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Monday, July 06, 2009

Bill Clinton To Visit Haiti

Former U.S. President -- and Haiti envoy -- Bill Clinton makes his first visit to that country in his new post. We will not entertain the possibility that the position was offered just before the former President was about to do an AmFar benefit, in Cannes, auctioning off his sax with the sexy Sharon Stone. Drama!

The envoy position, we cannot fail to note, comes with some adult supervision (Exaggerated cough suggesting feigned detachment), which should calm some minds in the State Department and party headquarters about the proposition of the former President, in the full bloom of Mid-life, roaming the globe without a portfolio. An idle mind is the devil's playground and all that (Averted Gaze). From the AP:

"Bill Clinton aims to refocus international attention on this Caribbean country's deep economic problems and environmental decay during his first visit as the United Nations' special envoy to Haiti.

"The former U.S. president, who is expected to meet with Haitian President Rene Preval and visit hurricane-battered areas, is lending his prestige to the plight of the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere as world attention has shifted to the global financial crisis and other trouble spots.

"He was scheduled to arrive late Monday, but no public events were planned until Tuesday, the United Nations said.

"The three-day visit will be Clinton's second to Haiti this year. He toured Port-au-Prince with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, recording artist Wyclef Jean and others in March, before Ban named him to the newly created post in May.

"Clinton spoke at a Haiti donors conference at the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington in April that generated $324 million in aid pledges."

I am of two minds about why a former President of the United States would take such a position: 1) Bill Clinton is trying to bolster his tarnished reputation among African-Americans after the bruising Presidential campaign. There are still some rough spots remaining between Bill and African-Americans (And, apparently, between President Obama and Clinton). 2) Bill Clinton is clearly testing the waters as to whether or not Secretary General of the United Nations is a political possibility. Can he handle -- or does he even want to handle -- the glories and headaches of international diplomacy in trouble spots?

Or maybe both.

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