TwitterFacebook

What Nancy Hath Wrought

• Views: 1,418

In the New York Observer of all places, an article that looks honestly at what it meant for reformists in the Middle East when House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Syria, donned a veil, and praised dictator Bashar Assad as a man of peace: After Pelosi’s Syria Visit, Dissidents Cower.

DAMASCUS, SYRIA—House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Syria last month, and the related question of whether or not the U.S. should formally re-engage this Baathist republic, remains as controversial a topic on the streets of Damascus as it was in the days afterwards among Beltway bloggers. And, perverse as it may seem to some American liberals, it is the Syrians who are most sympathetic to their progressive values who have been most critical of Ms. Pelosi’s attempts to begin a dialogue with Syria’s government.

Many Syrian dissidents and pro-democracy activists have privately expressed dismay at Ms. Pelosi’s message of friendship to the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. They say that Ms. Pelosi’s visit, no matter how well-intentioned, has effectively pulled the rug out from under them, critically damaging their efforts to create momentum for reform from within.

“Pelosi’s visit made the regime feel that Americans were divided on how to deal with Syria,” said a Damascus-based women’s-rights activist who, like five other activists interviewed for this article, asked that his name be withheld because he feared punishment. “This sends a message to the regime that the pressure is off, that it can do what it likes.”

It has certainly seemed that way in the weeks since Ms. Pelosi’s departure, during which time the government has imprisoned Kurdish opposition figures while maintaining travel and work bans on political activists. …

Even Syrians outside the inner circle of activists seem shaken by the conviction, shortly after Ms. Pelosi’s return to Washington, of Syria’s best-known human-rights lawyer, Anwar al-Bunni. Mr. al-Bunni was convicted of “spreading information that could weaken national morale” and “joining an international organization without proper authorization,” for which he was given a five-year prison sentence.

Mr. al-Bunni is a slight, nervous-looking man, a tireless polymath who, aside from his work defending scores of political prisoners, has helped to found a center offering training in human rights, and has drafted a new constitution for Syria. Last year, he invited a handful of foreign reporters to his home to show them his proposed new constitution, and waved his hands excitedly as he outlined his ideas about what a democratic transition in Syria might look like, how potential power-sharing arguments among Syria’s many ethnic and religious groups could be anticipated and solved.

But Syria’s would-be Thomas Jefferson is in the infamous Adra prison now, and he is known to have been tortured.

Read the whole thing…

^ back to top ^

TwitterFacebook

Turn off all ads for a full year by subscribing!
Take advantage of our yearly subscription, and save 50% off the normal subscription price! One-year ad-free subscriptions are just $59.95. Turn off all ads for a full year by subscribing now and save!
Read more...

► LGF Headlines

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Articles

  • Loading...

► Tweeted Pages

  • Loading...

► Top 10 Comments

  • Loading...

► Bottom Comments

  • Loading...

► Recent Comments

  • Loading...

► Tools/Info

► Tag Cloud

► Contact

You must have Javascript enabled to use the contact form.
Your email:

Subject:

Message:


Messages may be published unless you request otherwise.
Tech Note:
Using the Contact Form
LGF Pages

This button leads to the main index of LGF Pages, our user-submitted articles. You can post your own LGF Pages simply by registering a free account with us.

Create a Page

This is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.

Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.

Last updated: 2015-03-17 11:42 am PDT

LGF User's Guide
Recent Pages
Cheechako
That Alaska GOP Comedy Ensemble Is a Riot … No, Wait, They’re Serious
The annual legislative skits were this weekend in Juneau. That's a big social event where legislative staff get together to make fun of their bosses. The 2015 Alaska Legislature is certainly a target-rich environment for parody. For example, there was ...

34 minutes ago
Views: 57 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
Lumberhead
Why Reconstruction Matters
I came across this NY Times editorial via Nancy LeTourneau in a piece published at Washington Monthly. Definitely worth a read. THE surrender of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee at Appomattox Court House, 150 years ago next month, effectively ended ...

46 minutes ago
Views: 51 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
electrotek
Old angry white man arrested for abusing “Muslim-looking” men
Man arrested over racist rant on Wellington bus5:20 PM Sunday Mar 29, 2015 A Lower Hutt man has been arrested after a video of a racist rant on a Wellington bus against two young men who appeared to be ...

1 hour, 39 minutes ago
Views: 57 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
Thanos
Lone Modder’s Half-Life 2: Update Brings Modern Graphics to a Classic
As amazing as Half-Life 2 was when it was first released in 2004, time has not been kind to the original release's graphics, which can look a bit flat and dated compared to modern PC games. Enter Romanian modder ...

4 hours, 34 minutes ago
Views: 87 • Comments: 2
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
Fred72
Are conservatives anti-science?
Are conservatives anti-science? Spoiler: Conservatives aren't anti-science or pro-science. But, they are pro-common-sense. And once more scientists adopt common sense approach to science, they'll find that they have the support of conservative politicians - the people whose job it is ...

18 hours, 25 minutes ago
Views: 283 • Comments: 9
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 0
EiMitch
Cracked: 8 Things Vietnam War Movies Leave Out (By an Enemy Soldier)
cracked.com Once the fighting started, a lot of people died, well over a million on our side alone. For the war to continue, a constant stream of new fighters had to join up, and they didn't have the benefit of ...

1 day, 22 hours ago
Views: 473 • Comments: 4
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 6
Romantic Heretic
The Lavender Scare
Here is an interesting article on one of Tail Gunner Joe's sick witch hunts that has, unfortunately, been forgotten. I try not to feel schadenfreude of the fate of McCarthy's side kick, Ray Cohn, but I never succeed.

2 days, 5 hours ago
Views: 380 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
FemNaziBitch
Should Women ‘Man Up’ at the Office, or Does Office Culture Need to ‘Man Down’?
About the Graphic How should a woman try to get ahead in a male-dominated workplace? Perhaps the answer lies less on women "manning up" and more in how businesses value their employees. Many women confront this tension as they ...

3 days, 7 hours ago
Views: 474 • Comments: 1
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 1
William Barnett-Lewis
Orthopraxy Pt 2
If we accept the idea of Orthopraxy over Orthodoxy, then what does evangelism look like? What is the Witness of those who try to follow the Way of Christ Jesus? To evangelize is to spread the good news that we ...

3 days, 19 hours ago
Views: 437 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 0 • Rating: 4
thecommodore
Eric Alterman: A Wake-Up Call for US Liberals
A short column in The Nation that is a must read. The primary difference between liberalism and conservatism, at least in theory, is that the latter is an ideology and the former isn't. Conservatism, as Milton Friedman argued, posits that ...

4 days, 3 hours ago
Views: 653 • Comments: 0
Tweets: 1 • Rating: 5
 Frank says:

If it can be conceived as music, it can be executed as music, and presented to an audience in such a way that they will perceive it as music: "Look at this. Ever seen one of these before? I built this for you. What do you mean, 'What the f*ck is it?' It's a goddam ETUDE, asshole."