Obama Rhetoric Straight
Out Of Radical’s Book?
In his major address on the Middle East last week, did President Obama quote from the centerpiece of Marxist community organizer Saul Alinsky’s defining work?
While hailing the Arab uprisings sweeping the Middle East and North Africa, Obama laid out his foreign policy using terminology strikingly similar to Alinsky’s mantra.
“There must be no doubt that the United States of America welcomes change that advances self-determination and opportunity,” Obama stated. “Yes, there will be perils that accompany this moment of promise. But after decades of accepting the world as it is in the region, we have a chance to pursue the world as it should be.”
One of Alinsky’s major themes was contrasting how the world “is” and how “it should be.”
In his defining work, Rules for Radicals, which he dedicated to “the first rebel,” Lucifer, Alinsky used those words to lay out his main agenda – that radical change to collapse the U.S. capitalist system must be brought about by working within the system instead of attacking it from the outside.
“It is necessary to begin where the world is if we are going to change it to what we think it should be. That means working in the system,” wrote Alinsky.
This is not the first time Obama used that phraseology.
In an April 2009 talk to a London girl’s school, the First Lady recalled that on her first date with Barack Obama he took her to a “community meeting” and taught her about the world “as it is” and “as it should be.”
Alinsky’s ideology is not foreign to Obama. The politician started his career as an Alinsky-style community organizer in Chicago.
Also, the Woods Fund, a nonprofit on which Obama served as paid director alongside terrorist Bill Ayers from 1999 to December 2002, provided capital to the Midwest Academy, a group that trains in the radical tactics of Alinsky.
This column first reported that the executive director of Midwest, Jackie Kendall, was part of the team that developed volunteers for President Obama’s 2008 campaign.
Also, in 1998, Obama participated on a panel discussion praising Alinsky alongside Midwest Academy’s founder Heather Booth, an organizer and dedicated disciple of Alinsky.
The panel discussion followed the opening performance in Chicago of the play “The Love Song of Saul Alinsky,” a work described by the Chicago Sun-Times as “bringing to life one of America’s greatest community organizers.”
Obama Draws Moral Equivalence
Between Israeli And Palestinian Deaths
During his major Mideast speech, Obama compared an Israeli who died in a Hamas terrorist attack that targeted civilians to three Palestinian girls killed in an Israeli anti-terror operation in which Hamas had reportedly shot at Israeli forces from near the girls’ home, drawing return fire.
Obama provided two examples of families who “would rather look to the future than be trapped in the past,” drawing a moral equivalence between Palestinian terror and Israeli self-defense.
Stated Obama: “We see that spirit in the Israeli father whose son was killed by Hamas, who helped start an organization that brought together Israelis and Palestinians who had lost loved ones.
“We see it in the actions of a Palestinian who lost three daughters to Israeli shells in Gaza. ‘I have the right to feel angry,’ he said. ‘So many people were expecting me to hate. My answer to them is I shall not hate. Let us hope,’ he said, ‘for tomorrow.‘“
Obama was referencing a January 2009 Israel Defense Forces operation in which three daughters of a Gazan doctor, Izzeldin Abuelaish, were killed when a shell struck their home.
The IDF said an investigation had shown that soldiers were returning fire in the direction of areas from which they had been fired upon. Hamas routinely uses civilians as human shields while drawing Israeli forces into urban combat situations.
Israel had entered Gaza in an incursion that December and January after Hamas refused to extend a cease-fire, instead launching a large number of rockets from Gaza aimed at nearby Jewish civilian population zones.
The Israeli father whose son was killed by Hamas, as referenced by Obama, was Yitzhak Frankenthal, the founder of a far-left Israeli group that blames Israeli “occupation” for Palestinian terrorism.
Frankenthal’s son, Arik, was 19 years old when he was shot in a drive-by Hamas terror attack in July 1994.
Obama’s faith adviser, Eboo Patel, declared that everything he was taught about Christopher Columbus, Thomas Jefferson and American “fairness” and “equality” was wrong.
The statements by Patel mark the latest in a series of controversial remarks about the U.S. to be reported by this column.
In February 2010, Obama named Patel to his Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
Patel, a Muslim activist, is the founder and executive director of the Chicago-based Interfaith Youth Core, which says it promotes pluralism by teaming people of different faiths on service projects.
Speaking to the progressive Sojourners magazine, Patel described his early experience with the social action Catholic Worker movement founded by anarchist Dorothy Day.
“It is impossible for me to overstate the impact of Dorothy Day and Christian social justice work, because it came at such a fragile and flammable time of my life,” he stated.
Continued Patel: “Basically, and this happens to a lot of people, you come to consciousness and realize that everything you were taught was wrong – about fairness, about equality, about Christopher Columbus, about Thomas Jefferson.
“At 17 or 18 years old, I raged. I felt like that was the only thing I knew how to do, and, to an extent, that was what was encouraged in the kind of identity politics/social justice crowds that were around.”
Patel’s reference to “rage” comes from his book, where he talked about rage he felt against the U.S. after claiming to experience prejudice.
Patel stated the Catholic Worker movement gave him a “way to have a radical view of the world – radical equality, radical peace, radical possibility – that is love-based, not anger-based.”
Sojourners magazine is the publication of a ministry by the same name professing a devotion to the pursuit of “social justice.” Sojourners was founded by Jim Wallis, who is also a member of Obama’s faith council.
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.