Carville on Bush Foreign Policy: Six Variations on 'Failure' in Six Minutes

Give the Ragin' Cajun credit: the man works fast.  In a Today show appearance lasting only six minutes, and shared with former Bush administration official Dan Senor, Carville managed to work variations on the word 'failure' into his comments no fewer than six times.

At the same time, I defy anyone to read the transcript or watch a replay of Carville's comments on Pres. Bush''s foreign policy and find one solitary instance in which he proposes an alternative or even offers constructive criticism.  His rap was utterly bereft of any notion of what the Democrats would do, and do better, if they regained power.

The occasion was this week's Time magazine cover, "The End of Cowboy Diplomacy.  The segment was hosted by the even-keeled Lester Holt, who began by asking Senor: "Time magazine calls it cowboy diplomacy. By any name, is that era now over?"

Senor unapologetically defended an assertive foreign policy:

"I hope not, actually. If you look back at the president's State of the Union in January of 2002, when he talked of the Axis of Evil, many people ridiculed it, mocked it, saying regimes as diverse as North Korea and Iran don't operate in unison. And that's true, in a formal sense. . . The larger point is our dealings with one of those regimes influences the behavior of all of those regimes. When we offer direct talks and concessions to the Iranians, it was followed by provocation by the North Koreans. If you look at Moammar Khadafy who agreed to give up his weapons programs back in 2003, it was when we were being assertive."

You've already gotten the flavor of Carville's comments, but here's an excerpt that portrays just how utterly negative he was:

"I'm saying that the president's foreign policy is failed. Cowboy diplomacy is an utter failure and now he's trying some kind of engagement, trying to replace failure with something. As an American, you look around the world and see American foreign policy collapsing. Of course cowboy diplomacy is over."

Senor repeated his advocacy of a muscular policy in these terms: "The regimes that are challenging us . .  follow our actions and behavior and when we're assertive they get back on their heels. And when we signal that we're not, they come at us."

Exactly.  Leave it to Carville and the Dems to condemn American foreign policy for all the world to see and hear, while offering not the shadow of a suggestion of what they would do should the American people place them in charge of our country's fate.

Mark Finkelstein
Mark Finkelstein is a contributing editor for NewsBusters.