Archives About Staff BagNews is dedicated to visual politics, media literacy and the analysis of news images.
October 10, 2006

Locked And Loaded

Bolton-Norkor

This afternoon, I received this from Chris, a regular reader, with his pic of the day…

After North Korea’s nuclear test, or sort-of test, Bush Administration cowboys ride the United Nations halls, cruising for action.  U.S. Ambassador John Bolton, left, leads the way, ready to fend off the enemy, while a young popinjay-in-training follows along, both affecting the tough-guy swagger favored by President Bush.

“Stand back, world, we’re locked and loaded,” the enforcers say, looking more like wanna-be thugs waltzing into a nightclub, ready to demand Cristal and young flesh. “Back off, no questions, we’re on a mission!”

If this scene had appeared on the late TV news, it would have lead to tense dreams. Luckily it was on the Times‘ website, so we could see it fade and drop off the page, along with Bolton’s macho blather, below.

Hate to sound like an idealist, but why does this country work so hard to destroy the UN?

(Early post)

“We’re looking for very swift action by the Security Council,” Bolton told reporters. “We think it’s important to respond even to the claim of a nuclear test by the North Koreans and we’ll be going 24/7 if we need to be to get this resolution adopted quickly.”

(Second try)

”No one defended it, no one even came close to defending it,” Bolton said of the reported test. ”I was very impressed by the unanimity of the council … on the need for a strong and swift answer to what everyone agreed amounted to a threat to international peace and security.”



(A subdued Mr. Bolton holsters his gun for the evening.)

“John R. Bolton, the American ambassador to the United Nations, reported that the 15 members of the Security Council were “solid” in deploring the North Korean move, and he said he hoped for swift action. But by Monday evening the Council adjourned its deliberations and set further meetings for Tuesday while, Mr. Bolton said, they received instructions from their capitals.”

Three Bolton posts from nytimes.com.

(image: Bebeto Matthews/A.P. United Nations. October. 9, 2006. Via YahooNews)

  • http://www.theunapologeticmexican.org Nezua-Limón Xolografik-Jonez

    young popinjay makes a fist like a little girl.

  • jt from BC

    A loose canon is never locked, however when I see Bolton I mute the TV and hear,
    I am the eggman
    they are the eggmen
    I am the walrus
    Goo goo g’ joob

  • http://www.badastronomy.com Phil Plait, aka The Bad Astronomer

    Actually, it’s all clear now: John Bolton’s a cylon! Look at Caprica Six walking along behind him!

  • floopmeister

    Why do I hear the Benny Hill chase music when I look at this photo?
    Where’s the little bald guy?

  • Cactus

    Just look at this bunch swagger and smirk.
    Is it any wonder the rest of the world hates us?

  • http://profile.typekey.com/richsodergren/ rchsod

    johnny is not going to be around in a few more weeks…well he`ll be an unpaided whatever. it only took 6 years for the united states to become a bit player in the world.
    ya johnny you really are a tough guy…you told them furners`did`t you!

  • Rod Dickson

    Forget the those morons who’s The Lady in Red?

  • David

    John Bolton was certainly not the best person that the president could have picked to be our ambassador to the United Nations. He has made insenstitive comments at best and at worst, remarks that threaten the viability of the organization.
    But John Bolton is not trying to destroy the UN. While it is arguable that it was the Bush Administration who sunk many of the plans to reform the UN, it must be remembered that that was the administration’s call, not Bolton’s.
    In the photo that you posted above, Bolton does appear to have to be “on a mission.” But this is not just our mission – reliable allies like Australia, Japan, S. Korea, and Great Britain support the ambassador’s statements and swing countries like France and Russia are on our side. Even countries that normally oppose us, like China are firmly in our camp. So yes, we’re on a mission, we’re on a mission to neutralize a rising threat in the region. Even China, North Korea’s ally, is staunchly opposed to this development.
    The world is angry at us for reasons other than North Korea. Think of Kyoto, think of the Invasion of Iraq, and think of the general tone of the administration. But Iraq is at best tangential to this issue and the Bush Administration has always pursued diplomacy in northeast Asia.
    I’m certainly no supporter of the president, but readers on this site (and I am a regular and a big fan) will seize any opportunity to bash the president; the war in Iraq is all bad! The Six-Party diplomatic talks are all bad! You guys are really good at complaining, but I rarely see constructive solutions proposed (except impeach the president, but then what? Who in the Democratic Party could fix the problems that we’re in, or perhaps a better question, would any Democrat been able to prevent the current situation?). Complaining is your right and mine and let’s exercise it until we expire. However, it’s stupid and dangerous to undermine American diplomatic efforts.
    Too many readers here live in their own naive fantasy world. I commend Ambassador Bolton for his “hardline” stance (one, that has also been adopted by the LA Times, NY Times, CNN, and other “liberal” media outlets). The time for negotiation has expired; I hope the readers’ child-like whinning will end also.

  • floopmeister

    The time for negotiation has expired; I hope the readers’ child-like whinning will end also.
    OK – so if negotiation is over, what is the other option? North Korea has played their hand beautifully and our only option is… what?
    Sanctions? Who do you think that will hurt?
    Military action? It might be time to wave the Big Stick; but it’s a pity it’s flaccid.
    However, it’s stupid and dangerous to undermine American diplomatic efforts.
    Really? The resolution to this situation lies with the CVhinese, the South Koreans, and to a lesser extent Japan. Let Bolton stride around the corridors of the UN all he likes. Let Bush make his fine speeches about Evil all he likes.
    North Korea just called the US’ bluff.

  • Johannes

    The photo looks to me like a angry and sulking Bolton followed by staff members who have a difficult time not to laugh out loud at their obnoxious miserable failure of a boss.

  • Joseph

    David,
    It’s all of a piece. Bush, Cheney, Bolton and the rest bring the same attitude to every situation as a substitute for thinking and collaboration. Perhaps some kind of “toughness” would be advised in this situation if the world had arrived here suddenly without steps that went before. Unfortunately, it’s the rigidity of the Bush regime’s approach to every other nation that has an interest contrary to ours that empties this crowd of its moral authority at a moment that requires genuine leadership.

  • KingElvis

    Bolton would make a great cartoon character. He really looks like something out of Bugs Bunny – Yosemite Sam perhaps? And like Sam, he does a lot of cussin’ and screamin’ to no avail.
    I’m starting to come to the conclusion that featherless bipeds have one distinguishing feature: hypocrisy.
    But with this crew of theives and murderers – who court the Krishtuns with their quasi-morals – the hypocrisy is particularly crushing.
    Hey Mr. Crankypants ever hear of the seven deadly sins? One of them is anger.
    All this bad-ass bluster signifying nothing. If you have to tell people you’re powerful…you’re not.

  • stevelaudig

    Pettiness Alert: Nice rug John. Also am I mistaken or is this angry mob all white. I can’t be sure about the young man on the Lady in Red’s right.

  • GeorgeF

    You asked: “Hate to sound like an idealist, but why does this country work so hard to destroy the UN?”
    Simple to explain: The reborne Christians believe sincerely that the UN is the “rule of satan” and the president of the UN satan himself – according to their understanding of the bible.

  • readytoblowagasket

    “John Bolton was certainly not the best person that the president could have picked to be our ambassador to the United Nations.”
    Not the best? Not even *Republicans* support his nomination.
    “He has made insenstitive comments at best . . .”
    *So insensitive* as to get REMOVED from the six-party talks with North Korea before they began. It takes a special insensitivity to get people to call you “human scum.”
    “But John Bolton is not trying to destroy the UN.”
    No, not destroy it entirely, just take 10 stories off the UN Secretariat building.
    “Even countries that normally oppose us, like China are firmly in our camp.”
    No, it isn’t “firmly” in “our” camp. China is firmly in its own camp, as it should be:
    “The Chinese envoy acknowledged that his country’s leadership is still studying possible responses to North Korea’s nuclear threat. But he *rejected* the U.S. call for tough diplomatic measures, and emphasized Beijing’s support for the six-party format, which involves North and South Korea, Russia, China, Japan and the United States. He urged Washington to be ‘more creative’ in trying to coax Pyongyang back to the six-party negotiating table.”
    http://www.voanews.com/english/2006-10-04-voa79.cfm
    “Bush Administration has always pursued diplomacy in northeast Asia.”
    What “diplomacy” are you referring to? There hasn’t been any U.S.-pursued “diplomacy,” which is the problem.
    “I rarely see constructive solutions proposed”
    That’s because we’re not the ones GETTING PAID to come up with solutions. You wanna start paying us, we’ll come up with some.
    “However, it’s stupid and dangerous to undermine American diplomatic efforts.”
    Again, what diplomatic efforts? Are you redefining the diplomatic efforts of other countries as belonging to the U.S.? Seems to me the U.S. doesn’t have its storyline down:
    Condoleeza Rice:
    “Rice said that President Bush has told the North Koreans that ‘there is no intention to invade or attack them. So they have that guarantee. . . . I don’t know what more they want.’ ”
    John McCain:
    “McCain called the latest statements from Pyongyang ‘one in an unending series of threats and bullying and attempts to get aid and assistance from the West.’ ”
    John Bolton:
    ” ‘This is the way North Korea typically negotiates by threat and intimidation,’ Bolton said. ‘It’s worked for them before. It won’t work for them now.’ ”
    North Korea:
    “In an interview today with Japan’s Kyodo News agency, Kim Yong Nam, second to North Korean leader Kim Jong Il as president of the Presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly, threatened further nuclear tests if the United States continues its ‘hostile attitude.’
    ‘The issue of future nuclear tests is linked to U.S. policy toward our country,’ Kim was quoted as telling Kyodo when asked whether Pyongyang will conduct any more nuclear tests.
    Kim also suggested that Pyongyang was ready to return to stalled six-party talks if sanctions against the reclusive regime are lifted, Kyodo reported.”
    Rice:
    ” ‘What Kim Jong Il should understand is that if he verifiably gives up his nuclear weapons program, there is a better path,’ Rice said. ‘There’s a better path for his people, who are oppressed and downtrodden, and hungry for that matter.’ ”
    http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/world/4250872.html

  • Aunt Deb

    “…the Bush Administration has always pursued diplomacy in northeast Asia.” Unfortunately, it just keeps on eluding them…

  • http://www.woodka.com donna

    Destroy the U.N.? I thought the goal was to destroy the U.S., they’re doing a really good job of that….

  • http://www.woodka.com donna

    And David, yes, Clinot prevented this situation. It only took Dubya six years to destroy that solution. He was much quicker at destroying our national security and our surplus.
    Who is living in that fantasy world, David dear?

  • http://molly.douthett.net momly

    Isn’t that guy behind Bolton from the PC/Mac commercials, sans his eyeglasses?
    He really looks familiar; he is on TV somewhere, isn’t he?
    He should be careful around sharp objects; he might pop.

  • ceabaird

    “Too many readers here live in their own naive fantasy world. I commend Ambassador Bolton for his “hardline” stance (one, that has also been adopted by the LA Times, NY Times, CNN, and other “liberal” media outlets). The time for negotiation has expired; I hope the readers’ child-like whinning will end also”
    Hmmm, David – your language outs you. The reason why Bush etal keep pussy-footing around East Asia is because the Chinese and Koreans have the ability to really punish us, and our allies (Japan), badly. No-one seems to remember the first Bush fuck-up, when we “gave” the Chinese one of our Orion P-3 patrol planes (full of top of the line Advanced ELINT gear). Bush sat back and let it happen – and no-one cared.
    The only Fantasy World here is the one between your ears – where “savior bush” will “overcome”. Fuck you.

  • spencer

    First thing I thought of when I saw this picture?
    The opening credits sequence in Reservior Dogs.
    These people are just as amoral as those characters, and a thousand times more dangerous.

Refresh Archives

Random Notes