White House strongly disputes Nancy Pelosi’s assertion that her road to Damascus was a road to peace

Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council commented: “Unfortunately, that road is lined with the victims of Hamas and Hizballah, the victims of terrorists who cross from Syria into Iraq. It’s lined with the victims in Lebanon who are trying to fight for democracy. Speaking on Air Force One as the president traveled to California, Johndroe said “…we don’t think these meetings are productive.”
Before flying to Saudi Arabia, the US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi summed up her talks Wednesday, April 4, with Syrian president Bashar Assad. She said she and her delegation had “expressed our concern about Syria’s connections to Hizballah and Hamas” and discussed the issue of fighters slipping across the Syrian border into Iraq.
Vice President Dick Cheney commented in a radio interview that Syrian President Bashar Assad has been isolated and cut off internationally because of his government’s behavior. “The unfortunate thing about the speaker’s visit is it sort of breaks down that barrier. In other words, his bad behavior is being rewarded.”
Pelosi went on to say: “We were very pleased with the reassurances we received from the president (Assad) that he was ready to resume the peace process. He was ready to engage in negotiations (for) peace with Israel,” she said.
“(Our) meeting with the president enabled us to communicate a message from prime minister Olmert that Israel was ready to engage in peace talks as well,” the most senior US official to visit Damascus told reporters.
An Israeli government official said that was not the message Olmert had asked Pelosi earlier this week to convey to Assad. “The prime minister said Israel is interested in peace with Syria, but Syria would first have to abandon the path of terror and providing support for terrorist groups,” the official said, in reference to Palestinian group Hamas and Lebanon’s Hezbollah.

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