Josh Rogin, a foreign-policy and national-security correspondent for the Washington Post, briefly set the political Internet abuzz when he fretted, Chicken Little–style, that the senior leadership of the State Department had resigned en masse. Rex Tillerson’s confirmation as secretary of state had, he suggested, caused an exodus of diligent, talented, indispensable civil servants.
Professional #Resistance members dutifully took up Rogin’s hue and cry, gnashing teeth and rending garments because the bureaucratic eschaton had become immanent. Conservative commentators pointed out that the departing civil servants had not exactly distinguished themselves for competency or impartiality during their long careers. Matt Lee, the Associated Press’s diligent and pathologically underappreciated diplomatic writer, sighed that the whole thing was a non-story. The AP, after all, had written up the whole thing a full day before Rogin decided to immolate his hair.
The truth is a bit more complicated than first meets the eye. In general, Lee is right: This is not a real story. Whether they were forced out, as reported, or not, is immaterial. Wholesale turnover at the top of the State Department is perfectly normal, and actually began in November, immediately after it became clear that Hillary Clinton would not be the next president.
The new administration has not filled the personnel gaps at Foggy Bottom with celerity. Indeed, in addition to the just-departed leadership, the following 15 offices appear to have their leadership posts occupied by placeholders in an “acting” capacity:
Office of the Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy
Office of the Legal Adviser
Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs
Bureau of Counterterrorism
Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs
Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs
Bureau of Political Military Affairs
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs
Bureau of International Organization Affairs
Bureau of International Information Programs
Bureau of Public Affairs
Bureau of Arms Control, Verification, and Compliance
Bureau of Legislative Affairs
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor
That’s a lot of empty chairs, and they need to get filled sooner rather than later. However, a slow transition does not mean that indispensable leaders are drifting away. This is a normal function of the transition from one administration to the next. When the sheriff rides off into the sunset, the deputies keep the peace.
Nonetheless, the departing personnel are not, in one important way, just run-of-the-mill civil servants. Under Hillary Clinton, and then John Kerry, the State Department became an intractably politicized department from top to bottom. The people who decamped en masse yesterday were instrumental in helping that process happen. Indeed, their collective decision to resign bespeaks their earlier role in helping turn the State Department into an ideological hothouse rather than a diplomatic engine in pursuit of American interests.
Patrick Kennedy, the most conspicuous member of the pack, has made himself an institution at State, and more to the bad. For the last decade, Kennedy has been under secretary for management, or “M” in the parlance of the diplomatic corps. His office oversees the vital functions of the department, including administration of the department, diplomatic security, personnel, budgeting, staffing, information resources, management policy, and a host of other matters.
Thus it is Patrick Kennedy who was ultimately responsible for the signal failures of the State Department over the last eight years.
Sorry snowflakes but your days of running through the streets bawling and squawling are over and the days of the snowflakes in over as well
Sounded more like resign or be fired, cleaning out a nest of vermin. Plenty more in the woodwork, termites eating at the foundation.
Slow walking FOIA requests, destruction of public records. Yes investigate DHS and their hacking of election.
Just following orders, we do not want to hear that, may be time to RICO the last admin.
Basically, every high level State Department career employee with experience and understanding regarding the geopolitical threat represented by Vladimir Putin’s Russian federation has now been sent packing—not just Obama people, but people dating all the way back to the Reagan era. Over the past 2 months, the State Department has been effectively lobotomized. The DoS is now headed by a personal friend and business associate of Vladimir Putin.
Are you figuring the patterns out yet? People on the right always claimed to have preternatural skills when it comes to connecting the dots. They’re all right out there to see, plain as day. Pick up your chalk and connect the damn things.
Connecting the Trump-Russia Dots
Riding the leftist infested State department by letting go the Clinton holdovers Bush 43 allowed to stay along with the Marxist planted obama acolytes, is a positive thing for America.
Rachel Maddow lays out the facts on the State Department situation:
Trump, Tillerson weaken State Department as Putin would want
There’s a reason why the Rachel Maddow Show is now ranks in the Top 10 of the most-viewed list of all television programs. She’s smart, and she assumes her viewers are, too. She doesn’t tell people what to think. She presents facts, and then asks, Do you see what I’m seeing?
Anyone who isn’t blind should understand that there are some very serious unresolved questions about the Trump administration’s relationship with Russia. They should be able to see this for themselves.
The Trump administration’s lobotomization of the U.S. Department of State is, in fact, a very big deal.
The Russian thing is over, nothing there, never was.
Getting rid of the anti American trash in the state department as well as the intelligence community is a win win for America.
Keep telling yourself that.
People who are paying attention realize there may be a time bomb in the Trump administration’s carry-on luggage, and they’re growing increasingly impatient with those who say it’s crazy to look inside to see what’s ticking.
@Greg: I would click your link but I cant stand Wretched Madcows insane ranting and lying, she cannot is incapable of slowing any weird rant she goes on down and lay out proven solid facts. The intelligence agencies said there is nothing.
As you said about all the generals that could not stomach Obama they are simply retiring. Regan era ya think they are due or were they 12 when they began careers, Anyone there that came in under O has got to go find a walmart greeters job.
The NY slimes removed wiretapping from their January 20th top of the for online edition to intercepts.
There is no Russian/Trump corroboration.
Obama’s Surveillance Of Team Trump: A Probable Paper Trail
You would click if you wanted to know what what the Trump administration is actually doing to your country and who is likely to benefit, but you don’t. Maddow is a very intelligent, highly informed political commentator, and communicates with great clarity. That’s pretty much why the right hates her.
He’s another link you won’t want to click on:
Meet the Hundreds of Officials Trump Has Quietly Installed Across the Government
We’re going to have a government consisting of amateurs having no experience and more uninformed opinion than knowledge, right wing propagandists, special interest lobbyists, and members of the Vladimir Putin Appreciation Society. There will be hell to pay. The Keystone Cops will be running the show.
@Greg: Wow, Greg must have a magic lamp to rub. He know exactly what is happening all over the world. He has ranked the television personalities. That weed he is smoking gives him super natural powers!!
greg is at his own tipping point. All the efforts to derail President Trump thus far have failed including the most recent Russian narrative. Time to put greg on suicide watch….
Just found gregs #1 source for all things Trump…..
This is an elected individual in the government. Is it any wonder so much stupidity resides in the democrat party?
@July 4th American: Have you seen the best seller book, ” all the Reasons to Vote for Democrats”? All the pages are blank!
@Greg: I would become a regular watcher of Madcow if you would read either Men in Black or Plunder and deciet by Levin. Unlike Obama or Trump he actually researches and writes his own books, no co-author or ghost writers.
The latest fake news from far alt right, Obamas brother has put up on internet Barrys birth certificate from Kenya lol https://www.infowars.com/malik-obama-shares-photo-of-brother-baracks-kenya-certificate-of-birth/ I am sure he will be banned from Twitter for that.
So I just cant help but Quote Hillary, What difference at this point does it make now. It never made a difference to me as his mum was an American citizen, at the time of his birth. It was always his ideology I could not stomach, not his birthplace or parentage.
Yes I did. Whomever authored that is brilliant.
@July 4th American: I got the audio book it was much like the song, sound of silence
HaHa. Good one….
@July 4th American, #13:
The Bozo Show is going to derail itself. These people are organizationally incompetent. Unfortunately, it may not happen soon enough to keep them from derailing the government of the United States.
A lot of bad things will happen, both here and abroad, if the government of the United States is suddenly absent, or seriously distracted.
@Greg: What would you know about leadership or organizational skills. You never experienced it as a liberal. You are going to look more like a fool than you already do if you keep making unsubstantiated statements.
@July 4th American: Were these the same a$$sh0les that were suppose to go to ethic classes for lying in court?
getting rid of them will surely derail the government 😛
@July 4th American: Thanks for the giggle, another pile of Gov workers that if fired would send the establishment off the rails and begin WW3.
Now boys sit down we are going to discus what NSFW means…what a meeting, free doughnuts and coffee.
Were they ogling nude pictures of our new First Lady? Or perhaps the 2000 Playboy soft core porn film Video Centerfold, that our new President appeared in? They might be Trump supporters.
So how’s that little project coming? We seem to have mainly added corporate executives with more conflicts of interest than anyone can keep track of, financial sector pirates, alt-right populace propagandists, assorted billionaires, and multiple people with hidden ties to Vladimir Putin’s intelligence services and the Russian oligarchy. Not to mention people who for some reason are chat buddies with Guccifer 2.0 and Julian Assange.
U. S. Attorney Preet Bharara was a swamp drainer with a proven record, going after political corruption without partisan bias. He got fired for his efforts. Can you figure out why?
I’m not sure being dropped on one’s head only once is sufficient to account for thinking none of this matters.
@Greg: You really have sucked up that kool aid! Are you writing for SNL now?
Well, first he was asked to resign, when he refused he was fired. Pretty cut and dry….
It is customary to ask for resignations and/or fire the US Attorneys. The guy who had his dick sucked by a 20 year old intern(young enough to be his daughter) in the oval office in addition to other sexual depravities, fired all 93 upon assuming office. No issue or commentary about any one of those individuals there…..
I am guessing bj clinton thought because of his power and statue as POTUS, women would want to perfom oval office sex and other sexual deviancies(see cigar(s) inserted into orifices). He could willingly engage whoever he wanted given his power….