[Vision2020] Pay More Than Lip Service To Diplomacy (Bob Schieffer)

Tom Hansen thansen at moscow.com
Sun May 27 09:25:37 PDT 2007

>From Bob Schieffer's closing commentary of today's (May 27, 2007) "Face the
Nation" -


Pay More Than Lip Service To Diplomacy
By Bob Schieffer

I had breakfast the other day with the ambassador from one of America's
strongest and closest allies. We got to talking about Iraq and Vietnam, and
he asked me what I thought the great lessons of those years have been. 

I said, first, that we can help people but we can't do it for them, and,
second, that America leads best when it leads by example - when we
demonstrate how our system works by practicing what we preach, not by
resorting to the methods of those who oppose us. 

"May I suggest one more thing?" he asked. "That America is most successful
when it does not work alone, but with its friends." 

"America has the strongest economy in the world and without question the
most powerful military, but when it has tried to work alone, it has seldom
been able to work its will," he continued. "Yet when it has been able to
forge broad coalitions it has seldom failed." 

That is more than opinion. It's just a fact which makes me wonder, even at
this eleventh hour, shouldn't that be the focus of our Iraq policy? Bringing
together a broad coalition of western nations and Iraq's neighbors to
contain the war and pressure its warring factions to settle their

Instead, we have paid lip service to diplomacy, made the debate about
battlefield tactics and searched for a military solution to a political

So far, we haven't found one.


Seeya round town, Moscow.

Tom Hansen
Moscow, Idaho

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