Saturday, September 8, 2012

How The Tea Party Makes Hillary Clinton's Work Sisyphean


Bloomberg News

Clinton Pushes Maritime Code, Trade at APEC Summit in Russia

By Indira A.R. Lakshmanan on September 07, 2012

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will urge cooperation on resolving regional maritime skirmishes that have escalated over the past year during a visit to Russia for an Asia-Pacific summit.
As President Barack Obama’s representative at the Asia- Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit in Vladivostok, Clinton meets today and tomorrow with the leaders of Japan, South Korea and Russia, all of whom have competing territorial claims with China or each other.
The top U.S. diplomat is wrapping up a six-nation, 11-day tour that garnered mixed results in pressing China and Southeast Asia countries to adopt a framework for negotiations on territorial claims in a region rich in oil and gas. The U.S. is seeking to diffuse conflict in the South China Sea, through which half of the world’s commercial cargo moves.
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None, I repeat, NONE of the difficulty Hillary Clinton has encountered on this Asia tour is necessary.  All of the conflicts she is attempting to settle through multilateral negotiations could have been brought to an international convention for fair adjudication.  Instead,  like a busy little bee (a  really cute one) cross-pollinating frantically,  Secretary Clinton is compelled to buzz from one to another bilateral meeting to try to bring disputes to settlement.  She does so at an extreme disadvantage with no muscle whatsoever because the United States is still not a member of the Law of the Sea Convention (L.O.S.T.) 

The Law of the Sea Convention is a body of maritime states that agree to certain stipulates, e.g. maritime borders may extend to as far as 200 miles offshore.  The U.S. has four maritime borders.  Members empower the convention to make decisions as to who may do what where.  Drilling and mining for rare minerals beneath the sea,  minerals used in our precious and necessary technology,  our smart phones and iPads,  is governed by rights to areas of the sea.   Not being members, we have no voice regarding who may encroach upon our own maritime borders nor upon those of our friends and partners e.g. some of the countries Mme. Secretary has visited this week.  This hobbles not only Hillary Clinton in her efforts on her latest journey, but our country going forward in this century, which, of course, is her concern.
We are not members of this convention because our opportunity came to a screeching halt just two months ago when the Tea Party essentially killed ratification of  L.O.S.T. in Congress. 
Every day I watch Hillary Clinton work her heart out for this country.  Right now, as I am writing this, she is working so hard to try, from a powerless position, to negotiate settlements by shuttling from one to another delegation.  It is unnecessary.  All of this could easily be settled peacefully before an international body we have  snubbed by not ratifying the Law of the Sea Treaty.   

Thank the Tea Party for that. 

See How the Tea Party Harpooned Hillary Clinton’s Asia Mission

Meanwhile, our precious Hillary, we appreciate all you are trying to do and all you have done.  Come home safe.  You have not failed in any way anywhere.  Your government-held-captive has failed you.

If you understand what is happening here and disagree with how  Congress, by way of the Tea Party,   has stymied our hard-working Secretary of State and worse, the future of our country and its leading role in world affairs,  lobby your reps and vow to vote them out if they do not RESURRECT L.O.S.T.!