Obama’s Sordid Past Affecting an Important Ally

Posted on October 17, 2008. Filed under: B. Hussein Obama's real record as a "reformer", Examination of Obama's past and present associations with questionable characters, Obama's Grand Plan for Change |

At least one candidate took the time to clarify who he really was during the last debate. Of course, that candidate was John McCain when he said, “Senator Obama, I am not President Bush. If you wanted to run against President Bush, you should have run four years ago.” In fact, Obama is probably the only person who needed to have this explained. Had McCain been more like Bush, conservatives would be voting for a candidate, rather than against Obama. But Americans are still waiting to hear an honest sentence from Obama about his past. The issue isn’t only about William Ayers, but rather Obama’s vast history of seeking out associations with people who have the same anti-American views as Ayers. Not only do these associations draw questions about Obama’s character judgment, they also cast doubt onto Obama’s believability of the policy statements he makes during the campaign. Trust should never be guaranteed to any politician. In fact, Obama’s refusal to disclose his full relationships only throws a key foreign policy issue into question.

Jesse Jackson made news when he told the World Policy Forum in France that Obama would end the, “decades of putting Israel’s interests first,” with his Middle East policies. Had this been an isolated incident to threaten Obama’s credibility on this issue, it would not require questions. Jackson’s statement, however, was far from the only piece in the puzzle. Newsweek recently ran an article about $30,000 in Obama campaign contributions that the campaign had to return to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. The campaign only returned the contributions, which were made in increments of less than $200 and therefore not required to be individually recorded, after it had been deemed illegal by the FEC. Obama spokesman, Ben LaBolt, said the Palestinian donations were made by two brothers who bought bulk t-shirt orders from the campaign’s website and when they listed their address as “Ga.” the campaign took it to mean Georgia. No one commented about whether the order actually shipped and if so, what address they were shipped to.

Once again, this would be a non-issue if there wasn’t more to the story. On April 13, 2006, an Obama supporter said on ABC radio, “We like Mr. Obama, and we hope that he will win the elections.” The problem is that the supporter was Ahmed Yousef, the chief political advisor to Hamas. (Hamas is the terrorist organization committed to the destruction of Israel and they are not huge fans of the US either.) Obama claimed Hamas gave his endorsement because of the fact that his middle name was Hussein and they felt they could trust him. This could be believable, if there wasn’t more to the story.

Adding to the problem is Obama’s inclusion of General Merrill McPeak, former US Air Force chief of staff under President Clinton, as one of his Middle East advisors. McPeak has publically stated his anti-Israel views throughout the years. Perhaps his most famous quote came in an interview with the Oregonian in 2003 that the biggest obstacle to Middle East peace is, “New York City, Miami. We have a large vote – vote here in favor of Israel. And no politician wants to run against it.” (In case anyone missed the innuendo, McPeak blamed the Jewish populations in Miami and New York for the problems with achieving peace in the Middle East.) Another Obama advisor to the Middle East, Robert Malley, was forced to resign from Obama’s campaign after the London Times discovered that he was having regular, undisclosed meetings with Hamas for his work for the International Crisis Group think tank. Now voters might start to see the problems associated with Obama’s lack of full disclosure.

Jackson’s statement is even more credible when viewed in light of the fact that the church where Obama was a 20-year member had a minister, Jeremiah Wright, who made frequent anti-Israel remarks in his sermons. Wright didn’t just stop at sermons though. In 1984 he travelled to Libya with Louis Farrakhan to meet with Muammar el-Qaddafi, whose anti-Israel views are no secret. Wright even gave Farrakhan an Empowerment Award through Obama’s church. Obama’s picture was even featured on cover of the church’s magazine alongside Farrakhan’s. (In case it’s not recalled from my first article, Farrakhan had the memorable quote, “The Jews don’t like Farrakhan, so they call me Hitler. Well, that’s a good name. Hitler was a very great man.”) Obama had also written fondly in his autobiography of his attendance of Farrakhan’s Million Man March on Washington.

With all of this background, now Jesse Jackson is telling an international audience that Obama will end “decades of putting Israel’s interests first,” when addressing the Middle East. Jackson himself is not a stranger to Obama. In fact, during his Ill. political career, Obama became good friends with Jackson’s son, Jesse Jackson, Jr. In an interview with the New York Post on Oct. 14, Jackson described Obama as, “a neighbor or, better still, a member of the family.” This would lead many to believe that Jackson might have a somewhat comfortable understanding of Obama’s world views.

Obama’s supporters claim that his past associations are an attempt to ignore the issues. In this case, these associations pose a risk to a vital area of foreign relations. Obama is not involved in a conspiracy against Israel, nor is anyone making the idiotic claim that Obama is secretly a Muslim. However, something about him has drawn repeated support from groups with hostile intentions to America and our important ally, Israel. Perceived lack of support for Israel could drastically escalate the situation in the Middle East creating many more problems and violence than are already present. The US often persuades Israel, as a trusted ally, from aggressive actions in the face of constant hostility. America cannot upset this balance because a presidential candidate refuses to be truthful about his past. One incident would be a non-issue. However, with Obama, it’s not a single incident, it’s an entire history.

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    Is this really a new type of politician? Or is the Obama machine just using politics as usual in their campaign?

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