State Department will fail until it gives enemies a taste of their own medicine

State Department will fail until it gives enemies a taste of their own medicine


Secretary of State Antony Blinken famously declared, “Diplomacy is back,” he but confuses diplomacy with affability. Guitar jamming in Ukraine is already Blinken’s Michael-Dukakis-in-a-tank moment. Dictators see in Blinken a man around whom they can run circles.

During the Trump years, NATO allies paid up; today, they again stick America with the bill. Two-bit dictators such as Azerbaijan’s Ilham Aliyev mock and belittle American diplomats without fear of consequence. Eritrea continues to imprison an Eritrean employee of the U.S. Embassy. To harass American diplomats serving in Cuba, Cuban agents often kill their family pets.

Turkey provides a case in point about how coercion can trump consultation. Backbone matters.

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There is no doubt Turkey is problematic. After two decades of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s strongman rule, Turkey has become a money-laundering hub,

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