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Quick Takes: News You May Have Missed

Hamas Chief Pessimistic On Peace Prospects
 
   The political chief of Hamas believes the new “pro-Israel” Congress will put the kibosh on President Obama’s attempts to create a Palestinian state.
 
   Dr. Ahmed Yousef, chief political adviser to Hamas in Gaza, hailed Obama as a “man of good intention” while wishing the U.S. president “all the best,” but he stated he believes Obama’s Mideast diplomacy will ultimately fail.
 
   Yousef was speaking in a radio interview with this reporter, who hosts an investigative show on New York’s WABC Radio.
 
   “We know that Mr. Obama is a man of good intention,” began Yousef. “He tried to strike a deal between Palestinians and Israel. But it sounds like he’s not capable to do something like this, and now when you have the majority of [Congress] pro-Israeli, I doubt that he will succeed.”
 
   Yousef continued, “But we wish him all the best, hoping that he will be able to convince the Israelis to strike a deal with the Palestinians. We will keep our fingers crossed, and we hope that he will succeed in that, but I doubt it.”
 
   Yousef was responding to reports that the Obama administration had proposed the Palestinian Authority assume ownership of the strategic Jordan Valley and then lease the territory to Israel.
 
   Asked whether Hamas would recognize any deal forged between Israel and the PA, Yousef replied, “It depends, actually.”
 

   He added, “We of course will look to the deal and will see if this is benefiting the Palestinian people or [is] another trap that the Israelis try to drag the Palestinians in.”

 

Think Tank President Suggests Obama

Bypass Congress For Next Two Years
 
   A George Soros-funded think tank with deep ties to the White House has produced a roadmap for President Obama to bypass the new Republican Congress and rule for the next two years via executive order.
 
   The plan calls for Obama to push a “progressive agenda” on issues of health care, education, foreign policy, and the economy and environment.
 
   John Podesta, president of the Center for American Progress, wrote that “the U.S. Constitution and the laws of our nation grant the president significant authority to make and implement policy,” including in executive orders, diplomacy, rulemaking and commanding the armed forces.
 
   Podesta was commenting in introductory remarks to his center’s 54-page treatise entitled, “The Power of the President: Recommendations to Advance Progressive Change.”
 
   The center reportedly was founded in 2003 with seed money from Soros, who also donated $3 million to the center’s sister, the Project Action Fund.
 

   Podesta, a former chief of staff to Bill Clinton, was co-chairman of the Obama-Biden Transition Project. A Time magazine article profiled the influence of Podesta’s Center for American Progress in the formation of the Obama administration, stating that “not since the Heritage Foundation helped guide Ronald Reagan’s transition in 1981 has a single outside group held so much sway.”

 

Sweeney To Receive Medal Of Freedom

 

   President Obama announced this week that he will award the Presidential Medal of Freedom – the nation’s highest civilian honor – to John Sweeney, president emeritus of the country’s biggest union, the AFL-CIO.
 
   Sweeney is a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, or DSA, the principal American affiliate of the Socialist International. The DSA has demonstrated a close relationship with Obama over the years.
 
   Sweeney is a member of the DSA’s Boston chapter. He served as president of AFL-CIO from 1995 until his retirement last September.
 
   He previously served for four terms as president of the controversial Service Employees International Union, or SEIU. During his administration, Sweeney famously aligned the SEIU with ACORN and other leftist groups.
 
   Upon assuming the presidency of the AFL-CIO in 1995, Sweeney was quick to rescind one of the union’s founding rules that banned Communist Party members and loyalists from leadership positions within the federation and its unions. Sweeney welcomed Communist Party delegates to positions of power in his federation.
 
   Linda Chavez and Daniel Gray, in their book Betrayal: How Union Bosses Shake Down Their Bosses and Corporate America, state Sweeney placed a number of DSA allies in his union office.
 

   The DSA’s official website carries an endorsement from Sweeney: “I’m proud to a member of a movement for change that puts the cause of working people at the heart of the matter.”

 
 

   Aaron Klein is Jerusalem bureau chief and senior reporter for Internet giant WorldNetDaily.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York’s 770-WABC Radio, the largest talk radio station in the U.S., every Sunday between 2-4 p.m.

About the Author: Aaron Klein is a New York Times bestselling author and senior reporter for WND.com. He is also host of an investigative radio program on New York's 970 AM Radio on Sundays from 7 to 9 p.m. Eastern. His website is KleinOnline.com.


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