In response to that Syria question, Bush said:
"We have been in touch with Syria. Colin Powell sent a message to Syria in person ..."As Kaplan notes, "No, Bush has not sent Colin Powell as an envoy to Syria in recent days (though that's what he seemed to be saying). He was referring to a trip that then-Secretary of State Powell took to the Middle East in 2003."
Perhaps Bush is smoother at using language than we ever realized. The words "have been" allow you to cite a diplomatic visit that occurred three years ago, long before the current crisis.
Eugene: You might want to read Bush's strange Darfur analogy (included in Kaplan's column).