From the Washington Post:
Karen Hughes, the longtime aide to President Bush, announced her resignation as undersecretary of state yesterday, after two bumpy years in which she overhauled the U.S. approach to public diplomacy but did not make major progress in improving America’s image abroad, according to current and former U.S. officials and Middle East experts.
Back to Lone Star State she goes, following in the footsteps of the rest of the Texas
Original DVD cover.
Public opinion polls show that the image of the United States has declined dramatically in the Muslim world, and elsewhere overseas, during Bush’s presidency. The numbers have not improved during Hughes’s two-year stint — and in some cases have gotten worse.
But Hughes used her close connection with Bush and a strong partnership with Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to push through substantial institutional changes at the State Department, win large increases in the budget for public diplomacy, increase cultural exchanges and expand partnerships with American corporations aimed at bolstering the U.S. image overseas, U.S. officials and outside experts said.
Expand partnerships with corporations? The Chimpy maladministration? Oh, silly me, I forgot that corporations will fix everything.
Hughes had a rough beginning. The Arab media ridiculed her for statements she made during her maiden voyage to the Middle East in September 2005, which some experts thought indicated a lack of depth in foreign policy.
“I am a mom, and I love kids,” Hughes declared in Ankara, Turkey, in September 2005 in an apparent attempt to connect with Muslim audiences. Explaining U.S. goals for Palestinians, she said they were “to have the experience of having children and families.”
Reviewing her trip, the Arab News said Hughes was “painfully clueless.” Al-Jazeera labeled Hughes “the marquee clown [in] America’s circus diplomacy.”
From the Houston Chronicle:
White House press secretary Dana Perino said Hughes told Bush — her “very, very close friend” — as far back as the summer that she would need to be back home in Texas by the end of the year. The president was sad to hear the news, but understood, Perino said.
spokesmodel Dana, tell the truth. She isn’t his very, very close friend; she’s the mother he never had! When she quit and went back to Texas the last time, he called her 4 times a day! Now, it will be it will be up to Condi entirely to make sure Chimpy’s bib is fastened correctly and that he doesn’t fall out of his high chair.
spokesmodelPerino] praised Hughes’ performance, despite persistently low opinions of the United States globally, particularly in the Muslim countries where she was supposed to concentrate her efforts.
Announcing Hughes’ decision to leave the department in mid-December, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said she had accepted the resignation “with a great deal of sadness[…]
Of course you’re sad, Condi! You don’t have that maternal instinct, and I bet you hate having to be the one who will have to read Chimpy his bedtime stories now.
Bush and Rice had picked Hughes two years ago to retool the way the United States sells its policies, ideals and views overseas. A former television reporter and media adviser, Hughes’ focus has been to change the way the United States engages and responds to criticism or misinformation in the Muslim world.
“Negative events never help,” Hughes said when asked how events like last month’s shooting of Iraqi civilians by private U.S. security guards [Blackwater] in Iraq affects the way the world sees the United States.
She nearly doubled the public diplomacy budget, to nearly $900 million annually, and sent U.S. sports stars Michelle Kwan and Cal Ripken Jr. abroad as unofficial diplomats.
Polls show no improvement in the world’s view of the U.S. since Hughes took over. A Pew Research Center survey earlier said the unpopular Iraq war is a persistent drag on the U.S. image and has helped push favorable opinion of the United States in Muslim Indonesia, for instance, from 75 percent in 2000 to 30 percent last year.
First, remarks like, “Negative events never help,” and she sent Michelle Kwan and Cal Ripken, Jr. out as diplomats? I bet ice-skating and baseball are huge in the desert! The woman is fucking brilliant!! Heckuva job,
evil bitch Karen!?