Strobe Talbott is president of the Brookings Institution, a nonprofit public policy organization based in Washington, DC. In an article published on January 4, 2008, he urges the next President of the United States to repair the damage done by President Bush to, among other things, the world’s perception of how we do business when under stress.
About the new administration, he writes:
“It will need to move quickly and dramatically to demonstrate that respect for international law, treaties and organisations is firmly reinstated as part of the bedrock of American foreign policy.
To send the strongest possible signal to that effect, the next president should, shortly after coming into office, affirm full adherence to the Geneva and UN torture conventions, restore the right of habeas corpus for US-held detainees, and ‘re-sign’ the treaty establishing the International Criminal Court, which the Bush administration ‘un-signed’ in 2002.”
President Obama has begun that process, to the relief — and possibly delight — of many. Indeed, his recent pronouncements on dissembling the policy of torture practiced under his predecessor show his commitment to re-establishing respect for the Geneva Convention.
They also exemplify his commitment to diplomacy.
Actually, if you wonder who’s advising our new President on foreign policy, read Mr. Talbott.