Breaking: Pelosi's Meeting With Assad Called a Felony!
Speaker Pelosi may have gone too far this time…
Pacifists George Logan on the left and Speaker Pelosi on the right.
George Logan traveled to France in 1798 to assure the French government the American people favored peace in the undeclared “Quasi War”.
Speaker Pelosi traveled to Syria in April 2007 to assure the Syrian Regime that Israel had changed their stand on peace talks and that her group was doing what they they thought was in the best interest of America regardless of what the president said.
The Israeli government quickly denied the Speaker’s comments.
Robert F. Turner, a State Department official during the Reagan administration, writes: Of course, not all congressional travel to, or communications with representatives of, foreign nations is unlawful. A purely fact-finding trip that involves looking around, visiting American military bases or talking with U.S. diplomats is not a problem. Nor is formal negotiation with foreign representatives if authorized by the president. …
Ms. Pelosi’s trip was not authorized, and Syria is one of the world’s leading sponsors of international terrorism. It has almost certainly been involved in numerous attacks that have claimed the lives of American military personnel from Beirut to Baghdad.
The U.S. is in the midst of two wars authorized by Congress. For Ms. Pelosi to flaunt the Constitution in these circumstances is not only shortsighted; it may well be a felony, as the Logan Act has been part of our criminal law for more than two centuries. Perhaps it is time to enforce the law.
The Logan Act of 1799 sets out the punishment for unauthorized U.S. citizens who “directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States.” (Here is some background on the law.)
World Net Daily adds this on the history behind the Logan Act:
The Logan Act was requested by Adams after a Pennsylvania pacifist named George Logan traveled to France in 1798 to assure the French government the American people favored peace in the undeclared “Quasi War” being fought on the high seas between the two countries, Turner points out. Rep. Roger Griswold of Connecticut explained the object was “to punish a crime” arising “from an interference of individual citizens in the negotiations of our executive with foreign governments.”
Someone please explain how what Pelosi did was any different than what the pacifist George Logan did in 1798?
RedState breaks down the nutroots arguments against Pelosi’s alleged crime.
Paul Mirengoff weighs in at News Bloggers.
Little Green Footballs has the outlandish remarks by Pelosi on her meeting with Assad including this from the Daily Star:
We can thank the US speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, for having informed Syrian President Bashar Assad, from Beirut, that “the road to solving Lebanon’s problems passes through Damascus.” Now, of course, all we need to do is remind Pelosi that the spirit and letter of successive United Nations Security Council resolutions, as well as Saudi and Egyptian efforts in recent weeks, have been destined to ensure precisely the opposite: that Syria end its meddling in Lebanese affairs.
The Asia Times chimed in: “Strange, but if Olmert wanted to send a message to the Syrians, why would he choose Pelosi as the messenger?”
Hat Tip to commenters Cornhusker and IOpian who pointed this out earlier.
Update: I took down the quote from Rep. Wolf who Haaretz reported was traveling with Rep. Pelosi. He was actually traveling with two other Republicans to Syria.
Jules Crittenden has a Pelosi-palooza roundup.