Thursday, December 13, 2007

Ten Percent Less Diplomacy

Karen deYoung writes in today's Washington Post that the State Department is planning to eliminate 10 percent of all diplomatic posts worldwide, outside of those in Afghanistan and Iraq, because staffing demands in the latter two countries have devoured all the money, and State is not increasing allocations to reflect the changed needs.

Money quote:

"The administration has not really fought" for diplomatic staff increases "the way it has fought to get all of the additional resources that the Defense Department and the military have needed since 9/11," said Steve Kashkett, vice president of the American Foreign Service Association, the union that represents U.S. diplomats. "We have seen a shrinking of the diplomatic component of foreign affairs and a dramatic expansion of the military component."

Remember that the next time you're told that the Bush administration is committed to diplomatic over military solutions to conflict.

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