Prior to the visit, I followed the controversy surrounding all this with interest. Personally, I thought Speaker Pelosi's point about the Republican
delegation visiting Syria right before she arrived was valid.
After all, if it was okay for them to have a fact-finding mission to Syria, then why not her?
Fair enough. I was convinced she had a legitimate rebuttal to the Bush Administration's complaints and chalked it up to political posturing by the
And indeed, if Speaker Pelosi would have confined her activities to those of a legitimate fact-finding mission, I probably wouldn't have thought
anything more of it.
is a whole different ballgame.
Lights! Camera! Fraction!
First off, I'm willing to bet most people couldn't name a single member of the Republican delegation, or even the Republican member of Pelosi's own
delegation. The spotlights were all on her, and this was her big chance to assert her stature as a world-class stateswoman.
Photo-ops? Check. Platitudes? Check. Historic visits and symbolic gestures? Check.
So far, so good. Ms. Pelosi did a great job of making her presence known and capturing world attention.
And then, with the whole world watching and the tapestry of history weaving around her like a prayer shawl, what did she do?
Speaker Pelosi, in her moment of glory, her coming-out party in Damascus, defiantly shouting "in your face!" at the President of the United States
with deeds if not words, managed to misrepresent the political and diplomatic positions of not one, not two, but three
simultaneously: the United States, Israel and even her host country, Syria.
Right there, in front of God and everybody.
She Ain't All That
So what does this mean? It means Speaker Pelosi just proved beyond all doubt that while she may be a shrewd and experienced legislator, she ain't no
This is a mistake even entry-level State Department employees wouldn't make.
I'm sure "her people" will brush this under the Persian rug as best they can and move on, and it seems the parties involved are doing their best
not to make a big deal of the fact that America's third-in-line for the presidency just made a fool of herself (and hey, let's face it: Bush has
done that enough to give her plenty of cover), but truly this is a blunder of epic proportions.
I mean seriously, if she's willing to fabricate stories from whole cloth to try to make herself look more important, it can only mean she really
isn't all that important. :shk:
A Woman's Place Is In The House
Talk is cheap, but in Speaker Pelosi's case, it's now officially worthless, and in the wake of this fiasco, her credibility with foreign leaders
probably rates somewhere between that of Baghdad Bob and that guy on Saturday Night Live
who used to say "Yeah! THAT'S the ticket!".
Nancy Pelosi's big moment in the Middle East as a no-nonsense player on the world stage turned out to be a modern version of The Innocents
and -- ironically enough -- nonsense itself.
In the sink-or-swim world of international diplomacy, first impressions matter.
Considering the loud gurgling noises coming from the deep end of the geopolitical pool, I can only hope Speaker Pelosi will find herself safely back
on dry land when she returns to a Washington that has changed in subtle but significant ways during her absence.
[edit on 4/6/2007 by Majic]