The world is at a precarious inflection point.
I am having great difficulty focusing on the world when trump is walking free and has terrible plans for this country. I understand what’s going on else where it’s just too much to take in sometimes.
May we thank Secretary Antony Blinken and all those diplomats negotiating for peace in all corners of the world, behind closed doors, out of the reach of MSM who fight to keep our nation and our allies free of war in-so-far as possible. They work quietly and yet with great purpose and should be acknowledged for the work they do on behalf of the people of this and other sovereign nations around the world. They are not celebrated as their work is so very secretive but they must be here and now as we wish them success in their endeavors to calm an agitated world.
Dan and Eliot, you are correct to move at least some of our focus to the delicate dance of diplomacy going on, most of it, as you have pointed out, behind closed doors. The United States election is one year off, but the threat of war, possibly expanding to world war, is immediate, and at our doorstep. Thank you for this essay for assisting us to gain perspective.
I am impressed with efforts by Antony Blinken. Confirmed ambassadors in the area would make their combined efforts and influence much more effective
The diplomatic corps was decimated during trump's occupation of the WH. The current ambassador to China (Nick Burns) was a couple of years behind me in high school. I was able to hear him speak in Boston before the 2019 election and he gave such an interesting and impressive overview of the life of a career diplomat (in his case going on 40 years). The job is filled with a range of experiences that build the skill set to deal with leaders around the world. These men and women are truly the unsung heroes and we (as well as the world) are beyond fortunate to have that level of talent working for peaceful solutions to immensely difficult problems. One observation I made is when Nick and I spoke one-on-one (and he didn't know me from Adam!), I was the only person in the room, immediately put at ease, and the conversation was not about him-we talked about the 'ole home town and how things have changed. He did that with each and every person he spoke with.
I was taught in high school that one of the major reasons for the establishment of the UN was to provide a forum for nations' verbal conflicts so that diplomacy has a better chance of success. Basically because all sides are heard in a rules based setting. The people who deride this function ignore it's proven ability over the years to sucessfully help to defuse dangerous and difficult situation. Thanks for your reminder that diplomacy, although difficult and time consuming, defangs aggression as well. Excellent observation. I do like to hear your comments from your work as a journalist.
Make no mistake, what Hamas has done was and remains horrific. Hamas has victimized and used/abused its own people. Using people’s homes, offices and hospitals as cover. It’s cowardly and sickening.
Let’s also remember, Bibi has preferred to ignore Hamas for >15-years. He’s continued to antagonize them through illegal settlement expansion. He’s not tried negotiating a two state agreement. The latter is not just his fault because how do you negotiate with someone who thinks your very existence should end.
This region of the world has a deep and complex history. Generations carry the memories of the past. Sadly, instead of doing the hard work of diplomacy, what we’re seeing now is merely the infection of a new generation of terrorists.
Hamas, like Al Queda will never disappear. It will only morph into something different, perhaps worse.
There is no easy answer to this issue.
Dan, I think it's worth noting and absent from your piece, The war on Gaza did not start on October 7, 2023. No, Zionist Israel started it 75 years ago to "found" Zionist Israel when armed Zionists from Europe stormed Palestine, massacring and destroying more than 400 villages and cities, forced at gunpoint 6-750,000 Palestinians out of their own nation, and Zionist Israel has brutalized Palestinians and murdered thousands upon thousands of Palestinians for these past 75 years. Moreover, Zionist Israel's brutal military has occupied what little remains of Palestine for 60 years and has committed genocide, ethnic cleansing, racism and, yes Dan, has continued to terrorize Palestinians in Gaza, West Bank and East Jerusalem. All of this Islam-hate and "deplomacy" funded $3.8 billion yearly to Israel for weapons to continue massacring Palestinians. President Biden, proclaims himself a "Zionist." Little wonder why he is shoveling yet another $14.3 billion into the hands of Zionist Israel funding its wholesale genicide in Gaza.
Permit me to suggest, Dan, that your readers study the following truth about American "Deplomacy:
What US media is missing in Israel’s war on Gaza...and why it matters
THE GAZA SIEGE: A HARSH SPOTLIGHT ON THE WEST’S MORAL BANKRUPTCY
Give us the wisdom to seek the paths of justice and peace.
“ War, what is it good for?;
“ Rules of war” sounds like an oxymoron.
By now, after thousands of years, you’d think the world wound be weary of war. Mankind has been bashing one another with rocks, sticks, arrows, bullets and bombs almost from Day One.
Cain slew Abel and tried hiding his murder from God. When God, presumably not practicing omniscience ( again), asked Cain if he knew Abel’s whereabouts. Which drew that great, ever enduring response “ Am I my brother’s keeper?”
Ideally we all are our Brother’s and Sister’s Keeper. Haven’t done a very good job over the millennia.
Jews have had the awful misfortune of being one of mankind’s most maligned groups.
The genesis (pardon the pun) of antisemitism has yet to be explained satisfactorily.
As an African American I relate on a deep level to the oppression of Jews. It’s an awful awful awful feeling being hated because of the human group you were born into.
There’s an old blues song with the line “ What did I do to be so Black and blue?”
I’m sure our Jewish neighbors must ask
“ What did I do to be hated ‘ cause I’m a Jew’”
If God had answered Cain “ Yes, you are your Brother’s Keeper. Keep him” maybe the world would be a very different place.
Jesus tried encouraging people to love one another. To keep one another. To treat each other as we want to be treated. We all know what happened….
We’ve been told for centuries the “ end times” would be marked by wars and rumors of wars.
In my 75 years the “ end times” have come and gone many times.
Rules of war is an oxymoron. Humans have never played nice in wars.
Dan, I have a dystopian worry about the Tuberville military promotion holds: He's trying to gum up the works to clear the field for highly politicized appointments by Trump. Effectively turbo-charging the dystopian "Project 2025". Stephen Miller's plan to create a patriarchy ruled by guys like him. Could this be true?
I support President Biden and will vote for him but the United States has given Israel Carte Blanche for way too many years. The attack was tragic but the response even more from a humanitarian standpoint.
I hope for the survival of our species.
I hope that we become willing to use our most basic survival skills of being able to communicate, cooperate, and negotiate to overcome our individual and collective greed for commodities and power.
A strong, capable State Department is so essential ... and needed much strengthening after DJT's term. Diplomacy seems mandatory for all nations if the world is to successfully deal with climate change.
You didn't mention the diplomacy needed to solve global warming. 'The 2023 state of the climate report: Entering uncharted territory". Where we are failing miserably, the result of which is inevitable wars over livable land, food, and water. It is a beautiful sunny day in the Pacific Northwest. I'll enjoy it while I eat my tofu.
Thank you for bringing into the discussion the undervalued, quiet global work done by our diplomats. With our military forces stationed near to the Middle East, in the Straits of Taiwan, and on call in case of need in the Ukraine, our diplomats are busy working toward resolution and the ending of violence in multiple theaters. Our enemies are on alert for opportunities to weaken the USA. There are just too many players with different agendas in each of these conflicts for the success of reasonable resolutions. I am hopeful that the Israeli government and the leadership of Hamas will agree to the current proposal for the return of 50 kidnapped women and children in exchange for a multiple day pause in the war, humanitarian supplies, and the release of some Palestinians imprisoned in Israel. If this arrangement works, perhaps diplomacy can develop a longer lasting pause with the return of all the hostages kidnapped by Hamas. If not, then what does the world expect from Israel? The nations of the world allowed too much time waiting to know the true intentions of Hitler and the Third Reich. Millions of innocent people were murdered even before the US military got the upper hand in the Pacific war and could start the offensive in Europe. By then, it was too late to stop the ethnic cleansing of Jews in Europe. So in conclusion, I see four issues:
1- The nation of Israel takes full responsibility for the protection of its people because it must.
2- Palestinians must have their own nation to govern for the protection of its people and accept wholeheartedly the right of Israel to exist.
3- Hamas has demonstrated its inability to forego violence and butchery and must be destroyed
4- The other nations of the Middle East must support the efforts to assure the safety of Israel and the establishment of a contiguous Palestinian nation.