For years, I’ve heard it argued that the State Department is not really a part of the United States government. Its critics say that Foggy Bottom is pretty much independent of the rest of the government, a body unto itself that has its own agenda, its own rules, and ignores its statutory status as a subordinate to the Executive Branch in setting policy and taking action to suit its own ends. I thought that while there might be a modicum of truth there, it was exaggerated for political reasons.
Now, though, I’m starting to seriously consider that State’s critics might be right.
First, there’s this story that the State Department is seriously considering a plan to formally recognize Palestine as an actual, independent nation. I have a tremendous amount of skepticism about this, considering that the source is Arab News, but the notion that we will formally recognize a government dominated by two (duly elected) terrorist groups with the blood of hundreds of Americans on their hands strikes me as both tremendously repugnant and all-too-predictable.
This comes on the heels that the State Department is so obsessed with its own vision that it will not let any trace of reality interfere with it, even to the point of protecting those who kill them. The State Department has finally publicly released documents proving that it had incontrovertible evidence that American Ambassador to Sudan Cleo Noel and his aide, Curtis Moore, had been murdered on the direct orders of Yassir Arafat in 1973. But instead of passing along this information to the rest of the government (who really, really ought to know who is ordering and carrying out the murder of American government officials), they hid the information and protected Arafat and his fellow terrorists from facing justice for their crimes against us. And when Arafat rose to head of a quasi-state and was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, they kept holding their tongues. Their commitment to their own “vision” was so absolute, they were willing to let the murder of their own fellow State Department officials and Americans go unanswered.
If ever there was a capital offense for a government agency, this has to be it. There needs to be a major purging of the Department of State, and Secretary Rice needs to either arrange it or be its most prominent victim. I have a tremendous amount of respect for her, but she needs to address this — quickly and decisively — or step aside and let someone else do what needs to be done.