Throughout the Obama administration, the American Left has grown increasingly hostile to Israel and unwilling to acknowledge the reality of the jihad threat; now these tendencies could become the central focus of the Democratic Party, if Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) becomes Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC). That became even clearer than it already was last week with new revelations of just how anti-Israel and tied to the Muslim Brotherhood Ellison really is.
The Investigative Project has released audio of Ellison speaking at a fundraiser for his 2010 Congressional reelection campaign, saying that a vote for him was a vote against Israel’s supposed control of U.S. foreign policy. “The message I want to send to you by donating to this campaign,” he declared, “is positioning me and positioning Muslims in general to help steer the ship of state in America….The United States foreign policy in the Middle East is governed by what is good or bad through a country of seven million people. A region of 350 million all turns on a country of seven million. Does that make sense? Is that logic? Right?”
Ellison also boasted that “there is a growing awareness in the US Congress and in the executive branch that everything anyone does, including Israel, is not fine. And there are real questions being asked.” He revealed that in meetings with his Jewish constituents, he challenged them to stand with Barack Obama against Israel: “Do you stand with the President on stopping settlements in east Jerusalem, because that is the policy of my president and I want to know if you’re with the President. Are you with the President?”
Ellison proposed that U.S. aid to Israel be tied to the Israeli building projects in East Jerusalem: “Why are we sending $2.8 billion a year over there when they won’t even honor our request to stop building in East Jerusalem? Where is the future Palestinian state going to be if it’s colonized before it even gets up off the ground?”
He offered an alternative aiding Israel: “We should be building the bilateral business relationships between the United States and the Muslim world….Morocco, we gotta build it up. Saudi Arabia, we gotta build it up. The Gulf countries, we gotta build them. Pakistan, we gotta build them.” (Saudi Arabia?) This would be done so that ultimately Muslims in the U.S. would be able to make demands upon the government: “We need to have so much goods and services going back and forth between this country and the Muslim world that if we say we need this right here, then everyone is saying, OK. Understand my point? You’ve got to be strategic….These business relationships can be leveraged to say that we need a new deal politically.”
Hosting the event at his Virginia home was Esam Omeish, a former leader of the Muslim American Society (MAS). (Ellison has ties to MAS also: in 2008, he accepted $13,350 from MAS to go on a pilgrimage to Mecca. The Muslim American Society is a Muslim Brotherhood organization: “In recent years, the U.S. Brotherhood operated under the name Muslim American Society, according to documents and interviews. One of the nation’s major Islamic groups, it was incorporated in Illinois in 1993 after a contentious debate among Brotherhood members.” That’s from the Chicago Tribune in 2004, in an article that is now carried on the Muslim Brotherhood’s English-language website, Ikhwanweb.)
In 2007, Omeish was forced to resign from a Virginia immigration panel after a video surfaced showing him praising Palestinians who chose “the jihad way” against Israel. Also attending was the cofounder and executive director of the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Nihad Awad, who declared “I am in support of the Hamas movement,” during a March 1994 symposium at Barry University.
In his speech, Ellison praised CAIR and Omeish: “The civil rights organizations that we had, had to do a lot of tough fighting but they are still standing. CAIR has not fallen, but they are fighting, they are struggling every day.” And of Omeish he said: “I just want to again thank Dr. Omeish, and let brother Esam know that he is my beloved brother and I love you and you are the best and your family is so beautiful and again, you know, you put it out there. You ran. And I hope you run again.”
None of this should come as any surprise, given the abundant evidence of Ellison’s links to anti-Semitic groups. Ellison has spoken at a convention of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). Yet ISNA has actually admitted its ties to Hamas, which styles itself the Palestinian arm of the Muslim Brotherhood. The Justice Department actually classified ISNA among entities “who are and/or were members of the US Muslim Brotherhood.”
Also, CAIR raised large amounts of for Ellison’s first campaign, and he has spoken at numerous CAIR events. Yet CAIR is an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror funding case — so named by the Justice Department. CAIR officials have repeatedly refused to denounce Hamas and Hizballah as terrorist groups.
Hamas has declared: “Killing Jews is worship that draws us close to Allah.” Ellison has spoken before several groups that have ties to Hamas, and has accepted money from a Muslim Brotherhood group; Hamas styles itself the Muslim Brotherhood for Palestine. Does Keith Ellison also, then, think that “killing Jews is worship that draws us close to Allah”? No establishment media “journalist” would ever dream of asking him that question, but it’s a fair one: Hamas repeatedly demonstrates genuine and murderous anti-Semitism, and Ellison has repeatedly shown himself willing and even eager to associate himself with Hamas-linked groups.
All this has finally caused some on the Left to draw back from Ellison. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), which had previously warmly endorsed Ellison for DNC Chair, withdrew his support. Howard Dean refused to back him. Consequently, the Washington Post mused Sunday that “Ellison is in for a far rockier road than he probably imagined when he entered the race just a few weeks ago. And even if he does ascend to the DNC chairmanship, a decent-size chunk of Democratic voters and donors will probably be none too happy about it.”
Maybe, but given the tenor of the Obama administration for eight years, they’re likely to get over it quickly.