Patterico's Pontifications

10/30/2009

Hillary Clinton in Pakistan

Filed under: Government,International — DRJ @ 1:18 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Hillary Clinton is in Pakistan meeting with government representatives, journalists and citizens. Her blunt talk is surprising Pakistanis and some of us at home:

“Al-Qaida has had safe haven in Pakistan since 2002,” [Hillary Clinton] finally asserted when challenged about Washington’s tough prescriptions for Islamabad. “I find it hard to believe that nobody in your government knows where they are and couldn’t get them if they really wanted to.”

After having publicly doubted the bona fides of her hosts, she added, as an afterthought: “Maybe that’s the case; maybe they’re not gettable…I don’t know. As far as we know, they are in Pakistan.” At one point during the exchanges, when a journalist spoke about all the services rendered by Pakistan for the US, Mrs Clinton snapped, “We have also given you billions.”

An NBC reporter described this as Clinton’s claim that Pakistan is coddling terrorists, something many Americans agree with but that is nevertheless rarely said at government levels.

Clinton also responded to Pakistani college students who criticized the amount of U.S. aid, saying it’s time Pakistan learned to provide for itself:

“At the risk of sounding undiplomatic, Pakistan has to have internal investment in your public services and your business opportunities,” Clinton said, adding, in a reference to the large-scale tax evasion in the country. ”The percentage of taxes on GDP is among the lowest in the world… We (the United States) tax everything that moves and doesn’t move, and that’s not what we see in Pakistan.”

I like the idea of telling nations to be more responsible but I draw the line at telling them it’s good to tax everything in sight. That’s the Democratic Party’s way, not the democratic way.

Finally, it’s tiresome to see Hillary in outfits that look more like burkas every day. Respect for other cultures is fine but we’re still Americans.

— DRJ

37 Responses to “Hillary Clinton in Pakistan”

  1. Hillary will be a useful scapegoat for our blamey little president man.

    happyfeet (71f55e)

  2. Is this the uber-great super-special smart diplomacy that we were promised? Don’t get me wrong, I actually prefer this, but could you freakin’ imagine if Bush had been so undiplomatic?

    JD (f1caab)

  3. Pakistan is a very poor ally and seems to move only when its own survival is threatened, as in the Swat Valley situation. Hillary is clumsy and well matched with Obama as they stumble about the world pi**ing off allies and sucking up to enemies.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  4. A clusterf-ck of immense proportions. What was that again about how well – liked we are in the world now? Oh.

    Dmac (a964d5)

  5. Well, my gut reaction to this is to be impressed. One, for putting some much-needed public pressure on Pakistan, and two, for telling the truth about American taxation. Now I realize that she views “taxing everything that moves and doesn’t move” as a GOOD thing and I don’t, but I like the phrase. (I’m frankly amazed she’d use that language, which sounds like something straight out of Ron Paul’s mouth.)

    Gene (4cab81)

  6. Brilliant foreign policy, just brilliant.

    What a bunch of clowns.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  7. Having been to the NorthWest Frontier (Peshawar), and seen what a Burkha covers (everything – it is “being in Purdah“), putting Hill in one would be a great improvement – particularly if they could add a voice filter.
    Hope & Change is making Cowboy Diplomacy look better every day to a lot of people both here and abroad.

    AD - RtR/OS! (2b030e)

  8. I like the idea of telling nations to be more responsible but I draw the line at telling them it’s good to tax everything in sight. That’s the Democratic Party’s way, not the democratic way.

    You have to understand it from Hillary’s point of view. She obviously looks at Pakistan and says “Repressive and corrupt dictatorship? Check. Stagnant economy? Check. Hatred of Western values? Check.” I am sure that given all that, Hillary can’t fathom why they would not have confiscatory tax rates too. Low taxes are entirely out of place with the rest of the culture.

    JVW (d32e06)

  9. I am a charter member of the I Hate Hillary club. That said, however, I am overjoyed to see that someone in this Blame America First administration has demonstrated the possession of a set of genuine cojones.

    I wish I could believe that she’s done this because it’s in the best interests of America. Alas, I fear it’s merely one early step in the Hillary in 2012 campaign.

    Robert N. (9456b3)

  10. This continues BHO’s dissing of allies and putative allies, while praising or holding his tongue when it comes to the evil states.

    Having said this, she was spot on in describing Pakistan.

    Ed from SFV (4b493e)

  11. DRJ said, “… it’s tiresome to see Hillary in outfits that look more like burkas every day.”

    Hillary likes burkas, they hide her big ass. Now, if she could just find some comfortable elevator shoes…

    ropelight (73157f)

  12. While some of what she said — the first part, anyway, not the domestic-Pakistani-tax-policy part — may have “needed to be said,” it surely didn’t need to be said IN PUBLICLY REPORTABLE REMARKS. Now Pakistan risks looking (even more) like an Obama puppet if it does what Hillary suggests.

    To say that stuff in any but the most private of settings is sheer stupidity and (or rather because it is) likely to backfire.

    Mitch (890cbf)

  13. That’s all right, Mitch. She’ll just have her Tyson-fixer take care of it, and make a little on the side, too.

    AD - RtR/OS! (2b030e)

  14. I must disagree with the suggestion that such candor belongs only in camera. One of the multiple failures, IMHO, of past administrations has been the willingness to bow down to the political considerations of autocrats, dictators, and other anti-American powers-that-be and their ‘constituents’. The Bush administration is a prime example.

    Their unwillingness to be candid with their own citizens, much less those with opposing points of view, provided an open door for media, domestic opponents, and international enemies alike to castigate motives and challenge actions while abandoning any active defense. The resultant ‘explanations’ sounded – all too often – like weak excuses.

    Transparency in ‘diplomacy’ may be occasionally deleterious to short-term gains, but profitable in the long-term. I want friends and enemies alike to know what I have to say, that I mean what I say, and that I won’t ‘back-door’ them in the course of ‘diplomatic negotiations’.
    Chess is played with all assets visible – life for all would be much easier if our State Department and Executive would do the same.

    Robert N. (9456b3)

  15. I don’t find it tiresome to see Hillary in her semi-burkas, but rather disturbing. While there is certainly the need for a woman in her position to show respect for other cultures, by donning the burka (and even the headscarf), she submits to what is seen as a symbol of oppression and submission.

    Hillary is a Western woman who knows a freedom that women in that part of the world can only dream of. To see her in the submissive role deflates any power she might bring, and results in a passive image – essentially, she has submitted to men.

    How great it would be to see her make a powerful yet non-confrontational statement by graciously declining the get-up.

    Dana (e9ba20)

  16. But, that would require a refutation of the elevation of diversity to the status of “end-all & be-all”.
    No PC Liberal would be caught dead rowing against the tide of contemporary Progressive thought like that.

    AD - RtR/OS! (2b030e)

  17. No, AD – RtR/OS!, that would require a woman who claims to be a feminist and defender and supporter of all women and their right to live free from oppression and fear, to actually put her money where her mouth is.

    IOW, it would require a woman to be a real woman.

    Dana (e9ba20)

  18. In her autobiography, Benazir Bhutto wrote in regard to her refusing to wear the burka, that by wearing one everything became blurred by the veil over the eyes and wearing one meant “a life spent in perpetual twilight”.

    Hillary could make a silent but mighty stand.

    Dana (e9ba20)

  19. in Shrillery’s case, i’m all in favor of her wearing a burka, as long as its the kind that would cover her entire face.

    now, if only they made one with a ball gag too…. %-)

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  20. Hillary will be able to sustain a long and aggressive attack by these Pakistani ankle biters.

    Huey (b957d9)

  21. Good for you, Hillary. I guess she’s positioning herself as the Anti-Waffle.

    That will look good in 2012.

    Patricia (b05e7f)

  22. I second the motion that Hillary be as completely covered as possible.

    As to the ball gag, if she really wanted balls in her mouth…Bill wouldn’t have needed Monica.

    Rich Fader (1919df)

  23. Isn’t it ironic that Hillary is the one person in this administration showing some balls….

    Stan Switek (d9d8ce)

  24. It’s comforting to know a real professional is in the SoS slot.

    General Malaise (d59b48)

  25. We (the United States) tax everything that moves and doesn’t move, and that’s not what we see in Pakistan.”

    Another epic Democrat foot-in-mouth moment that the RNC will fail to exploit. Just wait and (don’t) see.

    Matador (e01f85)

  26. At one point during the exchanges, when a journalist spoke about all the services rendered by Pakistan for the US, Mrs Clinton snapped, “We have also given you billions.”

    I kind of like that.

    Didn’t she react in a “snapped” manner not long ago when she thought some student at a conference was asking her what her husband’s opinion was?

    From accounts going back years, Madame Sniper Fire is supposed to be the essence of a beyootch.

    We (the United States) tax everything that moves and doesn’t move, and that’s not what we see in Pakistan.”

    I’d give Sniper Fire Hillary some credit for making that comment if it were spoken in a tone of disapproval, to point out the opposite extreme of the tax-burden scale. But knowing people like her, I’m sure the disapproval she has of Pakistan’s low tax rate far exceeds the disquiet she may have about a society that taxes everything that breathes and doesn’t breathe.

    Mark (411533)

  27. Recent history in Pakistan is similar to events in Iran during the rule of the Shah. Both leaderships were strongly backed by the US, and were involved in widespread repression or attacks on their own people. Both regimes followed policies that were deeply unpopular domestically. In Iran, this led the revolution of 1979 which created an Islamic Republic. Could something similar happen in Pakistan?

    http://watching-history.blogspot.com/2009/10/future-of-pakistan.html

    Canada Guy (f8905e)

  28. Yes, the people of Iran have so warmly embraced the policies instituted by the Mad Mullahs of Teheran.
    That they were imposed under the threat of violence and death has nothing to do with the continuity of the regime.
    Plus, the people of Pakistan have shown great warmth and tolerance to the policies instituted by the Taliban in those areas that they have taken control of; so much so that they welcome the Pak Army back with open arms, and provide valuable intel on where Predators need to fire their Hellfires.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a63966)

  29. AD, I guess you’re responding to me? I wasn’t saying anything about the current government of Iran, I was just trying to explain *why* the revolution happened. It was a popular movement in 1979, though not so much today.

    Canada Guy (f8905e)

  30. No one elected the Shaw.
    Pakistan has a popularly elected Legislature and Leadership.
    Now, what were you saying about comparable situations?

    AD - RtR/OS! (a63966)

  31. Both leaderships were strongly backed by the US, and were involved in widespread repression or attacks on their own people.

    In fact, the Shah was far less repressive than the present regime. He was just enough of an autocrat to pi** people off but not enough to keep the peace. It was chiefly popular among the mullahs and the young men who had too much time on their hands. Had Carter not facilitated the return of Khomeini, the Shah would have died in power.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  32. Whatever happened to being nice to everyone so they’d like us?
    We were going to reach out to the everyday people of the Muslim world and teach them American’s are wonderful… but then we tell their government to tax the shit out of them for everything from goats to opium.
    Nice job.

    SteveG (97b6b9)

  33. AD, right, no one elected the Shah, and not one elected Musharraf (the US was not involved in the second though). Sure, we have Zardari now, who was elected, but he’s following the same policies, and has single digit support from the people. I think the election was probably relatively fair, but most Pakistanis don’t trust it.

    Mike, as for whether the current government in Iran is more repressive or not, that’s not really the point. People often have a revolution and get rid of one bad guy, just to get a worse. In fact, that’s a good reason to hope Pakistan *doesn’t* have a revolution! Best way for that to happen is for Pakistan to do what’s best for Pakistan and forget about the US. Ironically, in the long term, that’s probably the best situation for the US as well. The war in Afghanistan won’t go on forever, but Pakistan will still be around afterwards.

    Canada Guy (f8905e)

  34. Over at Powerline, some of Hillary’s lies, while in Pakistan, about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are outlined.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  35. AD – RtR/OS! – “7.Having been to the NorthWest Frontier (Peshawar), and seen what a Burkha covers (everything – it is “being in Purdah“), putting Hill in one would be a great improvement – particularly if they could add a voice filter.”

    So I take it you never saw the early Star Wars movies – it has actually been done, already … the Sith Lord (original pronunciation She Lord) was presciently based upon our current Secretary of Mis-State !

    Alasdair (205079)

  36. […] Secretary of State Hillary Clinton engaged in some blunt talk in Pakistan. Her comments indicate she, and almost certainly the Administration she speaks for, believe […]

    Patterico’s Pontifications » Obama Again Delays Afghanistan Troop Decision (e4ab32)

  37. I’ve seen episodes IV, V & VI. The others don’t interest me.

    After the way we’ve treated them over the last 30-years, the Pak’s just don’t trust us – we say how we’ll help them, then we cut them off at the knees – something that happens a lot when you have 535 Sec’s of State making Foreign Policy.
    We used to have a very good relationship with the military leadership going back to the CENTO days, but after Congress (in its’ infinite wisdom) cut off advanced training for the Pak Officer Corps, we have lost the contact that results in good relationships. Our performance vis-a-vis the Afghani’s since the Soviet melt-down hasn’t helped any either. Plus, they are wary of our new relationship with India, a wariness that was kept under some control by a personal relationship between GWB and Mushariff (the guy who’s name he couldn’t remember in a Presidential Debate in ’00) – ironic, isn’t it?

    AD - RtR/OS! (a63966)


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