I’m sorely tempted to give White House economic adviser Jason Furman the nod for explaining to the country that fewer jobs is a feature not a bug of Obamacare. And the 42 Republicans who signed onto a letter demanding Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) allow a vote on Iran sanctions that would pass overwhelmingly deserve praise as well. But this week’s standout was an undiplomatic State Department career foreign service official.
Victoria Nuland, assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian Affairs, has been the most visible and effective U.S. official in support of Ukrainian protestors. She’s been candid and outspoken about the Ukrainian government’s repression, marching with protestors and delivering sandwiches. That hasn’t pleased the Russians, who started the trouble by muscling Ukraine to back out of an European Union trade pact. She’s been so successful that the Russians decided to go after her, by leaking a phone conversation in which she said to our own ambassador about the E.U.’s efforts to mediate a resolution there: “F— the E.U.” The context is especially apt, as a British paper reported:
In the audio, voices resembling those of Mrs Nuland and Mr Pyatt discuss international efforts to resolve Ukraine’s ongoing political crisis.
At one point, the voice that sounds like Mrs Nuland’s suggests that the EU’s position should be ignored after she reportedly tells Mr Pyatt that Ban Ki-Moon, the UN secretary-general, is going to appoint Robert Serry, the former Dutch ambassador to Kiev as his representative in Ukraine. “That would be great I think to help glue this thing and have the UN glue it and you know, F*** the EU,” the voice says.
Truer words have ever been spoken about our remiss allies (or the United Nations). The E.U.’s malfeasance of course is not limited to Ukraine. (Under the tutelage of Lady Ashton the E.U.’s diplomacy seems mostly to consist of bashing Israel and trying to sell an atrocious interim deal with Iran.)
The Russian dirty trick reminds us of Soviet days, as does much of what Vladimir Putin does. But it is the highest tribute to be the one selected for the Kremlin’s mischief. Unlike 90 percent of the personnel at Foggy Bottom, Nuland is an effective advocate for U.S. interests and human rights.
Germany and others are in a huff and want Nuland replaced. Nonsense! (If our secretary of state had the nerve he’d send a Russian stationed here home as a warning not to mess with our people.) She deserves a raise. All we can do is say, well done, Ms. Nuland.