Sadly, the United States has't had a coherent foreign policy in nearly 25 years. The collapse of the Soviet Union and the many opportunities it offered us was never fully realized. As a result, we
have Mr. Putin (baby Statlin) trying to recapture the old glory of Russia through the only means he knows...brutal force. The Middle East, thanks largely to President George W. Bush, is a total mess. President Obama, after eight years, has literally accomplished nothing when it comes to major foreign policy successes. Instead of having a proactive approach to the World's problems, the Obama administration's actions have been reactive. Now, President-Elect Trump, with the possibility of appointing Mr. Giuliana as Secretary of State, is ready to throw the world and our allies into a state of total chaos. There are plenty of qualified people in the Republican Party and outside the party who would make wonderful Secretary of States. This is the most important appointment a President has to make. Let's hope President-Elect Trump does the right thing. Sadly, I wouldn't bet on it.
For much the same reasons, Newt Gingrich would also be a terrible choice and I'm glad he's not interested (he sees himself as an wise wan without portfolio). Much better among those considered would be John Bolton although he is tied to Bush's foreign policy. Retired Senator Coburn would be a much better choice, but no idea if he is even interested in un-retiring or working for Trump. A review of retired U.S. Senators reveals most are quite elderly.
IPresident Obama was elected in 2008. There, I remember seeing his face on the cover of a copy of Time magazine at a busy curbside newsstand. I felt especially proud again to be an American abroad, a proud citizen of the USA, as well as a citizen of the world.
I remember President Obama receiving the Nobel Peace prize when he quite literally had done nothing yet worthy of such an honor and yet, at that time, to many Americans, it felt right. Even though now I must admit that winning the prize then was wildly premature and inappropriate. Nonetheless, our nation had shed some of the over-the-top, self-serving post 911 attitude prevalent during the Bush years.
If Rudy Giuliani takes the office of Secretary of State, we will most certainly look at the Bush years as enlightened by comparison. Rudy has not demonstrated even the slightest bit of diplomatic skill. His world view is still rooted in the horrors of 911. No doubt he will reconstitute the worst possible aspects of our nations post 911 world.
We can be tough on trade deals and we can insist that our allies do their fair share in supporting global security without being a bully. Instead we can be tough, like Ronald Regan: Peace through strength; Trust but verify. There is nothing, absolutely nothing about Rudy Giuliani that even begins to project an image that will serve our nation well. We should reserve his bitter, sneering, snarl for right wing cable news punditry.
The positions President Elect Trump is filling are not gifts from a grateful billionaire, baubles to be passed out as pay-for-play for his most loyal campaign supporters willynilly - "Don't want to be Attorney General? How about Secretary of State? Don't like the sound of Secretary of Health and Human Services? Maybe Secretary of Education would be more to your liking.
These are the heart and soul, the nuts and bolts, the real actors on the real American stages, the deciders.
Which American lands will be preserved forever untouched and which will be decimated - pristine no more forever; what our kids will learn in school; "drill baby drill" or alternative energy; deregulation or protection; political prosecutions or not.
I know there is little we can do about many appointments from a procedural sense, but where there is we must oppose the most dangerous.
Where there is not, we must raise a hue and cry, in the media, in letter writing and e-mail and petitions and social media campaigns - and take to the streets if need be in peaceful protest - until cooler heads prevail and qualified, sane, moderate and competent Republicans who try to represent the interests of all Americans are put in those critical positions.
And if a crazy right wing fringe Cabinet member is still seated in this administration, we must watch them like a hawk, and be ready to raise the same h**l over specific actions - blocking them where possible.
We have work to do.