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Homeland Security Advisory

April 03, 2007

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Why Is Pelosi In Syria?

Pelosi In Syria

DAMASCUS, Syria - U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi met Syrian President Bashar Assad Wednesday for talks criticized by the White House as undermining American efforts to isolate the hard-line Arab country.

The California Democrat and accompanying members of Congress began their day by holding separate talks with Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem and Vice President Farouk al-Sharaa and then met Assad, who hosted them for lunch after their talks.

Pelosi's visit to Syria was the latest challenge to the White House by congressional Democrats, who are taking a more assertive role in influencing policy in the Middle East and the Iraq war.

Bush has said Pelosi's trip signals that the Assad government is part of the international mainstream when it is not. The United States says Syria allows Iraqi Sunni insurgents to operate from its territory, backs the Hezbollah and Hamas militant groups and is trying to destabilize the Lebanese government. Syria denies the allegations.

"A lot of people have gone to see President Assad ... and yet we haven't seen action. He hasn't responded," he told reporters soon after she arrived in Damascus Tuesday. "Sending delegations doesn't work. It's simply been counterproductive."

Pelosi did not comment on Bush's remarks but went for a stroll in the Old City district of Damascus, where she mingled with Syrians in a market.

Wearing a flowered head scarf and a black abaya robe, Pelosi visited the 8th-century Omayyad Mosque. She made the sign of the cross in front of an elaborate tomb which is said to contain the head of John the Baptist. About 10 percent of Syria's 18 million people are Christian.

At the nearby outdoor Bazouriyeh market, Syrians crowded around, offering her dried figs and nuts and chatting with her. She bought some coconut sweets and looked at jewelry and carpets.

On Tuesday night, Pelosi met Syrian human rights activists, businessmen and religious leaders at the U.S. ambassador's residence.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem was quoted Wednesday as saying that Pelosi and other members of Congress were "welcome" in Syria.

"Better late than never," he told the Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Anba in an interview. He said the visits were taking place because Americans and Europeans had realized that their policy of trying to isolate Syria had failed.

However, the Syrian ambassador to Washington, Imad Moustapha, was quoted as saying Syria was "wary of the sudden U.S. openness" and would respond cautiously.

"Syria will not hurriedly offer concessions when it refused to offer them under much greater pressure from the United States in the past," he said in an interview with the Al-Baath newspaper, the mouthpiece of the ruling party.

"Syria will take a step forward every time the Americans take one," he added.

Democrats have argued that the U.S. should engage its top rivals in the Mideast - Iran and Syria - to make headway in easing crises in Iraq, Lebanon and the Israeli-Arab peace process. Last year, the bipartisan Iraq Study Group recommended talks with the two countries.

Bush rejected the recommendations. But in February, the U.S. joined a gathering of regional diplomats in Baghdad that included Iran and Syria for talks on Iraq.

Visiting neighboring Lebanon on Monday, Pelosi shrugged off White House criticism of her trip to Syria, noting that Republican lawmakers met Assad on Sunday without comment from the Bush administration.

She said she hoped to rebuild lost confidence between Washington and Damascus and would tell Syrian leaders that Israel will talk peace with them only if Syria stops supporting Palestinian militants. She said she also would raise Syria's roles in Iraq and Lebanon and their support for the Hezbollah militant group.

"We have no illusions but we have great hope," said Pelosi, who met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the West Bank city of Ramallah earlier Tuesday.

Relations between the U.S. and Syria reached a low point in early 2005 when Washington withdrew its ambassador to Damascus to protest the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Many Lebanese blamed Syria - which had troops in Lebanon at the time - for the assassination. Damascus denied involvement.

Washington has since succeeded in largely isolating Damascus, with its European and Arab allies shunning Assad. The last high-ranking U.S. official to visit Syria was then-Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage in January 2005.

The isolation, however, has begun to crumble in recent months, with visits by U.S. lawmakers and some European officials.

Story Here
Why are ANY of them in Syria? The President asked them NOT to go! We have ONE Commander-In-Chief not 535 of them! What part of "We DONT Negotiate With Terrorists" do the Democrat's NOT understand?


Bush Blast's Pelosi For Syrian Visit

WASHINGTON - President Bush criticized House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to Syria on Tuesday, saying it sends mixed signals to the region and to the government of President Bashar Assad.
"There have been a lot of people who have gone to see President Assad: some Americans, but a lot of European leaders, high-ranking officials. And yet we haven't seen action," Bush told reporters at a Rose Garden news conference. "He hasn't responded."

Bush said that Assad had not reined in violent elements of militant groups Hamas and Hezbollah as requested by the international community, had acted to destabilize the democratically elected government of Lebanon and was allowing "foreign fighters" to move into Iraq from Syria.

"Sending delegations hasn't worked. It's just simply been counterproductive," Bush said.

The president spoke shortly after Pelosi, leading a congressional delegation, arrived in Damascus as part of a tour of the Middle East.

Bush also expressed frustration with the congressional debate on Iraq war spending and accused majority-party Democrats of being "more interested in fighting political battles in Washington than providing our troops what they need."

He renewed his veto threats on both the House and Senate versions of war spending bill and noted that it had been 57 days since he requested more than $100 billion for Iraq and Afghanistan.

"They left for spring break without finishing their work," Bush said.

The president's remarks come one day after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced he would try to eliminate money for the war if Bush rejects Congress' proposal to set a deadline to end combat.

Reid said Tuesday that Democrats will give troops "the resources they need and a strategy in Iraq worthy of their sacrifices."

"If the president vetoes this bill he will have delayed funding for troops and kept in place his strategy for failure," Reid said in a statement.

GOP leaders said they planned to stick with Bush.

"I think our Democratic friends have decided the war is lost," said Sen. Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.

Bush has disparaged the Senate-passed bill calling for most U.S. combat troops to be out of Iraq by March 31, 2008, and an even stronger House-passed bill demanding a September 2008 withdrawal. He said both bills "undercut the troops."

Bush bluntly said that such a veto could not be overridden in Congress, given thin Democratic majorities. He said if Congress was, in fact, going to send him a bill that he would surely veto, they should do it quickly.

"If Democrat leaders in Congress are bent on making a political statement, then they need to send me this unacceptable bill as quickly as possible when they come back. I'll veto it and then Congress can get down to the business of funding our troops without strings and without delay," Bush said.

Pelosi on Tuesday became the highest-ranking American politician to visit Syria since relations began to deteriorate between Washington and Damascus four years ago. The United States accuses Syria of interfering in Iraq and Lebanon and sponsoring terrorists—charges that Syria denies.

Pelosi, D-Calif., did not make any comment on arrival and headed for a tour of downtown Damascus. She is scheduled to meet Assad and other Syrian officials on Wednesday.

She earlier had shrugged off White House criticism of her visit, saying in Lebanon on Monday that it was an "excellent idea" for her and other lawmakers—Democrats and Republicans alike—to go to there. "We have no illusions but great hopes" for her talks with Assad, Pelosi said.

The White House has said the administration objects to all visits to Syria by high-ranking officials.

"We have made it clear to high-ranking officials, whether they be Republicans or Democrats, that going to Syria sends mixed signals, signals in the region and, of course, mixed signals to President Assad," Bush said. "Photo opportunities and/or meetings with President Assad lead the Assad government to believe they're part of the mainstream of the international community, when, in fact, they're a state sponsor of terror."

While discouraging visits by U.S. officials, the administration is talking to Syria as part of international conferences on Iraq. The first was held last month in Baghdad. Another, to include foreign ministers, was expected to be held sometime this month in the region.

Bush also:

—Said he agrees with British Prime Minister Tony Blair's efforts to win the release of 15 British sailors captured by Iran in waters that separate Iraq and Iran. "There should be no quid pro quo when it comes to the hostages," Bush said, again using the strong word "hostages" to describe those being held by Tehran.

Story Here

Dems Ready For War With Bush

Pelosi Rebuffs

Democrats Escalate Iraq War Debate

Reid May Move To Defund Troops

Hillary to Challenge Veto Threat

House Republicans Have Enough Votes To Sustain Bush Veto


Bush Blast's Dems Over War Funding
Let me get this right, Congress takes off for recess without funding the Troops, and Nancy Pelosi is over in Syria playing footsie with our Terrorist enemy Assad! Nice One Democrats!!

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Blogger J_G said...

The muslims are laughing at this moron Pelosi. They will play her for the idiot that she is. It's kind of sad really that someone seeks so much attention that she must go to the enemy to get it. The muslims will play the ol' Hudna game with her. "Yes, we have peace now but as soon as you leave we try and shoot down your plane".

Looks like I'm going to have to call my congressman's office as soon as I get done here. Joe Pitts is probably the single most conservative congressman, I can't understand what the heck he's doing over there.

April 03, 2007 7:53 AM  
Blogger The Liberal Lie The Conservative Truth said...

This trip to Syria really ticks me off. I understand that as Speaker she can and will make many , "diplomatic," trips outside the US. It goes with the territory and position. But to engage with talks with a terrorist state that the Bush administration has stopped talking to officially because of state spronsored terrorism and totally refusing to adhere to State Dept. and Presidential requests to NOT make the visit is arrogance to the umpth degree. She does NOT set foreign policy for this country but her very visit to Damascus as Speaker forces a change in policy as she goes representing The United States government in an official State visit.

There have been lesser diplomats visiting Syria but it has not been an official State visit like Pelosi's which completely undermines all US policy and diplomatic steps with Syria. It also gives Assad the illusion that he is a friend and we approve of his government which is NOT the case.

She should be horse whipped and I would be happy to crack the whip on her liberal butt!!!!

April 03, 2007 8:04 AM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...


Yes GF! Get on the phone!!

And when you are done with whoever hit Nancy Pelosi's office and tell them to pass along a message that she just made one hell of a bad judgement call.

April 03, 2007 8:22 AM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...


I truly believe they think they know better than the Commanders on the Ground and the President and are trying to micromanage this war, and our right to exist.

But co-horting with the enemy?

I would pay money to watch you Bullwhip Pelosi. SERIOUSLY!!!

April 03, 2007 8:26 AM  
Blogger The Liberal Lie The Conservative Truth said...

I'll make a deal with you. You can HELP whip her for free. You hold first while I beat the crap out of her then we'll switch and you take the whip for awhile. That way we both get satisfaction!

April 03, 2007 8:44 AM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...


Sounds like a plan to me, now how do we get her down here? Or wherever? LMAO!

You know, we could have a HUGE blogger party, instead of "Pin the Tail on the Donkey" (Which Fits)

We could all take turns at the whip :-)

April 03, 2007 8:48 AM  
Blogger The Liberal Lie The Conservative Truth said...

By the way on a different note. Did your hear that the Nimitz left today for the Persian Gulf ? That would have the Stennis, The Eisenhower and the Nimitz all in the Gulf at once. Makes you wonder if something is a-foot with the hostage, (I prefer POW), situation with the Brits and Iran!

April 03, 2007 1:08 PM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...


Yes sir I am aware of that, that was going to be my next post. You know the Nimitz is Nuclear?

Yes something is afoot, I think Iran is going to get the foot right up, well where the sun doesnt shine :-)

This dilly dallying with the hostages is nuts. I know it's a British thing, but this whole mess has to end with Iran one way or another for us all to live in peace.

They have been the root of all this evil since 1979, we put them out of commission and I think we could eliminate most of this terrorist Islamo-Fruitcake mess. And we probably wont even have to step in Country to do it.

April 03, 2007 2:47 PM  
Anonymous Skye said...

Is there an islamofacist in Syria Pelosi didn't blow yet?

Crude, but accurate.

April 03, 2007 3:42 PM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...


LMAO! If the Democrats have sunk that low to have to blow Terrorists for promises that will never be kept, we are in serious sh**!

Oh man my tummy hurts from this one now haha.

Good one Skye!

April 03, 2007 3:57 PM  
Blogger KEvron said...

"to engage with talks with a terrorist state that the Bush administration has stopped talking to officially"

you guys are awfully quiet about frank wolf and the delegation of republican congressmen who went to syria, too.

gee, i wonder why....



April 04, 2007 4:16 PM  
Blogger KEvron said...

"But co-horting with the enemy?"

heh. yeah, "co-horting"! that's what she did there.

and syria is not an enemy state. duh.

but you guys go ahead continue with your delusional fantasies about commiting acts of violence against elected us officials. charming....


April 04, 2007 4:19 PM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...


I gave them all hell if you would have actually read my post, Republicans included!

But Nancy Pelosi is 2nd in line for the Presidency, didnt clear her visit with the White House, asked not to go by the President, and went anyway putting herself at great personal risk, at the expense of the taxpayer dime.

And yes Co-Horting with the enemy. We dont have relations with Syria, there is a reason for that, THEY ARE A STATE SPONSOR OF TERROR!

Then again what can I expect out of you, you sympathize with Terrorists and dont give a rats ass about this Country.

I hope you enjoyed paying for Nancy's little meaningless trip, because that was charged to you my dear!

April 04, 2007 6:47 PM  
Blogger KEvron said...

"I hope you enjoyed paying for Nancy's little meaningless trip, because that was charged to you my dear!"

money well spent!


April 05, 2007 5:05 PM  
Blogger Marie's Two Cents said...


Money well spent? LMAO!

Only you would want to pay for Ms Pelosi's trip to terrorist haven where she made a complete ass of herself. Yeah I guess that was money well spent lol

April 06, 2007 8:47 AM  

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