Kerry's remarks on Assad could haunt him
FILE - This April 1, 2010 file photo released by the Syrian official news agency SANA, shows Syrian President Bashar Assad meeting with Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., President Barack Obama's choice to become the next secretary of state, at al-Shaab presidential palace in Damascus, Syria. Kerry's past words of encouragement for Syrian President Bashar Assad are certain to draw scrutiny at his confirmation hearing for secretary of State as the Mideast ruler's brutal crackdown has plunged the country into months of deadly civil war and turned Assad into a pariah. (AP Photo/SANA, File) ** EDITORIAL USE ONLY **
Photo by AP
Sen. John Kerry once held up Syria as a country that could bring peace and stability to the Mideast and predicted that the now-disgraced government of President Bashar Assad would pursue a legitimate relationship with the United States. Those assertions are certain to draw scrutiny at Kerry's confirmation hearing to be secretary of State.
Conservative websites have mocked the relationship as a Kerry-Assad “bromance.”
Kerry summed up the uncertainty in the region when he said in a speech on March 16, 2011, that the “modern Middle East has long confounded American foreign-policy makers.”
Of Assad, Kerry said that he had been “very generous with me in terms of the discussions we have had. And when I last went to — the last several trips to Syria — I asked President Assad to do certain things to build the relationship with the United States.”
Kerry ticked off six requests for Assad, and said the Syrian president fulfilled all of them.
“So my judgment is Syria will move; Syria will change, as it embraces a legitimate relationship with the United States and the West.” — AP
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.