ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Thursday, April 05, 2007

The Problem with San Fran Nan as Sec of State

The Jerusalem Post has this article which demonstrates the problem with allowing the House Speaker to travel to non-friendly states and letting them think they can "deliver a message:"

PMO denies peace message to Assad
Herb Keinon, THE JERUSALEM POST Apr. 5, 2007

The Prime Minister's Office issued a rare "clarification" Wednesday that, in gentle diplomatic terms, contradicted US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi's statement in Damascus that she had brought a message from Israel about a willingness to engage in peace talks.

According to the statement, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert emphasized in his meeting with Pelosi on Sunday that "although Israel is interested in peace with Syria, that country continues to be part of the Axis of Evil and a force that encourages terror in the entire Middle East."

Olmert, the statement clarified, told Pelosi that Syria's sincerity about a genuine peace with Israel would be judged by its willingness to "cease its support of terror, cease its sponsoring of the Hamas and Islamic Jihad organizations, refrain from providing weapons to Hizbullah and bringing about the destabilizing of Lebanon, cease its support of terror in Iraq, and relinquish the strategic ties it is building with the extremist regime in Iran."

The statement said Olmert had not communicated to Pelosi any change in Israeli policy on Damascus.

Pelosi, who met in Damascus with Syrian President Bashar Assad over the objections of US President George W. Bush, said she brought a message to Assad from Olmert saying that Israel was ready for peace talks.

"We were very pleased with the reassurances we received from the president [Assad] that he was ready to resume the peace process. He was ready to engage in negotiations for peace with Israel," Pelosi said after meeting Assad.

She said the meeting with the Syrian leader "enabled us to communicate a message from Prime Minister Olmert that Israel was ready to engage in peace talks as well."

According to officials in the Prime Minister's Office, however, this was not what transpired during her meeting with Olmert.

The officials said Olmert had told Pelosi that he thought her trip to Damascus was a mistake, and that when she asked - nevertheless - whether he had a message for Assad, Olmert said Syria should first stop supporting terrorism and "act like a normal country," and only then would Israel be willing to hold discussions.

The first part of that message, the officials said, was lost in what was reported from Damascus on Wednesday.
The article goes on, but you get the picture. You see, as the Speaker of the House, Pelosi is not authorized (nor equipped) to conduct foreign policy. Anything that Olmert may have said to Pelosi in a meeting should have been kept private, but Pelosi - seeing a possibility for perhaps a Nobel Peace Prize which seem to be given out each decade that the Middle East conflict continues - decided she would try to kick things off. If only the sides would talk to each other, she probably thought to herself.

Of course, in addition to not being authorized to conduct foreign policy, she also is used by foreign governments to attack the US. As opposition leader in the US congress to the current President (who does have authority to conduct foreign policy), our enemies abroad can use her visit to claim that the American people are weak and fractured. Of course, this is exactly what the Dems are pursuing politically...

I thought this cartoon on Pelosi from Cox & Forkum was great:

St Louis Blogger-buddy Jim Hoft (aka Gateway Pundit) is also covering Pelosi's missteps (here as well)

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler