Thursday, 6 March 2014

Oh yes, John Short is a

fortunate man. He does not deserve his good fortune. He has, at the expense of a good deal of diplomatic time and effort and a great deal of money been deported from North Korea.
It has gained him a great deal of publicity and he will, no doubt, be praised by like-minded people. He has, to my mind, done no good. He may even have done great harm. I doubt he will see it like that.
We now have a similar problem on our hands.
Our former Prime Minister has been appointed a Senior Fellow at Harvard University. His qualifications for this are something of a mystery but no doubt Harvard University believes it is buying a name and that the expertise can come from somewhere else.
It has given Mr Rudd an excuse to do more globetrotting. At a time when others are studiously avoiding Russia he has gone there. His excuse is that it is a "research" mission and that it was arranged some time ago. Apparently he also intends to go to the Ukraine. More research?
I doubt it. Columnist Malcolm Farr has suggested that it is a "job application". Mr Rudd still has yearnings to be the ninth Secretary-General at the United Nations. Mr Rudd is not Scandinavian, African or Asian. His chances are surely remote - and yet he seems to believe he can do the job. This is not the first time that the idea has been mentioned in the media.
Mr Rudd has had diplomatic postings - but diplomatic postings do not make an individual a diplomat. He was posted to Stockholm and Beijing but, rather than pursue a diplomatic career, he went into politics. In reality I doubt he would have reached the top if he had stayed in the diplomatic service. He is too volatile for that. The Senior Cat had cousins, now deceased, who rose to far more senior positions in the diplomatic service than Mr Rudd would have had any chance of gaining. 
And yet, Mr Rudd now wants the top diplomatic job. He's off on a research mission. I suspect it is to try and gauge just how much support he has abroad. He may not have much at home. The new Opposition Leader was cautious in his remarks. The Government has diplomats (and others) monitoring him closely.
Mr Rudd is a publicity junkie. He thrives on publicity. He is not a team player. He is not a leader. You need to be both to be a diplomat. 
He has a lot in common with Mr Short.

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