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Sacrificing a Good Man

November 16, 2006
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Pundits are saying that one consequence of last week's congressional elections will be that John Bolton, America's ambassador to the United Nations, will once again be denied confirmation by the U.S. Senate.

But that's only half-true. Many Democrats opposed Bolton and some, like Sen. Joseph Biden (D-Del.), deserve much of the blame for this. But Bolton's chance for a permanent appointment were slim even before the election, due to the failure of some Republicans to back him both when President Bush first put his name forward in 2005, and again this past summer when an attempt to get him permanently confirmed was made.

It's a real shame that a man who's used his year as our ambassador at the United Nations to stand up for Israel and for a genuine reform of that cesspool of anti-Semitism and corruption will soon be discarded.

But it would be an even greater shame if Bolton's defeat is the harbinger of the return of the influence of former Secretary of State James Baker and other "realists," who, unlike Bolton, have little use for Israel and even less of an understanding of the true path to peace in the Middle East. Rather than rejoicing in Bolton's downfall, Democrats need to use their new majority to act as an effective check on the State Department and the return of Baker.

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