Middle East studies in the News
Obama's Next Chief of Staff Tied to Radical Muslim Group [incl. Ingrid Mattson]
by Ben Johnson
The woman who may be Barack Obama's next chief of staff has ties to radical Muslims, radical leftists, and potentially illegal government propaganda.
Chicago Mayor Richard Daley's decision not seek re-election all but ensures that Rahm Emanuel will throw his hat in the ring. Emanuel currently serves as chief of staff to President Obama, the man who controls who gets access to the president. Politico.com reports that Rahm has told sources his likely successor is Valerie Jarrett, Obama's long-term friend and Chicago confidant.
Anyone familiar with Jarrett's record should be concerned.
To pick but one underreported example, Valerie Jarrett gave the keynote address at the 46th annual convention of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) last July. ISNA was anunindicted co-conspirator in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation's financing of terrorist organizations, particularly Hamas. ISNA is a byproduct of the Muslim Brotherhood, the organization that formed the worldview of Ayman al-Zawahiri and Osama bin Laden.
Although Jarrett was the highest-ranking government official at the meeting, she was hardly the only VIP. Cat Stevens, now Yusuf Islam, addressed the same gathering. Stevens is the "Peace Train" folk singer who defended the Ayatollah Khomeini's fatwa against Salman Rushdie after the latter dared criticize Islam.
Another of the speakers, Imam Warith Deen Umar, has a long history of Islamic extremism. He reportedly hailed the 9/11 hijackers as martyrs, a remark that got him banned from the New York State Department of Corrections, where he served as a chaplain. In another instance,Umar urged Muslims to:
Jarrett has kept tight company with ISNA literally since day one of the administration. She invited its president, Ingrid Mattson, to offer a Muslim prayer at Obama's inauguration and attend a Ramadan dinner. Aaron Klein of WND.com reported, "In June 2009, Obama senior aide Valerie Jarrett invited Mattson to work on the White House Council on Women and Girls, which Jarrett leads. One month later, the Justice Department sponsored an information booth at an ISNA bazaar in Washington, D.C."
The relationship has continued apace since then. ISNA published the book by Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, the leader behind the Ground Zero Mosque. It was originally entitled A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble: Islamic Dawa [conversion] in the Heart of America Post-9/11.
Jarrett's participation in a conference so filled with radicals shows more than her poor choice of venue. Her keynote speech made clear she was there to recruit ISNA for the administration'sgovernment-sponsored propaganda. According to ISNA's account of the confab:
Then she tried to get them involved with the government's Serve.gov website. The White House website states:
This is the same project officials in Jarrett's Office of Public Engagement would attempt to foist on grant recipients of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), asking dozens of "artists" on a conference call to create art that promoted the president's agenda.
OPE officials, including Jarrett herself, would host a "cultural policy summit" in D.C. last spring, featuring several of Van Jones' associates, a host of radicals who accuse the CIA of selling crack in black neighborhoods, and the "former International Spokeswoman for the Universal Zulu Nation" (a woman who goes by the name "Rha Goddess"), among a cast of dozens. Sally Kohn, a leftist radical who was present at this and numerous subsequent meetings,confirmed the administration uses far-Left groups to covertly advocate for its agenda.
The ISNA speech appears to be another example of Jarrett reaching out to enlist radical, anti-American extremists in the White House's cause. Indeed, Jarrett has been the primary source of radicals into the administration.
Jarrett lobbied Obama to create the office of Chief Diversity Officer within the FCC, a position filled by Mark Lloyd, an Alinskyite and former senior fellow at the Center for American Progress.
On the campaign trail, she made sure white staffers listened to the views of Al Sharpton's racial grievance lobby. She — and both Obamas — are also close friends with Marilyn Katz, an SDS radical who oversaw "security" during the Days of Rage. Two years ago, Katz told the media, "I would probably reject violence as a useful form of revolution." Probably?
Jarrett is already the de facto chief of staff, if not the de facto president. Last year, Obama toldNew York Times reporter Robert Draper, "I trust her completely…She is family." Obama empowers Jarrett "to speak for me, particularly when we're dealing with delicate issues." When asked, he admitted he runs every decision by her. Jarrett perhaps described her relationship with Barack Obama best: "We have kind of a mind meld."
To be safe, the administration is floating other names. Former OMB head Peter Orszag wasrumored to be on the list, but after he publicly rebuked the president's tax policy, he would seem an unusual pick. Politico claims Tom Daschle is allegedly being considered, but that hardly seems likely after Obama admitted he "screwed up" after nominating Daschle as secretary of Health and Human Services. Another potential nominee is John Podesta, the head of the Soros-funded Center for American Progress, which currently employs Van Jones. Podesta, writes the Politico's Ben Smith, "would represent a change of course." The more things change….
No matter who holds the position, Jarrett holds the reins of power. Her radicalism is no mistake. It is a perfect reflection of the president's deepest-held opinions and beliefs.
And that should frighten everyone who believes in freedom.Note: Articles listed under "Middle East studies in the News" provide information on current developments concerning Middle East studies on North American campuses. These reports do not necessarily reflect the views of Campus Watch and do not necessarily correspond to Campus Watch's critique.
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