Red Pill. December, 2012.

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Dear Breakfast Clubbers: I thought about you all as I poured the second cup of french-pressed goodness and decided to share in this forum some life reflections. I have had a lot of free time since my dismissal at State on December 18. Still on the payroll, but with no desk and no secretary to order my life, I have been free to take long morning walks, hit the DC think tanks after breakfast, and work on writing projects in the afternoon. The passage of time has given me a clearer understanding of the whole administrative process that envelops me.

It (this administrative leave period) was only supposed to last for a few days until Clinton could testify before Congress. But she got sick and had to postpone so my release was delayed until after her testimony, now scheduled for January 24.

My actual piece is this whole Benghazi drama is actually quite small. I was responsible for North Africa, but because Libya was so sexy, several more senior folks carved parts out, including people VERY well connected to the Clinton machine. Of course, they couldn’t be fingered, so it rolled down to me, unconnected me, in a most undignified and uncollegial way.

In a letter to the senior politicos who made this decision, leaked my name to the press, and executed this decision, I told them the way they treated and were treating me was shabby, thuggish and third worldly, and that I actually held the third world in a higher regard, having spent most of my career there. They didn’t like that. But my, wasn’t it poetic!? The whole thing is further complicated because my small part has become a chink in Clinton’s armor, and, consequently, in Obama’s armor, since they both “signed off” on the findings of the Benghazi ARB, whose official unclassified report, by the way, mentions neither my name nor my position as deputy assistant secretary for the Maghreb.

Unfortunately for me, any effort to extract me from this mess, to exonerate me, to clear my name, risks exposing Clinton and Obama managerial weaknesses, not to mention policy flaws that the political opposition would love to exploit.

The Clinton machine is focused on 2016, already. The Obama machine, as it has for the past four years, lacks any true foreign policy focus. This is Washington, baby. The buck never stops; it never even slows down.

I have decided to share with the Breakfast Club, and any ModPoers who lurk therein, this inside view of Washington policy making.

I will get through this: they use tough, resilient material to make the Maxwells and Hairstons down in piedmont North Carolina. There will be poems written, and memoirs, and maybe even a slick movie. Yeah, a Spielberg slick movie. “The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ, Moves on: nor all your Piety nor Wit Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line, Nor all your Tears wash out a Word of it.” –Omar Khayyam


p.s. Keep up with the latest by occasionally checking out my poetry blog: and my foreign service oral history blog: .

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