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Thoughts about Pelosi's Syria visit?

Old 04-04-07, 11:49 AM
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Thoughts about Pelosi's Syria visit?

I think she is meeting with their president al-Assad today.

I didn't know that three Republican Reps had already met with him.

The visit just gets a meh from me.

You?

Just posting this article because I think it has named everyone who went.
WASHINGTON - House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's trip to Syria sparked a high-profile clash with the White House on Tuesday, with President Bush criticizing her for potentially undermining U.S. foreign policy.

Bush's administration, asserting that Syria has aided terrorists and played a significant role in destabilizing the Middle East, has reined in its dealings with the country's government.

Commenting on Pelosi's visit, Bush said, "We have made it clear to high-ranking [U.S.] officials, whether they be Republicans or Democrats, that going to Syria sends mixed signals."

Pelosi arrived in Syria on Tuesday and plans to meet with President Bashar Assad today. The third-highest ranking elected official in the U.S. government behind the president and vice president, Pelosi is the most senior U.S. leader to visit the country since Syrian-American relations faltered in 2003.

The San Francisco Democrat shrugged off Bush's criticism, pointing out that the White House was silent over the weekend when three Republican congressmen - Reps. Frank Wolf of Virginia, Joe Pitts of Pennsylvania and Robert Aderholt of Alabama - were in Syria and met with Assad.

"I think that it was an excellent idea for them to go," Pelosi said.

"And I think it's an excellent idea for us to go as well," she said.

Bush, speaking at a news conference in the White House Rose Garden, said Syria is on the State Department's list of nations that sanction state-sponsored terrorism.

And he stood by his policy - which some veteran U.S. diplomats have questioned - of limited contact with the country or its leaders.

"Sending delegations doesn't work," he said. "It's simply been counterproductive."

He also 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."

Pelosi's visit comes in the wake of recent votes in the House and Senate that ignored a Bush veto threat and backed a timetable for withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq. And it signals an escalation in the political battle between the Republican administration and the Democratic Congress for leadership in foreign policy.

In scheduling the trip, Pelosi demonstrated that she is eager to implement the recommendation of a blue-ribbon advisory group that, as part of recommendations for quelling the violence in Iraq, called on the United States to open a dialogue with Syria.
Panel's Report Mostly Ignored

The group - headed by former Secretary of State James A. Baker III, a Republican who served under Bush's father, and Democrat Lee H. Hamilton, a former House member from Indiana - issued its report late last year. Although Bush praised its efforts, he ignored many of its suggestions, including the revised policy toward Syria.

Pelosi, who stopped in Israel on Sunday, said she planned to press Assad not to aid militant Hamas and Hezbollah groups in the Middle East and to support Lebanon's democratically elected government.

"We have no illusions, but we have great hope," she said of her meeting with Assad.

The White House views Hamas and Hezbollah as terrorist groups that operate with assistance from Syria. And it accuses Assad of attempting to cause turmoil in Lebanon.

Pelosi, traveling during a congressional recess, also visited Lebanon and will go to Saudi Arabia.

Her delegation includes the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif., as well as Reps. Henry A. Waxman, D-Calif., David Hobson, R-Ohio, and Keith Ellison, D-Minn., the first Muslim member of Congress.

The dispute about Pelosi's trip came amid an already simmering conflict between the White House and Congress over Bush's request for more money to pay for the Iraq war. The House and Senate bills approving the request include timetables for troop withdrawal.
Bush Threatens Veto

At his news conference, Bush continued his attack on those conditions and stressed they have no chance of becoming law because of his veto.

"Congress should not tell generals how to run the war," he said. "Enough politics."

Bush called Democrats in Congress irresponsible for approving war bills that order U.S. troops to leave Iraq by certain dates. He said such efforts will backfire, keeping some troops in battle even longer.

"The bottom line is this: Congress' failure to fund our troops on the front lines will mean that some of our military families could wait longer for their loved ones to return from the front lines," Bush said. "Others could see their loved ones heading back to the war sooner than they need to."

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., responded that Bush would bear the blame for a continuing stalemate on war funding.

If he carries out his veto threat, Bush "will have delayed funding for troops and kept in place his strategy for failure" in Iraq, Reid said.
http://www.tbo.com/news/nationworld/MGBE8FN830F.html
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Old 04-04-07, 12:29 PM
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who cares? congress has been making visits to other countries for a long time
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Old 04-04-07, 12:37 PM
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Communicating is hardly ever a negative if you ask me.
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Old 04-04-07, 12:41 PM
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Queen Nancy gave up the territory she conquered for women's rights when she became speaker with this.
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Old 04-04-07, 12:42 PM
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I agree bhk.
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Old 04-04-07, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by bhk


Queen Nancy gave up the territory she conquered for women's rights when she became speaker with this.

and yet when Laura Bush did as well
or Condi Rice wore a veil, nothing was said?
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Old 04-04-07, 01:14 PM
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Laura Bush and Condeleeza Rice haven't been hailed as the advancers of Women's Rights by the media as much as Queen Nancy has. But your point is well taken.
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Old 04-04-07, 01:27 PM
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Originally Posted by bhk
Laura Bush and Condeleeza Rice haven't been hailed as the advancers of Women's Rights by the media as much as Queen Nancy has. But your point is well taken.
I think that propping up an argument by using a double standard you yourself oppose is a little weak. Also, I can see how Laura Bush isn't seen as a women's rights pioneer, but anyone who thinks Secretary Rice hasn't done as much (or more) to advance women's rights as Speaker Pelosi is either weak in the head or so biased that their opinion is worthless.
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Old 04-04-07, 01:52 PM
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Apparently Laura Bush and Condoleezza Rice got some tips on how to wear a veil. Nancy Pelosi looks like she's about to walk into her church.
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Old 04-04-07, 01:54 PM
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Originally Posted by wendersfan
I think that propping up an argument by using a double standard you yourself oppose is a little weak. Also, I can see how Laura Bush isn't seen as a women's rights pioneer, but anyone who thinks Secretary Rice hasn't done as much (or more) to advance women's rights as Speaker Pelosi is either weak in the head or so biased that their opinion is worthless.
I think bhk's comment has to do with the media's hailing (or choice) of Pelosi over Rice, especially since Rice is a conservative.

BTW, Nancy Pelosi looks like one of my great aunts in her scarf.
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Old 04-04-07, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by wishbon3
I think bhk's comment has to do with the media's hailing (or choice) of Pelosi over Rice, especially since Rice is a conservative.
I know.
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Old 04-04-07, 02:25 PM
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So what is the deal? We see that head scarf as a symbol of female oppression. What are they seen as in Syria? It must be something else if these powerful women put them on so easily.
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Old 04-04-07, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by wendersfan
I think that propping up an argument by using a double standard you yourself oppose is a little weak. Also, I can see how Laura Bush isn't seen as a women's rights pioneer, but anyone who thinks Secretary Rice hasn't done as much (or more) to advance women's rights as Speaker Pelosi is either weak in the head or so biased that their opinion is worthless.
I don't know if either of them would be considered outspoken women's rights advocates. If you are measuring their careers as women, Pelosi is higher on the food chain.
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Old 04-04-07, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by CRM114
So what is the deal? We see that head scarf as a symbol of female oppression. What are they seen as in Syria? It must be something else if these powerful women put them on so easily.

It's called not wanting to offend the easily offended. Not wearing a headscrarf is probably the same as shitting on Assad's favorite rug.
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Old 04-04-07, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Mopower
It's called not wanting to offend the easily offended. Not wearing a headscrarf is probably the same as shitting on Assad's favorite rug.
Thats what I'm wondering (and assuming). If thats the case, I'd tell them the only way I come is as an American woman - on equal footing with men.
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Old 04-04-07, 02:51 PM
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Originally Posted by CRM114
I don't know if either of them would be considered outspoken women's rights advocates. If you are measuring their careers as women, Pelosi is higher on the food chain.
Maybe right now, but I would argue that Rice has had the more distinguished career. That may just be because I have a pro-academy bias.
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Old 04-04-07, 02:52 PM
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Couldn't care less.
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Old 04-04-07, 03:15 PM
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To be a queen, doesn't she need to wear a crown?

I don't know what circumstances she was wearing the headscarf. I know she visited the tomb that had John the Baptist's head. That is probably considered a holy site for many Christians.

It wasn't so long ago when it was common for Catholic churches to have the females cover their heads in some way. There probably are still a few here that do.
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Old 04-04-07, 03:19 PM
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I don't have that much of a problem with Queen Nancy going there. Its not that big of a deal, but I think its ridiculous that everytime a female politician goes to an Arab country they are wearing veils. Why are we trying to appease them? Are we ok with their horrible track record on women's rights just because its not as bad a a burhka? This is kind of messed up for someone that is supposed to be a defender of womens rights. More political correctness run awild.
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Old 04-04-07, 03:24 PM
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Question - when Gentile men enter a synagogue, aren't they supposed to wear a kippah?
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Old 04-04-07, 03:28 PM
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I think it's a positive move.
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Old 04-04-07, 03:29 PM
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Was Pelosi in a mosque when that photo was taken?
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Old 04-04-07, 03:34 PM
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Well, she's not wearing it here in the company of the president of Syria so I'm assuming she was wearing it in some ceremonial context.

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Old 04-04-07, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by wendersfan
Question - when Gentile men enter a synagogue, aren't they supposed to wear a kippah?
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Old 04-04-07, 03:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Talkin2Phil
I think it's horrible the the president should appease a bunch of Jews like that. Oh, wait - it's OK if we appease them. How could I forget that the right has it's own set of double standards.
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