and military commanders, operating under the name Diplomats and Military Commanders for Change, issued a written statement strongly condemning the foreign and domestic policies of the Bush administration.

As quoted in the Washington Post, "Our security has been weakened," the former ambassadors and four-star commanders said in a statement read at a packed Washington news conference.

"Never in the two and a quarter centuries of our history has the United States been so isolated among the nations, so broadly feared and distrusted."

The article continues, "A consistent theme of the statement and the news conference at the National Press Club was that the Bush administration has taken steps that have alienated allies and undermined U.S. interests -- ultimately making the world a more dangerous place for Americans."

"Among those who signed the statement are Adm. William J. Crowe, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Ronald Reagan, and Marine Gen. Joseph P. Hoar, appointed by George H.W. Bush to lead U.S. forces in the Middle East."

Another notable signatory was Gen. Merrill A. "Tony" McPeak, "former U.S. Air Force chief of staff, said he was the Oregon chairman of Republican Bob Dole's presidential campaign in 1996 and joined Veterans for Bush in 2000. Now he is advising Kerry.

'This administration has gone away from me, not vice versa,' McPeak told reporters."

Among other more specific criticisms, the statement claims that the Bush administration "adopted an overbearing approach to America's role in the world, relying on military might and righteousness, insensitive to the concerns of traditional friends and allies, and disdainful of the United Nations. Motivated more by ideology than by reasoned analysis, it struck out on its own."

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