Posts Tagged: millions


22
Oct 10

Looking over our shoulder to drive libs nuts: Did Obama spend millions to keep Birth Cert secret?

Items are organized chronologically, then in order of discovery . . .
Robert Bauer — Obama’s Mouthpiece

Robert Bauer, the chief of the political law group at Perkins Coie, the Seattle law firm hired by the White House to defend Obama in court cases challenging his “natural born” citizenship status in the United States and thus, his eligibility under the U.S. Constitution to be president.

Bauer has done his best to prevent the American public from seeing a wide range of Obama’s records that could prove, or disprove, his eligibility to occupy the Oval Office under the Constitution’s requirement that the president be a “natural born” citizen.

Documents concerning Obama that the White House has refused to release to the public include his long-form birth certificate and his passport records, as well as other records that may possibly be relevant, such as records regarding Obama’s possible adoption by his Indonesian stepfather or college application and tuition financial aid records which would reveal whether Obama was ever registered as a foreign student.

Federal Election Commission records show $ 1,352,378.95 in payments were made by Obama for America to Perkins Coie while the law firm was representing Obama in various court cases which have sought to obtain Obama’s long-form birth certificate to determine if he is a “natural born” citizen under Article Two, Section 1 of the Constitution.

Bauer, a Democratic Party partisan, has a long history of defending Democratic Party presidential hopefuls.

A biography for Bauer posted on the Perkins Coie website indicates he was general counsel to the Democratic National Committee during the presidential campaign of Sen. John Kerry and that he served as counsel to Sen. Tom Daschle, the Democratic leader in the impeachment trial proceedings of President Bill Clinton.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Bauer functioned as an “attack lawyer,” threatening with FEC complaints groups wanting to run anti-Obama television ads.

Also during the 2008 presidential campaign, Bauer as counsel for the Obama campaign wrote letters to television station managers and to Department of Justice Assistant Attorney General John Keeney arguing that airing an anti-Obama ad pointing to the known association between Obama and Weather Underground radical Bill Ayers would violate federal election rules.

Also during the 2008 campaign, Bauer intervened on behalf of Obama to block the California-based American Leadership Project from running a television ad campaign over support from unions, including the Service Employees International Union.

Again, Bauer filed a complaint with the FEC alleging that the union-funded television campaign the American Leadership Project planned to run in Indiana against Obama was illegal under federal election laws.

In addition to representing Obama on eligibility cases, Bauer also is hired as legal counsel to represent the president in the criminal probe going on into the activities of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

Last year Bauer was at the center of the controversy over Obama’s decision to reverse course on his promise to accept pubic financing for his presidential campaign after a meeting with Sen. John McCain’s attorney, Trevor Potter, when Bauer claimed McCain did not want to reach a compromise on the issue.

The McCain campaign sharply criticized Bauer’s characterization of the meeting.

It was in June 2007 when Bauer authored a piece in Huffington Post regarding Vice President Dick Cheney’s aide, Scooter Libby, arguing that liberals should not oppose a White House pardon because a pardon would draw President George W. Bush directly into the case, with the potential the “presidential fingerprints” could become politically explosive.

Obama Attorney Threatens Sanctions
After the flippant dismissal by U.S. Circuit Court Judge James Robertson of the lawsuit to attempt to determine whether Barack Obama is constitutionally eligible to occupy the Oval Office, D.C. attorney John Hemenway received a letter from a lawyer representing Barack Obama and Joe Biden.  (Hemenway had enjoined the suit launched by Hillary Clinton’s ally, Philip Berg, the former Deputy Attorney General of Pennsylvania and attorney Lawrence Joyce of Arizona, in an attempt to force Obama to disclose his birth records, currently being protected against public scrutiny by the Obama legal team at a reported cost of as much as one million dollars.)  The letter, written by Obama attorney Robert F. Bauer, states the following:

“I represent President Barack Obama and Vice President Joseph Biden. I write to request that, in light of the District Court’s March 24, 2009 Rule 11 order in Hollister v. Soetoro, No. 08-2254, you withdraw the appeal filed in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, No. 09-5080.  For the reasons stated in Judge Robertson’s order, the suit is frivolous and should not be pursued.”

“Should you decline to withdraw this frivolous appeal, please be informed that we intend to pursue sanctions, including costs, expenses, and attorney’s fees, pursuant to federal Rule Appellate Procedure 38 and D.C. Circuit Rule 38.”

Mr. Hemenway’s response to the letter was a promise to “write and protest and attack those against the demand that Obama show proof of his birth, and I will continue to do anything I can think of doing that might perhaps deter or injure those who are opposed to “transparency” and “openness” and honesty in governmental operations — all those good and vague promises that Obama threw out in speeches read from his teleprompter.”

There’s more here . . .

Barnett v. Obama
Is The Fix In?

In a stunning blow to the impartiality of the American Judicial system, Federal Judge David O. Carter, who is hearing the case Barnett vs. Obama, in the Central District, Southern Division Court at Santa Ana, California, has just hired a lawyer who works for a law firm where Robert F. Bauer, one of Obama’s top lawyers is a partner.  And that, just days before the Oct. 5, 2009 hearing on the Motion to Dismiss, in which Judge Carter’s demeanor radically changed.

Siddharth Velamoor is the lawyer chosen by Carter to serve as one of his two official clerks, from Oct. 1, 2009, till Sept. 30, 2010.  Velamoor is listed as an associate with Perkins Coie, LLP’s office in Seattle, Washington.  It is not clear if he has broken his relations with the firm.

Robert F. Bauer, is a partner of Perkins Coie, LLP’s office in Washington, D.C..  His bio at the company identifies him as holding the Chair of the Political Law group at the firm; general counsel to Obama’s Campaign for America and general counsel to the Democratic National Committee.

Continue reading here . . .

Bauer is Obama’s chief “birther” lawyer.  His job is to keep Obama’s personal artifacts hidden from the American People.  He has demonstrated that he will use all available means to do this.

Mr. Bauer’s wife is none other than Anita Dunn, Obama’s Communication’s Director, whose affection for Chairman Mao is documented in the next item.

Siddharth Velamoor was Bauer’s subordinate at Perkins Coie.  As Carter’s clerk, he will synthesize trial minutia for the judge.  He will be in a position to influence Judge Carter’s understanding of the facts — put something favorable in — leave something unfavorable out — little things.

Perkins Coie, you might recall, employs in its Anchorage office attorney Thomas Daniel, who was retained by the Alaska Personnel Board to investigate an ethics complain filed against former Governor Sarah Palin by Kim Chatman.  Daniels, a Democrat who donated to the campaign of John Kerry and is a member of the ACLU, said in his report to the Board that Alaska Fund Trust, the legal defense fund which was very carefully created to pay Palin’s legal bills from a string of bogus ethics complaints, was itself a violation of the state’s ethics law.

You connect the dots.

Was Judge Carter forced to hire Velamoor?  Was that why Judge Carter’s demeanor changed at the Oct. 5th hearing?

Update:  A Wikipedia page has been cited by dozens of bloggers after it listed Siddarth Velamoor as one of the newest law clerks for federal Judge David Carter.

A Wikipedia editor by the name of “Paul Pieniezny” indicated that he believed “dangerous people” may “go nuts” with the information.

He wrote, “I have decided to delete the entire chapter.  There are dangerous people up there, with guns.  We do not want any people threatened or killed.  Please discuss if you think otherwise.”

Another editor, “Leuchars,” responded, “I don’t think deleting easily available information from Wikipedia is a good response to fears that some birther might go nuts.  Some people are already pointing to this deletion as evidence of a conspiracy to cover things up.  No reason to add fuel to the fire.”

But “Pieniezny” countered, “They do not need much incitement to go nuts.  And I suppose that since Orly’s demand to start discovery got the Bastogne answer from the DOJ, they probably do not like the word ‘nuts.’  I do not really understand why clerks’ names should be put on the page of a judge who is dealing with a very controversial case (I mean the Maffia [sic] one, not the Orly Taitz case, which is not controversial at all) and of course with the Orly Taitz circus.  Of course, any edit to this page is controversial among birthers, that is the very essence of a conspiracy theory.”

Birther Lawyer Is New White House Counsel
Robert Bauer, Obama’s “Birther” lawyer, will replace White House counsel Gregory Craig, who took flak for his work on the Guantanamo prison closure.

Politico says that the incoming White House counsel Bob Bauer is widely respected as a skilled and pugnacious lawyer and has the unquestioned trust of Obama’s inner circle and a deep knowledge of the ways of Washington.

But the announcement Friday that he will take the place of Greg Craig, which had been rumored for weeks, nonetheless prompted questions about whether his experience as a campaign law expert and partisan warrior is appropriate for a job dealing with some of the most sensitive constitutional and national security issues in government.

Republicans moved quickly to cast Bauer, a veteran Democratic campaign attorney with limited government experience, as “hyperpartisan,” with a former White House counsel to President Ronald Reagan calling the pick “troubling.”

Government watchdogs, who for years battled Bauer over their efforts to reduce the role of money in politics, winced at the appointment, fearing it would steer Obama further away from as-yet-unfulfilled promises to bolster a campaign finance regime under attack from the right.

Even some Democrats privately questioned whether Bauer’s relatively specialized background and confrontational style are well-suited to a post that requires both a familiarity with a wide range of sensitive legal issues — from national security to habeas corpus to military law — and finesse in dealing with stakeholders outside the White House.

Bauer’s expertise is almost entirely in political law — including lobbying, campaign finance and ethics — and he is perhaps the leading attorney in that competitive and well-paying field.

A 1976 graduate of the University of Virginia Law School, he built the political law practice at Perkins Coie, a Seattle-based law firm, into a powerhouse, hiring and grooming some of the top lawyers in town.

Today, the firm has a near-stranglehold on some of the biggest Democratic political accounts in town; it represents the party’s two congressional committees — the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee — as well as the individual campaigns and political action committees of many Senate Democrats.

And Bauer landed the mother of all accounts — Obama’s presidential campaign — even before the campaign officially began, which led to his being appointed this year to the coveted position of lead counsel for the Democratic National Committee, a position that also made him the lawyer for Obama’s political network, Organizing for America.

Plus, he represents Obama and his family in personal matters, such as the federal investigation of disgraced former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, but Bauer’s number one priority is to keep Obama’s bona fides hidden from the American People.

Bauer is married to recently resigned White House Communications Director, Anita Dunn.

Continue reading here . . .

Tells you something about where eligibility issues rank with Obama.

Obama Campaign Disbursements To Perkins-Coie
The following is information was compiled from the official Federal Elections Commission website for disbursements from the Obama campaign to Robert Bauer’s law firm of Perkins Coie, which represents Obama in various eligibility suits.  The FEC links follow the entries.

2nd Quarter, 2010, FEC report for Obama for America
Perkins Coie:  $ 248483.94

http://query.nictusa.com/pdf/501/10930598501/10930598501.pdf#navpanes=0

1st Quarter, 2010

Perkins Coie:  $ 261,206.69

http://query.nictusa.com/pres/2010/Q1/C00431445/B_PAYEE_C00431445.html

October 2009 quarterly:
Perkins Coie:  $ 314,018.06
http://query.nictusa.com/pres/2009/Q3/C00431445/B_PAYEE_C00431445.html

July 2009 quarterly:
Perkins Coie:  $ 270,754.18
http://query.nictusa.com/pres/2009/Q2/C00431445/B_PAYEE_C00431445.html

April quarterly
Perkins Coie:  $ 688,316.42
http://query.nictusa.com/pres/2009/Q1/C00431445/B_PAYEE_C00431445.htm

l

Year-End 2008
Perkins Coie:  $ 173,052.52
http://query.nictusa.com/pres/2008/YE/C00431445/B_PAYEE_C00431445.html

Amended post-general election:
Perkins Coie:  $ 205,323.00
http://query.nictusa.com/pres/2008/30G/C00431445/B_PAYEE_C00431445.html

That adds up to:  $ 2,161,155.11

Click this link to run your own query against the FEC database . . .

Perkins Coie does not appear in the pre-general election filing or a few others checked randomly.  You are free to pursue any further information that is of interest.  But one would assume that the official FEC website to which the Obama and other campaigns must report their financial activity would be taken by even the most skeptical among us as valid documentation of the reported $ 1.8 or $ 2.2, or anything in between, figure expended to defend the eligibility suits.

This information is about the legal fees only of that one law firm, not the DOJ attorneys, court time, or other related costs.

Obama Waives Ethics Rules For Counsel
Kenneth P. Vogel says that when Bob Bauer replaced Greg Craig last year as White House counsel, it seemed inevitable that he’d be working on some of the same issues he had in his previous job as Obama’s personal and campaign lawyer.  So late Friday afternoon, in recognition of that reality, the White House issued Bauer a waiver to ethics rules established by Obama that prohibit officials in his administration from working on issues affecting their former clients for two years.

Those rules would have prevented Bauer “from performing roles that someone in the Counsel’s position ordinarily performs” and, therefore, neither “make sense” nor are they “in the public interest,” wrote White House ethics lawyer Norm Eisen in a post on the White House blog.

Eisen, who works under Bauer and wrote the waiver, stressed that it is limited, applying only to Bauer’s work at the powerhouse Democratic firm Perkins Coie as a private lawyer for the Obama family, and for the Democratic National Committee.

Bauer also served as the top lawyer for Obama’s presidential campaign and his confluence of positions made him a powerful member of Obama’s inner circle as well as the most influential Democratic election lawyer in town until he replaced Craig in November.

Perkins Coie — which paid Bauer $ 959,000 in 2009 and still owes him $ 216,000 — continues to represent Obama’s presidential campaign, as well as the Obama family and the DNC. In the latter two capacities, the firm is involved in helping Obama fill out his personal financial disclosure statement, which is due next week, and in fighting a lawsuit filed by the Republican National Committee seeking to overturn laws prohibiting huge “soft money” donations to political parties.

Bauer is expected to advise the White House on those matters, and a White House official pointed out that in both cases Bauer’s private work is consistent with Obama’s stances in favor of disclosure and reducing the influence of special interest money in politics.

The waiver notes that Bauer is “a leading national authority on campaign finance and related matters and the government will benefit greatly from his expertise,” but the White House official said Bauer hadn’t advised Obama on campaign finance litigation prior to the waiver.

Obama touted his ethics rules as the toughest ever, but his administration has been criticized by Republicans and independent government watchdog groups for issuing waivers to it.  But there wasn’t any immediate criticism Friday evening over the Bauer waiver.

“This is precisely the type of situation in which an ethics waiver is appropriate,” said Craig Holman, an ethics and campaign finance lobbyist for the non-profit watchdog group Public Citizen.  “The conflict of interest requirements are intended to prevent business interests from capturing the regulatory agencies that oversee them,” said Holman, adding that “is not an issue here, and so a waiver for Bauer is appropriate.”

Added Melanie Sloan, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington and an occasional White House critic: “I don’t see a problem. Basically, I think the president is entitled to have the counsel he wants.”

There is no mention in this article of Bauer’s primary role — Robert Bauer is Obama’s eligibility lawyer — and, as of May 8, 2010, the Obama Campaign has disbursed$ 2,161,155.11 to Perkins Coie.  His job is to prevent the American People from seeing this stuff.

-ESAD-

Liberty Pundits Blog


18
Oct 10

George Soros’ Millions Buying ‘Political Reporters’ for NPR

The left loves to go wild claiming that Ruppert Murdock, a famous conservative, owns a few news outlets. The left is also aghast that well known righty Roger Ailes guides Fox News. Ailes’s ideology makes of his network a compromised product, they claim. It’s all a travesty of “news,” and “proof” that those agencies are contaminated by right-wing ideology say lefty detractors. So, with the news that George Soros is buying one hundred political “reporters” for National Public Radio (NPR), one waits with baited breath for the left to decry the fact that a famous anti-American leftist is buying and influencing the “news.”

soros

One will likely wait in vain, too.

In fact, The New York Times doesn’t even mention the left-wing ideology of the foundation that is supplying $ 1.8 million to NPR so it can hire political reporters across the country.

The left-wing Open Society Foundations is donating the large sum to NPR for a project being called “Impact of Government.” The project is planning to add at least 100 reporters across the country to cover local state house politics to fill the holes left by the firing of so many local reporters due to the contraction in the field of journalism over the last decade.

One might look at this plan and imagine that it isn’t such a bad idea. If states have lost reporters ready to hold local politicians accountable why is it so bad for $ 1.8 million to be spent to fill that gap? But in the NYT piece one can see why this donation should raise eyebrows instead of making folks feel at ease that the plan is merely helping fill a reporting gap.

Ms. Schiller said the journalists would not be part of typical statehouse coverage, but instead would work on enterprise journalism that looks at how state government decisions play out over years, and extend beyond a single state’s borders.

What exactly does “enterprise journalism” mean? This sure smacks of agenda journalism as opposed to mere reporting, doesn’t it? And even if that isn’t the intent, the rhetoric here is suspicious.

But what makes this all even more suspicious is the source of the $ 1.8 million donation. The Open Society Foundations was founded by well-known anti-American George Soros. Yet, nowhere in the news is this made clear to readers.

One might recall the hullabaloo that was raised when it was revealed that News Corp, owner of Fox News, had donated one million dollars to Republicans for this election cycle. It was the end of the world as far as the left was concerned. It was “proof” that Fox could not be trusted.

Yet, here we have George Soros buying reporters for NPR, the same Soros who has an extremely left-wing agenda that he has been pushing on the world for decades. After all, if the assumption that conservatives owning Fox makes its news slanted, shouldn’t the same logic dictate that anything Soros owns reflects his ideology? Shouldn’t we assume that NPR’s new reporters will be left-wing hacks bought and paid for by one of the richest, most active, most extreme left-wing activists in the world?

So what is the difference between a left-wing billionaire buying 100 reporters for NPR and Fox News being owned by conservative owners? Why has the Old Media establishment completely ignored the extremist agenda of the foundation making such a large donation to NPR? Why isn’t NPR to be suspected of being a left-wing mouthpiece now?

The answer to this question can only be that the Old Media establishment is already bought and paid for by the far left and would never raise questions that might reflect badly on a left-wing agenda. Only conservatives need “outing” as far as the Old Media is concerned.

That George Soros owns NPR like this? Well, that’s just a little secret between you and me.


Big Journalism


6
Oct 10

Toomey Insists Derivatives Deals Are ‘Non-Risky,’ As They Cost Schools And Cities Across The Country Millions

Pennsylvania’s Republican Senate nominee Pat Toomey has been unrepentant about his role in deregulating derivatives, the complex financial instruments that helped bring about the financial crisis of 2008, and which Toomey himself traded. While in House of Representatives, Toomey voted for the Commodity Futures Modernization Act — a bill sponsored by Phil “Mental Recession” Gramm that outlawed government oversight of the over-the-counter derivatives market — and has said he would vote for it again if given the chance.

“That bill did absolutely nothing to cause the financial crisis, and no credible person has tried to make that argument,” Toomey said.

Of course, several credible people — including Nobel Prize winner Joseph Stiglitz — have highlighted the destruction wrought by derivatives. Billionaire investor Warren Buffett has referred to them as “financial weapons of mass destruction.” And as a revealing piece by Mother Jones’ Nick Baumann shows, Toomey has tried to downplay the extent to which the instruments he traded and then exempted from oversight have hurt American communities:

During the campaign, Toomey has referred to the products he worked with as “non-risky” “common derivatives,” different from the “toxic” mortgage-backed derivatives that some believe caused the financial crisis…In Pennsylvania alone, 107 school districts reportedly entered into swap deals—”gambling with the public’s money,” according to the state’s auditor general. Some have since paid millions of dollars to Wall Street banks to get out from under the deals. Chicago, Denver, Kansas City, Missouri, Philadelphia, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, and Oregon all recently lost money on similar swap deals.

One Pennsylvania school has had to pay $ 12.3 million to disentangle itself from a swap deal with J.P. Morgan. The Denver public schools system has paid millions of dollars more in fees on a swap deal than it anticipated, and the only way to escape is an $ 81 million termination fee. And Matt Taibbi ably demonstrated how Jefferson County, Alabama, was fleeced by swap deals as it tried to finance a new sewer system.

Now, Toomey himself did not have anything to do with these deals, or with the credit default swaps that sunk some of Wall Street’s behemoths, necessitating a slew of federal rescues. But he doesn’t seem to have any comprehension of the damage that Wall Street has wrought by wielding these instruments without regulatory oversight.

This is going to be a critical issue in the next few years, as regulators implement the Dodd-Frank financial regulatory reform bill, and already House Republicans are looking at ways to defund some of the enhanced regulations. Would Toomey hop on board with those efforts, since he seems to feel what Wall Street’s deregulation caused no harm?

Wonk Room


3
Oct 10

Guess Who Rants Against Government Spending and Handouts But Has Gotten Millions in Tax Breaks?

Guess who rants against government spending and handouts but has gotten millions in tax breaks — while only producing “a handful” of jobs?

Here are some hints. He’s a Tea Party movement candidate who pulled an upset and won his party’s nomination. And another little hint: he’s running in New York.


The Moderate Voice


29
Sep 10

Coburn Holding Up Millions Of Dollars In Aid For Haiti Earthquake Survivors Over Obscure Objection

coburnian Last spring, the United States pledged nearly $ 1.2 billion in emergency aid to Haiti following its tragic earthquake that left hundreds of thousands of people dead and many more homeless.

Yet the Associated Press (AP) reports today that “not a cent of the $ 1.15 billion the U.S. promised for rebuilding has arrived” to Haitians who badly the need the aid. This summer, both the House and the Senate passed a bill that would make $ 917 million available for Haiti reconstruction aid. Yet Congress must also pass an authorization bill that directs exactly how the money will be spent, and thus far, the U.S. Senate has failed to do.

The AP conducted its own investigation of why the Senate has failed to pass the authorization bill, and it discovered that a single senator “pulled it for further study.” After calling dozens of senators’ offices, the AP discovered that the senator holding up the bill is Tom Coburn (R-OK). Coburn spokeswoman Becky Berhardt explained that the reason he is holding up the bill is because he objects to the creation of a senior Haiti coordinator — a position that would cost a paltry $ 5 million over five years — when the United States currently has an ambassador to the country:

Now the authorization bill that would direct how the aid is delivered remains sidelined by a senator who anonymously pulled it for further study. Through calls to dozens of senators’ offices, the AP learned it was Sen. Tom Coburn, a Republican from Oklahoma. “He is holding the bill because it includes an unnecessary senior Haiti coordinator when we already have one” in U.S. Ambassador Kenneth Merten, Coburn spokeswoman Becky Bernhardt said.

The bill proposes a new coordinator in Washington who would not oversee U.S. aid but would work with the USAID administrator in Washington to develop a rebuilding strategy. The position would cost $ 1 million a year for five years, including salaries and expenses for a staff of up to seven people.

While Coburn continues to hold up much-needed reconstruction aid over a relatively meaningless objection, “just 2 percent of [Haiti's earthquake] rubble has been cleared and 13,000 temporary shelters have been built - less than 10 percent of the number planned.” There are estimated to be 1.3 million Haitians still homeless as a result of the earthquake.

Think Progress


24
Sep 10

Obama on Sudan Referendum: The “Fate of Millions of People Hangs in The Balance”

ABC News’ Sunlen Miller reports: Calling it a moment in which the “fate of millions of people hangs in the balance,” President Obama called for a peaceful and on-schedule referenda of self-determination in Sudan in January.



Email this Article
Add to Twitter
Add to Facebook
Add to digg
Add to Reddit
Add to StumbleUpon






Sudan - Barack Obama - Africa - United States - President of the United States

Political Punch


21
Sep 10

Fundraiser: Jesse Jackson Jr offered Blagojevich millions for Obama’s Senate seat

Nuance.


This would be the same Jesse Jackson Jr who was first identified almost two years ago in connection with offering money for the seat. A direct quote from the time: “It is impossible for someone on my behalf to have a conversation that would suggest any type of quid pro quo or any payments or [...]

Read this post »

Hot Air » Top Picks


21
Sep 10

Like father, like son: Jackson, Jr., was going to push $millions$ to Blago for Senate seat

Sometimes the truth has a way of seeping out:  Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. directed a major political fund-raiser to offer former Gov. Rod Blagojevich millions of dollars in campaign cash in return for an appointment to the U.S. Senate, sources said the fund-raiser has told federal authorities.

The allegation by Oak Brook businessman Raghuveer Nayak counters public statements made as recently as last week by Jackson that he never authorized any deal to attempt to buy the Senate seat.

These people are just scum, from top to bottom, just scum.

Liberty Pundits Blog


17
Sep 10

Millions of Virgins; Millions of Martyrs. These Guys Have Followers and They Really Mean It (Guest Voice)

Millions of Virgins; Millions of Martyrs. These Guys Have Followers and They Really Mean It
by Barry Rubin

Yes, it’s true; a fringe minister with just fifty followers in America wanted to burn a Koran. But he didn’t. Meanwhile another nut wants to kill all Jews, wipe Israel off the map, destroy the United States, eliminate all Christians, indoctrinate children into being suicide bombers, and carry out a revolutionary war of terrorism for decades no matter how many die and how much destruction occurs.

Oh, and by the way, he and his colleagues have several hundred thousand followers and are ruling what amounts to an independent state bordering on the Mediterranean.

When you study the Middle East seriously you get used to this kind of rhetoric, yet somehow the seriousness and importance of such talk doesn’t seem to register with many Western government officials, journalists, and academics who explain away these movements and regimes as somehow rational and moderate.

Maybe that’s because when you look at the situation honestly it’s really rather scary. Another word for finding something scary is to have a “phobia” toward it.

So it wasn’t some silly, obscure guy who said this but…well, please wait just one more paragraph to find out.

In the speech, this fellow said that it was really great to be a martyr for Islamic revolution because there are 2.5 million black-eyed virgins waiting at the gates of a palace-just one, so presumably there are more-in the Garden of Eden just waiting for them. You do the math: 500 gates, 5,000 virgins per gate.

Who said this? Ahmad Bahr, a Hamas leader and speaker of the Palestinian Legislative Council. In other words, he’s the Palestinian equivalent of Nancy Pelosi.

Bahr and his colleagues aren’t just joking; they aren’t just telling tall tales to titillate the yokels. Nor are they making this stuff up, since Bahr is quoting one of Muhammad’s chief lieutenants and a caliph in his own right. This speech was broadcast on al-Aqsa television on September 5, 2010. It was intended to mobilize the masses to go out and die for Hamas and the Islamic revolution. So presumably a good number of Palestinians take this seriously, too.

Now how is this plan going to be implemented? Basically, Bahr said that every Muslim should have a lot of sons and train them to be terrorists and hence martyrs. He concluded:

“If this is the culture of the nation today, who will be able to stop it?…As long as we continue on this path, nobody on Earth will be able to confront the resistance, or to confront the mujahideen, those who worship Allah and seek martyrdom.”

So it doesn’t matter how hopeless the odds seem, how many will die, how much suffering will take place. Peace is not more attractive than war; having a nice future for your children is not the top priority. Goals are not set by a cost/benefit analysis but on the basis that the creator of the universe is calling the shots, insists on this path, and will ensure its victory.

OK, you say, but maybe Bahr just hates Israel and would be satisfied if it is wiped out and then the struggle would end? Nope. Maybe he just wants an independent Palestinian state and then will leave everyone else alone? Again, nope.

Here’s what he said in 2007 in a speech broadcast on Sudan television:

“‘You will be victorious’ on the face of this planet. You are the masters of the world on the face of this planet. Yes, [the Koran says that] ‘you will be victorious,’ but only ‘if you are believers.’ Allah willing, ‘you will be victorious,’ while America and Israel will be annihilated, Allah willing. I guarantee you that the power of belief and faith is greater than the power of America and Israel. They are cowards, as is said in the Book of Allah: ‘You shall find them the people most eager to protect their lives.’ They are cowards, who are eager for life, while we are eager for death for the sake of Allah. That is why America’s nose was rubbed in the mud in Iraq, in Afghanistan, in Somalia, and everywhere….

“America will be annihilated, while Islam will remain. The Muslims ‘will be victorious, if you are believers.’ Oh Muslims, I guarantee you that the power of Allah is greater than America, by whom many are blinded today. Some people are blinded by the power of America. We say to them that with the might of Allah, with the might of His Messenger, and with the power of Allah, we are stronger than America and Israel.”

Again, this is one of Hamas’s top leaders, and others in the leadership-not to mention their Iranian, Hizballah, and Syrian allies-have said similar things. This is not a joke. Middle East: This is your life!

Do you mind if I’m perfectly frank with you? I suspect that deep down most Westerners think people like Bahr are as corrupt and hypocritical as an Upper-West-Side-of-Manhattan progressive thinks is true for a Southern televangelist. They probably expect Bahr steps out of the pulpit then goes to a bar for a scotch and a ham sandwich.

If they would only apply to Bahr-whose extremism they tend to ignore, feel overrated, or can easily be turned into moderation-the same standards as they do to Christian Pentecostals-who they despise without tolerance-that would be one step in the right direction. Then keep going, adding on that, unlike Christian “fundamentalists” in America, revolutionary Islamists have murdered tens of thousands of people and want to kill many more; unlike those Christians they command thousands of armed soldiers; unlike those Christians they will kill anyone who changes to another religion or who doesn’t behave as they want; and, too, their program is to seize state power, establish totalitarian states, and attack other countries.

No, Bahr isn’t just speaking for effect. He’s dead serious, and that expression isn’t chosen by accident, betting his life on his cause while much of the Western elite trembles at merely being unfashionable. And what Bahr says and believes word-for-word also applies to Hizballah; the Egyptian and Jordanian Muslim Brothers; Iran’s regime; the Taliban; Islamists in areas of Russia; Islamists in Indonesia and Pakistan; clerics in Syria and many other countries; and is heard in certain meetings and mosques throughout Europe and North America.

By no means all Muslims, or even most, but a heck of a lot do talk like Bahr. Not a very small minority of believers; a very big minority of believers. And if they are not stopped they will be the majority of believers and the rulers of multiple countries.

Given the number of martyrs that have been and are going to be generated, there’s going to be a need for all 2.5 million of those virgins Bahr mentions. Actually, that won’t be enough because at 99 per (male) martyr that’s only enough for about 25,000.

Very few Muslims are publicly making fun of such statements or battling against them, though many are fighting the Islamists on political grounds.

Doesn’t all of this matter a bit? Shouldn’t this be something people in the West know about, the mass media cover fully? Mightn’t this kind of talk and thinking convey something of why nobody should try to bring Hamas or similar groups into the diplomatic process, give it aid, or help it in any way? Isn’t this a bigger threat than some marginal haters of everything Muslim who just aren’t going to become martyrs? In the face of this threat should people be demonized and intimidated if they dare talk about it?

I can’t imagine why there should be any doubt about the answers to these questions.

Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), with Walter Laqueur (Viking-Penguin); the paperback edition of The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan); A Chronological History of Terrorism, with Judy Colp Rubin, (Sharpe); and The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley). He has a blog at http://www.rubinreports.blogspot.com.


The Moderate Voice


16
Sep 10

Just a reminder: Sexist RINO establishment ogre Karl Rove is spending millions to help Sharron Angle win

Nuance.


He alluded to this himself in the clip that Ed posted earlier, but since he’s now being treated as some sort of cancer on the party for daring to say that O’Donnell’s a flawed candidate, let’s flesh out the facts a bit. If, as Jeri Thompson suggests, Rove has a double standard for tea-party women, [...]

Read this post »

Hot Air » Top Picks