Monday, September 27, 2004

Carter's Place in History Still Being Written

Carter's Place in History Still Being Written. Article addresses some of the challenges of the Carter administration and speculates on history's final evaluation.

From the site:

Just when we thought Jimmy Carter would simply fade away into the political shadows of the night, the former president pulled off the unthinkable in Pyongyang, North Korea. He brought peaceful resolution within the realm of possibility -- averting a probable military solution under the auspices of quiet skepticism in America.

Although the conflict in North Korea is far from over, Carter has put the two adversaries at the threshold of stability and may force Americans to re-examine his place within presidential history. He has done what no one else has been able to do. He brought the North Koreans to the bargaining table.

Past interpretations label Carter as an executive failure, mired in domestic toils like inflation, energy scarcity, the boycott of the 1980 Olympic games in Moscow and the Iranian hostage crisis. But a closer examination reveals a much different image than the one put "on trial" during the 1980 election.

Maybe Carter's accomplishments in dealing with President Kim Il Yung will solidify his role as a diplomat and statesmen, the likes of whom our country may never see again.
At the time of his ouster in 1980, Carter left office with the reputation of an idealistic small-town politician, and somewhat of an intellectual light- weight. Carter may have been a peanut farmer, but he was a peanut farmer with a degree from the Naval Academy.

In Tip O'Neill's autobiography "Man of the House," O'Neill wrote an anecdote about Carter during the energy crisis of the late 1970's. In 1979, Carter had just eloquently addressed the American people with regard to the most recent energy crisis. "Energy will be the immediate test of our ability to unite this nation," Carter said. "It can also be the standard around which we rally. On the battlefield of energy we can win for our nation a new confidence and we can seize control again for our common destiny."

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