“My name is Daniel Pearl. I am a Jewish-American.”
On February 21, 2002, a videotape was released titled The Slaughter of the Spy-Journalist, the Jew Daniel Pearl. The text from the video reads in Arabic: “My name is (Daniel Pearl), I am a Jewish-American.”
President Obama signed the Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act yesterday. He refused to take any questions from the press??? It is so despicable that he, just like his Attorney General Eric Holder, cannot and will not give the proper name to those who beheaded journalist Daniel Pearl and are still trying to kill other Americans.
Here is video of President Obama signing the “Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act” at the White House, which instructs the State Department to keep up with Press Freedom violations around the world as a way to help evaluate Human Rights conditions.
At the end of the signing, some of the press present attempted to ask questions, to which Obama smiled and told them, “you’re certainly free to ask” – but then said he would not be taking any questions.
(For Obama’s full message click here)
Here are two commentaries from Commentary Magazine in regards to Obama’s refusal to call the name of those who beheaded Daniel Pearl-
Jennifer Rubin – 05.17.2010 – 3:33 PM
At a signing ceremony for the Freedom of Press Act, it is ironic and shameful that Obama could not bring himself to identify the killers who beheaded the man who fearlessly reported on the jihadist terrorists. Obama had this to say:
All around the world there are enormously courageous journalists and bloggers who, at great risk to themselves, are trying to shine a light on the critical issues that the people of their country face; who are the frontlines against tyranny and oppression. And obviously the loss of Daniel Pearl was one of those moments that captured the world’s imagination because it reminded us of how valuable a free press is, and it reminded us that there are those who would go to any length in order to silence journalists around the world.
If you didn’t know already, you’d never figure out that he was talking about the Islamic fundamentalists who butchered Pearl. Obama then pronounced:
What this act does is it sends a strong message from the United States government and from the State Department that we are paying attention to how other governments are operating when it comes to the press. It has the State Department each year chronicling how press freedom is operating as one component of our human rights assessment, but it also looks at countries that are — governments that are specifically condoning or facilitating this kind of press repression, singles them out and subjects them to the gaze of world opinion in ways that I think are extraordinarily important.
Oftentimes without this kind of attention, countries and governments feel that they can operate against the press with impunity. And we want to send a message that they can’t.
But of course they can and do, safe in the knowledge that they will pay no price so long as this administration is in power. Has Obama done anything about the suppression of media critics in Egypt (other than prepare a lucrative financial package for the Egyptian government)? Has Obama made this a priority with any thugocracy? No. And when signing a bill in the name of someone who elevated and personified the freedom of expression, Obama at least could have departed from his campaign to delete the name of our enemies from the public lexicon.
John Steele Gordon – 05.17.2010 – 5:07 PM
Jennifer wrote this afternoon, regarding the signing of the bill named for Daniel Pearl, who died a martyr to freedom of the press: ”Has Obama made this [freedom of the press] a priority with any thugocracy? No. And when signing a bill in the name of someone who elevated and personified the freedom of expression, Obama at least could have departed from his campaign to delete the name of our enemies from the public lexicon.”
He might also have taken questions from the press. As Chip Reid of CBS points out, the reporters were herded out of the room after the ceremony. “There was some rich irony at the White House today — President Obama signed the Press Freedom Act,” he wrote, “and then promptly refused to take any questions.” This is nothing new: as his presidency has evolved, Obama has become more and more remote from the press, except when he is in total control.
The press has never been so tightly controlled as it is now in the Obama White House. The president hasn’t held a formal press conference since last July 22. Perhaps he felt so badly burned by how that one turned out that he is unwilling to face a repeat. The only thing memorable about that conference, of course, was his coming down hard on the side of Professor Henry Louis Gates regarding his recent confrontation with Cambridge police. Obama said the police had acted stupidly and implied that racial profiling had been at work. It turned out that Obama didn’t know what he was talking about and that it had been Gates who injected race into what had been proper police procedure. He had to work hard to undo the damage.
Shouting questions at presidents is an old American tradition, and one remembers with affection how Ronald Reagan used to answer the ones he wanted to answer and elaborately pretend not to be able to hear those he didn’t want to answer. But then Ronald Reagan was a man of immense charm. Barack Obama is a man with far more self-regard than charm, and it’s really beginning to show.
posted by Rightthingtodo May 18, 2010