Naturally, Grandma came to mind when I saw this headline: "Bush administration refuses to talk directly with its main foes." Bush won't let his people meet with representatives from North Korea, Iran, Syria, and others with whom he disagrees. What the hell kind of "diplomacy" is that? How do two parties reach an understanding without communication? I'm not the only one who sees this as wrongheaded at best, fatal hubris at worst.
"I believe that diplomacy is not simply meant for our friends. It is meant for our enemies," said Richard Armitage, the deputy secretary of state in President Bush's first term. "In fact, our enemies need diplomatic engagement more."Condoleezza Rice argues, "We have people who know our views who talk with the Iranians. I don't think that the absence of communication is the problem here." Yeah, at least Grandpa still talked to my mom. But should the most powerful nation on Earth engage in critical discussions solely by proxy? I just don't get it. Maybe Grandma can explain it to me.