Thursday, April 05, 2007

Secretary of State Pelosi Solves Iranian Hostage Crisis

The Associated Press implied in a story today that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi was instrumental in getting the 15 British hostages released from Iran. That actually may be the case, but pay no attention to the 'man behind the curtain' which is that Speaker Pelosi's actions are bordering on treasonous.

Imagine if, during the civil war, Speaker of the House Schuyler Colfax would have visited the south and negotiated behind Abraham Lincoln's back. Such chicanery as Mrs. Pelosi's has never before been attempted, and there are many who think that it can somehow have a healthy result.

It is the Constitutional responsibility of the Executive department to be the Commander in Chief during wartime. It is the Constitutional responsibility of the Executive department to deal in affairs of state. By implication, even though she is only two heartbeats away from the presidency, it is the Constitutional responsibility of the Speaker of the House to keep their nose out of such business, especially when it comes to cavorting with a declared terrorist state.

These sentiments have nothing to do with whether the current Executive, George W. Bush is doing a good job. In fact, in most instances, I think he and his administration are doing a poor job.

But he is the president. If someone (several people) don't want him to be the President, because he lied or tortures people or says "nukyaler" or whatever, then they need to draw up impeachment proceedings. Far worse than the supposed problems being caused by the Bush Administration currently (one opinion I recently heard is that Americans have now killed 650,000 Iraqis, and that is a conservative estimate) is the absolute chaos that is brewing in America due to the thoughts of enough Bush haters who think Bush should either be thrown out of office or ignored, the Constitution apparently be damned.

Stop for a moment to think how vulnerable the United States becomes when, in effect, two diametrically opposed foreign policies are being promulgated in the most volatile region of the planet.

Terrorist groups have spoken, and they love what they are seeing.

It's working. Pandora is stirring. Pelosi, Syria's Bashar Assad, Iran's Ahmadinejad, and the terrorists they support are getting the last laugh. Yes they place blame for the capture and ill-treatment of the British sailors--on President George W. Bush.

When Britain and the European Union, who influence 40% of Iran's trade, had a chance to make a difference, they flinched.

A travesty.


Rich Warnick said...

Hah. Bush ain't Abraham Lincoln by any stretch of the imagination. Anyway, I thought Dick Cheney was the man behind the curtain. Nancy Pelosi is a better leader than both of them put together.

Frank Staheli said...

You're probably right that Pelosi is better than Bush and Cheney. You're definitely right that Bush is no Lincoln!

But what about the point that she constitutionally should not be doing what she's doing?

Rich Warnick said...

The statement I heard from Speaker Pelosi is that in her discussions with Syrian leaders she did not deviate in the slightest from established US foreign policy. And the article you cite does not even imply she talked with Syria about the British prisoners.

What about the Republican members of Congress who went to Syria with Pelosi and separately?

Frank Staheli said...

The following are the paragraphs from the story that I think make the implication:

"Syria, Iran's close ally, said it played a role in winning the release. "Syria exercised a sort of quiet diplomacy to solve this problem and encourage dialogue between the two parties," Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem said in Damascus.
The announcement of the release came hours after U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi met with President Bashar Assad in Damascus, trying to show that a U.S. dialogue with Syria — rejected by the Bush administration — could bring benefits for the Middle East. The British sailors were not part of their talks, and it was not clear if the release was timed to coincide with her visit."

I didn't have my headphones at the gym this morning, but the closed captioning I read from NBC Today says that she probably crossed the line that I suggest.

What did the Republicans do who were there? Did they visit with Assad? Did they espouse a different foreign policy?

Rich Warnick said...

When the article says "the British sailors were not part of their talks" how can you say Speaker Pelosi was "instrumental" in securing the release of the Brits?

Rich Warnick said...

Think Progress reports on the Bush administration's hypocrisy.

Elizabeth said...

It's debatable whether Pelosi's trip had anything to do with the interests of the USA. See my last blog post.

Frank Staheli said...

Richard and Elizabeth,

Since I commented on Elizabeth's site, I found the following quote from another article:

Pelosi told reporters that during her talks Wednesday with Assad she "determined that the road to Damascus is the road to peace."

"We came in friendship, hope," she said.

The House speaker also said she conveyed an Israeli message to Assad that the Jewish state was ready to resume peace talks. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert quickly issued a denial, however, stating Israel's policy toward Syria has not changed.

The article also quotes a former state department official who states that Pelosi's trip might be a felonious.

Rich Warnick said...

Frank's concern about the Constitution is misplaced. Here I'll quote from Jef Huber on DailyKos:

"Arguments that the executive branch enjoys sole control of foreign policy don't hold water. All treaties have to be ratified by two thirds of the Senate. Congress has exclusive authority, according to the Constitution, to declare war, to maintain and regulate the military, and to fund foreign aid. Are congressional leaders to keep their noses out of the foreign policy process and simply act as a rubber stamp for the executive's dictates? I think not. We've just witnessed six years of that sort of thing, and it hasn't turned out so well."

Frank Staheli said...

You're holding Jef Huber up as a greater Constitutional authority than I? Well, I never! ;-)

I did click through his post to Media Matters article that clarified for me that the Republican delegation recently visited with President Asad as well. I still counter (in an effort of learning and not trumping) that it is much more likely that the Republican delegation conveyed to al Asad the sense of US foreign policy--as defined by the existing administration--while Pelosi did not.

Rich Warnick said...

Frank, I just swiped Huber's paragraph cause I couldn't say it better myself. Congress has always been involved in foreign policy. That's why the House has a Foreign Affairs Committee and the Senate has a Committee on Foreign Relations.

This faux-outrage over Speaker Pelosi is just another momentary distraction thrown up by the Bush administration.

Rich Warnick said...

OK, this week's hypocrisy prize has to go to Newt Gingich. As Speaker of the House, he publicly contradicted our Middle East foreign policy and defied the White House by leading a delegation to Israel.

Now he says: "I think it's very dangerous for America to start having 535 secretaries of state..."

Frank Staheli said...

Richard Warnick leads 1-0 in the touche' competition, thoroughly trouncing my argument that Pelosi's antics have no precedent.

I contend, however, that Gingrich was wrong. Did I think that at the time it happened? 'I have no recollection of the matter.' Actually, I very likely supported Gingrich at the time, because I thought Clinton was a loser (actually I still do).

It is a slightly different situation now (although the nuance is nearly inconsequential) in that Gingrich went to a country that is not on the terror list.

However, in my retrospect, I think it was wrong for both Gingrich and Pelosi to have done what they did.

Elizabeth said...

re "The House speaker also said she conveyed an Israeli message to Assad that the Jewish state was ready to resume peace talks. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert quickly issued a denial, however, stating Israel's policy toward Syria has not changed"

Olmert has to issue a denial, to avoid offending Bush.