In a front page story about a major FBI terrorism investigation, The Washington Post has reported that the targets include “Chicagoans who crossed paths with Obama when he was a young state senator and some who have been active in labor unions that supported his political rise.” The implication is that the trail could lead to the White House.
This is an unusual investigation that does not primarily involve Islamists. Instead, it is focused on elements of the old international communist networks that many people mistakenly thought had faded away with the collapse of the Soviet Union. Those under investigation are suspected of providing support to foreign terrorist organizations such as the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine in the Middle East, a Marxist group. The Post called them “Colombian and Palestinian groups designated by the U.S. government as terrorists.”
The investigations came into public view last September when the FBI raided the homes of several “activists,” as the Post called them. Some lived in Chicago.
One of the targets, Tom Burke, was a union organizer for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). He was so confident he would get a fair shake from the Post that he provided the paper with a photo of himself shaking hands with Barack Obama. The other apparent intention was to send a message to the President and Attorney General Eric Holder that any investigation of Burke might lead to Obama.
The Post suggested that investigations of labor union activists might jeopardize their support for Obama’s 2012 presidential run. Indeed, it could therefore threaten his re-election bid, if investigations determine that the activists did more than “cross paths” with the President.
Deep inside the article, in the 29th paragraph, we find out that some of the “activists” are associated with a group known as the Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO), a Marxist-Leninist organization. Burke is a member of the FRSO, which the Post admitted was “far left.”
The obvious question is why Obama, as a state senator in Illinois, would ever have “crossed paths” with such people. The answer goes beyond just union support for the candidate. The “far-left” networks that include the FRSO, the Communist Party USA, the New American Movement, and the Democratic Socialists of America backed and even spawned Obama’s political career. Don’t forget that Weather Underground leaders Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn hosted a fundraiser for his first run for political office. The same networks also backed CIA Director Leon Panetta’s career when he was a congressman from Santa Cruz, California. This helps explain why Obama would pick Panetta, with no intelligence background, to run the intelligence agency. They are cut from the same cloth.
Nevertheless, on Tuesday, the Senate voted 100-0 in favor of Panetta’s nomination as Secretary of Defense. It was a classic case of “head in the sand” politics, ignoring not only Panetta’s long-time relationship with Communist Party member Hugh DeLacy but his record as a congressman in undercutting then-President Reagan’s pro-defense policies at every turn.
Obama and Panetta were players in the “progressive” community, which since the days of Henry Wallace, presidential candidate of the Progressive Party, has had a red tint. Obama had his own communist mentor, Frank Marshall Davis, a Communist Party member under FBI investigation for 19 years, while Panetta gave DeLacy, whohad traveled to China to meet with Soviet and Chinese intelligence agents, sensitive reports on U.S. military matters. Any notion that Panetta had no awareness of DeLacy’s Communist affiliation was obliterated when Panetta in 1983 inserted a tribute to DeLacy into the Congressional Record, praising his resistance to “McCarthyism.”
Former FBI agent Max Noel once told me that the Bureau used to investigate candidates for federal employment by analyzing Character, Associates, Reputation, and Loyalty to the United States. The first letters in those words make up the acronym CARL. By the standard of “A”-Associates-Panetta flunks. But so does Obama.
Another sensitive case involves Huma Abedin, a top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and wife of disgraced Rep. Anthony Weiner. Walid Shoebat and Ben Barrack have reported that Arab newspapers have revealed that Huma Abedin’s mother is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, a group whose goal is to subvert Western civilization. Jamie Glazov of Front Page Magazine asks Robert Spencer, “There is a remote possibility that Abedin is actually being deceptive in her marriage to Weiner to follow Muslim Brotherhood instructions and to infiltrate the U.S. government, correct?” Spencer replies, “Certainly. That is a very real possibility, and it should be investigated. But the only ones who have the means to do so are mainstream media journalists who are either clueless or complicit.”
It may also be the case that the FBI never investigated Abedin’s background.
As the FBI does not vet presidential candidates for national security purposes, we know there would have been no FBI investigation into Obama’s own background, associations, loyalty, and overall fitness for office. The FBI only probes those being considered for some federal positions under the president. They should have therefore investigated Panetta. But there is no indication that he was ever properly vetted. Now he is confirmed as Secretary of Defense because conservative Republican Senators were apparently afraid of being accused of McCarthyism for questioning his past associations.
On the other hand, the “progressives” are raising hell with Obama and want him to rein in the FBI. They want to further emasculate the agency charged with ferretting out subversives and terrorist support networks.
As the Post noted, “nine members of Congress have written letters to the administration” complaining about the FBI probe of Burke and other activists. The Post even noted that another one of the targets of the investigation, a union organizer named Tracy Molm, managed to arrange a meeting with Holder himself.
One of these congressional members is Muslim Rep. Keith Ellison, the foremost critic of Rep. Peter King’s hearings into radical Islam in America. “Shortly after the raids,” Ellison said, “I made inquiries to the FBI field office for more information. FBI Special Agent Boelter confirmed that an investigation was ongoing. He informed me that due to the pending nature of the investigation, he was prohibited from sharing any further information. However he gave me assurance that the purpose of the searches and service of subpoenas was not to punish or to suppress protected First Amendment activity.”
Pro-Marxist activist Medea Benjamin has said she managed to have a few words with Holder as well to complain about the probes. She is with the Code Pink group that travels to Gaza to meet with the terrorist group Hamas. She is also a staunch ally of Adam Kokesh, the “Russia Today” TV star who openly admits that he functions as a paid Russian agent of the Vladimir Putin regime.
Holder is receptive to this kind of appeal because of his friendship with Obama and record as Deputy Attorney General in the Clinton Administration for facilitating pardons and clemency for terrorists from the Puerto Rican FALN and Weather Underground. It is this record that puts the current investigations by the FBI in serious jeopardy.
The Post article has to be seen as a signal to Holder from those around Obama that he must act quickly to close down these investigations before they get too close for comfort to the Oval Office. First, however, he has to make sure that the congressional investigations don’t get too close to Holder himself. It won’t look good for the Attorney General to be personally implicated in knowledge of the federal gunrunning schemes now under Congressional investigation that provided weapons to Mexican narco-terrorist cartels. The evidence already shows that federal authorities let guns fall into the hands of known criminals.
Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism.
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