Fifty-nine Former Ambassadors sign letter opposing Bolton's nomination

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Transcript of the letter, dated March 29, 2005, which was sent to Senator Richard Lugar, Chairman of The Senate Foreign Relations Committee by 59 former Ambassadors, stating their opposition to the George W. Bush Nomination of John R. Bolton to be United States Ambassador to the United Nations.


March 29, 2005
 
The Honorable Richard G. Lugar
Senate Foreign Relations Committee
450 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510-6225

Dear Senator Lugar,

We have noted with appreciation the moves of President Bush at the beginning of his second term to improve U.S. relations with the countries of the European Union and of the United Nations. Maintaining these ties and the willingness of those countries to cooperate with the United States is essential to U.S. security.

It is for this reason that we write you to express our concern over the nomination of John R. Bolton to be permanent representative of the United States at the United Nations. We urge you to reject that nomination.

By virtue of service in the State Department, USAID and Justice Departments, John Bolton has the professional background needed for this position. But his past activities and statements indicate conclusively that he is the wrong man for this position at a time when the UN is entering a critically important phase of modernization, seeking to promote economic development and democratic reforms and searching for ways to cope better with proliferation crises and a spurt of natural disasters and internal conflicts.

John Bolton has an exceptional record of opposition to efforts to enhance U.S. security through arms control. He led a campaign against ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty. Today, the administration is pressing for development of new types of nuclear weapons. John Bolton blocked more extensive international agreement to limit sales of small arms, the main killer in internal wars. He led the fight to continue U.S. refusal to participate in the Ottawa Landmine Treaty. Today, the U.S. has joined Russia and China in insisting on the right to continue to deploy anti-personnel landmines. John Bolton crafted the U.S. withdrawal from the joint efforts of 40 countries to formulate a verification system for the Biological Weapons Convention and blocked continuation of these efforts in a period of increasing concern over potential terrorist use of these weapons and of terrorist access to the stocks of countries covertly producing these weapons. John Bolton’s unsubstantiated claims that Cuba and Syria are working on biological weapons further discredited the effect of U.S. warnings and U.S. intelligence on weapons of mass destruction.

John Bolton led the successful campaign for U.S. withdrawal from the treaty limiting missile defenses (ABM Treaty). The effects of this action included elimination of the sole treaty barrier to the weaponization of space. In the face of decades of votes in the UN General Assembly calling for negotiation of a treaty to block deployment of weapons in space, he has blocked negotiation in the Geneva Conference on Disarmament of a treaty on this subject. The administration has repeatedly proposed programs calling for weapon deployment in space.

As chief negotiator of the 2002 Moscow Treaty on withdrawing U.S. and Russian nuclear weapons from field deployment, John Bolton structured a treaty without its own verification regime, without required progress reports from both sides, without the requirement to destroy warheads withdrawn from deployment, and without provision for negotiating continued reductions. Under his guidance, the State Department repudiated important consensus agreements reached in the year 2000 Review Conference of the Non-proliferation Treaty and has even blocked the formulation of an agenda for the next review conference to be held in May 2005.

Under John Bolton as Under Secretary for Arms Control and International Security, the State Department has continued to fail to resolve the impasse with Russia about the legal liability of U.S. personnel working with Russia on the security of the huge arsenal of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons of the former Soviet Union and has failed to accelerate measures aimed at the safety and security of this huge arsenal from theft, illegal sale and terrorist access.

John Bolton’s insistence that the UN is valuable only when it directly serves the United States, and that the most effective Security Council would be one where the U.S. is the only permanent member, will not help him to negotiate with representatives of the remaining 96% of humanity at a time when the UN is actively considering enlargement of the Security Council and steps to deal more effectively with failed states and to enhance the UN’s peacekeeping capability.

John Bolton’s work as a paid researcher for Taiwan, his idea that the U.S. should treat Taiwan as a sovereign state, and that it is fantasy to believe that China might respond with armed force to the secession of Taiwan do not attest to the balanced judgment of a possible U.S. permanent representative on the Security Council. China is emerging as a major world power and the Taiwan issue is becoming more acute.

At a time when the UN is struggling to get an adequate grip on the genocidal killing in Darfur, Sudan, Mr. Bolton’s skepticism about UN peacekeeping, about paying the UN dues that fund peacekeeping, and his leadership of the opposition to the International Criminal Court, originally proposed by the U.S. itself in order to prosecute human rights offenders, will all make it difficult for the U.S. to play an effective leadership role at a time when the UN itself and many member states are moving to improve UN capacity to deal with international problems.

Given these past actions and statements, John R. Bolton cannot be an effective promoter of the U.S. national interest at the UN. We urge you to oppose his nomination.

Sincerely,
The Hon. Terrell E. Arnold
Former Deputy Director, Office of Counterterrorism, U.S. Department of State (Reagan)
Former U.S. Consul General, Sao Paulo, Brazil (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Harry G. Barnes, Jr.
Former U.S. ambassador to Romania, Chile, and India (Nixon, Ford, Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Robert L. Barry
Former U.S. ambassador to Bulgaria and Indonesia (Reagan, Clinton)
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs (Carter)
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs (Carter) Ambassador Josiah H. Beeman
Former U.S. ambassador to New Zealand and Western Samoa (Clinton)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Maurice M. Bernbaum
Former U.S. ambassador to Ecuador and Venezuela (Eisenhower, Johnson)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Richard J. Bloomfield
Former U.S. Ambassador to Ecuador and Portugal (Ford, Carter, Reagan)
 
Ambassador George Bunn
Former member of U.S. delegation to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) negotiations (Johnson)
Former U.S. Ambassador to the Geneva Disarmament Conference (UN) (Johnson)
 
Ambassador (ret.) James Cheek
Former U.S. Ambassador to Sudan and Argentina (G.H.W. Bush, Clinton)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Carleton S. Coon
Former U.S. Ambassador to Nepal (Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Jane Coon
Former U.S. ambassador to Bangladesh (Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) John H. Crimmins
Former U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic and Brazil (Johnson, Nixon, Ford)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Richard T. Davies
Former U.S. Ambassador to Poland (Nixon)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Jonathan Dean
Former U.S. representative to the Mutual and Balanced Force Reduction Talks, Vienna (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Willard A. DePree
Former U.S. Ambassador to Mozambique and Bangladesh (Ford, Reagan, G.H.W. Bush)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Robert S. Dillon
Former U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon (Reagan)
Former Deputy Commissioner General of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) (Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Donald B. Easum
Former U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria and Upper Volta (Burkina Faso) (Nixon, Ford)
Former Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs (Nixon, Ford)
 
Ambassador (ret.) James Bruce Engle
Former U.S. ambassador to Dahomey (Nixon, Ford)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Richard K. Fox
Former U.S. ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Holsey Gates Handyside
Former U.S. ambassador to Mauritania (Ford, Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) William C. Harrop
Former ambassador to Israel, Kenya, and Zaire (Reagan, G.H.W. Bush, Clinton)
Former Inspector General, U.S. Department of State (Nixon)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Samuel F. Hart
Former U.S. ambassador to Ecuador (Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Arthur A. Hartman
Former U.S. ambassador to France and the Soviet Union (Carter, Reagan)
Former Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs (Nixon)
 
Ambassador Ulric Haynes, Jr.
Former U.S. ambassador to Algeria (Carter)
 
Ambassador Gerald B. Helman
Former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Geneva (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Robert T. Hennemeyer
Former U.S. ambassador to Gambia (Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Lewis Hoffacker
Former U.S. ambassador to Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea (Nixon)
 
Ambassador (ret.) H. Allen Holmes
Former U.S. ambassador to Portugal (Reagan)
Former Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs (Reagan)
Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict (Clinton)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Robert V. Keeley
Former U.S. Ambassador to Mauritius, Zimbabwe, and Greece (Ford, Carter, Reagan)
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs (Carter)
 
Spurgeon M. Keeny, Jr.
Former Deputy Director, U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency(ACDA) (Carter)
 
Ambassador Henry L. Kimelman
Former U.S. ambassador to Haiti (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Roger Kirk
Former U.S. Ambassador to Somalia and Romania (Nixon, Ford, Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Dennis H. Kux
Former U.S. Ambassador to Ivory Coast (Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) James F. Leonard
Former Deputy U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations (Ford, Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Samuel W. Lewis
Former Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs (Ford)
Former Director of Policy Planning, State Department (Clinton)
Former Ambassador to Israel (Carter, Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Princeton N. Lyman
Former Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs (Clinton)
Director, Bureau of Refugee Programs, U.S. Department of State (G.H.W. Bush)
Former U.S. Ambassador to South Africa and Nigeria (Reagan, G.H.W. Bush, Clinton)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Richard Cavins Matheron
Former U.S. Ambassador to Swaziland (Carter, Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Charles E. Marthinsen
Former U.S. Ambassador to Qatar (Carter, Reagan)
Jack Mendelsohn Deputy Assistant Director of
   the Strategic Programs Bureau, Arms Control and Disarmament Agency
(ACDA) (Reagan)
Senior ACDA representative on U.S. START delegation (Reagan)
 
Ambassador Carol Moseley-Braun
Former U.S. Ambassador to New Zealand and Samoa (Clinton)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Donald R. Norland
Former U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands, Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland, and Chad (Johnson, Ford, Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) David Passage
Former U.S. ambassador to Botswana (G.H.W. Bush)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Edward L. Peck
Former U.S. ambassador to Iraq and Mauritania (Carter, Reagan)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Jack R. Perry
Former U.S. ambassador to Bulgaria (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Christopher H. Phillips
Former Deputy U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN (Nixon)
Former U.S. ambassador to Brunei (G.H.W. Bush)
 
Ambassador Stanley R. Resor
Former Secretary of the Army (Johnson, Nixon)
Former U.S. representative to the Mutual and Balanced Force Reduction Talks, Vienna (Nixon, Ford, Carter)
 
Ambassador Nicholas A. Rey
Former U.S. ambassador to Poland (Clinton)
John B. Rhinelander Deputy Legal Adviser, U.S. Department of State (Nixon)
Legal adviser to the U.S. Strategic Arms Limitation Delegation (SALT I) (Nixon)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Stuart W. Rockwell
Former U.S. ambassador to Morocco (Nixon)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Talcott W. Seelye
Former U.S. ambassador to Tunisia and Syria (Nixon, Ford, Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Carl Spielvogel
Former U.S. ambassador to the Slovak Republic (Clinton)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Monteagle Stearns
Former U.S. ambassador to Greece and Ivory Coast (Ford, Carter, Reagan)
Former Vice President, National Defense University (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Andrew L. Steigman
Former Ambassador to Gabon, Sao Tome and Principe (Ford)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Harry E.T. Thayer
Former U.S. ambassador to Singapore (Carter, Reagan)
The Hon. Hans N. Tuch Career Minister, U.S. Foreign Service, USIA
 
Ambassador (ret.) Theresa A. Tull
Former U.S. ambassador to Guyana and Brunei (Reagan, G.H.W. Bush, Clinton)
 
Ambassador William J. vanden Heuvel
Former Deputy U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations (Carter)
Former U.S. representative to the United Nations, Geneva (Carter)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Christopher van Hollen
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs (Nixon)
Former U.S. ambassador to Sri Lanka (Nixon, Ford)
 
Ambassador (ret.) Robert E. White
Former U.S. ambassador to Paraguay and El Salvador (Carter)
Former Deputy U.S. Permanent Representative to the Organization of American States (Ford)
 
Ambassador (ret.) James M. Wilson, Jr.
Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, East Asia and Pacific Affairs (Nixon)
Coordinator for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs, Department of State (Ford)