Did Powell Resign or Was He Pushed?
Colin Powell has long been the odd man out in the Bush administration. He was the only senior administration figure to have ever fought in a war, and perhaps because of that insufficiently willing to offer up human sacrifices to the gods of war. He was also insufficiently deferential to his lord and master even though he had perjured himself before the world to do the bidding of that master. Yet his demise was predictable and predicted. In August 2003, a senior administration official suggested that Colin Powell would not be part of a second Bush administration.
Yesterday the Washington Post reported that Colin Powell would not serve as Secretary of State for Bush's second term. The story was a bit strange since it was reported that Richard Armitage had told Condi Rice about this decision somewhat casually. Included in the story was a lot of speculation about who would replace Powell in that role, with Rice being the person considered the most likely to be that replacement. A few hours later, Powell denied the story and said he was definitely not planning to leave.
“It’s nonsense,” Powell said. “I don’t know what they are talking about.
“I serve at the pleasure of the president. The president and I have not discussed anything other than my continuing to do my job for him, and this is just one of those stories that emerge in Washington that reflects nothing more than gossip, and the gossip leads to a rash of speculation about who might fill a vacancy that does not exist,” he said.
As LiberalOasis said, the resignation today was one last slap at Powell by the Bush administration. Powell had recently indicated that he was ready to help make progress on the Middle Eastern front and the timing of the announcement was sure to make his latest diplomatic trip abroad less than useful.
Yup, cleaning house is so much more important than trying to put out a fire by making progress on the Israeli-Palestine crisis. Someday I hope that Colin Powell realizes that being a patriotic American requires him to tell the truth about the Bush administration even if the right wing calls him a traitor. Of course, that might cut into the talk show and corporate speaker opportunities if he did so.