On Tuesday, November 13, I'm going to be on a plane to Beijing, so I can't attend the American Enterprise Institute book event featuring the recess-appointed former US Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton speaking on his new memoir, Surrender is Not an Option: Defending America at the United Nations.
Committee on the Present Danger Honorary Co-Chairs and Senators Jon Kyl (R-AZ) and Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) will serve as the "discussants". I would have thought that someone like Lincoln Chafee, Chuck Hagel, Richard Lugar, or even George Voinovich would have made for a more interesting event, but I have to give credit to AEI for lining up two incumbent Senators as the Ambassador's back up chorus.
Theoretically, Bolton should have thanked me in the acknowledgments of his book for helping to build up his brand name. When I first approached a couple of Senators about blocking his confirmation, the response I got was "John Bolton is an obscure bureaucrat going for a job no one cares about. Before we can do anything, there has to be political space for it. You need to turn Bolton into a household name to do this and win."
I think Bolton was always better known than early skeptics of this battle thought, but those of us opposed to his confirmation for the United Nations post did play by the rules of our democracy in stopping him and in the process did elevate his profile -- and now his book sales as well.
But I can't be there -- but I'd love a signed copy of the book.
If anyone goes and has the temerity to ask Ambassador Bolton to sign a book to "Steve Clemons", I'd be most grateful and am happy to reimburse. I hope that he's diplomatic enough to chuckle about the request -- but then again, he may slam the book and throw it across the room.
Actually I think he'll chuckle. But whatever may happen, be respectful if acting on my behalf.
-- Steve Clemons publishes the popular political blog, The Washington Note