Skip to comments.Armitage says he and Powell went public to try to sway Bush [State shouldn't agree with White House]
Posted on 01/14/2005 12:50:32 PM PST by SJackson
BARRY SCHWEID AP Diplomatic Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Baring one of Washington's worst-kept secret, Secretary of State Colin Powell's deputy said he and Powell sometimes went public with their dissenting views to try to influence Bush administration policy.
Richard Armitage, who leaves along with Powell at the end of President Bush's first term, described the process as using the "bully pulpit.''
"Differences of opinion are something you as a citizen and I as a citizen should value in your government,'' Armitage said in an interview with National Public Radio's "Morning Edition'' on Thursday. "You really want it.''
Powell and Armitage, whose friendship was forged decades ago, share foreign policy views that are distinctly more moderate than those of Bush and other key presidential advisers. They also made far more use of media interviews and speeches to promote U.S. foreign policy than their predecessors.
Armitage made clear in the interview that the public appearances had another design, as well -- to reflect and register the views of the State Department as well as influence the shaping of policy.
"When Secretary Powell speaks or when Rich Armitage speaks, we're putting out our views. And we will do so respectfully, of course,'' Armitage said according to a text released Friday by the State Department. "This is what the president paid us for, to bring him our views.''
"And, of course, he can agreee with us or not, as he chooses,'' Armitage said.
Armitage offered no examples of specific areas or issues of disagreement, although his response was to a question that suggested that Powell and he had been at odds with other top administration officials on policies involving North Korea and the Middle East.
Powell is known to have pushed for negotiations with North Korea over its nuclear weapons programs, a strategy Bush adopted after months of review at the beginning of his first term. On the Middle East, Powell sometimes sought more flexibility from Israel, than did the White House, in dealing with the Palestinians.
"You don't want a government that sees everything the same way,'' Armitage said. "That would be bad -- it would lead to bad government, in my view.''
Hopefully, Condi will clean up the tripe at Foggy Bottom.
Armitage gone yet?
What a disloyal schmuck. Imagine doing this to the CEO of a company where you are employed and expecting to get away with it.
At least as long as it's a Dim Commie Traitor expressing the difference in opinion...
You're right, you'd be fired, sooner rather than later.
So explains why the State Dept is inept and ineffective.
< ...in an interview with National Public Radio's "Morning Edition''.. >
Says it all.
Excuse me, but who was it that was whining just last week that Bush only has "yes men" around him?
The effrontery is breathtaking.
< One would think that on multiple occasions both Powell and Armitage have had sufficient face time with the president to acquaint him with their opinions and views. If that's the case, then why use the media? Public channels of communication in such a case are for those who do not have sufficient access to other means. >
The word "undermine" comes to mind.
Their opinions were heard, just not always heeded. Going public is an effective way to change, or at least thwart, administration policies with which they disagree, rather than execute the Presidents policies. I can think of several Powell pronouncements regarding the middle east which made the President appear either indecisive or a liar.
I knwe Powell was a mistake for Bush from the very beginning, he is as much against the USA as Kerry.
From the Administration's perspective. From the State Dept. perspective they're advancing their agenda as effectively as they can.
Too bad cause before State I thought both of these men had done so much for this country........I really still like Armitage and though Powell has his ups and downs I respect him for his service and being Chairman of Joint Chiefs...
No. It would be antithetical to a dim witted, State Dept. bureaucrat that a single, effective Foreign Policy be enunciated to our allies and foes alike. Who's State Dept. does this guy work for, France's? IMO A real A$$ and I better not see him getting a Medal of Freedom Award soon!
oh come on now.....you are just being cruel now..... The State Dept by nature always takes a different foot and who do ya think oversaw the 1st Gulf War......Powell did a fine job then. I think anyone who works at State is kind of set up to fail cause of all the liberal lifers in there
Weren't they the perfect fit for State.