Would Mideast Crisis Have Been Averted Under a 'President Kerry'?

Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:

Israeli Conflict

Some House Democrats are circulating a letter urging Speaker Dennis Hastert to cancel the Iraqi prime minister's speech in front of a joint session of Congress on Wednesday, since he and other Iraqi leaders have denounced Israel's bombing of Lebanon.

The letter originated with Illinois's Rahm Emanuel, who heads up the House Democrats' political campaign committee. It claims Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's call for an end to Israeli aggression directly conflicts with the U.S. position, saying, "we are unaware of any prior instance where a world leader who actively worked against the interests of the United States was afforded such an honor."

So far, at least two other Democrats have signed on to the letter, which also accuses Maliki of supporting Hezbollah and being unduly influenced by Iran.

Iranian Soldiers in Lebanon?

Lebanese intelligence officials say the bodies of as many as nine Iranian Revolutionary Guard soldiers killed by the Israeli Army in Lebanon were transported to Syria last week to be flown to Tehran for burial. What's more, Jordanian officials tell The New York Sun that they're "100 percent sure" Iranians have fired rockets on Israel, and that the Syrian army has provided Hezbollah with intelligence information on possible Israeli targets, while Israel says Iranian soldiers' duties include watching over Iran's long-range rockets — which are capable of reaching Tel Aviv.

The Iranian government, meanwhile, continues to deny that its soldiers are anywhere near Lebanon.

Peace Under a President Kerry?

Massachusetts Senator John Kerry is blaming President Bush for the conflict in the Middle East, saying, "If I was president this wouldn't have happened." Kerry tells the Detroit News that the president should have targeted terrorist groups like Hezbollah instead of invading Iraq, saying, "The president has been so absent on diplomacy when it comes to issues affecting the Middle East."

Kerry added, "This is about American security and Bush has failed. He has made it so much worse because of his lack of reality in going into Iraq."

Sued Over Safety

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee is suing the federal government for failing to protect Americans stranded in Lebanon. The group filed suit in Detroit on behalf of 30 citizens — some of whom are still in Lebanon — saying Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld neglected to take all possible steps to secure their safety.

A lawyer for the group says the administration's decision to supply Israel with weapons during the crisis "has put its citizens at risk ... when many U.S. citizens are still there." The lawsuit also asks the court to order the administration to request a cease-fire between Israel and Hezbollah.

—FOX News Channel's Aaron Bruns contributed to this report.