US Senator Bob Menendez’s return to the chairmanship of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee is essential for America, for our dedication to democracy and human rights and for areas during which he has explicit curiosity, comparable to Cyprus, Greece and the Ecumenical Patriarchate of the Orthodox Church. His return is essential for a quantity of causes. Many take into account Menendez to be one of the brightest, if not the brightest, of the 100 US senators. He has a uncommon understanding of his president and his secretary of state as Joe Biden and Tony Blinken served and labored with him on the Foreign Relations Committee as chairman and employees director, respectively.
His chairmanship is essential to a extensively divided America. He plans to make his committee function in a extra bipartisan method and transfer towards a non-partisan overseas coverage. He will strengthen our constitutional system as he shares with our founders the perception that American pursuits and freedoms are higher preserved and benefited by a transparent separation of energy between the government and the legislative branches of our authorities. In current years, government department energy has intimidated a majority of the Senate into compliance. As half of this constitutionally strengthening effort, he’s additionally seemingly to reclaim some of the Congress’ authority that has been ceded to the government department over the final 30 years. This congressional reassertion of energy can even profit coverage towards the aforementioned nations of the chairman’s particular concern. For a long time, congressional insurance policies towards these nations have been far nearer to his views than the insurance policies of the government department.
For Cyprus and Greece, Menendez’s chairmanship might be a superb star in the once-in-a-millennia alignment of the stars for American coverage towards Greece, Cyprus and the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Never earlier than have the 4 facilities of US overseas policymaking – Joe Biden’s White House, Tony Blinken’s State Department, Bob Menendez’s Senate and Nancy Pelosi’s House of Representatives – had some of Washington’s greatest-ever philhellenes in the high positions of energy and management. Another essential factor of this nice alignment are Greece’s and Cyprus’ relationships with America and Israel, the finest in fashionable historical past. As nicely, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s current anti-American conduct has dramatically diminished his assist in Washington.
Menendez’s spectacular capacity to assist with points associated to Cyprus, Greece and the Ecumenical Patriarchate will be seen in the main steps he has taken on them even with out the energy of his chairmanship. For occasion, by laws, he institutionalized the Eastern Mediterranean Partnership, a title that some of us had been attempting to set up for a while. This now widespread language reinforces the notion of Cyprus and Greece as essential allies of America and Israel. His laws gave focus and robust impetus to a paperwork not recognized for simply taking steps ahead for Cyprus and Greece.
Menendez’s chairmanship carries with it a terrific deal of energy. Traditionally, if an administration needs a boss’s committee to transfer its laws, it will be important that they too transfer points of the chairman’s concern. As nicely, State Department officers are delicate to the needs of the chairman realizing that he performs an essential function of their careers shifting ahead. Our Constitution requires Senate “consent” relating to any high-level State Department appointment the secretary might want to make. The chairman carries the biggest weight in assessing the worthiness of the nominees and the 79 senators who don’t serve on that committee vote for or in opposition to the nominees primarily based totally on the committee’s suggestion.
Menendez’s chairmanship can also be essential as a result of of Plato’s description of authorities as the Ship of State. The issue in altering the path of a big ship is analogous to the issue in altering the path of our authorities’s paperwork. The type of inertia that weighs down directional adjustments in our government department doesn’t hamper the nimble Foreign Relations Committee’s chairman or his top-notch employees. Thus, the mixture of Menendez’s huge data about Greece, Cyprus and the Ecumenical Patriarchate along with his capacity to alter rapidly to essential and significant developments and threats, alongside along with his energy to bypass the paperwork and entry the very tops at the State Department and White House, make Bob Menendez an especially essential and essential asset on this constellation of constructive circumstances for our points.
Having labored very carefully with Senator Menendez by thick and skinny for over 1 / 4 of a century, we will say with nice confidence that his tenure as chairman might be really extraordinary for America and for Greece, Cyprus and the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
Philip Christopher is president of the International Coordinating Committee – Justice for Cyprus (PSEKA). Andy Manatos is CEO at Manatos & Manatos, of which his son, Mike, is president.