Thursday, June 26, 2008

Reversing the Course

A few days ago, it came out that the U.S. is considering a kind of unofficial embassy in Iran-- something called a "diplomatic outpost". This would be similar to the diplomatic institution currently operating in Havana. Today, the White House has announced that some trade sanctions against North Korea are being lifted and will similarly be removed from the list of states that sponsor terrorism (not sure what it does for North Korea's membership in the Axis of Evil, though-- maybe put them in a second tier club, like the Coalition of Chicanery or something).

This could have some interesting ramifications for the Presidential race. McCain has been hitting Obama hard on Obama's "unconditional diplomacy" and willingness to sit down with the leaders of hostile nations for talks. Seeing the stubborn Bush Administration quietly reverse its hard line stance strongly suggests that more and more people are understanding the wisdom of negotiation, compromise, and avoiding international pissing matches. This should help disarm one of McCain's few perceived advantages-- the foreign policy / terrorism realm (which McCain, in a recent national poll, is still more "trusted").

Now McCain can say he disagrees with President Bush on something, finally. Too bad it's one where he's even more of a batshit hawk than the current crop of Neocons.