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Pelosi Gets Cold Shoulder in Baghdad, Praises the Surge

1:33 PM, May 18, 2008 • By MICHAEL GOLDFARB
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Nancy Pelosi was in Baghdad yesterday, where she got a rather chilly reception from the Iraqi people--or at least the Iraqis who are on our side. As Time reports, "for all of Pelosi's unpopularity, in many ways she got a nicer arrival treatment than the last senior female American official to appear in Baghdad, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice." The Green Zone was hit by mortars when Rice came to town, but the insurgents didn't take any shots at Pelosi--they're on the same team:

Pelosi is something of a nonentity to average Iraqis. If they know who she is at all, she is generally seen as an antiwar caricature figure, someone whose views on U.S. troop withdrawals are widely considered unrealistic. Pelosi has said she wants to see most U.S. troops withdrawn from Iraq by the end of the 2008, a time frame virtually no Iraqi political leader sees as feasible. Not even Mahdi Army militia leader Moqtada al-Sadr, the fiercest advocate of a U.S. withdrawal on the scene, has called for such a rapid withdrawal of U.S. forces. Rather, Sadr contends that the Americans should simply announce a reasonable timetable for the departure of U.S. forces.

The lack of popularity of Pelosi's views was evident in the fact that her first day on the ground Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki did not make an effort to see her....

Pelosi may not get much more warmth from the American military leaders she plans to meet either.

But Pelosi did offer some praise for the surge. According to the AP, she "welcomed Iraq's progress in passing a budget as well as oil legislation, and a bill paving the way for the provincial elections in the fall that are expected to more equitably redistribute power among local officials." Next thing you know she'll be glorifying what happened in Basra.