Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Logan Act

I have some serious concerns about the way so many politicians (from both parties, present and former office holders) feel free to go to foreign countries with whom we have conflicts. It is one thing to go on a fact-finding mission, but another entirely to meet with leaders of these countries and discuss current situations, diplomatic matters, and so forth when they are not authorized to do so by the government of the United States. The latter is what concerns me so much.

Obviously, my thoughts turn to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her recent sojourn to Syria, but there is also Jimmy Carter with his various trips attempting to arrange agreements with countries with whom we are in conflict. And there have been Republicans and others, as well as Democrats, who do this type of thing.

It should go without saying that this interference can ruin any hope of the governments reaching some solution. In addition, it is illegal. There is the Logan Act, which has been on the books since 1799, addressing this very situation. For a good explanation, complete with the wording of the act itself plus background information, see this link for a pdf file from the Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress.

At Jewish World Review, David Limbaugh writes a column about Speaker Pelosi's trip to Syria. The title is "Gen. Pelosi's Gift to Our Enemies". Have a look and see what you think. He says:
President Bush strongly urged Pelosi not to go. But in keeping with her flagrant disrespect for President Bush and, manifestly, for the presidency itself, she openly defied him and went anyway.

Her action is indefensible. She was not legally representing the United States, since the president refused to authorize her mission. And if she wasn't purporting to represent the United States, her trip was pointless. But she was.

Pelosi and her delegation were clearly attempting to influence American foreign policy by pressuring the Bush administration to open a dialogue with Syria.

If you believe the Pelosi delegation was merely "fact-finding," which characterization is laughable, listen to its own post-trip assessment. Delegation member Tom Lantos boasted that the meeting "reinforced sharply" the potential benefits of talking to Syria. "This is only the beginning of our constructive dialogue with Syria, and we hope to build on this visit."

And then there is this to consider:
Under the Constitution, President Bush is in charge of U.S. foreign policy. In that capacity, he has attempted to isolate Syria and has persuaded our allies to do likewise. Pelosi, in direct contravention of presidential authority, directly contradicted the U.S. policy toward Syria by sending the unmistakable signal that Syria is part of the international mainstream when it is our policy to discourage that notion. As the highest-ranking member of the House of Representatives, she colluded with a terrorist tyrant to humiliate the commander in chief and countermand his foreign policy.

It wasn't just the US foreign policy she was interfering with--it was also Israel's policy:
Pelosi not only undermined the United States through her unconstitutional usurpation and contradiction of executive authority. She also intermeddled with Israeli policy and caused great harm there, too, by misrepresenting Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in implying he had softened Israel's stance toward Syria and wanted to renew peace negotiations. This reckless blunder incensed the Olmert administration, which strongly denied it had changed its position. Olmert said that until Syria changes its sponsorship of terrorism, peace talks will be meaningless.

Mr. Limbaugh concludes with these two paragraphs:
If there is any doubt about Pelosi's collusion with Syria to weaken the president and thus the United States, or if there is any doubt about the poisonous fruits of that infernal collusion, hear the words of Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al Moallem following the Assad-Pelosi meeting. He said, "These people in the United States who are opposing dialogue, I tell them one thing: Dialogue is … the only method to close the gap existing between the two countries. … We are happy that Mrs. Pelosi and her delegation had the courage and determination to bridge these differences."

Pelosi has caused enormous anxiety to our allies, but has given great comfort to our enemies who seek to divide and conquer us, by doing the dividing part for them. Her actions were disgraceful.
I believe that we elect Senators and Congressmen to support our country, not to tear it down and cause further problems. Speaker Pelosi has shown on more than one occasion that she is not working to support our country. So what is she doing? I'll leave it to you to answer that.

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At 7:22 PM, Anonymous Pop said...

Very good, Mary.

At 8:57 PM, Blogger Mary A said...

Thanks, Pop.

At 11:29 AM, Blogger Titus Todd said...

Yes, very good. I have nothing to add to the article and your comments but agreement.

At 4:37 PM, Blogger Mary A said...

Thanks, Titus. I appreciate that you stop by!


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