Monday, May 23, 2005
According to the following article, Oregon's junior Senator, Gordon Smith may have jumped the tracks in remarks to Arab leaders at a high level economic conference. the Senator's words conflict directly with official US foreign policy , which the Bush regime is still pretending to honor, the "Roadmap", agreed upon jointly with Russia, the UN, and the European Union.Joining Senator Smith in making intemperate remarks was Congressman Christopher Shays (R-Connecticut).
The US State Dept. website describes the Roadmap agreement as follows:
The settlement will resolve the Israel-Palestinian conflict, and end the occupation that began in 1967, based on the foundations of the Madrid Conference, the principle of land for peace, UNSCRs 242, 338 and 1397, agreements previously reached by the parties, and the initiative of Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah - endorsed by the Beirut Arab League Summit - calling for acceptance of Israel as a neighbor living in peace and security, in the context of a comprehensive settlement. ( http://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2003/20062.htm )
No one who has followed the non-progress of the "Quartet's " plan is unaware that the Bush regime has failed utterly to put its "political capital" to work to help solve the Middle East's most intractable struggle. But among other shocking and insulting remarks, Senator Smith's statement specifically repudiates the US agreement to make a "serious commitment" to resolving the issue of a Palestinian state. Such loose cannon rhetoric will further inflame a region already at war.
Was Senator Smith authorized to speak for the Bush administration on this foreign policy subject? If not, Senator Smith must make an immediate apology and retract his statements. Hopefully, President Bush will be stung by Smith's preemptive strike on US foreign policy and will finally put up or shut up on the issue of Palestine.
A US senator has dispensed bitter pills to Arab leaders, pointing out that the United States is not ready to risk the prestige needed to create a Palestinian state.
Speaking on Saturday at the World Economic Forum being held in Jordan, Senator Gordon Smith said Washington's priority was to secure Israel in a way that, if possible, was just to the Palestinians.
He advised Arab leaders to worry more about injustices in their own countries.
"It's a mystery to me why Arab countries can't work on their own countries before Palestine is fixed," Smith said in a discussion at the forum.
Smith, a Republican from Oregon, said the peace process, aimed at bringing about an independent Palestinian state, was unlikely to win a serious commitment from the Bush administration.
"Until we have someone on the other side, who is willing to say, "Yes, we're not going to continue to prostitute the American presidency to people who aren't serious," Smith bluntly told a prestigious panel that included Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa and top officials from Jordan, the Palestinian territories, Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as academics from Iran and Turkey.
Asked why the United States was willing to anger Arab countries in favour of Israel, another Congressman, Republican Christopher Shays, said simply that America was not a neutral player in the Middle East.
"We are Israel's strong ally," Shays, Republican of Connecticut, said in an interview with The Associated Press.
"It would be foolish for people to think that somehow we are neutral," he added.http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/C22F4B63-F860-4992-B985-A55C052A2A47.htm
Senator Gordon Smith
404 Russell Senate Office Building,
Washington, DC 20510-3704
Local : One World Trade Center 121 SW Salmon St., Suite 1250
Portland, OR 97204
Phone: (503) 326-3386
Fax: (503) 326-2900
Rep. Christopher Shays R. Connecticut-