The colors of the American flag are red, white and blue, but the colors of the Center for American Progress are red, white and green. Red for the left and green for Islam.
The Center for American Progress is not just any organization. Headed up by John Podesta, a co-chairman of Obama’s transition team and backed by a 38 million dollar annual budget, it is George Soros’ most ambitious attempt to turn his Shadow Party into a shadow government. CAP is the organization with the single greatest influence on the Obama White House and its foreign and domestic policy.
CAP is more than just another think tank; it’s a lever for shifting the Democratic Party further to the left, bought and paid for by George Soros and a roster of secret donors whose names are not made public by the secretive and powerful organization. Those who buy influence with it also get anonymity as part of the package.
But the Center is more than a rogue billionaire’s brand of progressivism turned into talking-point groupthink by Washington insiders. It is a link between the American left and the Muslim right, articulating the Islamist agenda as a vehicle for the foreign policy of the post-American left. It’s where Ali Gharib can run pieces whitewashing the Muslim Brotherhood while Zaid Jiliani attempts to justify the ambassador to Belgium’s comments denying the existence of Muslim anti-Semitism.
A CAP report co-authored by Wajahat Ali, a defender of Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists, and a board member of the Muslim Students Association, a Muslim Brotherhood front group, claimed that counterterrorism analysts were misrepresenting the threat of Sharia law and that Sharia was “overwhelmingly concerned with personal religious observance such as prayer and fasting, and not with national laws.” That particular revelation might come as a shock to raped women in Pakistan and gay men in Iran.
Ali’s Islamist leanings drove him to call on Obama to “interact with democratically elected Muslim governments and representatives, such as Hamas and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran.” But despite Ali’s extremism, the Center allowed him to co-author a report on Islamic law and another report titled “Fear Inc.” which attempted to demonize Muslim and non-Muslim critics of Islamist organizations such as the Muslim Brotherhood.
ThinkProgress, the Center for American Progress’ blog, is run by Faiz Shakir, who also serves as the organization’s vice president. The ThinkProgress blog has become extreme even by CAP standards, forcing Ken Gude, CAP’s national security director, to attempt to distance his center’s policy arm from its blogs. In a post jointly co-authored by Faiz Shakir and Ken Gude, the two men denied that their work was anti-Semitic, but avoided similarly ruling out that their work was anti-Israel, probably because such an assertion would have simply been unsupportable.
CAP and its various affiliated blogs have taken an enthusiastically uncritical approach to the Islamist Arab Spring and a hostile, critical approach to the State of Israel. At the ThinkProgress blog, Matt Duss described Israel’s border controls with Hamas-run Gaza as a “moral abomination” and compared the deaths of Islamist radicals who attempted to murder Israeli soldiers to the murders of Goodman, Chaney, and Schwerner in the South during the Civil Rights movement.
Duss, writing at Middle East Progress, a spinoff CAP blog, ran a piece on Rashid al-Ghannushi. Al-Ghannushi is one of the leaders of Tunisia’s Islamist Ennahda organization with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. In the past he has called for a war against America, branding it an “enemy of Islam.”
Al-Ghannushi has also called for the genocide of Israeli Jews, writing: “There are no civilians in Israel. The population– males, females and children… are the army reserve soldiers, and thus can be killed.” True to form, Duss tossed softball questions to the gruesome Al-Ghannushi while praising him as a non-violent intellectual. This was business at usual at CAP where Netanyahu is a monster who must be kicked to the curb, but real monsters like Al-Ghannushi are moderates who deserve our support.
A more accurate name for CAP would be the Center for Islamist Progress. There is no Islamist thug or regime too awful for the Center, whose number one priority is backing Islamist takeovers in the Middle East. Its number two priority is fighting military action on Iran, and even decrying sanctions against Ahmadinejad and the Ayatollahs, and its number three priority is portraying Israel as the greatest threat to peace in the region.
But if the Center wanted to avoid allegations of anti-Semitism it would have been wise to also avoid picking a fight with the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a non-partisan organization started by Nazi hunter Simon Wiesenthal that tracks expressions of hate against the Jewish people. Instead, in response to a simple policy statement from the Wiesenthal Center against returning to the indefensible 1948 borders, ThinkProgress’ Ben Armbruster called it a “far-right” organization and accused it of branding Obama a Nazi.
The Wiesenthal Center had done no such thing and blasted CAP and Media Matters, the former home of Ben Armbruster, for conspiring to intimidate any group taking a pro-Israel position. CAP’s goal is to shift the Democratic Party further into the anti-Israel camp and attacking and silencing pro-Israel voices is an effective means of doing so. This Kulturkampf being waged against pro-Israel groups by Soros’ prodigies extended even to an attack on the most prominent Jewish anti-Nazi group in the world. An attack doubtlessly approved of by Soros, who was after all an unashamed Nazi collaborator.
Jewish liberals who attempted to denounce the harmful influence of the Center have been silenced. Josh Block, a former fellow at the Truman National Security Project (TNSP), was purged after he denounced Duss and co. for their bigotry. The purge was unsurprising considering that John Podesta of CAP is on the advisory board at TNSP and Rachel Kleinfeld, TNSP’s executive director who fired Block, has consulted for Soros’ Open Society Institute.
The Truman National Security Project was created to bolster the Democratic Party’s image on national security. Instead it has chosen to follow the CAP line and that has ominous implications for the Democratic Party. The Center for American Progress has done its best to revive the Carter-era Green Belt program of passing off Islamist empowerment and Israel bashing as policies that are in our national interest.
The American left has rolled out the red carpet for the Islamists without paying any attention to the bloody footprints that the Muslim Brotherhood’s various affiliates leave behind. The red, white and green flag that they have raised over the White House, the State Department and over their party has already helped turn major portions of the Middle East and North Africa into another Iran. Unless moderate Democrats stand up to the extremists at the Center for American Progress, then their party will be permanently red, white and green all over.
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