Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Another Casualty Of War
He served this country in the area of foreign policy whenever a Democrat held the Presidency. He did it with toughness and determination. What more could we ask of a public servant? He was a warrior.
He was also a casualty of war. The current war. Though not by an IED or rifle fire, he was killed, never-the-less, by the war. Wars. All of them since Vietnam accumulating in his system until, at 69, his constitution could no longer handle the stress. Frustration, fatigue.
He was the strength in what appears to be shaky foreign policy. Where the President may appear weak to our adversaries, they know they had to face Holbrooke across the table. He was not warm and fuzzy. No push over there.
His death leaves a huge hole in our negotiating abilities. Who will take his place? Who has the stature and, more importantly, the ability and skill to fill his shoes? Should we prepare for the Taliban and al Qaeda to test our mettle? I'd not be surprised.
Whether or not he had a premonition that he might not survive his surgery, I do not know. But when he told his Pakistani surgeon, before he was sedated, that the war must end, it could not have been more clear how he felt.
It's bad enough we're wasting a generation of young soldiers in a battle with no end. If it's now to the point of taking the same toll on those on the diplomatic side, perhaps it's time to listen.