- The Washington Times - Sunday, June 20, 2004

Goodbye, Piccadilly

William Farish, the U.S. ambassador to Britain, announced his resignation over the weekend in a London newspaper article in which he praised U.S.-British relations as stronger than ever before.

“First of all, whether your point of reference is D-Day or the end of the Cold War, there is no time that the special relationship has been better,” he wrote Saturday in the Times of London.

Mr. Farish praised British Prime Minister Tony Blair, who has strongly supported President Bush in Iraq, and dismissed public opinion polls that showed Britons opposed to the war.

“My experience is that caricatures of the president and U.S. policy find little resonance among the British people,” he wrote.

“They see the president as a plain-spoken man of principle who says what he believes. They understand that American foreign policy is motivated by a genuine desire to make the world a better, safer place for us and for our children.”

Mr. Farish, president of his own trust management firm in Houston and a top Republican fund-raiser, said he plans to return to business after leaving his diplomatic post on July 10.

The ambassador took up his post in August 2001 and soon found the U.S. Embassy the focus of British mourning over the September 11 terrorist attacks.

“It is in such trying times that one discovers which friends are really true,” he wrote.

Mr. Farish had no previous experience as a diplomat, but he enjoyed close relations with Queen Elizabeth II, who shares his passion for horse breeding. Mr. Farish owns a renowned horse farm in Kentucky, where the queen boards several mares.

FBI in Bulgaria

The United States has opened an FBI office in Bulgaria to fight the spread of terrorism, U.S. Ambassador James Pardew said.

“The United States is committed to assisting the government and people of Bulgaria in countering the threats to their security and prosperity from international crime and terrorism,” he told reporters in Bulgaria.

Diplomatic traffic

Foreign visitors in Washington this week include:

Today

• Ukrainian Foreign Minister Konstantin Gryshchenko, who meets Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice and Paula Dobrinansky, assistant secretary of state for global affairs, on his visit this week.

Jayaraj Fernandopulle, Sri Lanka’s minister of consumer affairs, who meets U.S. Trade Representative Robert B. Zoellick.

Tomorrow

• Hungarian Prime Minister Peter Medgyessy, who meets President Bush. He opens the Hungarian Technology Center in Vienna, Va., on Wednesday.

Thursday

• A delegation of Roman Catholic leaders from Central America: Archbishop Oscar Andres Rodriguez Maradiada of Tegucigalpa, Honduras; Bishops Carlos Maria Ariz of Colon, Panama, Angel San Casimiro Fernandez of Ciudad Quesada, Costa Rica; and Alvaro Leonel Ramazzini Imeri of San Marcos, Guatemala; and auxiliary Bishops Gregorio Rosa Chavez of San Salvador, El Salvador; and David Zywiec of Bluefields, Nicaragua. They discuss the Central American Free Trade Agreement with invited guests at the Inter-American Dialogue.

Bill Rammell, Britain’s parliamentary undersecretary of state for foreign and commonwealth affairs, and Col. Kahinda Otafiire, Uganda’s minister of water, lands and environment. They hold an 8:30 a.m. press conference at the National Press Club.

Friday

Maj. Gen. Ladislav Lipic, chief of the general staff of the Slovenian Armed Forces, who attends a National Day and Armed Forces Day reception at the Slovenian Embassy.

Call Embassy Row at 202/636-3297, fax 202/832-7278 or e-mail jmorrison @washingtontimes.com.

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