Outrage as Pompeo Gives Convention Speech in Jerusalem

Critics say unacceptable to give political speech during official travel

As the mouthpiece of US foreign policy, the State Department isn’t meant to be a political body. That’s a growing issue today, as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo used an official State Department visit to Jerusalem as an opportunity to deliver his speech to the Republican National Convention.

Critics say giving a political speech while on duty is inappropriate, and especially for the State Department. It’s not clear there is a specific law about this, however, as the State Department said they’d reviewed the speech and decided it didn’t cross lines.

Democratic groups said that in addition to going against historical acts by top US secretaries, that having the speech in Jerusalem risks making Israel a wedge issue politically. The Trump Administration is playing up moving the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, which is likely to be part of why it was chosen as a location for the speech.

President Trump has recently played up the move to Jerusalem, and how much it pleased US evangelicals, in speeches. Pompeo is reportedly going to praise Trump’s foreign policy during his speech.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.