Saturday, May 14, 2005

Colin Powell Disgraces Himself

I have always respected Colin Powell for his accomplishments on behalf of our nation, even when I disagreed with his stands on particular issues. Courtesy of the excellent Counterterrorism Blog, however, comes news that makes me lose some of my respect for him:

"Last week Nigerian president Obasanjo visited Washington and received mixed messages on the urgency of turning the indicted war criminal and aider of both al Qaeda and Hezbollah, over to face justice. While Secretary of State Rice was forceful in her presentation of the U.S. case and other administration officials weighed in in favor of Obasanjo expelling Taylor for violating the rules of his asylum (see my previous posts), all of that was undercut by former Secretary of state Colin Powell. At a dinner in Washington honoring Powell, the former secretary took time out to essentially tell Obsanjo not to worry about getting rid of Taylor, that it was all part of an agreement that should not be disturbed."

The U.S. Senate unanimously joined the House this week in passing a resolution to turn Taylor to the Special Court for Sierra Leone to stand trial for crimes against humanity. Surely they will not be pleased with a former Secretary of State giving Charles Taylor a pass and ignoring clearly expressed Congressional intent.

Charles Taylor is a criminal of the first order. His militia carried out hideous atrocities in the West African nations of Liberia and Sierra Leone. Bringing him to justice should be a priority. That Colin Powell would try to undermine such efforts is a disgrace.


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