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View Diary: Breaking: Kerry issues ultimatum ! (225 comments)

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  •  In the context of diplomatic speech,... (2+ / 0-)
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    corvo, Kevskos

    ...it probably is an ultimatum.

    Diplomats -- and Kerry is chief diplomat for the US -- have to craft their words with a view toward every way they can be parsed by anyone.  Interpretations are tricky.  They can result in wars, and though the US loves it some bellicose sexytime, most other nations hate war.  If the Guardian can construe this as an ultimatum, so can others.

    Maybe Kerry went off script here.  That alone would be a very bad thing for someone with his responsibilities.

    Or maybe he said exactly what he wanted to say, and the potential, maybe even the desired, outcome could indeed be an ultimatum.  It could be directed at Syria, though I seriously doubt we care anymore what Syria thinks.

    Or it could be aimed at Congresscritters who need political cover for a Yes vote.  "See, we gave Assad every chance to reform, but he just wouldn't, so we have no choice but to bomb the crap out of his country."

    Or it could be aimed at the international community if an effort is being made once again to get the UN to enter the debate.

    But in the full spectrum of ways this could be interpreted, the very lifeblood of diplomacy, this could be an ultimatum.

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