Ultima Thule

In ancient times the northernmost region of the habitable world - hence, any distant, unknown or mysterious land.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

Rice admits U.S. underestimated Hamas strength

By Aussiegirl

Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice made a series of unbelievably naive, inconsistent and just plain idiotic statements today in response to questions about how the administration could have failed so miserably to foresee the possibility of a Hamas victory. There's just no polite way to put it -- this woman is out to lunch and appears to not even be in touch with reality. I know I should probably be measured and temperate in my comments, like a good political commentator -- hedging my bets and taking the yes, but on the other hand this attitude. But there's no way about it, this was an unmitigated failure of vision and intelligence -- both of the intel variety and the plain and simply smarts variety. If this were a Japan she should hand in her resignation in complete disgrace and offer the country and the world an apology for her incompetence.

How could any savvy Secretary of State utter such inanities as the following. It's just plain embarrassing. What they underestimated is not the hostility among Palestinians towards their longtime leaders, they underestimated the Palestinians hatred of Israel and the Jews. A hatred which will now consume them, and perhaps even involve the region in a much more dangerous and wider war. So much for democracy and the rosy two-state scenario.

"I've asked why nobody saw it coming," Ms. Rice said, speaking of her own staff. "It does say something about us not having a good enough pulse."

Ms. Rice pointed out that the election results surprised just about everyone. "I don't know anyone who wasn't caught off guard by Hamas's strong showing," she said on her way to London for meetings on the Middle East, Iran and other matters. "Some say that Hamas itself was caught off guard by its strong showing."

Ms. Rice told reporters that she was convinced of the wisdom of instilling democracy in the Middle East. Elections have brought into office anti-American Islamic radicals in Egypt, Lebanon and Iran, but Ms. Rice said the alternative was trying to bottle up seething anger in the region that could lead to more terrorist attacks in the West.

"There is a huge transition going on in the Middle East, as a whole and in its parts," she said. "The outcomes that we're seeing in any number of places, I will be the first to say, have a sense of unpredictability about them. That's the nature of big historic change. It's simply the way it is."

Rice Admits U.S. Underestimated Hamas Strength - New York Times


At 7:47 AM, Blogger stickman said...

I don't find it all that disconcerting that a) we failed to predict the outcome of an election, and b)our Secretary of State is admitting this failure; I also don't see Hamas' victory as a bad thing for the West.

We can't even predict outcomes of our own elections, and "intelligence" is produced constantly and in huge volume in the form of polls.

As to Hamas' victory......No more ambiguity in reading Palestinians' motives. The wall is now justified. Any agression is now official state policy and can be construed to be an act of war. An attack on Hamas' principal ally's nuclear weapons is now legitimized. Iran now has to plan to act, instead of talk.


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