State Department denies that Kerry was on yacht during Morsi’s ouster [UPDATED With State Dept. Admission]

Mosheh Oinounou of CBS has tweeted a photo of John Kerry’s yacht, the “Isabel,” and claimed that a CBS producer spotted Kerry on board Wednesday, the day of Mohammed Morsi’s ouster. According to Oinounou, when the producer shouted “Morsi,” she received no response.

However, the State Department denies that Kerry was on his yacht during the crisis. And it insists that, although he wasn’t in Washington at the national security team meetings on Egypt, he participated “by secure phone and was and is in non-stop contact with foreign leaders, and his senior team in Washington and Cairo.”

Such participation is not inconsistent with yachting. Thus, it doesn’t matter if Kerry was on the “Isabel,” though the idea is amusing.

Indeed, it doesn’t really matter whether Kerry participated in the Washington meetings. We’re not talking about William Seward, John Hay, or Dean Acheson here. We’re talking about the guy who believed that the key to a successful U.S. policy in the Middle East was to work with Bashar al-Assad.

Nor is it likely that even the giant diplomats of the past could have contributed anything of consequence in this context. By Wednesday, the U.S. had already sidelined itself due to the previous poor decisions of the Obama administration.

JOHN adds: As several readers have pointed out, the State Department has now walked back its denial that Kerry was on his yacht while the crisis in Egypt took place:

As regime change was unfolding in Egypt, Secretary of State John Kerry spent time on his boat Wednesday afternoon in Nantucket Sound, the State Department acknowledged to CBS News on Friday, after repeatedly denying that Kerry was aboard any boat.

“While he was briefly on his boat on Wednesday, Secretary Kerry worked around the clock all day including participating in the President’s meeting with his national security council,” said State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki, naming a series of Egyptian and international officials Kerry had spoken with on Wednesday.

Psaki’s acknowledgment marked a stark reversal from previous denials that Kerry was on any boat whatsoever.

Two observations here: First, the administration’s “lie first and figure out the facts later” approach is typical. Have we ever seen such instinctive dishonesty from any administration? Second, I share Paul’s view that the less John Kerry has to do with events in the Middle East, the better. And the same goes for Barack Obama. Yesterday my tweet on that subject was, I am proud to say, Glenn Reynolds’ “Tweet of the Day”:

On Egypt, Obama should strive for irrelevance. It’s the best he is going to do.

Here, for those who are interested, is John Kerry’s yacht, Isabel. Is this the same one he parked in Rhode Island to avoid Massachusetts’ onerous tax? I assume so. Liberals are so funny: it never seems to occur to them that they are not the only ones who will modify their behavior to avoid taxes.

Hey, no one ever denied that marrying for money can bring you…money.

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