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Partisan Tone to Words

News Analysis

By Justin C. Danilewitz

In spite of Secretary of State Warren Christopher's claims of being apolitical, his address yesterday at the Kennedy School of Government was not without conspicuous partisan overtones.

In an apparent attempt to combat the rhetoric of President Clinton's conservative opposition, Christopher used the event to highlight the importance of the United States' role as police officer and peacekeeper in a world which, Christopher said, is experiencing "accelerated change."

Speaking with the aid of teleprompters furnished by the State Department, Christopher's speech focused upon the foreign policy successes of the Clinton administration since Christopher spoke at the Kennedy School a year ago. The Secretary also outlined the administration's goals for the coming year.

Christopher spoke in detail about the accomplishments he has made in sixteen shuttles to the Middle East, in fostering stability in the fledgling republics of South Africa and Haiti and, more recently, in the former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia.

His claims to success on a variety of fronts were perhaps as legitimate as they were predictable.

"He rightly took some pleasure in summarizing what had been accomplished, since 1995 was a good year in terms of results for the administration," said Dillon Professor of Government Graham T. Allison, Jr. '62.

The conclusion of the address was inevitably a highly politicized one.

"As this presidential election year begins, we are hearing once again from those who preach the dangerous gospel of protection and isolation," Christopher said. "As President Clinton said at the beginning of his administration, 'we must compete, not retreat.'"

Christopher referred to "forces in Congress who would cut our foreign affairs budget" as people who "betray a lack of appreciation for what America has accomplished in the last 50 years and a lack of confidence that our great nation can shape the future.

His claims to success on a variety of fronts were perhaps as legitimate as they were predictable.

"He rightly took some pleasure in summarizing what had been accomplished, since 1995 was a good year in terms of results for the administration," said Dillon Professor of Government Graham T. Allison, Jr. '62.

The conclusion of the address was inevitably a highly politicized one.

"As this presidential election year begins, we are hearing once again from those who preach the dangerous gospel of protection and isolation," Christopher said. "As President Clinton said at the beginning of his administration, 'we must compete, not retreat.'"

Christopher referred to "forces in Congress who would cut our foreign affairs budget" as people who "betray a lack of appreciation for what America has accomplished in the last 50 years and a lack of confidence that our great nation can shape the future.

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