I was quite surprised today when Pony Blow claimed that Condi’s little trip to Rome (which left her shedding tears of frustration) resulted in several “significant victories”.
Speaking of which, it’s probably worth opening at least a little bit, and then we’ll get to questions, with a little bit of perspective on what did and did not happen in Rome. I’ve seen a number of press accounts describing this as not going anywhere, and as a matter of fact, there were significant victories achieved in Rome.
Ed Chen of the LA Times was surprised as well.
Q I just want to follow up on you saying that Secretary Rice had significant victories in Rome. How can you say that when she came away with no cease-fire? And also —
MR. SNOW: Because —
Q — we’re hearing she’s going back probably within the next few days. So she — the job is not done.
MR. SNOW: Because, Ed, you’re laboring under the presumption that she was supposed to come with a magic wand and say a cease-fire. What she has said is, what on earth is the good of having another empty-handed cease-fire in the Middle East? What is the purpose of having something that is not enforceable at this juncture and is not realistic? The purpose —
Q It was —
MR. SNOW: No, because — I want to push back a little bit, because the presumption was, it wasn’t success unless you had a cease-fire.
Then Chen struck at the hypocritical heart of the Assministration’s position on a cease-fire in Lebanon.
Q Yes, but you just said a moment ago that it would be — it would not be an enforceable cease-fire. How do you know until you have a cease-fire? Why not get a cease-fire, and then if Hezbollah does not follow it, the world community sees that they’re to blame.
MR. SNOW: In other words, why not — because we are — because what you’re asking for is a PR move rather than a strategic move. The question of why not —
Q Why would it be PR if people are not dying?
MR. SNOW: No, no, no, wrong. Again, Hezbollah is firing, what, 150, 200 rockets a day. Do you seriously believe they’re going to stop if somebody in Rome says there’s going to be a cease-fire?
Q Nobody knows until you do it, right?
MR. SNOW: No, no, no, don’t play “what if.” That is naive, Ed, it’s naive.
Q You’re playing “what if” by saying it’s not enforceable. You don’t know that. Nobody knows that.
MR. SNOW: Yes, we do. Yes, we do. Yes, we do.
Q Well, then, if it’s not enforceable, at that point, the whole world will see Hezbollah is not playing by the same —
MR. SNOW: How many times do peace efforts have to fail? Do you really — apparently, what you’re saying is it didn’t make us happy because we expected a cease-fire. What Secretary Rice went for was to get people to roll up their sleeves and take a realistic look at the region. And that’s important.
Obsession continues, Read More…
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