Gen. David Petraeus: Appeaser?

Gen. David Petraeus: Appeaser?


He apparently thinks diplomacy with Iran is the best option, and as the following suggests, he’s right in line with Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

From Wash Post:

Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, President Bush’s nominee to lead U.S. forces in the Middle East and Central Asia, supports continued U.S. engagement with international and regional partners to find the right mix of diplomatic, economic and military leverage to address the challenges posed by Iran.

In written answers to questions posed by the Senate Armed Services Committee, where he will testify today, Petraeus said the possibility of military action against Iran should be retained as a “last resort.” But he said the United States “should make every effort to engage by use of the whole of government, developing further leverage rather than simply targeting discrete threats.”

Petraeus’s views echoed those expressed by Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates, who this month said that talks with Iran could be useful if the right combination of incentives and pressures could be developed.

So what to make of this given Bush’s recent statements? Are we supposed to just ignore him and focus on what the real policy seems to be?

  • Jimmy the Dhimmi

    “…engage by use of the whole of government, developing further leverage…”

    How do you gain “leverage” by apeasement? The whole point of appeasement is that you lose leverage as a gesture of good will. Pressure, sanctions, and other diplomatic means to isolate or weaken the regime will give you leverage. Patraeus kows that Iranian weapons are being used to kill his men. I doubt he advocates giving away concessions that would further empower Iran in the region in order to get them to stop.

  • C Stanley

    His statements only conflict with the Bush administration’s policies when you contort them. Of course he believes diplomatic resolution of problems is better than war- if he didn’t, then that would be newsworthy. No one in their right mind thinks that war is preferrable to diplomacy- but what’s absurd is to think that every problem can be solved diplomatically if we just show goodwill.

  • Jon Kay

    Er, Jimmy, I think the word “appeasement” doesn’t quite mean what you think it does.

    Appeasement would be agreeing to do whatever Iran wants us to do or looking the other way to keep the peace.