The Irish feel betrayed, the Japanese are honored and gay advocates are happy.
That sums up the diplomatic developments over the past week.
Irish-Americans are complaining that President Obama has failed to appoint a U.S. ambassador to Dublin since Daniel M. Rooney retired nearly a year ago.
The Japanese are thrilled now that Caroline Kennedy has arrived as the new American envoy in Tokyo.
And gay advocates are cheering the Senate confirmation of James W. Brewster as ambassador to the Dominican Republic, where he will serve as the sixth openly homosexual ambassador appointed by Mr. Obama.
Leading Irish-Americans grumble that the 11-month absence of a U.S. ambassador to Ireland is the longest vacancy since 1927.
“It’s a slap in the face to the millions of Irish-Americans that supported this administration,” Brian O’Dwyer, head of the Emerald Isle Immigration Center in New York, told The Sunday Times in London.
“I have no idea why this is happening. It’s a disgrace,” he added.
Meanwhile in Tokyo, Ms. Kennedy arrived Friday to warm greetings from Japanese officials and citizens who hold strong respect for her father, President John F. Kennedy.
Ms. Kennedy noted that her father, who was assassinated 50 years ago this week, had wanted to visit Japan.
“I would be humbled to carry forward his legacy in a small way and represent the powerful bonds that unite our two democratic societies,” she said in a video posted by the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo.
Although she has no diplomatic experience, her close relations with Mr. Obama could make her a “new bridge” between the two countries as they continue to work on sensitive subjects such as bilateral trade talks and the relocation of the Marine Corps air base on Okinawa, The Japan Times reported Saturday.
Gay advocates applauded the Senate for confirming Mr. Brewster, a Chicago marketing executive, on Thursday, despite strong resistance from some leading Catholics who objected to a homosexual ambassador serving in the Dominican Republic.
“All of us at Victory are delighted by this news,” said Chuck Wolfe, president and CEO of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund and Institute.
With the international community inching toward an agreement with Iran that would slow parts of that nation’s nuclear program, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday cautioned against accepting “an exceedingly bad deal” that he says would threaten the very existence of his country.
“I’m the prime minister of Israel. I have to care for the survival of my country. And Iran maintaining its nuclear weapons capability — that is, the capacity to produce nuclear weapons — threatens directly the future of the Jewish state,” Mr. Netanyahu said on CNN’s “State of the Union” program.
“We’ve been around, the Jewish people, for about 4,000 years, and we’re not about to let ayatollahs armed with nuclear weapons threaten that,” he said.
Iranian officials are set to meet in