Obama had Islamic terrorists guarding the consulate, lied to the world and blamed a virtually unseen movie trailer, and then hires an Islamic apologist to “investigate”. It’s no wonder that the mother of one SEAL and the father of another killed in Benghazi believe that Obama murdered their sons.
America is a seething hotbed of “Islamophobia,” filled with ignorant racist rubes who irrationally fear the benign Muslim religion, according to the Obama administration’s lead investigator into the Benghazi atrocities.
So said former Ambassador Thomas R. Pickering in more polished, diplomatic language during an Oct. 23 panel discussion at the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. The talk was on “what role the faith community can play in fighting Islamophobia,” a make-believe mental illness that Islamists would love to have listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Radical Islam’s stateside defenders frequently accuse anti-terrorism hawks of “McCarthyism,” hurling the epithet “Islamophobe” the same way American leftists use the word “racist” to shut down debate.
Pickering’s pontifications came two and a half weeks after Secretary of State Hillary Clinton named him to head a State Department “Accountability Review Board” tasked with examining the circumstances surrounding the deaths on Sept. 11, 2012, the 11th anniversary of 9/11, of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, information management officer Sean Smith, and security personnel Glen Doherty, and Tyrone Woods at the U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya.
At last week’s panel discussion, Pickering piously but incorrectly invoked the Holocaust to argue that American Muslims were somehow in danger.
“I’m not great at quotations,” he said, foreshadowing a misattribution to come.
“Perhaps it was [German theologian and dissident] Dietrich Bonhoeffer who said of the Nazis, when they came for the Jews, I didn’t speak up. I was not a Jew. When they came for the Catholics, I didn’t speak up, I was not a Catholic. When they came for us, no one spoke up. There was no one left to do so,” Pickering said, paraphrasing famous, poignant verses actually spoken by Third Reich-era German pastor Martin Niemoller.
Pickering said that Americans’ lack of familiarity with Islam –and not Islamic terrorist attacks on Americans— fuels hostility toward Muslims.
“Data shows that those Americans who do not know Muslims, who do not know much about Islam, are the ones who harbor the greatest feelings of prejudice,” he said.
There is a “strong, continuing, and perhaps, in an unfortunate way in some areas, growing, prejudice against Muslims and Islam,” he said.
However, he added that veterans returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have so far avoided embracing this anti-Islamic bigotry. “Many of the soldiers are still serving and I think that also is helpful because they understand that as loyal Americans that kind of prejudice is not to be expressed.”
Pickering urged what might amount to a zero-tolerance policy against so-called Islamophobes in American society. “There are strong efforts as well that we must make to deal with opinion leaders who harbor these prejudices, who espouse them and spread them,” he said.
Although the former envoy did not elaborate on what those “strong efforts” might consist of, his statement is worrisome. The Obama administration is openly hostile to the First Amendment.
After the Benghazi debacle, President Obama went before the United Nations General Assembly and apologized for America’s free speech protections. Pushing the false cover story that the attacks on U.S. missions this past Sept. 11 were prompted by an anti-Islam video virtually no one saw, the president said that “the future does not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.” Weeks before that, Department of Justice official Thomas Perez pointedly refused during a congressional hearing to rule out supporting Saudi-style anti-blasphemy laws.
Pickering wasn’t the only panelist last week to describe ordinary Americans as a threat to Muslim inhabitants of the United States.
In a particularly revealing soliloquy, Arab American Institute president James J. Zogby, whose younger brother is renowned pollster John Zogby, passionately inveighed against his fellow Americans, and particularly Tea Party supporters, labeling them dangerous racist Islamophobes:
“I think that there’s a direct correlation between the president of the United States and Islamophobia. As we do our polling, we find that it is not the universal phenomenon. This hatred toward Muslims is largely concentrated with middle class, middle age, white people, and then it overlaps almost identically with the Tea Party. It is not a Republican thing. It’s a generational thing.
And it is a phenomenon born of a simple set of conditions, collapse of home mortgages, foreclosures increasing, pensions in collapse when the stock market went down, unemployment doubling, the decline of the American dream. In our polling we always used, when we’d say, are your children going to be better off than you, that’s the American dream question, we’d get two thirds saying yes. We now get two thirds saying no.
And in the midst of all of that this group of white middle aged, middle class men looked around and saw a young African-American, educated at Harvard with a middle name Hussein, and didn’t like the president of the United States of America. It fueled this phenomenon and it opened the door for the wedge issue to operate and it’s operating simply among that demographic. It’s not a universal phenomenon. It’s not found among African-Americans or Asians or Latinos. It’s not found among young white kids. It’s not found among college educated professional women. It’s found in that one narrow demographic. That’s where the bad numbers come from.
He continued: “And I think that, if, we had, I have a lot of gripes with George Bush, but if he were president, he would be doing what he did, which is put his foot down and say stop. I think we would not be seeing the phenomenon growing as we see it growing. But the problem is is that if Barack Obama says stop they say, you’re just the damn problem to begin with, you’re not one of us anyway,” Zogby said, affecting an accent that might be characterized as “redneck” or “country.”
There is “an overlay between the racism and the Islamophobia” that is “being used as a wedge issue” against President Obama, he said. Zogby also described controversial Congressman Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), a Muslim and an extreme left-winger, as “a gift to America and Congress, an extraordinary person who could not be better than he is.”
Pickering also praised his fellow panelists American Association for Muslim Advancement executive director Daisy Khan, and her husband, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, chairman of the Cordoba Initiative, as “wonderful people” whose “hopes and aspirations … we all, I believe, widely share.”
Khan and Rauf are prime movers behind the proposal to build a victory mosque near Ground Zero in lower Manhattan. Khan becomes apoplectic when discussing those who question the wisdom of building a Muslim holy site so close to the place where nearly 3,000 Americans were killed in an Islamist attack on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Asked in 2010 if America was “Islamophobic,” Khan replied that “It’s not even Islamophobia, it’s beyond Islamophobia — it’s hate of Muslims.”
Critics say Pickering is unfit to head any probe of what happened in Benghazi because he harbors sympathy for Islamism and is suspiciously cozy with Iran, the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism. The former envoy has ties to the pro-Iran Islamist front group known as the National Iranian American Council (NIAC). NIAC recently lost an important defamation case in federal court in which it unsuccessfully argued the group was not a tool of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
NIAC is one of several “Jihadist entities hostile to American interests,” according to an influential report by Clare M. Lopez of the Center for Security Policy. NIAC is involved in “a de facto partnership” with its notorious Islamist ally “the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and other organizations serving as mouthpieces for the mullahs’ party line.” CAIR is an affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood and was named by the Department of Justice as an unindicted co-conspirator in the 2007 and 2008 Holy Land Foundation trials.
Meanwhile, while the majority of
state-run media outlets cover for Obama and are complicit in the Benghazi/Obama coverup, the truth is hard to suppress, Security officials on the ground in Libya challenge CIA account.
The Obama administration’s lead investigator into the Benghazi attack, former Ambassador Thomas Pickering, previously held clandestine meetings with Hamas aimed at opening U.S. dialogue with the terrorist group, according to informed Middle Eastern security officials.
Sources within Hamas previously disclosed to WND the June 2009 meeting. The gathering allegedly took place in Geneva with two Hamas leaders, Bassem Naim and Mahmoud al-Zahar. Naim is Hamas’ health minister, while al-Zahar is one of the main Hamas leaders in Gaza.
Pickering is further tied to the revolutions in the Middle East and North Africa through his role as a member of the small board of the International Crisis Group, or ICG, one of the main proponents of the international “Responsibility to Protect” doctrine.
The doctrine is the very military protocol used to justify the NATO bombing campaign that brought down Moammar Ghadafi’s regime in Libya.