New U.S. Secretary Of State Ends Bush Legacy


December 26, 2012

Senator Kerry is likely to be succeeded by Senator Robert Menendez
as Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

U.S. President Barack Obama decided to fully refresh his
administration, with Senator John Kerry (D-MA) nominated as the
Secretary of State and Chuck Hagel, former Republican Senator from
Nebraska as the Secretary of Defense. Treasury Secretary Timothy
Geithner and, perhaps, Attorney General Eric Holder will also be

Obama’s nomination of his next Secretary of State put an end to George
W. Bush’s legacy. Hillary Clinton and diplomats of the old “Wilson”
school she surrounded herself with kept talking about the historical
mission of the U.S. and the need to disseminate U.S. values. Meanwhile,
the American society has long ceased to demonstrate enthusiasm about
such considerations. Unlike Clinton, Rice, and Albright Senator Kerry
believes that diplomacy can achieve anything, and military force Bush
father and son were so keen on, is not necessary at all. These two
brought the U.S. into long-term interreligious and interethnic clashes,
from Afghanistan to Iraq. The current administration will hardly
insist on an intervention into Syria or even launch of hostilities
against Iran.

Meanwhile, the Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) hailed
the nomination of Senator Kerry as the Secretary of State.

“We welcome President Obama’s nomination of Senator Kerry – a
legislator with a three decade-long record of support for Armenia and
a legacy of advocacy for the foreign policy priorities of Armenian
Americans – as our nation’s next Secretary of State,” ANCA Executive
Director Aram Hamparian said. “We look forward to continuing to
work constructively with Senator Kerry, now in his new role at the
Department of State, as we seek to lift Turkey’s gag-rule on American
recognition of the Armenian Genocide, strengthen U.S.-Armenia ties,
and put in place freedom-based solutions that provide security to
the Republic of Nagorno Karabakh,” Hamparian stated.

The Armenian community has certain hopes for Senator Kerry; however,
a key factor is the Secretary of State will not necessarily be a
supporter of the Armenian Diaspora. Kerry will hardly try to please
Baku the way his predecessors did; nor will he ruin relations with
Turkey for the sake of Armenia and recognition of the Armenian
Genocide. Time will show, though; predicting the moves of the new
administration is not an easy task.

Senator Kerry was first elected to the Senate in 1984. He succeeded
now-Vice President Joe Biden as Chairman of the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee in 2009. Over the years, Senator Kerry has been a
strong advocate for Congressional affirmation of the Armenian Genocide,
cosponsoring many resolutions to end U.S. complicity in Turkey’s
denial of this still unpunished crime. As a member of the Foreign
Relations Committee, he pressed ambassadorial nominee to Turkey,
Francis Ricciardone about U.S. policy on the Armenian Genocide and
Turkey’s blockade of Armenia. He is not currently a cosponsor of the
Armenian Genocide Resolution.

In the early 1990s, Senator Kerry was a vocal leader in support
of Senate adoption of Section 907 of the FREEDOM Support Act,
which restricted U.S. assistance to Azerbaijan until it lifted its
blockades and stopped its aggression against Armenia and Nagorno
Karabakh. Earlier this year, Chairman Kerry was “shocked and appalled”
at Azerbaijan President Ilham Aliyev’s pardon, praise and promotion
of convicted Azerbaijani axe-murderer Ramil Safarov.

Senator Kerry will likely be succeeded by Senator Robert Menendez as
Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, ANCA reports.

“Odnako” magazine quotes U.S. political scientist Harlan Ullman as
saying that all key positions related to foreign policy are now given
to senators who have once slammed the policy of George W. Bush.

“Obama-Biden-Kerry-Hagel link can work very smoothly and produce a
real coup,” Ullman said.

“During Obama’s first term, the U.S. already started to yield
its positions on the world arena. “One power cannot dominate the
world, and those criticising the U.S. for a unilateral approach
should overcome the anti-Americanism which had too often justified
collective inaction,”” the U.S. president declared at a UN General
Assembly meeting in 2009. Many experts are now comparing the United
States with the British Empire during its decline, when London started
shifting a part of its responsibility for global issues off to other
players,” Ullman said.

John Kerry is an American aristocrat, heir of the Forbes family. The
first governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony John Winthrop is a direct
Kerry forbear. Kerry studied at Yale University and was member of the
influential Skull and Bones secret society. His second wife Teresa
Heinz is owner of a food empire with assets worth more than $3 bln.

Kerry chaired the Senate Select Committee on POW/MIA Affairs from
1991 to 1993. In 1994 the Senate passed a resolution, sponsored by
Kerry and fellow Vietnam veteran John McCain that called for an end
to the existing trade embargo against Vietnam; in 1995, President Bill
Clinton normalized diplomatic relations with the country of Vietnam.

Kerry has advocated China’s accession to WTO and once said at
the Congress that the Chinese top officials, despite maintaining
authoritarian traditions, have nothing in common with the “Red
Plague”. To this, Republican Jesse Helms responded: “You may call it
whatever you wish, but a duck will always remain a duck.”

Karine Ter-Sahakian