Was Kofi Annan's Response Planned?

I must say the quote for Tuesday comes from a guy I've taken some satisfaction in kicking around lately. Kofi Annan (search), the U.N. Secretary General, was asked by a reporter if he thought he should resign for the good of the U.N. He replied emphatically, "Hell no."

But I watched his eyes, and I think he expected to be asked this question and had planned his answer. The "Hell no" part is good — tough, assertive, solid — all the stuff Kofi is generally not. But the shifty eyes tell me this was a media advisor's piece of work.

Somebody worked up a focus group, or it seems like it anyway. They studied the people who hate the U.N — the same people who thought it was cool that Dick Cheney told Pat Leagy what he could do to himself, if you get my drift. Those people might think better of Kofi if he said something like the U.N. version of John Wayne.

You gonna quit, you lousy Euro wimp — you hand-wringing corruption-tolerating anti-American? Hell no John Wayne growls. But if it's John Wayne, he crawls through the TV and punches me out for saying those other things about him.

Look, Kofi looked the other way while Saddam Hussein (search) tried to bribe the security council; he let his staff and his son pick up the loose change that fell out of Saddam's pockets; he spent a year telling the world the U.S. was a rogue, lawless state that had no right, and no reason to start the Iraq war; and he ran like a rabbit the first time some U.N. people got killed in Iraq. Turns out the U.N. was employing some of the insurgents, who made the bombing an inside job.

Kofi should go. But it will take more than a reporter to pry him out of the U.N.

The U.S. got Kofi's predecessor moved out. What's the problem moving Kofi out? Oh right, we don't want the world thinking we think we are the world's most important nation, which we are, because it's too triumphalist to be caught thinking such a thing.

We are a humble nation. But Kofi should go. Hell yes!

That's My Word.

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