Bush Tries to Texas Two-Step Around Armenia’s

It seems like just yesterday that American voters rose up in unison to reject the policies of a dysfunctional and corrupt Republican Congress and in essence rejected six years of a misguided Bush-ocracy. I was one of those voters and when the Democrats reclaimed both the House and Senate, I felt a sense of relief that I hadn’t felt since NBC decided to end the excruciating televised lobotomy known simply as "Friends." Watching a dejected Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld exit stage left was about as gratifying as knowing that no longer would David Schwimmer (Ross Geller on "Friends) be considered a national sex symbol! But no good thing ever lasts and pretty soon, President Bush was back in full form. Foreboding rumors of a "surge" in troop levels in Iraq floated around the news headlines like rumors of a "Friends" spin off based on the imbecilic sex mongering character of Joey Tribbiani. My heart sank because I knew that if it sounded too terrible to be true, then it probably was. So an entire voting populace tells President that they’re tired of a concocted war driven by no actual attainable goal and he responds by increasing the number of troops stationed in Iraq. Maybe this is Texas logic and it’s beyond our understanding. But this is like having your girlfriend dump you because you’re not focused and spend too much time partying with your friends and when she finally comes back, you tell her you’ve decided to sink your life savings into opening up a strip club! Not since Presidents Herbert Hoover or Richard Nixon has a resident of the White House had a greater disregard for the opinion of the American people. Every news agency reported that the President was humbled yet just a few days ago, he was on TV again, wearing a patented blue tie and chimpanz-oid scowl and stumbling through yet another press conference like a drunken frat boy trying to pass a sobriety test. Bush’s contempt for the will of the American people pervades every policy decision he makes and is most notable in his approach to issues of relevance to his Armenian American constituency. Last year, the administration nominated Richard Hoagland to be the Ambassador to the Republic of Armenia to replace Ambassador John Evans. Evans was being replaced because he accurately described the Turkish massacres of Armenia’s as Genocide during a public event — an absolute "No-No" for the Administration. Hoagland made waves when he questioned the facts of the Armenian Genocide during his confirmation hearing. The Armenian National Committee of America quickly pounced on him and urged Senators to block his nomination sighting that no representative of the United States to Armenia can have such a blatant disregard for historical facts and for such a significant event in Armenia’s history. Senator Menendez of New Jersey blocked the nomination and the protests reached such a fervent pitch that Hoagland’s nomination was pulled. Now here’s where Bush revives his role as the spoiled and incompetent son of a New England millionaire former President who always gets his way. On January 9th – over Congressional opposition and Armenian American community outrage – the Bush Administration re-nominated Richard Hoagland, who has denied the Armenian Genocide, as U.S. Ambassador to Armenia (from www.anca.org). Yup. Fool me once, shame on you! But fool me and you can’t get fooled again! That’s an actual Bush quote and is not supposed to make sense but you get the idea. Bush re nominated Hoagland despite: A majority of Senate Foreign Relations Committee members having expressed concerns about the firing of former U.S. Ambassador Evans and remarks by Hoagland denying the Armenian Genocide. A specific call by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Senator Bob Menendez questioning Hoagland’s effectiveness as Ambassador given the controversy surrounding his appointment. A recent community poll that reported that 97% of Armenian Americans oppose the appointment of Richard Hoagland as U.S. Ambassador to Armenia. I read the news and was speechless. I stared at my computer in disbelief. The man just doesn’t give a flying monkey’s hairball about what anyone thinks about his Presidency or his legacy. But the re-nomination of Hoagland is going too far. I wish he was eligible for one more term just so I could vote against him. Unfortunately, this is Bush’s swan song. His last lame-duck two years where he tries to throw enough policy around to fill up the last two rooms of the George W. Bush Library and Museum. Before I go on, I just want to commend the Armenian National Committee of America for taking the lead and being the only Armenian advocacy group to voice their discontent in regard to this issue. There’s going to be a little something extra from Santa Skeptik come later this year in their donation stocking. I’ve said this a hundred times already but I’ll say it again. The ANCA works its tails off to advance the Armenian Cause and no one else even comes close. That might change over time or depending on the issue, but I challenge anyone out there to point me to a single other organization that’s doing this kind of work with this level of intensity. I’ll buy you a cold frosty mug of Kotayk beer if you do. In the meantime, here’s my plan. I’m not going to just sit on the sidelines and take this insult with a stupid smile and a "Thank you Sir, may I have another" attitude. This issue isn’t over until we say it’s over. If you haven’t done so already, go to the ANCA website (www.anca.org) and send a fax, email, letter, singing telegram in a gorilla suit or whatever mode of communication you prefer to your elected representatives today! Call the White House operator and ask to speak to the bonehead who decided to throw Hoagland’s fez back in the ring. Annoyed operators are standing by, the rest is up to you. Skeptik Sinikian passed the foreign service exam and was nominated on two separate occasions to be the U.S. Ambassador to Narnia and Kazakhstan. If you would like to show him your support, do so by writing him at SkeptikSinikian@aol.com or visit his blog at www.Sinikian.blogspot.com.

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