Powell said Bush accepted the resignation Friday, adding, "It has always been my intention that I would serve one term."
But a senior State Department official characterized Powell's departure this way: "He was not asked to stay."
UPDATE I -- November 16: From The Wall Street Journal: The Powell Lesson: Will the State Department now support American foreign policy?.
[The State] department's idea of public diplomacy too often amounted to spinning itself to an obliging media as the supposed last bastion of sanity amid an Administration overrun by neocon crazies. In one example that somehow went unpunished, Mr. Powell's own chief of staff, Larry Wilkerson, described his colleagues at Defense and in the White House this way: "I call them utopians. I don't care whether utopians are Vladimir Lenin on a sealed train to Moscow or Paul Wolfowitz. Utopians I don't like. You're never going to bring utopia, and you're going to hurt a lot of people in the process of trying to do it." That kind of talk may have hurt the Administration, but it hurt State far more.
The first task of whoever replaces Mr. Powell (as we went to press, Condoleezza Rice's name was being whispered) will be to ensure that the department acts as an arm of executive power and not as the in-house opposition.
UPDATE II -- November 17: This cartoon appears in today's (Wednesday's) Investor's Business Daily.
UPDATE III -- December 7: This cartoon appears in today's (Tuesday's) The Detroit News.
Posted by Forkum at November 15, 2004 09:14 PM