Davos08: Condoleeza Rice

Condoleeza Rice addresses the opening of Davos. She talks about ideals and optimism and I wasn’t going to blog that; it sounded like boilerplate.

But then she said this: The United States is said not to deal fully with its past. “To which I say good for us. Too much dwelling on history can become a prison.”

That is a bold statement that slaps our enemies. It puts the line not between east and west but between past and future.

She says that America has no permanent enemies. We are engaged in relations with Syria and Vietnam as well as China and she says any talk about a renewed cold war is “hyperbolic nonsense.” She also says that America “has no desire to have a permanent enemy in Iran.”

  • George Bush and seven of his administration’s top officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice, and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, made at least 935 false statements in the two years following September 11, 2001,

  • No sense of history, just optimism. Excuse me, this comment is not another example of “Anti=Americanism” as you call it but are you sure about this? For example did George Bush and Tony Blair ever discuss bombing the offices of al Jazeera? The media seem less interesting at Davos than last year but this sort of thing may be in the background. Here in the UK the Official Secrets Act and the views of judges prevent the reporting of a trial and a report in the Daily Mirror as if they were a joined up story. Not so for media outside the UK, including the Jurist. Good for them, reporting current events in context.

  • Refusing to take responsibility for the past, only the future, is a favourite trick of politicians. Its a neat one, because it means that they actually never have to take responsibility for anything they do, but it makes for a nice positive sound-bite. Its Tony Blair’s standard response when asked about Iraq.

  • Politics aside for a moment (is that possible?) this is, in my opinion, a very healthy way to live. Of course, this doesn’t absolve you from seeking justice and forgiveness where appropriate but in my vocational area (pastoring/counseling) I find a lot of people locked in the past. It’s over. Move on. thanks for the post! http://www.theproblemwithreligion.com

  • Marcus Kirsch

    Her comment just shows that future is still something we think about in a positive way. Which is a good thing, yet in her situation bringing up the illusion of supporting future and the associated terms of progress and (positive) change is a lame gesture as the US history shows, but then again she asks us not to look at history and I (begin to) wonder why.

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