If Condi doesn’t move her office to Baghdad, I will be personally offended!

WASHINGTON (AP) — The State Department is warning U.S. diplomats they may be forced to serve in Iraq next year and says it will soon start identifying prime candidates for jobs at the Baghdad embassy and outlying provinces, according to a cable obtained by The Associated Press.

A similar call-up notice last year caused an uproar among foreign service officers, some of whom objected to compulsory work in a war zone, although in the end the State Department found enough volunteers to fill the jobs.

Now, the State Department anticipates another staffing crisis.


Original DVD cover.

“We face a growing challenge of supply and demand in the 2009 staffing cycle,” the cable said, noting that more than 20 percent of the nearly 12,000 foreign service officers have already worked in the two major hardship posts — Iraq and Afghanistan — and a growing number have done tours in both countries.

As a result, the unclassified April 8 cable says, “the prime candidate exercise will be repeated” next year, meaning the State Department will begin identifying U.S. diplomats qualified to serve in Iraq and who could be forced to work there if they don’t volunteer.

…snip…

The cable describes how the department will fill upcoming vacancies at hardship posts like those Iraq and Afghanistan — although it doesn’t plan to force any Afghanistan assignments. Diplomats will “bid,” or apply, for positions in the war zones that will be advertised in May. After that, the department expects to begin identifying prime candidates for about 300 Iraq jobs that come open next summer, Thomas wrote.

…snip…

Last year, after prime candidates were identified for 48 Iraq jobs that come open this summer, enough qualified volunteers came forward to avoid what would have been the largest diplomatic call-up since the Vietnam War — but not before the uproar over the prospect of forced tours made national headlines.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said Tuesday that she had been personally offended by the critical comments of some diplomats who questioned the ethics of sending people against their will to a war zone. One diplomat, during an October session held at the State Department to explain the policy to employees, called the forced assignments a “potential death sentence” to loud applause.

“I was deeply offended myself, and deeply sorry that these people who had self-selected into this town hall went out of their way, to my view, cast a very bad light on the foreign service,” Rice told a House panel.

…snip…

Some diplomats have privately expressed unease about volunteering for Iraq duty amid deep uncertainty over how the administration following President Bush will deal with Iraq, and how that might affect security or change Washington’s focus on the country.

While presumptive Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain has vowed to stay the course, both Democratic hopefuls, Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, have made clear they oppose the war and have pledged to reduce the number of American troops there.

Such a move could have an impact on State Department operations and security, some diplomats fear.

…snip…

At least three foreign service personnel — two diplomatic security agents and one political officer — have been killed in Iraq since the war began in March 2003.

11 Comments

Filed under 2008 election, Afghanistan, Baghdad, Barack Obama, Chimpy, Condoleezza Rice, George W. Bush, Hillary Clinton, humor, Iraq War, John McCain, movies, parody, politics, Republicans, snark, State Department, Vietnam, Wordpress Political Blogs

11 responses to “If Condi doesn’t move her office to Baghdad, I will be personally offended!

  1. TRM

    You know even I have been getting pissed lately by Iraq…

    I am convinced we are now actually fighting Iran, and Iran is never going to allow any sort of stability… they will keep killing their own people, to destroy American will and try to drive us out.. sick animals all of them…

    I am almost to the point to where I want us to pull out, sit in the gulf and wait for Iran to “take over” Iraq, get nukes and start puffing their chest out,,,, which they are surely on course to do….. then BLAM!!! the whole goddamned region is a windshield……. sorry, the whole islam thing has got me pissed off….

    too bad the left doesn’t understand that no matter what we do, no matter how nice you try to act to these animals, they are intent on their course….
    it’s either us or them,,,,,,

    oh yeah…. stop makin fun of Condi 😦

  2. nightowl724

    TRM, would you support Condi as VP?

  3. jeb

    Wow, genocide as a foreign policy? With attitudes like this, people wonder why the Iranians feel the need to seek nuclear capability (well that, and our history of intervention in their country). Are the mullahs bad? Yeah! So was Saddam. But as long as they cannot directly threaten our country militarily (which they can’t) then our discussing nuclear options only confirms their own paranoia.

    Not only that, but we give the tyrants the tools they need to keep the people in line. Focus them on the enemy, not on how you are screwing up their lives and making them miserable.

    Remember, all Islam is not like the fanatics, just like all Christians are not like Pat Robertson or the Pope. Islam means peace. Muslims are human, they want what is best for their families which is sustenance, stability and a future for their children. They know – as we do – that those things can only achieved by long-term peace.

  4. yeah, well, trm, maybe chimpy and deadeye dick shoulda thought of that before they took out saddam.
    like it or not, iraq was stable for the most part under saddam. yes, i know he was a tyrannical bastard, but he was a tyrannical bastard keeping iran under control. now, we have done iran’s dirty work for them, and they are securing their political foothold in iraq. ahmedinejad is a lot of hot air, but we have made him more relevant.
    jeb is right. most muslims are just like everyone else. they want to live in peace, raise their children, and live good lives.

  5. TRM

    Night owl,, Sure, she has some things I disagree with , abortion, affirmative action etc…. but no nes perfect… except Ronaldus Magnus 🙂

    something tells me there a gotcha coming

  6. TRM

    Agreed on the everyday muslim feelings to an extent… where is the outrage in this so called “peaceful muslim” community at what is being done in their name?

    I kind of defended Maher and his comments about the pope today in a post,,, does that get me any lefty cred???

    I posted at Kos last week,,, in 4 minutes I had 70 responses and many of them were to boil me, kill me, etc etc… real peace and love bunch of folks over there…

  7. nightowl724

    TRM, no “gotcha.” I was just wondering how you’d feel about a black woman as VP and then as Prez.

    Me? I very much wanted to like and respect her because I think she is brilliant and she had great potential.

    However, I grew to loathe her and everything she stands for, most especially torture, and everything she doesn’t stand for, most especially the American people. I think she’s an ass-kissing, selfish, arrogant bitch who is drunk with power.

    I think she was a lousy National Security Adviser and a worse Secretary of State, taking us into an unnecessary and unwinnable war, ruining our standing around the world and our economy.

    But, as always, I mean that in the nicest way! 🙂

  8. trm,
    what’s your uid over at dkos? i didn’t find any comments when i did a search for trm.
    i have no idea what bill maher said about the pope. i stopped watching him, because i think he is stuck in adolescence.

  9. nevermind, trm, i think i found you over at dk! 😆

  10. condi is the worst secretary of state ever — she uses her mastery of language and calming style to cover for the fact she has done nothing of value for nearly eight years — other than kiss her bosses ass. as donald trump said about her “name me a deal she has closed”

    she is a brilliant and accomplished woman — only that brilliance is stuck in the wrong planet. the damage from her (and her boss’) incompetence will be felt for years.

  11. dcAp,
    condi is accomplished, but i don’t know if she is brilliant. to me, a brilliant person understands difficult situations and can figure out how to deal with them effectively. i have not seen that from her. organizational skills? the state department is a mess. as for her language skills, not as wonderful as they are touted to be. this is a very good article about condi, from back in sept 2007:
    http://www.newstatesman.com/200709060026

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