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Filling the gap
by Thanos Kalamidas
2008-08-24 09:15:12
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And his name is …Joe Biden and it was like hell for all of us who don’t live in the States, not very familiar with the name and the background to find out who Biden, Mr. Joe Biden is. The US Democratic Presidential hopeful Barack Obama announced his pick for a vice-president in the face of a 65-year-old veteran senator and expert on foreign policy making at least me …smile!

First of all, it looks like there is a new tradition in American presidential election; you pick your running mate after checking his medical file. I mean George W. Bush’s running mate Dick Cheney was touring with Bush and a group of doctors. You will probably point that nowadays 65 is not old and in the case of Obama-Biden we have experience joining forces with young passion. I totally agree with you and I really hope it is true.

But then why do I worry if experience can mean conservatism and youth passion …compromise? And please don’t argue that I’m saying all that because I was wishing Hillary for the place because I think that near the end Hillary made so many often unbelievable mistakes that it would worry me if Barack even thought the chance.

Then I read the man’s bio at least the one that was in the media and I noticed that it was extremely emphasized his experience in foreign affairs, after all, the man chairs the Foreign Relations Committee and well done and I’m really happy for him actually and I have often pointed it, the biggest problems the new US administration will have to deal with from the very beginning will have to do with foreign policy and it doesn’t matter who is going to win, Democrat or Republican; and an experience in foreign affairs vice president is good, really good, just too good to be true. Because Joe Biden is part of the status quo Barack wants to clean, so much part of it so in the beginning just like Hillary he fully supported both the invasion in Iraq and the occupation …sorry, I mean the help for security reasons.

I don’t know why but this expert on foreign affairs somehow comes weird to me, I mean George W. Bush or Dick Cheney aren’t exactly the masters of foreign policy. George W. Bush when he was still a candidate he thought that Pakistan is neighbouring Colombia and that Coventry is a city in USA. Dick Cheney with all his dividing Europe gave lessons of diplomacy, the two of them wrote the book all the mistakes a state can do to screw diplomacy and make enemies between allies. You would never from the very beginning call them experts of foreign policy.

And then there was another thing on the media that stroke me, the son of a car salesman expected to appeal to the blue collar workers. So Obama is admitting two things which oddly are the same things that McCain keeps accusing him, inexperience in foreign policy and being a white collar! I’m not going to add that he’s white because that will be the total cynicism.

Of course, it is too early to judge how this thing will work and of course it is unfair to say anything about Sen. Joe Biden before we hear him and we will have the chance pretty soon but again I have to remember an open letter a lot of US personalities signed and published a couple of weeks ago reminding Barack Obama that he should not change his fight for change in the name of the presidential seat. In that letter all these people tried to remind him that USA is in a deadlock in many, perhaps too many ways and only change can bring hope, something that is missing lately from the average US houses. Hope without guns but with dignity in their every day life, hope without cooperative financial scandals and greedy lobbies.  Hope that will bring back faith to the system and not more homeless and unemployed in the streets.

I hope Mr. Joe Biden is aware of all that and not enter the campaign to fill the missing gap and most of all I hope that Barack Obama remembers his own words. Last and not least I’m waiting to see Hillary’s reaction in the Democrats convention that starts soon. From the beginning of her end I had the feeling that the former first lady hadn’t finished yet!

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Emanuel Paparella2008-08-24 10:30:47
Indeed, in Europe Joe Biden may not be a household name. I strongly suggest that those Europeans who know little about him and wish to get better acquainted with him pick up his book of memoir titled “Promises to Keep”? In that book there is a telling story which has to do with Biden’s attitude toward the EU Machiavellian real politik policies of the 90s and tells much about Biden.
In April 1993 Biden had been calling for sanctions and NATO air strikes against the Serbs and lifting a weapons ban on the Bosnians. This was about a year after Serbian forces and paramilitary gangs armed by Milosevic had unleashed a murderous campaign against Bosnia's Croats and Muslims. Milosevic took notice and invited Biden to his palace for a private chat. During that chat the Serbian leader argued that the Serbs weren't persecutors but victims. Biden responded with a list of accusations of Serbian atrocities. Milosevic vehemently denied them. Finally, Biden recalled, "Milosevic could tell I had just about had it with his lies, and at one point he looked up from the maps and said, without any emotion, 'What do you think of me?' " To which Biden responded that "I think you're a damn war criminal, and you should be tried as one."

Emanuel Paparella2008-08-24 18:55:11
P.S. Another interesting aspect of Joe Biden’s character that few know about, even here in America, is that he has never lost touch with the young in the academic world. For many years now, every Saturday morning, he has been teaching a class in jurisprudence at one of Delaware’s local university. His wife has a Ph.D. in education and teaches at a local college and all his children are college educated, one of them is the attorney general for the state of Delaware. Moreover, among all the senior senators in the US congress he is one of the poorest; his net worth is some 70,000 dollars; which means that within his value system intellectual endowments seem to be more important than material ones. He can certainly sympathize with the million of people who are struggling in an economy in shambles, brought down by a president who has taken care of the interests of the rich for the last eight years. Yes there are good reasons to smile; for indeed in the opinion of many experts Barack Obama has made the best choice he could have made. Time will indeed tell.

Thanos2008-08-24 23:18:33
Thanks for all the information, at the moment we just ...wait and see!

Sherron L2008-08-28 06:35:33
Net worth of 70,000? Is that true? I'm wondering how is he going to make suggestions on how to run the national economy if he hasn't performed better in this area?

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