Marc Lynch clarifies his comments on Judith McHale made back in January

Marc Lynch responds to comments made last month – and revisited this week – by former Under Secretary James Glassman on Lynch’s description of Judith McHale’s long anticipated and now actual nomination as Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy:

[S]ince everyone is quoting the "terrible, terrible pick" line, I guess it’s worth going back to that post to emphasize that that my objection was not personal.  I have no reason to believe that she’s anything but the smart, tough, and experienced woman that her friends and supporters have described.  My criticism was rooted in one thing: that she had no evident experience or background in what I consider to be a vital part of an effective foreign policy apparatus. …

I didn’t think it was so controversial to suggest that, say, heart surgery should be done by a heart surgeon and not by a smart guy who used to watch ER.  But clearly not everyone considers public diplomacy to be heart surgery…

So what do I think now that she’s been nominated?   I want her to be confirmed, and quickly. After watching the position stand empty for months, just like so many other important foreign policy positions, we need an Under-Secretary to take the job and get started.   The President and the good folks at the NSC have been exemplary on the public diplomacy front thus far, but they can’t do it alone — they need the kind of sustained, ongoing engagement across all levels which the appropriate State Department agencies can and must provide.

One thought on “Marc Lynch clarifies his comments on Judith McHale made back in January

  1. Marc Lynch always raises my suspicion of his connection to Arab political regimes of contradicting ideologies, except in being dictatorships, Syria and Saudi Arabia!!!

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