March 09, 2005

Bolton Gets Personal As everyone

Bolton Gets Personal

As everyone who keeps up with the news will know, President Bush has selected Undersecretary of State John R. Bolton as the United States’ ambassador to the United Nations. This has inevitably raised cries of protest from prominent Democrats, many of whom see Mr. Bolton as insufficiently awed by Kofi Annan and Co.

America, argue our Democratic friends, needs a Neville Chamberlain, not a John Bolton. Can’t we all just get along—and demonize Zionism in the process?

A piece in the March 8 number of The Washington Post sums up the fracas quite well. Penned by Glenn Kessler and the uproariously named Colum Lynch, this article offers the typical lefty slant on Mr. Bolton’s selection.

Among the numerous criticisms aimed at Mr. Bolton is the following:

On the eve of six-nation talks over North Korea’s nuclear ambitions two years ago, Bolton traveled to Seoul and denounced North Korean leader Kim Jong Il in highly personal terms. He labeled Kim a “tyrannical dictator” who made North Korea “a hellish nightmare”—which prompted the North Korean government to call him “human scum and bloodsucker.”

We, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” were captivated by Messrs. Kessler and Lynch’s characterization of John Bolton’s criticisms as “highly personal.” What in the Lord’s name could that mean?

As far as we’re concerned, calling Kim Jong Il a “tyrannical dictator” is only “highly personal” in the sense that it’s an accurate reflection of Kim Jong Il’s career. In fact, calling him a “tyrannical dictator” is much like calling George W. Bush a “forceful president.” It’s a fairly accurate job description, if you ask us.

(At least the enlightened government of North Korea chose not to respond to Mr. Bolton’s “highly personal” criticism in kind: Nothing says “impersonal” quite like “human scum and bloodsucker.”)

Frankly, if Mr. Bolton desired to offer “highly personal” criticism of North Korea, wouldn’t he be better off calling Kim Jong Il a “laughably short, sartorially ridiculous Elvis impersonator manqué”? We think that would rile up the North Korean government far more effectively.

What kind of description of Kim Jong Il would soothe the Democrats? How about: “He’s a pleasant—if mildly pugnacious—chap who has turned North Korea into a dynamite hell-hole.” Or: “He’s one of the twenty-first century’s greatest statesmen; it’s too bad he has a penchant for such ridiculous spectacles.” Or: “Kim Jong Il is the Napoleon of two-bit Eastern autocrats.” Or: “At least he’s not as fat as Michael Moore.”

And this has all led us to wonder: What would Messrs. Kessler and Lynch consider “highly impersonal” criticism of Kim Jong Il?

Moreover, if our fancy-pants Washington Post correspondents deny that North Korea under Mr. Jong Il is in fact “a hellish nightmare,” we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” personally invite them to enjoy a one-way trip to Pyongyang.

We’ll see if they can muster any “highly impersonal” criticism of Mr. Jong Il whilst they are there.

Posted at March 9, 2005 12:01 AM | TrackBack