Yet, as we have documented here many times, agencies were turning away non-Muslim Arabic speakers. Anyway, this is what it is, but it would be refreshing if one day we saw the headline “State desperate for envoys to learn about Islam, jihad.”
By Nicholas Kralev for the Washington Times, with thanks to all who sent this in:
The State Department, in an unprecedented move highlighting its desperate need for Arabic speakers, is allowing U.S. diplomats to curtail their current assignments anywhere in the world and begin Arabic language training in September.
Foreign Service officers who are interested in learning Arabic or improving existing skills have until the end of July to apply for more than 100 positions in Arabic-speaking countries that will open in the next two years.
Asked why the program has been initiated only now — nearly six years after the September 11, 2001, attacks and more than four years into the Iraq war — department officials cited a lack of resources.
The lack of resources may be over. The lack of realism persists.