Final Word from Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Senate confirmation of the U.S. ambassador-designate to the CR, Norman Eisen, is being held up because Sen. Charles Grassley objected to Eisen's role in the firing of a semi-government official who took action against a friend of Barack Obama's. To describe Eisen's behavior, Grassley used some truly tough language in Congress ("lack of candor," "misrepresentations"), as well as in his Joint Staff Report on the issue ("Eisen's claims are not credible"), but nowhere did Grassley state bluntly that Eisen might have broken the law. Neither did the Czech press. Yet Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg said in Washington yesterday that "whether [Eisen] violated U.S. laws, whether he told the truth or not, is an internal American matter." Schwarzenberg might be admired at times for his undiplomatic language, but such a gratuitous remark about the ambassador-designate of a major ally suggests that he either isn't reading his briefs closely enough, or that he has some kind of hidden agenda the country needs to know about.[Czech Republic United States of America]

Glossary of difficult words

semi-goverment - the official, Gerald Walpin, worked for the Corporation for National and Community Service, which is a public-private initiative;

candor - the quality of being open and honest in expression; frankness;

misrepresentation - a false or misleading statement;

bluntly - (of a person or remark) uncompromisingly forthright;

gratuitous - unnecessary; uncalled for; lacking good reason;

brief - a concise statement or summary; a set of instructions given to a person about a job or task.


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