John McCain has now denounced Michelle Bachmann for requesting that the State, Homeland Security, Defense and Justice Departments, investigate potential “policies and activities that appear to be the result of influence operations conducted by individuals and organizations associated with the Muslim Brotherhood.”
McCain, who in his political career has always been more interested in appearing before a camera, anywhere, anytime, than standing up for bedrock American principles, found a moment to stand on the Senate floor to defend Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton’s longtime assistant from Bachmann’s simple request, saying with righteous indignation:
“… recently, it has been alleged that Huma, a Muslim American, is part of a nefarious conspiracy to harm the United States by unduly influencing U.S. foreign policy at the Department of State in favor of the Muslim Brotherhood and other Islamist causes. These sinister accusations rest solely on a few unspecified and unsubstantiated associations of members of Huma’s family, none of which have been shown to harm or threaten the United States in any way. These attacks on Huma have no logic, no basis, and no merit. And they need to stop now.”
Oh, really? Bachmann had sent a 16-page letter to Keith Ellison, the only Muslim congressman, outlining her concerns:
“The concerns about the foreign influence of immediate family members is such a concern to the U.S. Government that it includes these factors as potentially disqualifying conditions for obtaining a security clearance, which undoubtedly Ms. Abedin has had to obtain to function in her position. For us to raise issues about a highly-based U.S. Government official with known immediate family connections to foreign extremist organizations is not a question of singling out Ms. Abedin. In fact, these questions are raised by the U.S. Government of anyone seeking a security clearance.”
This is absolutely correct. Abedin’s father, Syed Z. Abedin, founded the Institute for Muslim Minority Affairs, an organization supported by the Muslim World League, a Brotherhood organization. Her mother, Saleha Mahmoud Abedin, is a member of the Muslim Sisterhood.
No matter. McCain was in fine fettle.
“…the letter and the report offer not one instance of an action, a decision, or a public position that Huma (note: Huma, not Ms. Abedin) has taken while at the State Department that would lend credence to the charge that she is promoting anti-American activities within our government. Nor does either document offer any evidence of a direct impact that Huma may have had on one of the U.S. policies with which the authors of the letter and the producers of the report find fault.”
Isn’t that what we find out during the investigation, John?
In May of 2011, McCain and his good friend Nancy Pelosi appeared at the two-day inaugural “Al Jazeera U.S. Forum” in Washington, D.C. Al Jazeera is not exactly the bastion of pro-American interests, but that didn’t stop McCain. At Al Jazeera’s inaugural dinner, McCain proudly said:
“I’m very proud of the role that Al Jazeera has played. When that young man who was humiliated by the police in front of his friends and compatriots and family decided to burn himself to death, that would have been confined in earlier years to a single isolated incident, and it was Al Jazeera, it was Al Jazeera, that spread the story time and time again, so that it permeated the conscience, not only of the Tunisians, but of countries throughout the Arab world. So I congratulate you.”
That same story McCain lauded inflamed the Arab Spring, which paved the way for Islamist rule in the Middle East.
According to a cable released by WikiLeaks, Al Jazeera was a foreign policy instrument of Qatar, which financially sponsored it and selected its personnel. Khalid Shaikh Mohammed, the suspected mastermind of September 11, resided in Qatar, and according to other Wikileaks cables, Qatar was the worst in counterterrorism measures in the region. Qatar’s security was “hesitant to act against known terrorists out of concern for appearing to be aligned with the U.S. and provoking reprisals.” And Al-Jazeera’s Afghan correspondent, Tayseer Alouni, went to prison in Spain for being an agent of al-Qaeda.
In 2011, Al Jazeera was having a hard time convincing American cable companies to carry its newscasts, as the Huffington Post reported when they ran a series of articles supporting Al Jazeera’s efforts. Keach Hagey of Politico wrote, “It’s a major step forward for the awareness-raising campaign that AJE has been on since its coverage of the Arab Spring propelled it to newfound relevance this year. But so far there is no sign that the obstacles keeping the channel from achieving its true goal in the U.S.–national cable carriage–are cracking at all.”
Al Jazeera’s fortunes rose when U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton praised the channel for offering “real news.” Of course, the William J Clinton Foundation had gotten between $1 and $5 million from the government in Qatar.
So McCain went to bat for Al Jazeera by praising their efforts in catalyzing the revolt in Libya. He also supported the insurgents against Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi when he was interviewed by Al Jazeera in its home in Qatar, which laid the way for Islamists to rule in Libya.
(For interest’s sake, why was Al Jazeera, notoriously anti-American, suddenly on the same page as an American administration when it came to Libya? Because Gaddafi gave up his nuclear weapons program under pressure from the Bush Administration and started turning over the names of members of Al Qaeda to U.S. intelligence. Gaddafi, out; Al Qaeda, in.)
McCain’s critique of Bachmann wasn’t just misguided. It was the latest act in a long pattern of softness on the threat of Islamism.