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Monday, June 13, 2011

Let's give Weiner the Benador of the doubt

A lot of people have presumed that I'm a blinkered fan of Anthony Weiner. Truth is, I admired his advocacy of single-payer health insurance, but felt infuriated by his inflexible stance on the issue of Israel's treatment of the Palestinians.

Juan Cole has written an excellent piece which details the "top ten" things Anthony Weiner has said and done that were far worse than consensual cyber-sex chat. He had called for the firing of a professor who dared to criticize Israel, he defended the Israeli attack on a relief ship in international waters, he has condemned Amnesty International, he refused to condemn the indefensible Israeli cluster bombing of civilians in Lebanon, he absurdly claimed that Israel does not occupy the West Bank, and he called the war in Gaza "humane."

Yeah, Tony. Humane. I was particularly impressed by the humane use of white phosphorous.

A social liberal in American terms, Weiner is so blinded by his allegiance to Israel and so studied in his ignorance of the Middle East that he has played a uniformly sinister role in that aspect of foreign policy.
Eric Ulrich, the Republican vying for Weiner's spot, may be more even-handed on this issue.

On the other hand: The Middle Eastern aspect to this story is indeed a puzzlement. Andrew Breitbart himself is so thoroughly pro-Israel, one almost wonders why he hasn't protected the congressman.

Perhaps Weiner made some nasty enemies when he married Huma Abedin, of Saudi Arabian heritage. The cross-cultural match struck many observers as unlikely, even though neither party is particularly religious. I'm not positing any mondo-weirdo Huma-centric conspiracy theories here. My thinking is much simpler, much more basic: Isn't it possible that marrying an Arab woman might have convinced Weiner that Arabs are people too?

For example, Anthony Weiner made his reprehensible statement about Israel's "humane" war before he married Huma. If he repeated that claim now, he'd have to justify it to his wife.

All of which brings us to this troubling story by Max Blumenthal. Apparently, the notorious Eleana Benador is getting in on the act.

Remember Benador? I've written about her and her neocon PR firm before, here and here.

Eleanor's recent piece ran on the Washington Times website -- for a while, at least. It was soon taken down. A right-wing text must be pretty damned rank for the Moonie Times to disavow it. Here's a whiff of what Benador had to say:
When looking broadly at the Anthony Weiner–Huma Abedin union, we have to wonder if the coupling of a Jewish American man and a Muslim woman of her pedigree was fostered by love or by a socialist political agenda...
Not unlike President Obama, the Clintons, as well as powerful politicos such as George Soros, are devotes of Saul Alinksy, who is considered “the founder of modern Community Organizing.” From my position, I clearly see that the actions of this group signal their socialist agenda, which includes domination of the U.S. by a Muslim ruled world.
Orwell would have loved that "not unlike" formulation.
Which begs the question of whether Huma Abedin been groomed by family and political leaders to carry this agenda forward?
Yada yada. Even Benador can't truly believe this nonsense. Since when does any formulation of "socialism" link up with this imaginary vision of a "Muslim ruled world"? She's simply tossing unrelated scare words into her salad.

Neither the Clintons (who supported Yeltsin to the point of madness) nor Soros (who profited enormously from the breakup of the USSR) nor Huma Abedin (so for as I know) have ever shown any signs of favoring socialism. As we've noted in many previous posts, Obama's brand of "socialism" includes putting the economic recovery firmly under the thumb of Goldman Sachs alumni -- not to mention Chicago schooler Austan GHOULS-bee.

Well, there's no point in arguing with hallucinations of this sort. Benador herself must understand that her statements are nonsense.

Speaking of hallucinations, Blumenthal adds:
Also at the Washington Times, Eric Golub, a professional nobody who says he “only dates Republican Jewish women” (unsurprisingly, he is also an Andrew Breitbart blogger), claims that Weiner hates Jewish women. Golub goes on to compare Weiner’s marriage to the Holocaust, writing that Weiner and other Jews who marry non-Jews are doing “what Hitler failed to do.” As pathological as Weiner’s behavior might have been, the right seems determined to outdo him.
Wow. And they call me paranoid. Golub's racist pronouncements buttress my earlier point: Anthony Weiner's marriage to Huma struck some people as an affront, perhaps as a betrayal.

Let's get back to Benador. To a large degree, she bears responsibility for laying the ideological groundwork for the Iraq war. In an earlier column, I offered this quote from the Asia Times:
But historians would be negligent if they ignored the day-to-day work of one person who, as much as anyone outside the administration, made their media ubiquity possible. Meet Eleana Benador, the Peruvian-born publicist for Perle, Woolsey, Michael Ledeen, Frank Gaffney and a dozen other prominent neo-conservatives whose hawkish opinions proved very hard to avoid for anyone who watched news talk shows or read the op-ed pages of major newspapers over the past 20 months.
New York-based Benador Associates is less than two years old, but has a star-studded client roster of 38 people, most of them Middle East specialists. Benador estimates that she arranges for her clients each week between 15 and 30 interviews on US and foreign television. In the same period, she places an average of about five op-eds by them in the most influential newspapers, such as the Times, the Post, the Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times.
To which I added:
She acquired that kind of clout in two years? Such things do not happen by accident. Hard work alone won't do the trick. This woman is connected.
Incidentally, another Benador-linked neocon is the well-known propagandist Laurie Mylroie, who co-wrote a book on Saddam Hussein with Judith Miller. Dr. Barry Rubin, the proprietor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (often considered a MOSSAD front) is also in the Benador orbit.
Eleanor's husband is a renown Picasso expert, which means that he probably knows Arianna Huffington, whose credits include a Picasso biography which she wrote almost all by herself. Arianna also happens to be pals with...

Nah. Better stop here. People will accuse me of being a conspiracy theorist.
You are really pathetic. There is absolutely no question about the socialist leanings of Soros. As a terrorist sympathizer, Muslim Jihad apologist like yourself, who also happens to spout off socialist ideals most of the time, you can't see the link? No wonder, let me get you a mirror.
I let that comment through to give readers a laugh. And now, if you don't mind, I have a socialist Muslim jihad to run...
Another comment directed at our anonymous friend: Seriously, dude, could you post further thoughts? I'd like to hear you present further evidence concerning the pro-terrorist bias you see here. Also, anything further you can tell us about Cannon's roll as a jihadi would be most enlightening.

Want to write a guest post? I'll let you do it. 2000 words max.
Can we make this any shorter?
(Blueprint for "armageddon", some whish for it, some fear it. Madness
rules) ->
Another fact free rant from a denizen of the Bizarro World of AM talk radio.
We have two such outlets here in the York, Harrisburg, Lancaster area of PA.
Today I learned from a caller that the financial crisis was the result of a Democratic controlled House raising the minimum wage in 2006. It had nothing to do with republicans gutting financial regulations since Reagan. I'm looking forward to Anon's guest rant.
Golub goes on to compare Weiner’s marriage to the Holocaust, writing that Weiner and other Jews who marry non-Jews are doing “what Hitler failed to do.”

That is truly insane, and a vile insult to the memory of the real people who were murdered in Nazi extermination camps - but since when did Zionists give a toss about them?

If Huma cared about war against civilians, murderous piracy against relief ships, white phosphorus, refugees, occupation, Jim Crow (Israeli-style), or any other aspect of Zionist fascism, why did she marry Weiner in the first place?

(Although you gotta wonder whose thoughts she may have channelled to whom with regard to putative US-Saudi weapons contracts that Weiner opposed).

The answer to the 'why now?' question may have to do with the New York mayoral election, where Weiner was going to run against billionaire Michael Bloomberg.

When you get billionaires as city mayors, stuff can get less pretty than it was. Ask them in Moscow. Or on a national level, cf. Italy or Thailand etc.
Hi. This is a letter I've sent to different news groups in hopes that someone will listen.

I have a few points to make, and I wish that someone would take them seriously. Here goes:

I'm still wondering when people are going to investigate who told that Ginger woman (if she wasn't lying, and I have no idea) that they'd release a statement she didn't authorize if she didn't speak about this... What happened to journalism? She clearly said this in her conference, "someone told me they'd release a statement I did not authorize." I was shocked that her lawyer let that get through...

But I guess it isn't important enough that someone out there may have been making this entire situation worse. Obviously, Weiner was in the photos in the gym, but the photo Breitbart released was never confirmed to belong to Weiner. And I kind of wonder how these people like Megan Broussard were allowed to accept money for photos that didn't belong to them. Yes, Weiner sent a photo to them, but that doesn't mean they can sell it...

And we've recently learned that Weiner knew of a sex scandal that would be breaking, as Ginger said he told her this. I'm not saying that Weiner was acting appropriately, but I do find it odd that no one is discussing these things, which are more important to this story than that he sent some dirty messages to clearly consenting adults. This in addition to the fact that there are people serving right now as our representatives who have actually had sex with people other than their spouse.

I don't think he should have lied, and if he suspected a scandal why would he be so foolish? He's not a stupid man. I'm not saying conspiracy, but it's something abnormal. Weiner's reaction of lying may have been more justifiable than we think. Although, I do believe enough time has been spent on this story already, I feel it should be investigated still. More so, I believe that this entire time America spent hoping to see more condemning photos, that someone, SOMEONE who knows how to investigate, would have devoted more time to the story behind this story. And it's not too late to do so...

Thank you for your time,

Crystal Keeton
Crystal, you make some good points. I didn't know that Ginger had made that comment.

As you may know, I believe that Weiner lied when he sent the May 27 tweet. For reasons which you touch upon, I think that the photo was indeed sent by someone else. Twitter accounts are notoriously insecure, so it would not be much of a technical problem. I think he confessed to it because he thought that would be the best way to make the issue go away.

A lot of people think that it's ridiculous to posit that anyone would confess to something he did not do. In fact, it happens all the time. Just a couple of nights ago, I saw "The Lincoln Lawyer," which hinges on a man who confesses to a murder he did not do. The evidence against him was so persuasive that he deiced that his chances were better if he confessed.

Now that Weiner is leaving, tempers are cooler, and it should be possible to look into these matters. Things are happening. That's all I'll say.
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