Archive for Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Ex-U.N. ambassador: U.S. taking wrong approach to foreign ‘trouble spots’

John Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, spoke Wednesday, April 4, 2012, at Kansas University.

John Bolton, a former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, spoke Wednesday, April 4, 2012, at Kansas University.

April 4, 2012


A former United States ambassador to the United Nations called for an increased attention to international affairs Wednesday, arguing a strong America is critical to an economically prosperous one.

John Bolton spoke Wednesday at the Lied Center at the Kansas University School of Business’ annual Vickers Lecture.

Bolton served as ambassador to the United Nations under former President George W. Bush, who used a temporary appointment procedure in 2005 to appoint him to the position over Democratic opposition in the United States Senate. Today, he serves as a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, researching U.S. foreign and national security policy.

Bolton took a brief tour of what he called “the world’s trouble spots” on Wednesday, touching on issues like the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the role of Iran and other Middle East instability.

On North Korea, he said the country would be willing to sell its nuclear technology to any group that had the right amount of currency.

“This is a regime that can only be dealt with by seeing it go to the ash heap of history,” he said.

He also discussed Iran, saying that unless military action is taken against it (which would likely have to come from Israel because an American strike is unlikely with the current administration), Iran would likely develop a nuclear program within a year, and likely sooner, he said.

“I wouldn’t trust that regime with sharp objects, let alone a peaceful nuclear program,” he said.

A policy of containment and deterrence that worked with the old Soviet Union might not be as successful with Iran, he said.

“I don’t think containment works with a regime that prizes life in the hereafter more than they prize life on Earth,” Bolton said.

He touched on longer-term issues like China, which so far has grown peacefully over the last 20 years. He said that path could continue, but the U.S. should be prepared for a more unstable growth, too.

The current administration isn’t appropriately dealing with these issues, Bolton argued. In an interview before the speech, he said he had endorsed Republican Mitt Romney in the upcoming presidential race.

“I think he’s got the confidence to sit behind the big desk in the Oval Office,” he said.

Though a small group of demonstrators protested outside the Lied Center before the event, Bolton spoke to a mostly friendly crowd who often applauded his responses to audience questions.


just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

This guy assumes that all his "enemies" are as bigoted and violent as he is, and wants to base US foreign policy on that twisted view of the world.

Shane Garrett 5 years, 11 months ago

Yes, the Jewish population of Israel is almost 6 million. Iran should be allowed to follow their glorious path to the destruction of the Zionist State and the annihilation of all non-believers. Sharia law should be established world wide so that we might as a population once again live the the beautiful 15th century ruled by Imams and religious leaders who could have us put to death for the slightest infractions. OR not.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

I hear that all Iranians have 12 toes and horns, too.

Shane Garrett 5 years, 11 months ago

Not All. I was once married to a wonderful woman from Iran. Her family have never return to; nor do they wish to under current conditions in Iran. So, I have some unbiased Iranian views.

David Reynolds 5 years, 11 months ago

just_another_bozo, obviously you do not like Ambassador Bolton's comments. Your trying to diminish him by calling him names only diminishes you. It shows how intolerant you are to others ideas, especially if you do not agree with them.

Ambassador Bolton holds to his view because his views are based on the reality of serving in the UN, interacting with representatives of these countries, & studying the actions of these countries. Did Bolton lie anywhere in his speech? Did you attend his speech? I attended and found his presentation mild in terms of reality of what is going on in this world.

If there is anything twisted in this world is the evil from a nation we must deal with that has as its espoused goal the complete annihilation of an entire nation and its people. Or the North Korean nation that is starving its people, is doing nothing to improves the lives of its people & develops nuclear weapons to sell to rogue nations & peoples for revenues to support itself. North Korea also uses threats to its neighbors to try to extort money from the western nations by threatening to blow its neighbors up.

Not to mention the actions of Hezbollah, Taliban, Islamic Brotherhood, Drug Cartels in Mexico, etc. they destroy lives, & threaten nations.

The intolerance you demonstrate is everywhere and that is the most destructive force in the world. We do not need any more intolerance, we need constructive dialogue. It is thru the exchange of ideas in a free & open society that improves societies, makes the world safer and leads to the betterment of mankind.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

" It is thru the exchange of ideas in a free & open society that improves societies,"

And if they aren't "free & open" precisely according to neocon (AKA neocolonial) doctrine, Bolton, and presumably you, have no compunction about nuking them off the planet.

And you have the gall to throw around the word "tolerant," as if you have a single tolerant bone in you body.

JackMcKee 5 years, 11 months ago

Bolton is one of the worst human beings of the last 50 years. Truly a disgusting human being.

JackMcKee 5 years, 11 months ago

and I'm not just talking about his physical appearance

David Reynolds 5 years, 11 months ago

Well Jack McKee, do you have any specifics for your views on the type of human being you portray Ambassador Bolton?

progressive_thinker 5 years, 11 months ago

While I doubt that he qualifies as the worst person in the past 50 years, he has proven himself to be far less than credible in terms of foreign policy. A perfect example was his involvement, as assistant secretary of state, in furtherance of the misinformation regarding attempts on the part of Iraq to obtain "yellow cake" uranium which helped lead us into war with Iraq. Also, later in 2003, he testified before the House International Relations Committee regarding Syria chemical weapons program information that was considerably worse than what the CIA actually had reported, apparently in an attempt to lure the US into an expansion of the Iraq war.

If he was willing to mislead congress and the US citizenry when he had access to confidential reports as assistant secretary of state, what would lead us to believe that he is doing anything different now.

The bottom line is that he is a warmonger, and has a history of distorting the truth to generate fear. A climate of fear is a climate that can provoke unnecessary violence.

morroray 5 years, 11 months ago

Bolton is one of the few public figures that understands what is going on in the world & what needs to be done about it. If we wanted a President who understands foreign issues Bolton would be the person. Certainly the Obama regime does not meaning all his advisors & Obama himself. Most administrations just haven't gotten it "right."

David Reynolds 5 years, 11 months ago

My, my, my Bozo...I can tell "critical thinking" is not part of this discussion.

You are very presumptive and thus draw way too many fallacious conclusions.

Your words & their tone continue to demonstrate my earlier comments as true.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

Oh, get off it. You're a hater, and you want a US foreign policy that reflects your positions.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 11 months ago

And it's people like Bolton that make folks in countries such as Iran think that nukes might be useful to their survival.

Richard Heckler 5 years, 11 months ago

"Rebuilding America's Defences," openly advocates for total global military domination. Many PNAC members held highest-level positions in the George W. Bush administration. John Bolton endorses this position. ============ War, Wealth, Oil Four generations have created an unsavory web by Kevin Phillips ============ We Arm the World

The United States once again leads the world in exporting weapons. BY Frida Berrigan

A $7 billion missile-defense system for the United Arab Emirates. An estimated $15 billion potential sale of Lockheed Martin’s brand-new fighter plane to Israel. Billions of dollars in weaponry for Taiwan and Turkey. These and other recent deals helped make the United States the world’s leading arms-exporting nation.

In 2007, U.S. foreign military sales agreements totaled more than $32 billion .

The Pentagon routinely justifies weapons sales as “promoting regional stability,” but many of these arms end up in the world’s war zones. In 2006 and 2007, the five biggest recipients of U.S. weapons were Pakistan ($3.5 billion), Iraq ($2.2 billion), Israel ($2.2 billion), Afghanistan ($1.9 billion) and Colombia ($580 million) – all countries where conflict rages.

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