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Archive for the ‘Secretary of State’ Category

From December 1990 to September 1997, Mary Robinson was President of Ireland.  She was succeeded by Mary McAleese who served from November 1997 to November 2011.  An entire generation in Ireland grew up under women presidents. That is remarkable. Éirinn go Brách!

These bios are from Wikipedia,

By World Economic Forum from Cologny, Switzerland – Cropped from File:Mary Robinson World Economic Forum 2013 , original source The Moral Economy: From Social Contract to Social Covenant: Mary Robinson, CC BY-SA 2.0,

Mary Therese Winifred Robinson (née Bourke; Irish: Máire Bean Mhic Róibín;[3] born 21 May 1944 in Ballina, County Mayo) served as the seventh, and first female, President of Ireland from 1990 to 1997, and the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, from 1997 to 2002.

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By Chancellery of the President of the Republic of Poland

Mary Patricia McAleese (/mækəˈls/; née Leneghan; Irish: Máire Pádraigín Mhic Ghiolla Íosa;[1] born 27 June 1951) served as the eighth President of Ireland from 1997 to 2011. She was the second female president and was first elected in 1997 succeeding Mary Robinson, making McAleese the world’s first woman to succeed another as president.[2] She was re-elected unopposed for a second term in office in 2004.[3] McAleese is the first President of Ireland to have come from either Northern Ireland or Ulster.[4]

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Other women presidents:  This website is celebrating five women presidents in honor of Women’s History Month and this Wikipedia page has an exhaustive list of female heads of state: List of elected and appointed female heads of state.

As for the United States, well … we’re not there … yet, but Hillary Clinton had a good week.  Mary Robinson was preceded in office by President Patrick Hillery. Maybe we will have the luck of the Irish!  May the wind be ever at her back!

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, right, is greeted by Ireland's President Mary McAleese and her husband Martin at Aras an Uachtarain in Dublin, Ireland as part of her five day tour of Europe Sunday Oct. 11, 2009. (AP Photo/Niall Carson/PA Wire) ** UNITED KINGDOM OUT NO SALES NO ARCHIVE **

US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, right, is greeted by Ireland’s President Mary McAleese and her husband Martin at Aras an Uachtarain in Dublin, Ireland as part of her five day tour of Europe Sunday Oct. 11, 2009. (AP Photo/Niall Carson/PA Wire)

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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U.S. Forming ‘Coordination Cell’ in Nigeria to Find Abducted Girls

… just hours before Kerry spoke on Tuesday, a report was released that eight more girls have been kidnapped from a village near one of the Islamists’ strongholds in northeastern Nigeria overnight, according to police and residents. The girls were aged 12 to 15.

Lazarus Musa, a resident of the village of Warabe, told Reuters that armed men had opened fire during the raid.

“They were many, and all of them carried guns. They came in two vehicles painted in army color. They started shooting in our village,” Musa said by telephone from the village in the hilly Gwoza area, Boko Haram’s main base.

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Condoleeza Rice requires no introduction from me.  Her resumé accompanies her name.  When I read, last week, that Rutgers faculty voted to disinvite her from speaking at commencement where she is to be bestowed a doctor of laws degree, my first reaction was rather liberal arts.   All sides deserve a hearing.   Why silence this one?

On further reflection, and upon reading reports about this faculty vote, I wondered how,  if  Condi is so “heavily political”,  any politician could ever be invited to speak at any Rutgers event again without the double-standard card coming up.

French professor François Cornilliat criticized Rice’s selection as “heavily political”, asserting that “our students are being manipulated to deliver a political point.”

Mon Dieu!  This sounded  like 1950-something!  As if Alger Hiss had been invited.  (But, then, French departments have a habit of being behind the times.)

What is a liberal arts education if it forbids light to be shed on one side of the spectrum?  Either side?  And how, given this dictum and precedent,  does Rutgers ever host or bestow honors on any politician again?

No stranger to campus politics,  I concluded that the faculty had shot itself in the foot.  Good luck ever getting Hillary Clinton,  I thought.   Y’all just slammed that door closed – and locked it!

Seems I am not the only one who saw this implication.

Memo to Rutgers: Don’t Boycott Condi Now If You Won’t Boycott Hillary Later

When it comes to Iraq, don’t selectively throw shade.

Posted: March 8 2014 1:08 PM

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Condoleezza Rice; Hillary Clinton
FILES/AFP/Getty Images; FILES/AFP/Getty Images

Put me down as a skeptic when it comes to Condoleezza Rice.

Although she’s generally applauded for her barrier-breaking career in public service, as the first African-American woman to serve as secretary of state and national security adviser, “her signature ‘achievement’ in public life,” as I wrote a couple of years ago, “was co-signing Bush’s 2003 invasion of Iraq—one of the worst foreign policy blunders in American history.”

It’s not exactly a great resume item, and it’s probably why she’s faded from view.

And while I wouldn’t put it quite the way they did, I also can’t really argue with the criticism offered earlier this week by the Rutgers University faculty council, who said Rice “played a prominent role in [the Bush] administration’s effort to mislead the American people about the presence of weapons of mass destruction” in Iraq.

It’s why they’re urging their administration to replace Rice, who’s keynoting this year’s Rutgers commencement ceremony—which is their prerogative—and they’ve got every right to feel strongly about the issue. A lot of folks probably agree with them.

Rice, of course, maintains that she made the best judgment she could at the time, acknowledging in retrospect that she and her colleagues “could have done better.”

But whether or not the Rutgers faculty accepts Rice’s version of events, if they’re prepared to snub her at this point, then down the road they might also want to prepare to snub Hillary Clinton, because she, too, co-signed the invasion of Iraq.

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At the time she cast that vote I agreed with her thinking – believing that it was right to accord those powers as she defined them.  I still stand by her words on that vote at that time.  I have never had a problem with that vote as it stood then.

If Condoleeza Rice is too heavily political and thereby should be banned from campus events, who is not?  Who can speak at Rutgers now?  Anyone?  Anyone?  Bueller?

I have another question about all of this. If the chosen speaker had been  Colin Powell, would the opposition have been as formidable?  Or would the boys club in the faculty lounge just have given him the pass?

Danke shön!  Thank you, Rutgers,  for shedding light on the state of faculty mentality.

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Cross-posted at Still4Hill.

Offline most of the day, I was unaware that Charles Krauthammer’s nasty and misleading attack on Hillary Clinton had buzzed around the interwebs all morning.   You would think, from reading his words, that Hillary Clinton blamed the video for the attack on the Benghazi consulate that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three others.  That was his implication. That was not the case.  She did make a reference to that video in the context of demonstrations at several U.S. Embassies in the region.  She did not, however,  tie that video to the attack on the consulate as she spoke at Andrews AFB beside the caskets on September 14.  In fact, quoting Mahmoud Abbas,  she referred to it as an act of terror.   I hope that before people believe a misrepresentation of what she said, they will read her words and/or watch the video.

Hillary Clinton at the Transfer of Remains Ceremony to Honor Those Lost in Attacks in Benghazi, Libya

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A friend and former colleague of Huma Abedin (profiled here last week)  my favorite political analyst, Karen Finney  at The Hill,  has taken on Michele Bachmann and her crazy allegations.  Karen correctly points out the dangerous direct impact Bachmann & Co. are having on our fragile relationships with newly democratic Arab states.  Those who pelted Hillary Clinton’s car with tomatoes and shoes in Egypt believed allegations they read on blogs by Frank Gaffney and Lucianne Goldberg.  Michele Bachmann and her minions have endangered our Head Homegirl, Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Karen Finney rightly and justifiably calls for her to be removed from her post on the Intelligence Committee.  We applaud Karen’s strong defense of Huma, her loyal concern for  Hillary Clinton, and her firm demand for Bachmann to answer for her dangerous claims. (I am filing this under “violence against women” among other categories because of the true physical danger this insanity poses to our hard-working Secretary of State and her Deputy Chief of Staff.)

So!  Once again the homegirls and boys here in the  Hillaryhood say “Go Karen!  You rock!”

Punish Bachmann

By Karen Finney – 07/23/12 06:51 PM ET
During Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s recent trip to Egypt, protesters threw shoes and tomatoes at the motorcade because they believe the Obama administration rigged recent elections to ensure the Muslim Brotherhood’s candidate, Mohammed Morsi (now elected president), would win, all part of a secret pro-Islamist agenda. Reports indicated protesters cited American blogs like Lucianne.com (founded by conservative Lucianne Goldberg, who played a role in the Monica Lewinsky scandal); former Reagan administration official Frank Gaffney, known for his theory that the Muslim Brotherhood is trying to impose Islamic Shariah Law and infiltrate the American government; as well as recent claims by Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) that the Obama administration has been infiltrated by loyalists to the Muslim Brotherhood, specifically naming Huma Abedin, deputy chief of staff to Secretary Clinton, and that billions of American dollars had been paid to the Muslim Brotherhood rather than aid to the Egyptian military.
SNIP
Bachmann and the others who signed on to her call for an investigation have abused their position as members of the House of Representatives, making baseless accusations that recklessly jeopardize an already tense situation in the Middle East, and endangering the life of an American secretary of State and Americans in the region by stoking anti-American sentiment.

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What a great way to kick off Women’s History Month!  If you possess the required skills set and the time, you can help change the world by helping another women who has  a good idea!

We all know that improving conditions, power, and representation for women and girls is the signature issue of our Homegirl-in-Chief.  So if you can qualify, go for it!  You just might make a few new friends and even learn some interesting things yourself!

U.S. Department of State’s TechWomen Initiative Now Accepting Applications for American Mentors

Media Note

Office of the Spokesperson
Washington, DC
March 1, 2012

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs announced today that TechWomen – an international exchange that uses technology as a means to empower women and girls worldwide – is now accepting applications from American women in the technology sector to serve as professional and cultural mentors. Candidates may apply at http://www.techwomen.org/get-involved/ beginning today.

In September 2012, these American “TechWomen” will mentor 42 women from Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco, the Palestinian Territories, Tunisia, and Yemen during a five-week program at U.S.-based technology companies in Silicon Valley and the greater San Francisco Bay Area. Click here to learn more about serving as a TechWomen mentor.

Following the U.S. portion of the exchange, U.S. mentors will travel to Jordan and Tunisia to conduct workshops and follow-on training for women in the technology sector and young girls who have expressed an interest in pursuing a tech-based career.

Launched by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton in 2011, TechWomen builds on her vision of “smart power” diplomacy. It embraces the full range of diplomatic tools, in this case technology, to bring people together for greater understanding and empower women and girls worldwide.

The U.S. Department of State partners with the Institute of International Education and the Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology. It is a public-private partnership in which more than 20 leading U.S. companies participated by hosting international TechWomen during the 2011 inaugural program.

Stay tuned for updates on Twitter @TechWomen.

Media contact: Talley Sergent U.S. Department of State at SergentRT@state.gov.

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I guess this comes under the heading: Sh*t happens. Obama’s campaign sent this to the blogger known as “Still4Hill.” How presumptive can they be?

2012
Friend —

I’m James Kvaal, the new policy director for President Obama’s 2012 campaign. You’ll be hearing from me occasionally about the President’s policies and those of our opponents, and how we can all help bring about change for our country.Yesterday, we accomplished one major change when President Obama announced that all American troops in Iraq will be home before the holidays.With that action, the Iraq war will end. And one of the President’s central promises will have been kept.Both as Americans and as supporters of President Obama, this is something for us to reflect on, and be proud of.

Watch the video of the President’s announcement — then please pass this on:

The war in Iraq was a divisive, defining issue in our country for nearly nine years, and was the catalyst for many Americans to get involved in politics for the first time.

Now, thanks to the actions of this President, we can say that conflict is coming to a close.

The end of this war reflects a larger transition in our foreign policy as, in the President’s words, “the tide of war is receding.” The drawdown in Iraq has allowed us to refocus on the fight against al Qaeda, even as we begin to bring troops home from Afghanistan. And of course, this week also marked the definitive end of the Qaddafi regime in Libya.

These outcomes are an example of what happens when a leader sets a plan and sees it through. In the last campaign, the President committed to getting American troops home while leaving behind a stable and secure Iraq. You rallied around that vision, and now that promise has been fulfilled.

On behalf of this campaign and supporters of the President across the country, I want to thank the more than 1 million Americans who have served in Iraq, and all those who worked to make this possible.

Thanks,

James

James Kvaal
Policy Director
Obama for America

Paid for by Obama for America

Here is my reply.

James –

I am a blogger associated with Team Hillary Clinton. My first question is why you would send a Barack Obama campaign email to somebody named “Still4Hill.” It seems that ought to imply who my 2012 candidate is. Were that not the case I might have changed my name to “Was4Hill” or something like that. But this is beside the point.

Seriously, James. The war is over? But not quite yet, not until December 31. The transparency promised by the Obama team in 2008 has been as clear as mud until recently. “Ending” the war in Iraq is as obviously political as are all the public appearances exhorting the public to contact representatives to tell them to support the jobs bills. There is one job that is meant to protect and preserve – Mr. Obama’s.

What strategic or tactical event precipitates this mighty finish to our long slog through Iraq? Nothing! Most tellingly, it is evidently not that “over” since the official end does not take place until the end of the year. This is misleading, purely political nonsense. It obscures the truth: that the American presence remains at great expense to Americans. This is a chess move.

Declaring the war over, Obama shifted operations in Iraq from the Pentagon to the poorly funded State Department. Protection of civilian State Department and USAID staff now falls to extremely expensive and poorly regulated contractors. If this declaration of peace were anything other than political, a wise president would have made sure that the State Department had a fully funded and trained civil security arm. There is such a body, but it is miniscule in contrast to the numbers of troops being pulled out. A responsible president would have bulked it up first, before declaring “peace.”

Now it is up to our diligent and assiduous Secretary of State to manage an almost impossible post-war program for which Congress is certain to cut rather than improve funding. Nice move.

Obama is the most disastrous president I have witnessed in my life. Worse than Nixon. This move by him is real clear politics. It reminds me of this and is about as true.

Good luck in your new position,

Still4Hill

Team Hillary Clinton

HillaryHood

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