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ANDREW YOUNG Ex-U.N. envoy has advice for nominee



Published: Thu, April 21, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



He praised free enterprise during a speech at Youngstown State University.

YOUNGSTOWN -- Former United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young doesn't know John Bolton. And he wouldn't predict whether President Bush's controversial nominee for U.S. ambassador to the U.N. will ultimately win confirmation.

But if Bolton secures the position, Young said he would offer some advice: "If he makes it, I'll probably try to sit down with him and tell him what I know. And that's the U.N. is a political body. You have to ask for support. You can't just throw your weight around.''

Young commented on the political controversy surrounding Bolton's nomination before delivering a speech Wednesday night at Youngstown State University. He said of the U.N. job: "You have to get along well with people. But he [Bolton] doesn't have that kind of reputation. I don't know how he's going to work with others around the world.''

Praise for Voinovich

The former Democratic congressman and mayor of Atlanta lauded Republican Sen. George Voinovich of Ohio and others who are taking a hard look at Bolton's past. "It's really good that Sen. Voinovich is asking the tough questions.''

Bolton, who has served since 2001 as undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, is under fire for his harsh criticisms of the U.N. and for allegations that he threatened or intimidated intelligence analysts who disagreed with him.

Democrats contend Bolton is unsuited for the job of U.N. ambassador, while Republicans counter that he's merely become a political target.

On Tuesday, Voinovich surprised fellow Republicans on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee when he announced he wasn't comfortable voting on Bolton's confirmation that day. The committee postponed the vote.

Young came to Youngstown to give a speech at the Paul J. and Marguerite K. Thomas Colloquium on Free Enterprise at the university's Kilcawley Center.

Little ambassador

The New Orleans native described growing up in a part of the city dominated by Italians, Irish and Germans. "My neighborhood was like a little United Nations,'' he said. "I found myself having to be an ambassador at 5 or 6 years old.

"You can't go through life fighting, so I got to be a pretty good negotiator.''

As mayor of Atlanta, Young guided the city through a period of prosperity, using what he called the concept of "public purpose capitalism.''

"You decide what the public needs, then you put it out to private investors.''

The concept worked with the Underground Atlanta development, the city's hosting of the 1996 Summer Olympics and the development of the Atlanta airport, he said.

While mayor, Young said the city cut government red tape, created industrial parks and gave businesses tax breaks in an effort to create a welcoming environment.

"We made capitalism friendly in Atlanta. We just told ... [business and industry], 'Respect our environment. Respect our historical preservation. And make your workforce look like our city.' ''

Government and capitalism can work well together, Young said. "Capitalism works. Free enterprise, if you believe in it, can truly change the world."




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