See John Kerry Go.

John Kerry, U.S. Top Diplomat.

Does Kerry deserve these early kudos? Time will tell–but it does appear that he has accomplished a great deal in a short amount of time–leading to a great deal of breathless “what if’s” as journalists are want to do:

Through persistence, energy, deep knowledge and dumb luck, he has joined with the Russians to make Syria turn over its chemical weapons, persuaded the Israelis and Palestinians to start talking, and was a central player in the interim agreement on nuclear weapons with Iran. All of these accomplishments could yet unravel, but they are substantial.

via Kerry Finds His Groove as Top U.S. Diplomat – Bloomberg.

In August, Nicholas Burns offered a “six-month report card” (and Q&A on the topic) where he noted an early assessment on what we now see to be his own style–creating momentum in theMiddle East, pushing diplomacy to the level of strategy, and engaging Iran. Kerry appears to be following coaching from former diplomatic stars George Schultz of the Reagan Administration and George Mitchell of the Northern Ireland peace accords.



5 thoughts on “See John Kerry Go.”

  1. While I agree that there is still a lot of time left before we can decide if John Kerry is going to be remembered as a “diplomat extraordinaire,” I think that we can definitely give him kudos for what he has accomplished so far. He is trying to use diplomacy to solve some of the problems that politicians and diplomats have been only tentatively dealing with before now. Whether he is a successful diplomat or not, he should at least be given credit for being, for lack of a better term, ballsy.

  2. While I commend Secretary Kerry for starting up more talks between the Israelis and Palestinians, I do not see the deal with the Iranians as an accomplishment at all. The Iranian nuclear deal is horribly flawed and has placed Israel, one of our closest allies, standing alone. President Netanyahu called it a “historic mistake” and I can’t help but agree with him. When Rouhani was elected president of Iran, I was hopeful that his presidency would lead to real changes in the United States’ relationship with Iran and would ease tensions. Instead, what we have is a deal where the Iranians can still enrich uranium and conceivably build nuclear bombs while the U.S. lifts sanctions. I don’t see any compromise there. Isn’t one of the purposes of diplomacy to let others have your way? If that’s true, then we are definitely having Iran’s way. That’s not an accomplishment at all and will likely lead to a very dangerous situation for Israel and the Western world.

  3. I understand that there are many people who find fault with the new nuclear deal with Iran, but I think that they are missing the point when people talk about it as a breakthrough. Certainly there are many things that could be better about it–the whole point of diplomacy is to work together to achieve a mutually beneficial goal and this will often require some compromise. I think what they are referencing is the fact that a deal was brokered. The US and Iran were finally able to sit down and agree upon a tentative fix for a problem. I’m sure future talks will need to be conducted, but I think we can all appreciate this as a good sign.

  4. Really, it’s too soon to call anything about Kerry’s career. I know in the State Department, he is not nearly as well liked or accepted as Clinton was, regardless of his achievements this year. As terrible as the comments on the article, I did one that made a good point. Kerry is a man. That gives him an instant advantage for negotiations in the Middle East that Clinton didn’t have. But really, we’ll just have to see. Maybe his next goal should be to win over his bureaucracy as that would help him a lot.

  5. I think that Kerry will be known mostly for his luck in the situation in Syria, but there was definitely some skilled diplomacy in his work in Syria. I also will admit that Kerry has done more than Secretary Clinton. I believe that this comes from the fact that Clinton is probably going to run for the 2016 presidential election, while Kerry can take more risks since his position is not subject to the American public. In the end it will be interesting to see how Kerry is portrayed in history within the next twenty to thirty years.

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