12
Apr
05

Rummy 2?

By BARRY SCHWEID

The Associated PressThe Associated Press

WASHINGTON Apr 12, 2005 � A former chief of the State Department’s bureau of intelligence and research castigated John R. Bolton on Tuesday as a “kiss-up, kick-down sort of guy” who abused analysts who disagreed with him on Cuba. A Democrat said he “needs anger management.”

With Bolton’s nomination to be U.S. ambassador to the United Nations under Democratic attack, Carl W. Ford Jr. appeared before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to support accusations of harassment.

“I have never seen anyone quite like Mr. Bolton,” Ford testified under oath. “He abuses his authority with little people.”

Contradicting Bolton’s assertion Monday that he never tried to have officials who disagreed with him discharged, Ford charged that Bolton tried to sack the analyst, Christian Westermann, and that Bolton was a “serial abuser.”

But the chairman, Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., said the “paramount issue” was giving President Bush the nominee he wants to undertake reform at the United Nations. “Bluntness may not be very good diplomacy, but on occasion it may be required,” Lugar said as the hearing drew to a close.

None of the 10 Republicans on the committee seized on Ford’s testimony as a reason to vote against Bolton. Having a 10-8 majority, Republicans appeared to be able to approve the nomination when a vote is taken later this week or next week.

Sen. Joseph F. Biden, Jr., D-Del., who is leading the fight to block the nomination, responded angrily to the accusation of mistreatment. Anytime a senior official calls in a lower-level one “and reams him a new one,” he said, “that’s just not acceptable.”

Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., said it was not an isolated incident, that Bolton had harassed at least three officials who disagreed with the extent of threats he saw posed by Cuba and other countries.

Calling Bolton a “bully,” Boxer said, “I think Mr. Bolton needs anger management at a minimum and he does not deserve to be promoted” to the U.N. post.

But Sen. Lincoln Chafee, a moderate Republican whose vote could be critical, noted calmly that analysts criticized by Bolton had “kept their jobs.” The Rhode Island Republican has already described himself as inclined to support confirmation.

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