Slaughtering the Opposition
So Ezra and Matt don't like Anne-Marie Slaughter, whose new book, The Idea That Is America, has just come out. I haven't read the book, but like Ezra and Matt, I've met Slaughter and heard her speak. I'm generally a huge fan of her ideas and approach to foreign policy, which is distinctly Wilsonian internationalist in the sense that Wilson meant it (i.e., creating alliances and strengthening international organizations rather than "spreading democracy."
With that in mind, let's dispense with Matt's objections first, because they're the easiest to dismiss. Matt thinks Slaughter is "soft and gentle," and he doesn't "have confidence that she's willing to make the tough decisions to deal with the rogue immoral elites that are destroying the planet." Well, I've got news for Matt. In academia, if you've attained tenure by age forty-four, that's quite an achievement. But at age forty-four, Anne-Marie Slaughter had gotten herself named Dean of the Woodrow Wilson School of International Relations at Princeton -- while being a woman in what is still largely a man's field, as well as a wife and mother. Let me tell you, any woman that can attain that high a peak in that little a timespan in that closed a field is not "soft and gentle," she's ambitious and tough as nails. So Matt fell for her disarming "gentleness," which I saw too when I heard her speak -- she was saying how she needed to talk fast because her kids would miss her if she didn't get home soon -- but that doesn't mean Mahmoud Abbas and Kim Jong Il and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad aren't going to realize very quickly that this lady can put the kibosh on them really fast if they don't shape up. When you think of Anne-Marie Slaughter, don't think of Condi Rice, think of Madeleine Albright -- and then imagine her bombing the heck out of Serbia, and you'll get a pretty accurate picture.
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