US ‘suburbs more violent than Iraq’

US ‘suburbs more violent than Iraq’

By Jonathon Moran

November 07, 2006 02:32pm

Article from: AAP

 

MORE fighting goes on in parts of suburban US than Iraq, according to Australian filmmaker George Gittoes who has just finished a documentary set in a Miami “war zone”.

Gittoes’ latest feature, Rampage, contrasts life for a family living in the blue-collar community of Brown Sub, Miami, with ongoing fighting in Iraq.

“It is much worse in Miami than it is in Baghdad,” Gittoes said in Sydney today.

“There is a sense of people with guns, drug dealers lairing at you … and being there, I knew I was in a war zone.”

Rampage is the second in Gittoes trilogy of documentaries based on the war in Iraq.

It follows the success of 2004s Soundtrack to War, which depicted American soldiers and their music in Iraq.

The film will be released in cinemas around the world and Gittoes is expecting plenty of controversy.

“Even left-wing Americans … don’t want to recognise the mess they’ve got in their own backyard,” he said.

Gittoes has spent much of his career travelling the world, painting, filming and photographing wars in places such as Rwanda, Afghanistan, and East Timor.

“To me, this was just another war zone and it was in America,” he said.

Gittoes said there were similar stories to Rampage in Australia’s indigenous communities, although he said the task of translating that on the big screen would be difficult.

“The film that I’d like to make in Australia I couldn’t make,” he said.

“All of our politically correct laws and things wouldn’t let someone like me make a film like this in an Aboriginal community in Australia.”

The final film in the trilogy, Fearless, and will examine the impact of the Iraq war on the American soldiers who have fought there.

“It is about the difficulty of exit and how much the soldiers have changed and become hardened warriors and how much the people they’re fighting have changed as well,” he said.

Rampage opens nationally on November 30.

Folks, Let’s Talk Seriously About The War

Folks, Let’s Talk Seriously About The War
Terrorism Jeff Lukens
October 28, 2006
My 21-year-old son recently joined the Army reserves, and is now in basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri. He writes to tell me that his drill sergeants are telling him that, reservist or not, get ready to go to Iraq.He has no reason to doubt them. For my son, it is a reckoning he calmly accepts.

What can I say? He wants to serve his country, and I couldn’t be more proud of him.

I’m just a regular guy like millions of people everywhere who love this country. I was in the Army years ago, but they never deployed me to a war zone. The thought of my son going into one sets me back a bit. When I think about the thousands of parents who have sons and daughters over there already, I get a bit choked. And when I think about those who have had their child die over there, I go beyond choked. God forbid . . . it could happen to my son too.

We’ve all heard fellow Americans badmouthing our country while military personnel overseas are risking their lives. They say they support the troops but they don’t support the war. Well, that’s baloney. It’s the same thing.

They say we shouldn’t question their patriotism either. Well, that’s baloney too. To actively root for our side to lose just so they can further their politics is more than unpatriotic. It’s criminal.

“The real reason for the Iraq invasion was that it was strategically necessary to influence the entire Middle East. The invasion was meant to show that we meant business in this war against al Qaeda.”

Let’s face it; many politicians, media people and others simply don’t care about this country. They don’t care about you or me, my son or your daughter. They’re not willing to make any sacrifices.

Folks, it’s us, the regular people who need to own the issue of the war on terror because we’re the only ones who are serious about fighting it.

We’ve all witnessed the political pretenders who say they voted for the Iraq war, but then have no problem when leaked classified information is used against it. Nothing is prohibited in their two-faced attempt to gain power, even when their tactics do our nation lasting harm.

The spin is that, by fighting terrorists, we somehow are the ones creating the terrorists. That thinking harkens back to the pre-9/11 days of waiting to be attacked before responding. What these people don’t understand is that our government’s most sacred duty is to protect the American people.

Think about it. After 9/11, there were just a few options open to us and all involved invading somebody. The only way to fight terrorism was to go on the offense and hit them so hard that they can’t hit back. And so we did. But invading Afghanistan alone was not enough to alter the root causes of terrorism.

The real reason for the Iraq invasion was that it was strategically necessary to influence the entire Middle East. The invasion was meant to show that we meant business in this war against al Qaeda.

Much complex analysis lay behind U.S. strategy, and much of its basis was too complex to present to the public. So, for right or wrong, WMD became the selling point for the invasion of Iraq.

The leaders in Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia have no doubt noticed the large presence of U.S. ground and air forces within easy striking distance of their countries. It no doubt is a major reason why they no longer support Al Qaeda, when they tolerated it – and even funded it – before.

So, now we have established a fledgling democracy in Iraq, and sectarian violence has become a problem. The government cannot be our ally if it is itself allied with terrorists. And terrorists are exactly what Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr’s Mahdi Army are. We should’ve taken them out in 2004. Now we need to finish that job.

But this is a secondary issue. We cannot allow disappointments to turn to disillusionment about our reasons for engaging in this war. Poor decisions can surely make matters much worse.

Wavering members of congress have been calling for a timetable for a withdrawal from Iraq. This is all hot air in an attempt to score political points. They’ll say anything to get elected. Nowhere in the history of warfare has a nation pre-announced such a timetable to their enemies. It would be disastrous.

Whether democracy succeeds in Iraq is up to the Iraqi people, not us. But they are watching our domestic politics too, and many more may decide to side with our enemies based on what the “loyal opposition” in Washington is doing to undermine the war. We cannot afford such irresponsibility.

It is naive to think that by getting out of Iraq, we can spare ourselves from the clash between radical Islam and the rest of the world. With Iran next door moving steadily toward a nuclear bomb, the question now is whether we are going to remain serious about terrorism, or frivolously pretend it is no longer important.

It’s up to us, the ones with a personal stake in winning the war, to make our voices heard. We owe that to our nation’s future. And we owe it to our sons and daughters who wear its uniform.

Jeff Lukens writes engaging opinion columns from a fresh, conservative point of view. He is also a Staff Writer for the New Media Alliance, Inc., a non-profit (501c3) coalition of writers and grass-roots media outlets. He can be contacted through his website at www.jefflukens.com

Holding Islam to Account

Holding Islam to Account

Amil Imani

 

Islam has spawned many sects that are master practitioners of the art of double standards. As far as Muslims are concerned what is good for Muslims is not good for the non-Muslims; and, what is bad for Muslims is good for non-Muslims.

What complicates matters is that there is no way of knowing which of the dozens of at-each-other’s-throat sects is the legitimate Islam. As sooner as Muhammad died his religion of peace became a house of internal war: jockeying for power and leadership started, sects formed and splintered into sub-sects, and bloodletting began in earnest.

The internal infighting in Islam is presently playing in full color—in red—most dramatically, in the Iraqi theater. Shiite raid Sunni civilians, slaughter them like sheep, and toss their bodies like trash in the streets or the rivers. The Sunnis return the favor with just as much viciousness and savagery.

Question: if this is the way these Muslims treat each other, how would they deal with the infidels, when they have the chance?

 

Answer: these devoted followers of Muhammad would deal with the infidels exactly the way Muhammad did: behead the non-believers, take them as slaves to hold or sell, or make them pay back-breaking jazyyeh—pole taxes.

Some may object that writings like this are little more than hatemongering and fanning the fire that rages between Islam and the non-Islamic world. They may further flash the Islamic apologists’ few well-worn-out propaganda cards as evidence for their contention that Islam is not what its detractors claim.

Here are the few favorite cards:

* There is no compulsion in religion says the Quran—the full context is never shown.

* “Islam,” means “Peace,” so Islam is religion of peace.

* “For you, your religion, and for me, my religion,” Muhammad reportedly had said.

The Muslims and their apologists quickly run out of their few cards and the rest of the Islamic deck is all about intolerance, hatred, and violence toward the infidels and all others who are not true Muslims, even toward those who consider themselves as Muslims. Shiites, for instance, judge the Sunnis as traitors to Islam and Sunnis condemn the Shiites as heretics. Each side deems the other worthy of death and hellfire.

This internecine Islamic war of the religion of peace is not confined to the Shiite-Sunni divide. There are so many internal divisions within each side that listing and describing them comprehensively would be encyclopedic.

So, who is right? What are the facts about Islam and how does Islam impact the ever-shrinking village earth and its inhabitants? Admittedly, this is a huge question and cannot be answered satisfactorily in one article. However, some facts can be presented to help the reader decide.

There is no need to belabor the point that Islam is not and has never been a religion of peace. The word “Islam,” is derived from “taslim,” which means “submission,” while the term for “peace,” is “Solh.” Another derivation of the word “taslim,” is “salamat” which means “good health,” and so on.

Irrespective of what the term “Islam” may mean, the facts on the ground conclusively demonstrate Islam’s violent nature from its very inception. No need to go back to the time of Muhammad and examine the historical records. Just a few from contemporary events should make the point.

Here is a partial list: the savage Shiites-Sunnis bloodletting in Iraq; the barbarism of the resurging Taliban in Afghanistan; the genocide in Sudan’s Darfur; the Somalis’ killings; the Iranian mullahs’ murder of their own people and support of mischief abroad; the cross-border attack on Israel by Lebanese Hizbollah; the incessant terrorist acts of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Fatwa of the Palestinians against Israel; the bombing of Shiites mosques in Pakistan and the Shiites retaliation against easy innocent civilian targets.

Clearly, there is no place on the planet where Muslims reside that is in peace from the religion of peace. Spain, France, Holland, England Thailand, and Indonesia, have already been attacked while others such as Belgium have been threatened and sanctioned.

Stretching the benefit of the doubt beyond limits, one may believe that all these acts of horrors are committed by a small minority of thugs and radicals who happened to be Muslims.

Fine, let us ignore all those “fringes” for now: those who are giving Islam a bad reputation. And never mind Saudi Arabia, the cradle of barbarism fixed in formaldehyde since Islam’s inception. Also, let us overlook the dastardly Shiite fanatics presently ruling (ruining) the great nation of Iran. Iran Shiite Hitlerists are hell-bent on wiping Israel off the face of the planet while viciously devastating Iran’s own largest minority—the Baha’is; the people universally-recognized as law-abiding and peaceful.

Would someone account for what is happening in the “civilized” Islamic country of Egypt? The world owes Egypt a debt of gratitude for giving it the Muslim Brotherhood—the lead promoter of Sunni hatred toward the infidels with chapters and front organizations in much of the world. With typical Islamic hypocrisy, the Egyptian government claims that the Muslim Brotherhood is outlawed, when in actuality the Brotherhood holds twenty-five percent of the seats in the Egyptian parliament. The same country that gave the world vicious American killers like Al Zawahiri is the recipient of huge largess from the American taxpayer.

And the latest shameful action of the Egyptian government is the issuance of identity cards that requires listing of one’s religion. In order to be issued an ID card which is essential for just about any and all exercises of the rights of citizenship, the individual must list his religion as one of the three sanctioned faiths: Islam, Christianity, or Judaism. No one is allowed to leave the religious affiliation blank or list any other religion. Buddhists, Hindus, Baha’is or agnostics and atheists have either to lie and fake a religious affiliation or run the serious risk of having to survive as non-entities in the “crown jewel” of modern and moderate Islamic society.

These are the conditions on the ground wherever Islam rules. Violence of all forms is endemic to Islam and is not confined to any fringes that are oppressive, hateful of others and violent to the core.

The world must confront Islam and demand that it mends its ways in conformity with the Bill of Rights, where every man, woman, and child is fully entitled to equal treatment under the law, irrespective of any and all considerations.

FamilySecurityMatters.org Contributing Editor Amil Imani is an Iranian-born American citizen and pro-democracy activist residing in the United States of America. Imani is a columnist, literary translator, novelist and an essayist who has been writing and speaking out for the struggling people of his native land, Iran. He maintains a website at http://amilimani.com

Against half-measures

Against half-measures
By Rich Lowry
Monday, November 6, 2006The recriminations over the Iraq War have long been raging, but now some of the war’s staunchest supporters have joined the blamefest. The list of what has gone wrong is long and varied, with liberal opponents of the war and conservative supporters all having their own ideologically congenial items. But if there’s one consistent lesson from our experience in Iraq, it is to avoid half-measures — go to war with more troops, more deadly force and more vigor rather than less. Muddling through and hoping to succeed with just barely enough resources, is a fool’s policy. As Napoleon said, “When you set out to take Vienna, take Vienna.” We took Baghdad, but never with the level of commitment to ensure it would stay taken in any form worth having. With apologies to Napoleon, if you are going to invade a country, invade a country. The Powell Doctrine calling for overwhelming force might not be applicable in all situations, but it is a reasonable rule when undertaking a major ground invasion of a country with a 400,000-man army. Instead, Secretary of Defense Don Rumsfeld constantly bid down the U.S. invasion force. There were sound reasons for wanting to go in relatively light, but clearly more troops were necessary for the postwar occupation. Here is where liberal hero Gen. Eric Shinseki proved right in his prewar analysis when he told a congressional committee that “several hundred thousand soldiers” would be necessary to secure Iraq: “We’re talking about post-hostilities control over a piece of geography that’s fairly significant, with the kind of ethnic tensions that could lead to other problems.” If you are going to fight an enemy army, fight an enemy army. We let Iraqi fighters escape our initial invasion out of a misplaced humanitarianism and a belief that Iraqi soldiers were the innocent victims of Saddam Hussein. Many of the Sunni fighters that we spared formed the nucleus of the insurgency. If you are going to occupy a country, occupy it. When we arrived in Baghdad, we watched the place get looted. Once we toppled Saddam, we owned Iraq, and letting disorder spread unchecked undermined our authority and set back the already-difficult task of reconstruction. If you are going to make Iraq your highest diplomatic priority in the Middle East, make it your highest diplomatic priority. Soon after Paul Bremer left as head of the Coalition Provisional Authority, John Negroponte took over as U.S. ambassador in Iraq and was notable only for his passivity. After he left, a period of three months passed when we didn’t even bother to have an ambassador on the ground. If you are going to secure Baghdad, secure Baghdad. We announced over the summer with great fanfare a plan to secure Baghdad, but never devoted enough troops to make it remotely plausible. In August 2003 there were 140,000 troops in Iraq, as there were in August 2004, August 2005 and August 2006. Whatever the question is in Iraq, the administration’s answer is always 140,000 troops. Some say that’s because we have no more troops, which raises the final lesson. If you are going to say our country is at war, act like our country is at war. On Sept. 10, 2001, when we still thought we were living in a blissful period of peace, we had a 1.4 million person military. Incredibly, after it has become clear that we are facing a generational war with Islamic radicalism, with two hot fronts in Afghanistan and Iraq and perhaps more to come, we still have a 1.4 million person military. If President Bush is to attempt to save the Iraq War after the election, he has to really attempt to save the Iraq War. This might be his last chance. There can be no skimping, no wishful thinking, no operating on a razor-thin margin of error. As military expert Frederick Kagan recommends, he has to send 50,000 more troops to Baghdad, in what would be a long overdue end to half-measures. 

Your world 11/07/06

Sparing Saddam: Why Europe is Morally Unserious

Sparing Saddam: Why Europe is Morally Unserious
November 7th, 2006

A general estimate is that Saddam Hussein killed 300,000 people, started two major wars (the first against Iran, costing a million lives, and the second against Kuwait, with perhaps 100,000 dead); according to the New York Times’ latest zig-zag, he came within a year of producing a nuclear bomb that could have been used to kill additional millions, and ensured the survival of his tyranny for the foreseeable future.  For sheer sadistic mayhem, like routine rape and murder, there has been no worse regime than Saddam. 

For the first time in human history, a mass-murdering tyrant on this scale has been caught, tried, and convicted in an open court of law. The people of Iraq and surrounding countries have been able to see him tried on television. Saddam has been sentenced to hang, according to Iraqi law, legitimized by the only elected government in the Arab Middle East.

By any decent human standard this is an extraordinary victory for civilization over barbarism. But rather than applaud a heroic achievement of Iraqi justice right in the middle of a war, Europe now noisily parades its opposition to capital punishment for Saddam.

Forget the usual pros and cons of capital punishment. Just ask yourself: Is Europe a morally serious place?

We know that its politicians constantly preach to the rest of the world. No doubt dinner conversations around the European continent echo the politicians. Tens of millions of Europeans obviously believe they are more moral than thou. But is there any truth to that?

Remember, for the first time in human history a major mass-murdering tyrant has been caught and brought to justice.

Hitler was never caught. Stalin and Mao died in their beds, and Jean-Paul Sartre, Europe’s most famous philosopher of the 20th century, passionately supported them at the height of their reigns of terror. The entire French intellectual elite worships Sartre as well as Nazis like Paul de Man and Martin Heidegger. The whole gang of bloody-minded European professors either sided with the Nazis or the worst Leftist tyrants, just as today they are passionately attracted to Hamas and Hezbollah.

None of the tyrants who were glorified and rationalized by millions of Europeans were ever caught. Europe’s ideological collusion was active and necessary for all those crimes to take place. Europe’s scribbling classes created the propaganda and the diversions necessary for mass murder, not once, but over and over again over the last century.

But now Saddam Hussein has been caught, tried, and convicted, and will be hanged if his conviction is approved on appeal.

And Europe wants to spare Saddam’s life.

Ten years ago Europeans looked on passively while genocide took place in the Balkans; finally they talked the United States into acting. The Europeans and their hero diplomat Kofi Annan, looked on and did nothing while genocide took place in Rwanda. Today a credible court case in France alleges that the French colluded and stirred up the genocidal parties for its own benefit. Today, Europe supports the Sudan being a member of the UN Human Rights Commission, and fails to do anything about yet another African genocide carried on by the Sudanese regime over a period of decades.

Yet Europe wants to spare Saddam’s life.

The dirty little secret is that every mass-murdering ideology in the last two centuries had its origins and supporters in Europe. Pol Pot was Cambodian by birth but learned his revolutionary ideology in Paris. He was trained by the French Communist Party and the Russian KGB, went home, and massacred two or three million of his countrymen. Even Saddam’s Baathist Party was modeled on the European fascist parties of the 1930s.

Yet Europe wants to spare Saddam’s life.

The most infamous massacres of the 20th century, the Nazi genocide of some six million Jews, was inspired by a European nativist ideology.

Yet Europe wants to spare Saddam’s life.

Belgium conducted mass murders in the Congo. France fought a vicious imperial war in Algeria. Russia, under the guise of the vaunted Soviet Union, the hope of mankind, created forced starvation in the Ukraine. And today, North Korea is still, responsible for systematically starving hundreds of thousands of its own people. Kim’s regime is a stereotypical Stalinist regime —a European ideology passionately supported by millions and millions of people on that dark and cruel continent. (I do not refer to Africa.)

Today, Europeans politicians are again in the world news, very proudly calling to spare Saddam’s life. It shows their sweet and moral nature.

Now we have new tyrants and terrorist at the gates. Three thousand innocent Americans were murdered five years ago, but Europe is urging us to forget all about it; and above all, not to take 9/11 as a warning of what is to come if we don’t fight now. It’s because they are so peaceful.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has promised to “wipe Israel off the map.” The Europeans have nominally taken the lead in negotiating with Ahmadinejad, to keep him from getting nukes. They have failed, because they are wishful weaklings, who rationalize any danger. The mullahs just laugh at them.

When sane nations take actions to stop Ahmadinejad, they will be viciously criticized by Europeans for doing so. We know that.

Europe is morally superior because it wants to spare Saddam.

If the whole world adopted Europe’s “higher morality” we would all be dead. Because their moralizing isn’t moral, it is merely flabby and self-indulgent.

We have protected Europe for a century with our blood and treasure. Under our protection they have constructed a Disneyland for adults, one that is utterly unable to defend itself. Instead, they have imported tens of millions of ideologues who want nothing more than to take over Europe.

Yet Europe is obnoxiously ready to preach morality to the decent nations of the world who are not as deluded as they are. True to their endless imperialistic arrogance, they are now exporting yet another world-conquering ideology, a fuzzier version of communism, aiming to actively hog-tie the United States through a hundred international treaties.

But this time they assure us that European-style world government will be paradise on earth. Trust us.

I’m curious – how is it that these people even dare to raise their heads when Iraq tries to punish Saddam?

James Lewis is a frequent contributor to American Thinker.

Human Rights Watch: Palestinian women victims of systemic violence, authorities fail to protect them

Human Rights Watch: Palestinian women victims of systemic violence, authorities fail to protect them

A Stop-The-Presses Alert, and a Sharia Alert from AP:

RAMALLAH, West Bank – A new report paints an alarming picture of the abuse of women in the Palestinian territories, with police, courts and government agencies failing to treat violence such as rape and beatings as a crime.

The New York-based Human Rights Watch cited practices such as rape victims being forced to marry assailants and light sentences for men who kill female relatives suspected of adultery. It said families, tribal leaders and authorities, backed by tradition and discriminatory laws, often sacrifice victims’ interests for family honor.’

Tradition, indeed. But one will see the most meaningful progress against such conduct only after confronting how deep and sacrosanct that “tradition” is in Islamic societies.

The problem is only getting worse with growing poverty and lawlessness in the West Bank and Gaza, the report said.

According to a survey by the Palestinian Central Bureau of Statistics of more than 4,000 households in December 2005 and January 2006, 23 percent of the women said they had experienced domestic violence, but just over 1 percent filed a complaint. Two-thirds said they were subjected to psychological abuse at home.

The gap between incidents and complaints filed is undoubtedly affected by Qur’an 4:34, which sanctions beating one’s wife.

[…]

Mair said Human Rights Watch singled out the Palestinian territories — as opposed to investigating abuses in another traditional societies — because of concern that the abuse will increase and because some Palestinian government officials have signaled they are ready for change. This made us optimistic we have something to work with,’ she said.

[…]

The report, based on dozens of interviews with victims, social workers, lawyers and police chiefs in the West Bank and Gaza, found that abusers are granted virtual immunity.

Rapists who marry their victims are not prosecuted, and such deals are often arranged by the families, tribal leaders and local police chiefs.

Even those assigned to protect the victims often push for such an outcome. The director of the West Bank’s only shelter for teenage girls is quoted as saying she arranged five such marriages in her six-year tenure.

The law is lenient with men who kill female relatives because of adultery. Yet it bars rape and incest victims from having abortions. Rape within marriage is not considered a crime, the report said.

Arguments for a change in the law would likely be countered with Bukhari 4:54:560, where Muhammad himself states: “”If a husband calls his wife to his bed (i.e. to have sexual relation) and she refuses and causes him to sleep in anger, the angels will curse her till morning””

Police and hospital doctors are not trained to handle abuse cases and often further humiliate victims, the report said. In one hospital in the West Bank city of Nablus, a doctor announced to a crowded waiting room that his unmarried 16-year-old patient was pregnant. The girl’s mother later cited that incident as the main reason for her decision to kill her daughter, according to a case documented in the report.

A premium is placed on female virginity, with rapists facing a lesser punishment if the victim is not a virgin. Virginity tests are imposed on sexual abuse victims against their will.

The women’s fate is increasingly determined by tribal leaders or Palestinian Authority-appointed governors, rather than overloaded courts. The informal justice system is often arbitrary and biased against the victims, the group found.

Victims are often afraid to come forward because of social stigma, the perceived futility of complaining and fear of inviting retribution by relatives, the report said.

However, Manal Kleibo, a lawyer at the Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling in the West Bank town of Ramallah, told The Associated Press that she has detected a change in recent years, and that the authorities are increasingly willing to work with her group.

For example, she said, growing numbers of police officers are attending workshops on how to handle sexual abuse cases. Some families no longer force their daughters to marry rapists, she said, citing the case of a 14-year-old girl who instead was taken to a secret shelter in the West Bank with her family’s support.

Human Rights Watch made a series of recommendations.

It said Abbas should launch a public awareness campaign and make it clear he does not tolerate violence against women. He should also demand that those currently settling abuse cases informally, including tribal leaders and Palestinian Authority-appointed district governors, refer all cases to the proper authorities.

Police should establish special units to deal with victims of abuse, and the legislature should repeal the most discriminatory provisions, the report said.

The ACLU Shadow

The ACLU Shadow
By Joseph Klein
FrontPageMagazine.com | November 7, 2006

The  has established a Human Rights Program which, in its own words, “works to ensure that the U.S. government complies with universal human rights principles in addition to the
U.S. Constitution.
On November 1, 2006, this ACLU Human Rights Program filed a petition with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights asking it to “find the
United States in violation of its universal human rights obligations by failing to protect millions of undocumented workers from exploitation and discrimination in the workplace
.”  This action is only the latest in the ACLU’s self-proclaimed strategy to use the United Nations and other global governance forums to “complement existing ACLU advocacy on national security, immigrants’ rights, women’s rights and racial justice.”

Apparently, the ACLU’s leaders do not believe that our Founding Fathers really intended the Constitution that they wrote for us to be “the supreme Law of the Land”, even though that is exactly what the Constitution says that it is.[1]   The U.S. Supreme Court has unfortunately given the ACLU some ammunition in recent decisions that have utilized so-called international norms as a basis for their interpretations of Constitutional provisions.  In June 2006, the Court inexplicably applied the benefits of civilian protection under Common Article 3 of the Geneva Conventions to suspected terrorists, including al-Qaeda, when it invalidated the special military tribunals set up by the Bush Administration to try enemy combatants held at

Guantanamo
Bay (Hamdan v. Rumsfeld (No 05-184 June 29, 2006). 

 

The ACLU and other U.S.-based human rights organizations have taken the Supreme Court’s willingness to incorporate some international law into its Constitutional decisions as a license to look for any opportunity to apply so-called international human rights standards against whatever they – in their infinite wisdom – perceive to be violations of social, economic, civil or political rights in the
United States.

 

On June 20, 2006, the ACLU Human Rights Program submitted a 116 page “shadow report” to the United Nations Human Rights Committee that was investigating the human rights record of the
United States.  The ACLU shadow report, entitled “Dimming the Beacon of Freedom: U.S. Violations of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights”, was a wholesale indictment of the United States’ human rights record in the broad areas of national security, immigrants’ rights, racial justice, women’s rights and religious freedom.   It sought to hold the
U.S. government accountable for what the ACLU alleged to be flagrant and repeated violations of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which they equate to an international “Bill of Rights.”

 

The ACLU’s purpose was to get the United Nations’ human rights “experts” on the Committee to declare that our duly elected government officials are violating some vaguely worded “international norms” in dealing with immigration, the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, juvenile justice, the death penalty, prison conditions within the United States, the treatment of enemy combatant detainees, electronic surveillance of suspected terrorists’ communications and so on.  As the ACLU’s Associate Legal Director, Ann Beeson, had once put it, “We are appealing to the international arbiters to hold the
U.S. accountable to basic human rights standards.”  (emphasis added)  With such a declaration from a recognized international body in hand, the ACLU litigators believe that they will be in a better position to seek judicial relief for their clients from sympathetic judges.

 

Barely paying any attention to what the
U.S. government had to say and without a shred of independently conducted research, the UN Human Rights Committee basically adopted the ACLU’s accusations as fact.

 

There are even a couple of instances where it lifted material right out of the ACLU’s shadow report without any critical analysis at all.  For example, the phrase “militarization of the southwest border” in the UN Human Rights Committee report is a close paraphrase of “militarization of the border” appearing on p. 60 of the ACLU shadow report.  The UN body’s reference to five million citizens who they claim are barred from voting due to felony convictions is amazingly close to the “5.3 million” number appearing on p. 96 of the ACLU’s shadow report. 

 

The ACLU then added insult to injury when its spokeswoman turned around and threw the parroted findings of the UN Human Rights Committee “experts” back at the U.S government, as if it were the work of an independent credible fact-finding body:

 

“The
United States should be ashamed of its dismal human rights record.
America must act now to remedy these ongoing human rights abuses…”
 

The ACLU Human Rights Program has kept after the U.S., while remaining silent about the world’s most flagrant human rights abusers like Iran, North Korea, China, Cuba and Saudi Arabia – the latter three acting like the foxes guarding the henhouse as members of the new UN Human Rights Council that oversees the UN’s human rights activities.  The ACLU’s defense is that they are trying to restore
America’s position as a “beacon of freedom throughout the world” so that it can lead by example.  But blinded by its disdain of traditional American values and impatient with working through our democratic institutions, the ACLU would rather appeal to a global body that includes authoritarian regimes.  On their very best day, these hypocritical judges of our human rights record would not come anywhere close to the
United States on its very worst day in terms of freedom, humaneness, and inclusiveness.  Yet the ACLU has encouraged them to rule against us on a whole range of human rights issues and thereby has handed our enemies fodder for their malicious propaganda.
 

For example, within a week of the ACLU’s submission of its shadow report, Iran’s news agency was bragging how the United Nations was planning to act against the
United States:

Minister of Justice Jamal Karimi-Rad said on Monday that the Human Rights Council launched in Geneva last week to replace UN human rights commission empowered the member states to take action with the UN about human rights violations in the
United States… He said that the Human Rights Council was a very good venue for explaining Iranian achievements in the field of restoring human and legal rights of Iranian nation.
(Islamic Republic News Agency, June 26, 2006)

In September 2006, the ACLU Human Rights Program filed a petition with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights asking for a ruling that
New Jersey was violating “universal human rights principles” by denying convicted felons the right to vote.  The ACLU had already litigated the issue in the
New Jersey courts and lost.   So again they are reaching for extra-judicial relief outside our country’s democratic institutions and laws, hoping that they can obtain a favorable ruling that they then can return with to our federal courts for a more sympathetic hearing.

 

In its November 2006 petition that it filed on alleged human rights abuses by the
United States against “undocumented” immigrant workers (i.e., illegal aliens) with the same Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, the ACLU Human Rights Program is seeking to obtain their ruling that the withholding from illegal aliens of legislatively prescribed benefits intended for legally employed persons such as workers’ compensation constitutes a violation of some vague “universal human right” belonging to the illegal aliens.  If successful, no doubt the ACLU will then try to convince some gullible federal judge to incorporate such a ruling in his or her “interpretation” of our Constitution and override the public policy decisions of our democratically elected federal and state representatives. 

 

The ACLU has long been famous for advocating extremist positions under the guise of protecting Constitutional rights.  It is an organization made up of idiot-savants who use their knowledge of Constitutional law, for example, to protect every imagined right of terrorist suspects without a thought of the right of innocent people to be protected by their government against mass slaughter.  According to the ACLU, a suspected foreign terrorist detainee should have the right to all the due process protections afforded in a regular criminal trial, and suspected foreign terrorists should be granted the right to privacy of their communications with their co-conspirators located in the United States whether or not they may be in the midst of planning to attack our country.   In the ACLU’s fevered imagination, these supposed rights would trump the Constitutional obligation of the
United States government to protect the people against “Invasion”.
[2]

 

On the domestic front, the ACLU has fought for the decriminalization of drugs such as heroin and cocaine, while fighting against laws to protect children from sex offenders.   The ACLU is all for free speech and rights of association unless it happens to be speech or association that, in their view, violates the “human rights” of some offended minority.   They oppose government-sponsored displays of Judeo-Christian religious symbols on public property and the teaching of the Ten Commandments in our public schools, but support the display and teaching of the UN-sponsored nature-worshipping Earth Charter – described by its creators as the new Ten Commandments – in public places including our public schools.  The ACLU is apparently quite selective in its reading of the Constitution when it comes to asking our courts to determine who is and who is not entitled to exercise the right of free speech and freedom of religious expression in the public square. 

With its Human Rights Program, the American Civil Liberties Union is now going even one step further.  It is asking non-American institutions to tell us how to conduct our own affairs under international human rights norms that are supposed to supplement the Constitution.  Every domestic policy issue becomes fair game for the “international arbiters” selected by the ACLU to apply international “norms” instead of our own duly enacted laws.  The ACLU is no longer willing to rely on the strength of
America’s own democratic institutions to resolve our problems ourselves within the proven framework of our own Constitution.  They want to outsource that task to global governance institutions that are hostile to the national sovereignty and democratic values of our country.  In short, the ACLU’s idiot savants have become the useful idiots for those enemies of the
United States whose aim is to manipulate the truth and undermine our unique Constitutional system of self-government.


[1] U.S. Constitution, Article VI (In its decision Reid v. Covert, the Supreme Court has concluded that it would make no sense for a treaty, once in effect as a result of the exercise of the President’s and the Senate’s Constitutional powers, to become the instrument for usurping the legal authority of the Constitution that established those powers in the first place.)

 

[2]
U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 9; Article 4, Section 4.

 

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DeathPAC

DeathPAC
By Ben Johnson
FrontPageMagazine.com | November 7, 2006

Michael Schiavo became infamous as the man who pulled the plug on his ex-wife; now he’s trying to elect politicians who will do the same thing to Iraq.

The vehicle of his left-wing political ambitions is “TerriPAC,” a political action committee he formed to retaliate against anyone who tried to keep Terri Schindler Schiavo alive. In a fit of hubris, he named it after his late wife, whom he had denied treatment over her family’s objections. Now, he has teamed up with the leftist blogosphere to support the most extreme candidates the Democratic Party will offer in today’s election.

 The surviving Schiavo blogs for the left-wing activist fever swamp DailyKos and attended its most recent YearlyKos gathering in Las Vegas. This pivotal year, he has endorsed the Left’s favored candidates in his late wife’s name. Of the 15 Congressional candidates backed by TerriPAC – only two are Republicans, and they share the Left’s view of the war. DeathPAC’s favored candidates this year include such radicals as: 

·        Ned Lamont of Connecticut. The man who – with the help of George Soros’s money – purged the Democratic Party of Joe Lieberman, tops Schiavo’s list of preferred candidates. Lieberman dared to be “outspoken” in his opposition to removing Terri’s feeding tube. However, Terri Schiavo could hardly be more trivial to this race. The New York Times dubbed Lamont’s victory the left-wing blogosphere’s “moment of arrival.” Lamont has made good on its trust, running a far-Left (and apparently unsuccessful) campaign built around immediate withdrawal from Iraq.

 

  • John Hall, the Democratic candidate for New York’s 19th Congressional district. Hall is endorsed by such left-wing heavy-hitters as Pete Seeger, Rep. Maurice Hinchey, the Progressive Democrats of America, the AFL-CIO, Bill Clinton, and the New York Times. Hall wrote in an op-ed in The Hill newspaper:

This is a war that never should have happened. The “reasons” for going to war were based on fabrications, to put it charitably. We have destroyed one of the great jewels of civilization, the nation that gave the world mathematics centuries before there was a United States. It was a war of choice against a country whose leaders may have been despicable and brutal but who posed no threat to us, and who had caused us no harm. It was a “preemptive” war in violation of international law, our own Constitution, the United Nations charter and against—as Thomas Jefferson eloquently wrote in our Declaration of Independence—“a decent respect to the opinions of mankind.” 

…I would vote for orderly but immediate withdrawal [from Iraq]…It may be too late to save face for this administration, but we can still save the soul of our country

 

  • Samm Simpson, Democrat running in Florida’s 10th district. His website reads like a Noam Chomsky pamphlet:

Let’s have a dialogue about the responsible withdrawal of our military and the U.S corporations that have wasted billions of our tax dollars…Let’s demand an end to torture, extraordinary rendition, illegal wiretapping…This can include abandoning the visions of empire and lawlessness that has [sic.] stirred up worldwide resentment, increased cooperation with foreign intelligence and law enforcement, stopping the vitriolic rhetoric against Muslims  

Making a pitch to last election’s “values voters,” he adds, others may tell Bush to reconsider but “I will tell Bush to repent.”

·        Rep. Brad Miller, the Democrat currently (mis-)representing the13th District of North Carolina. Miller voted against trying terrorists before military commissions; against the president’s NSA terrorist surveillance; voted “present” on H. Res. 861, pledging support for the War in Iraq and rejecting a timetable; voted against extending the Bush tax cuts; and voted “yea” on an amendment introduced by Rep. Bernie Sanders, the socialist of Vermont, that forced authorities to go through a more rigorous process before examining terrorists’ library and bookstore purchases. His campaign rhetoric questions our motives in Iraq:

 Through no fault of our troops, most Iraqis now see them as an occupying army…If our presence in Iraq is truly not for Iraq’s oil or for a permanent staging area for military operations in that part of the world, we need to say so. We need to state clearly that we do not intend a long-term occupation of Iraq and that Iraqis will decide their own future. 

I have sponsored a joint resolution (see below) requiring the President to submit a detailed plan to Congress for ending the occupation of Iraq, including a near-term reduction of United States forces…We demand that the President clearly state the remaining mission of our military in Iraq, and the time period that the President believes will be necessary to accomplish that mission.

 

  • Kathy Castor, Democratic candidate in the 11th district of Florida, boasts of her endorsement from the thoroughly disreputable Rep. Alcee Hastings. Exactly what she stands for is a bit of a mystery; she refused to fill out the Project Vote Smart questionnaire, which is essentially de rigeur for serious candidates. She is the daughter of Betty Castor, former president of the University of South Florida, who refused to fire Sami al-Arian after it became known he was chief financier of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (and used his position at USF to employ his fellow Islamic radicals). Instead, she placed him on paid leave for two years, then reinstated him as a professor. Ma Castor ran for Florida’s open senate seat in 2004; now Kathy hopes to bring her mother’s values to Washington, at last.

When Rep. John Murtha, the first Vietnam combat veteran elected to Congress, started the debate on America’s role in Iraq by saying “Our troops have done all they can do,” he was right. Our troops toppled the Saddam Regime [sic.] and made sure that there were no WMDs. It is time to change the direction in Iraq, and we need to start bringing our men and women home now.

 

Ironically, his website proclaims, “Patrick believes that access to quality health care is a basic human right, and that it’s long past time that the United States joined every other industrialized nation in ensuring health care security for all Americans.

  • Eric Massa, D-NY, also bitterly criticizes the commander-in-chief during wartime: “The Iraq war was a bill-of-goods sold to the American people on the basis of misinformation and political positioning, and we need to remember how we got into this terrible mess in order to get out of it. And whatever the original goals, we’re now less secure, not more.” Massa wrote on the DailyKos that Defense Secretary Rumsfeld made “the choice to invade Iraq on false pretenses. That alone should be sufficient grounds to call for his resignation. When one adds in the choices to approve torture and to keep secret prisoners, etc.” Massa demands we get Out in less than 24 Months. 

  • Phyllis Busansky, the Democrat in Florida’s 9th district, wants to see heads roll in Iraq: American contractors’s heads. “Phyllis Busansky supports a new ‘Truman Commission’ tasked with ending fraud and abuse among contractors – and, if warranted, charging serious offenders with treason.” She supports a three-state solution in Iraq, which “will allow us to strategically redeploy our troops.” However, she opposes offshore oil drilling, which would reduce our dependency on foreign petroleum. Busansky has been endorsed by none other than Betty Castor.

  • Joe Sestak, the Democrat running for Congress in the Keystone State’s 7th. He wants to “withdraw from Iraq by end of next year.” He believes, before we went into Iraq, we should have first settled the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Then we would have liberated Iraq “within a large Arab-led regional coalition.” Instead, he calls Operation Iraq Freedom “a misadventure” and “an inconclusive, open-ended occupation,” proposing “a planned end to our military engagement in Iraq within the next year.

  • Linda Stender, a Democrat from the 7th district of New Jersey, willpush the President for an exit strategy, one that safely phases troops out of Iraq, and a plan to bring American soldiers home from Iraq within one year.” She also chides her Republican opponent for “voting to renew the Patriot Act.” 

  • John Cranley, a Democrat, is again running against Republican incumbent Steve Chabot of Ohio. Cranley pledges to “demand” the president provide “an exit strategy” and that “will bring our troops home.”

  • Frank Gonzalez, the Democratic candidate in Florida’s 21st Congressional district. He opposes the “unethical and unconstitutional” nature of our “Invasion & Occupation of Iraq & Afghanistan” He is “Persuading Real Conservatives to Stop the Erosion of Civil Liberties…through such legislation as the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act.” And he’s against “freedom-robbing” trade sanctions against Castro’s Cuba. Running as a crypto-libertarian Democrat (nothing odd about that combination), he links to Antiwar.com. and LewRockwell.com to support his leftist views.  

  • Michael Calderin of Florida’s 25th district and a Democrat. He, too, channels Chomsky. We must go beyond calling for “an honorable and respectable exit strategy,he says. “We must destroy terrorism at its rootsOnly when hate is gone and economic conditions give people an alternative will terrorism disappear. This should not be confused with a willingness to support oppressive or aggressive regimes.

TerriPAC is also supporting two Republicans – who likewise want to cut-and-run: 

  • Jack Robinson, who lives in the 9th district of Massachusetts, Robinson is a Republican running against Rep. Stephen Lynch, whom a leftist group derides as “a regressive Democrat” and “a Bush-Cheney booster on Iraq.” Robinson would partition Iraq and advocate “a speedy return of virtually all U.S. forces,” leaving only 700 soldiers behind. Although he claims to be a libertarian and “[s]trongly conservative on fiscal issues,” he favors a higher national minimum wage.

  • Rep. Chris Shays, R-CT, who happens to be the one of the few Republican Congressmen favoring a timetable for withdrawal. He wants “to set firm timelines for Iraqi security forces to replace our troops who are doing police work.” He is also known as the co-sponsor of campaign finance reform legislation in the House, with Rep. Martin Meehan.

All is not smooth-sailing for TerriPAC at present. The relatively new leftist committee has faced continual questions about its financial integrity.

 Not to mention its logical or moral integrity. Terri Schindler Schiavo was a martyr of our sick judicial system. For Michael Schiavo to open a PAC rewarding those who would have aided his wife’s euthanasia is reprehensible. (All his business cards need is a picture of Terri Schiavo saying, “Hey, thanks for killing me!”)  This is a strikingly left-wing list of endorsements, particularly given the prominent Democrats who voted to save Terri Schiavo. The Rev. Jesse Jackson led public demonstrations outside the hospitals – where the cameras were – and his son, Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., D-IL, voted with Tom DeLay to let Terri live. So did Rep. Harold Ford Jr., who is waging a neck-and-neck battle with for Tennessee’s open U.S. Senate seat (which it appears he has lost). In fact, 47 Democrats voted for the bill, and only 53 had the guts to vote against it. Yet Schiavo has contributed to only two Republicans – one of whom is believed to have no chance at winning – while supporting the Democratic Party’s fringe, especially those running against vulnerable hawks (like Chabot and Lieberman). 

Perhaps the blogosphere’s acclaim of Michael Schiavo is the logical extension of its current victimology. First the Left lauded Cindy Sheehan, who blamed President Bush for her son’s death. Now, it joins hands with Michael Shiavo, who blames Republicans for almost saving the woman whose life he terminated.

 

If elected, these representatives will do to our national security what Michael did to Terri. He has done enough damage to the wife he abandoned and ultimately dehydrated by judicial fiat. How tragic that he may make our homeland security his final victim.

Pelosi’s Left-Wing All Stars

Pelosi’s Left-Wing All Stars
By Patrick Poole
FrontPageMagazine.com | November 7, 2006

With Election Day upon us, Democrats nationwide are pinning their hopes on picking up enough seats in both the US Senate and House races to give them majorities so that they can wrest legislative control from Republicans and political control from the Bush Administration. Part of the electoral prize if Democrats can pick up an additional 15 seats in the House and claim the majority is that their selection as Speaker, most probably Left Coast Liberal Nancy Pelosi (the current House Minority Leader), will get to choose the chairman for 25 separate House committees.

If Democrats are successful in taking control in the House, Pelosi will be the first female Speaker of the House and the first Democrat to take over the Speaker’s chair since voters cast Democrats into the political wilderness in 1994. As she made clear in an interview with Leslie Stahl of 60 Minutes a few weeks ago, “Speaker” Pelosi intends to remake congressional politics in her own image. The primary means by which she will do that will be through her appointment of committee chairmen.

 

With that in mind, it would be prudent to take a quick look at who “Speaker” Pelosi would probably choose to head up the most important House committees for the 110th Session of Congress:

 Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence – Alcee Hastings (FL-23) 

This election has clearly been defined by the national security issue and the war in Iraq. It should be remembered that one of the contributing factors to 9/11 is that our intelligence agencies failed to respond to the escalating threat of al-Qaeda. This is what makes the House Intelligence Committee so important. And yet, the Washington Post reported two weeks ago that Nancy Pelosi intends to pass over the current ranking Democrat on the committee, Jane Harman, in favor of her friend, Alcee Hastings, for chairman of this critical committee. Harman has come under attack from members of her own party because of her strong support for Israel; Hastings, on the other hand, has the dubious distinction of being only one of six federal judges to be impeached in American history after he was caught taking a $150,000 bribe in exchange lenient sentencing of two convicts (be sure to read Jacob Laksin’s June 2006 FrontPage profile of Hastings, “A Profile in Corruption”). But having been tossed from the bench in 1989 (when Nancy Pelosi voted to impeach him), Hastings ran for and won his congressional seat in 1992, riding the Clinton Wave (which two years later crashed on the shores of the Republican Revolution). Since then, Hastings has risen through the Democratic ranks and is the front-runner for the Intelligence chairmanship in the event of a Democratic takeover in the House. Remember, this is the same committee that in September had a Democratic staffer fired for releasing sensitive national security information to the media to embarrass the Bush Administration. Expect even more of the same if Hastings gets access to the deepest secrets of our intelligence community.

 Committee on Appropriations – David Obey (WI-7) 

One of Pelosi’s biggest fans, in 2004 Obey hailed Pelosi as “our Maggie Thatcher”. While the Appropriations committee is hardly the sexy assignment as Intelligence or Judiciary, Obey has always taken his orders from his Democratic Party masters and “obeyed” his leaders in the House. Like his votes in the early days of the Clinton Administration (when Democrats still ruled in Congress), when he voted seven times to slash the intelligence budget and was an accomplices to Clinton’s dismantling of the American military under the guise of the “peace dividend” to pay for the Democratic social spending spree of the Clinton Era. And if Democrats are in fact returned to power, Obey has promised to make one of his primary initiatives his goal of making individual contributions to a political candidate a federal crime, which would give unprecedented power to the political parties (read – Democrats) in our political system, and responding to what he calls “our biggest national security threat” – global warming.

 Committee on Armed Services – Ike Skelton (MO-4) 

Usually one of the more sensible members among House Democrats, Skelton has nonetheless been prone to wild swings on the issues. Despite being one of the most forceful voices in favor of going to war in Iraq, just a few weeks ago he joined Democrat Cut-and-Run Caucus Chairman John Murtha in calling for the immediate withdrawal of US troops from Iraq – this from a Congressman who was quoted by the Washington Post in 2003 as saying, “We cannot leave Iraq. This has to be a success. If it’s not a success, the credibility of the United States of America as a leader in this free world will hit rock bottom. We cannot allow that.” Skelton vowed that if Democrats come into power, he intends to wrest control of military policy from the Bush Administration (the Executive Branch being given that power by the US Constitution) and involve Congress (read – Democrats) more in the management and oversight of the military.

 Committee on the Budget – John Spratt (SC-5) 

One of the more vulnerable Democrats this election, Spratt is facing a tough reelection campaign in a conservative district that has voted overwhelmingly in favor of President Bush in the past two presidential elections. It hasn’t helped that Spratt is Nancy Pelosi’s right-hand man, serving as her the Assistant to the Democratic Leader, which hasn’t played well back in his district. His opponent, Ralph Norman, has noted that while Spratt was one of only a handful of Democrats to vote in favor of the presidential line-item veto during the Clinton Administration, which he said was “absolutely necessary if we want to get our finances in order up in Washington,” according to columnist Robert Novak, this past July he quickly fell into line on Pelosi’s orders to reverse his position and oppose Republican efforts to pass Spratt’s own proposal for a limited presidential line-item veto. While claiming in his campaign that he has worked to repeal estate taxes, Spratt early this year voted against making those tax cuts permanent (maybe it was one of those “I voted for it before I voted against it”). Another agenda item not sitting well with Spratt’s constituents is his join proposal with Pelosi to raise taxes to pay for Hurricane Katrina relief last year. That was one of the contributing reasons why the National Taxpayer’s Union last year gave Spratt a grade of “F” as one of the “Biggest Spenders” in Congress.

 Committee on Energy and Commerce – John Dingell (MI-15) 

Dingell grew up the privileged son of a Congressman and is currently the longest serving member in the House of Representatives. According to an editorial last month in the Washington Times, in his role as chairman of the Energy and Commerce committee, Dingell intends to revisit the passage of the Medicare prescription-drug plan by launching an investigation to see what role drug companies played in the Republican proposal. Also at the top of Dingell’s agenda is his long-standing plan to nationalize America’s health care – a proposal he inherited from his father from the New Deal days that he introduces at the beginning of each congressional session.

 Committee on Financial Services – Barney Frank (MA-4) 

During the recent Mark Foley scandal, it was ironic to see the mainstream media, such as Newsweek, interviewing Barney Frank on congressional sex scandals. Observers might recall that Frank was censured by the House in 1990 when it was discovered that his homosexual lover was running a male prostitution ring out of Frank’s Washington D.C. home. But that is far from Frank’s only scandal, such as his opposition earlier this year to the Respect for Fallen Heroes Act that prohibits protests in national cemeteries during funerals for soldiers killed in action. Frank was only one of three House members to oppose the law. Equally as appalling was Frank’s role in the early 1990s (when Democrats still controlled Congress) of implementing rules that kept Immigration and Customs officials from stopping Islamic militants from entering the US on visas (see Rocco DiPippo’s detailed FrontPage exclusive, “Immigrating Terror,” for Frank’s role in revising immigration laws).

 Committee on International Relations – Tom Lantos (CA-12) 

One of Nancy Pelosi’s fellow San Francisco liberals, Tom Lantos (see his DiscoverTheNetworkorg profile) is a rarity among Democrats for his long-time support of Israel and his vocal opposition to international anti-Semitism, which should come as no surprise from a Holocaust survivor. And yet, when it comes to other threats to America and freedom abroad, Lantos has turned a blind eye. For instance, in 2002 he added his name to a letter to Secretary of State Colin Powell complaining of the human rights abuses by the Columbian government in their war against the Marxist, drug-financed FARC guerillas, who have waged a bloody terrorist campaign in that country, and demanding that US funds for drug-interdiction efforts to Columbia be cut. No mention was made in the letter, however, about the atrocities committed by FARC. And as a member of the far-Left Progressive Caucus (founded by Vermont Socialist Bernie Sanders, and currently chaired by Dennis Kucinich), Lantos is recognized as one of the most liberal members of Congress, one of the few to receive a perfect 100 percent score from the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL). He has also received top marks from labor unions and educrats alike, particularly for his opposition to school vouchers for inner-city children trapped in failing schools.

 Committee on Government Reform – Henry Waxman (CA-30) 

During the Clinton era, it was Henry Waxman’s job as ranking Democrat on the Government Reform committee to obstruct Republicans’ investigations in the scandal-ridden Clinton Administration (as Chris Weinkopf described in his 2002 FrontPage article, “Regarding Henry”). During that time, Waxman’s position was “see no evil, here no evil, speak no evil” regarding the rampant corruption within the Clinton White House. But now with Waxman within striking distance of the committee chairmanship and a Republican occupying the Oval Office, he has embraced the “government ethics” religion, vowing to open up investigations on a number of fronts targeting the Bush Administration. But as FrontPage editor Ben Johnson explained last year, one investigation that Republicans might want to explore if they are successful in maintaining control of the House is Waxman’s role in assisting a number of radical Leftist organizations in delivering $600,000 in “aid” into Iraqi camps near Fallujah while US forces were trying to clear the area of insurgents, where Waxman gave his radical friends a letter to ensure that their “aid” coming into the area did not receive scrutiny by security personnel.

 Committee on the Judiciary – John Conyers (MI-14) 

Even though Nancy Pelosi said on 60 Minutes a few weeks ago that if Democrats won control of the House, impeachment would “be off the table,” it’s clear that she has had trouble convincing John Conyers, her choice to head the Judiciary committee, of that. Earlier this year he was asking on his congressional website for public support in forming an independent committee to gather evidence to be used as grounds for impeachment of President Bush, promising to end the George Bush regime in the United States of America.” Also on Conyers’ agenda would be pushing through legislation for slavery reparations – a pet cause that Conyers has been pushing since 1989. As the representative for the most heavily Muslim-populated area of the country, it is no surprise that Conyers is one of the most anti-Israel, anti-war members of Congress. Regularly ranked as one of the most liberal member of Congress, Conyers has associated himself with a number of extremist groups, including the Marxist pro-North Korean front group, International A.N.S.W.E.R., and even speaking in March 2005 at a rally to raise money for anti-Semitic, conspiracy theorist, and perennial presidential candidate, Lyndon LaRouche.

 Committee on Ways and Means – Charlie Rangel (NY-15) 

If Nancy Pelosi and the House Democrats are successful in getting enough seats to put them in the majority, the front man for Speaker Pelosi’s efforts to repeal the Bush tax cuts (which economic experts have identified as a major contributor to the post-9/11 recovery) will be Charlie Rangel. But not only will he work to repeal the legislation that has cut the taxes of millions of seniors, working families and single mothers, Rangel has made it clear that tax hikes will be the order of the day for a Democratically-controlled House. When he was asked by Congress Daily PM in September if across-the-board tax increases would be part of the Democratic Party majority agenda, Rangel replied, “No question about it.” But in recent days as the election has grown near, Democrats in tight House races have been frantic to get Rangel talking to the mainstream media (such as this Washington Post article last week) assuring voters that all of his promises over the past six months to rollback the Bush tax cuts had been misinterpreted. But the Washington Times noted last month how frequently Rangel changes his position on ending tax cuts and imposing tax hikes depending on who his audience is. Americans should not be fooled – Charlie Rangel is no friend to the American taxpayer.

 

We will learn if Democrats have been victorious in convincing the American electorate that they are the party that best represents the American mood. Most pollsters are saying the race for control of Congress is too close to call. Sadly, most voters will never get to vote in competitive congressional elections because of how both parties have carved up each state map to preserve their respective political power.

But for voters who are in districts with tight congressional races, they should know that what is at stake is not only who will represent them in Washington, but who will control the political machinery in Washington. If Democrats get a majority of House seats, Speaker Pelosi has her best men – all of whom will be beholden to her for their powerful committee chairmanships, not the voters who elected them – ready and waiting to take America in a very different direction. In looking closely at Nancy Pelosi’s Democratic Party All-Star Team roster, Americans who are demanding change in Washington D.C. had better be careful. They may get exactly what they voted for.

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