Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Rice returns to the Scowcroft way

Rice Speaks Softly in Egypt, Avoiding Democracy Push - New York Times:
Ms. Rice, who once lectured Egyptians on the need to respect the rule of law, did not address those domestic concerns. Instead, with Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit by her side, she talked about her appreciation for Egypt’s support in the region.

It was clear that the United States — facing chaos in Iraq, rising Iranian influence and the destabilizing Israeli-Palestinian conflict — had decided that stability, not democracy, was its priority, Egyptian political commentators, political aides and human rights advocates said.
She's come a long way, apparently returning to her old mentor's realism:
The relationship between Scowcroft and the Bushes is not the only complicated one in this story. Condoleezza Rice was Scowcroft’s protégée. What happened there?

Condoleezza Rice started her public career as an aide to Scowcroft, and was firmly in the realist camp. But she switched Bushes, in a sense, becoming closer to the son than to the father; the son has a different view of the world, and now so does Rice. From what I understand, Rice believes now that the realists’ preoccupation with stability over democratic change brought us to September 11th, and now she’s committed to the idea of transforming countries into democracies, rather than dealing with their governments as they are. There is, of course, merit to that argument. There is also merit to Scowcroft’s argument that America shouldn’t rush into these sorts of programs haphazardly.
These youngsters these days, always thinking they know better...