Monday, June 30, 2008

Elf Terrorist Eric McDavid Sentenced to Almost 20 Years

Convicted ELF eco-terrorist Eric McDavid

KCRA News (5-8-08) reports:

A man convicted of conspiracy in an eco-terror case was sentenced Thursday to 19 years and seven months in prison, U.S. Attorney McGregor Scott said.

Eric McDavid, 30, was convicted in March of conspiring to damage or destroy property by fire and an explosive.

The suspected Earth Liberation Front member threatened to bomb Nimbus Dam and the forest service building in Placerville.

"Today's severe punishment of nearly 20 years in federal prison should serve as a cautionary tale to those who would conspire to commit life-threatening acts in the name of their extremist views," Scott said in a statement. [Full text]

The FBI (6-30-08) has published an article about McDavid's case titled "PUTTING INTEL TO WORK Against ELF and ALF Terrorists":

In early 2006, eco-terrorist Eric McDavid and two associates met in a secluded cabin in Dutch Flat, California to discuss making improvised explosive devices and to choose targets to bomb. Soon after, they began casing the targeted facilities and buying supplies to make bombs. But before they started mixing the ingredients, we swooped in and arrested them.

How did we know what McDavid was up to? How were we able to prevent attacks that could have caused thousands or millions of dollars in property damage and possibly harmed people?

In a word, intelligence.

Our intelligence—which included the use of an FBI source who was actually with McDavid and his associates inside that California cabin—allowed us to piece together the entire plot ahead of time.

...[E]co-terrorists and animal rights extremists are one of the most serious domestic terrorism threats in the U.S. today…for several good reasons:

-The sheer volume of their crimes (over 2,000 since 1979);
-The huge economic impact (losses of more than $110 million since 1979);
-The wide range of victims (from international corporations to lumber companies to animal testing facilities to genetic research firms); and
-Their increasingly violent rhetoric and tactics (one recent communiqué sent to a California product testing company said: “You might be able to protect your buildings, but can you protect the homes of every employee?”).


ELF and ALF are probably the names you’re most familiar with. The Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) are loosely-organized movements whose adherents engage in crimes like arson, fire bombings, vandalism, intimidation, assaults, stalking, etc. No membership dues are necessary—the only way to become a “member” is to engage in “direct action”…criminal activity designed to cause economic loss or destroy the victim company’s operations.

...So whatever happened to Eric McDavid? In May, he was sentenced to nearly 20 years in federal prison. [Full text]

Saturday, June 28, 2008

"AIM Myth Busters" Begins Posting on June 26, 2008

Retired FBI Special Agent in Charge Joseph H. Trimbach and his son John M. Trimbach, the co-authors of American Indian Mafia, innaugurated their new blog on June 26, 2008. Their blog is called AIM Myth Busters. Their site is mirrored here.

Trimbachs chose this symbolic date for their first post because on June 26, 1975, two FBI agents, Jack R. Coler and Ronald A. Williams, were murdered on Pine Ridge Indian reservation in South Dakota.

Joe Trimbach was the Special Agent in Charge of the Minneapolis FBI office when these murders occurred. The Minneapolis Divison of the FBI has jurisdiction in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota.

On June 1, 1977, a career criminal named Leonard Peltier was sentenced to two consecutive life terms "for the first degree murder of and for aiding and abetting the first degree murder of [the] two FBI agents."

There may be more to the story than the quote above, because Trimbachs write:

In 1977, Peltier was convicted of aiding and abetting, or helping in the murders, a level of guilt that carries the same level of complicity and punishment as if the defendant actually pulled the trigger.

The official FBI history of the Reservation Murders Case (RESMURS) is here.

The Trimbachs believe that the murders of these two young men probably led to the murder of a young Indian woman named Anna Mae Aquash in December 1975. Anna Mae was one of four people who reportedly heard Peltier bragging about the murders, as Anna Mae's friend Ka-Mook testified at the trial of one of Anna Mae's killers, Arlo Looking Cloud.

Indians testified at the trial of Arlo Looking Cloud and will also be witnesses at the trial of John Graham, who is scheduled to go on trial for her murder on October 6, 2008.

The Trimbachs explain the purpose of AIM Myth Busters:

Joe and John Trimbach, authors of American Indian Mafia, An FBI Agent's True Story About Wounded Knee, Leonard Peltier, and the American Indian Movement (AIM), comment on timely topics and questionable histories in a continuing effort to correct the historical record of 1970s Pine Ridge, honor the fallen, and raise awareness of issues important to Native Americans.

I am really appreciative of the fact that Joe Trimbach, who is retired and has many grandchildren, is still trying to set the historical record straight and get justice for people murdered on Indian lands. He is telling the story of Indians overcoming historical suspicions and malicious rumors and working with their government to get justice for crime victims.

As the Minneapolis FBI said in a well-known document titled "Accounting For Native American Deaths" (2000):

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and its Agents in South Dakota can only operate effectively where we have the trust and help of the American people. For South Dakota, much of our work revolves around crimes occurring in Indian Country. The trust and help of reservation residents are vital to the accomplishment of our sworn duty.

I think that the trial of John Graham will show that this trust is being built, and I am glad that the Trimbachs and Indians like Richard Two Elk, Paul DeMain, and Tim Giago will be chronicling this important story.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Joseph and John Trimbach Appear on Native America Calling (6-6-08)

On June 6, 2008, the former FBI agent Joseph H. Trimbach and his son John Trimbach, the co-authors of American Indian Mafia: An FBI Agent's True Story About Wounded Knee, Leonard Peltier, and the American Indian Movement (AIM), were interviewed on the radio program called Native America Calling. The program can be found on the link called "Past NAC Programs."

I may comment later, but Native America Calling has written this description and has posted a link to the interview and the people who called in to respond:

Friday, June 6, 2008 – AIM: American Indian Mafia: (listen)

A new book called “American Indian Mafia: An FBI Agent’s True Story About Wounded Knee, Leonard Peltier, and the American Indian Movement ( AIM )” is making big waves across Indian Country. The book claims to expose the “dirty little secrets of the AIM leadership.” What really happened on the Pine Ridge Reservation in the early 70’s? Who shot the FBI special agents? Can Native America trust an account of these events from a former FBI agent who was there? Guests are author Joseph H. Trimbach, former FBI Special Agent in Charge at Pine Ridge and co-author John Trimbach.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Rapid City Trial of John Graham Set for October 6, 2008

"The American Indian Movement [AIM] leadership ordered the execution of Anna Mae Aquash...the AIM leadership concocted a series of conspiracy stories blaming the FBI for the murder. ...Wounded Knee Legal Defense Offense Committee [WKLDOC] lawyers were a party to the conspiracy and joined efforts to blame the killing on the FBI...Countless authors have since parroted the lies in a series of politically-motivated books, most notably Peter Matthiessen’s In the Spirit of Crazy Horse, Ken Stern’s Loud Hawk, and Professor Ward Churchill’s Agents of Repression."--Former FBI Agent Joseph H. Trimbach and his son John M. Trimbach, co-authors of American Indian Mafia

The Jamestown Sun (6-23-08) reports that American Indian Movement (AIM) member John Graham (shown above) will finally stand trial in Rapid City, South Dakota, for the December 1975 murder of Anna Mae Aquash (shown below). Aquash was also a member of AIM.

Graham's trial is scheduled to begin on October 6, 2008 and is expected to last at least two weeks.
Anna Mae Aquash was shot in the head as she begged for her life and was pushed over a cliff near Wanblee, South Dakota.
A Denver man, Graham's co-defendant Fritz Arlo Looking Cloud, was convicted of her murder in 2004. According to the Jamestown Sun (6-23-08), at Looking Cloud's trial, witnesses testified:
[Looking Cloud], Graham and another AIM member, Theda Clark, drove Aquash from Denver and that Graham shot Aquash...
Looking Cloud and Graham, who were young men in 1975, are believed to have acted on the orders of the leaders of the American Indian Movement.
The Aquash case may have implications for leadership members of the American Indian Movement [AIM] alleged to have been involved in several murders of those they believed were informers going back to the occupation of Wounded Knee in 1973...according to AIM members now cooperating with federal authorities.
Soon NFIC will publish some new documentation about this murder investigation:
Part V - Index of Individuals, Grand Jury/Cooperating Witnesses, Conspirators/Associates.
Under Construction/Readying Completion/Projected Publishing June 2008
Part VI - Relationship Tree: Family member relationships and AIM hierarchy.
Under Construction/Readying Completion/Projected Publishing June 2008
The former FBI agent Joe Trimbach and his son John write:
The American Indian Movement leadership ordered the execution of Anna Mae Aquash because they believed (mistakenly) that she was an FBI informant. Once convinced that she had not betrayed them, the AIM leadership concocted a series of conspiracy stories blaming the FBI for the murder. Wounded Knee Legal Defense Offense Committee lawyers were a party to the conspiracy and joined efforts to blame the killing on the FBI. (AIM lawyer and WKLDOC member Bruce Ellison was allegedly among those present at the meeting where Anna Mae’s fate was discussed by a round table of co-conspirators. Upon learning that Anna Mae was bound with rope, Ellison allegedly said, “Untie her.” Today, Ellison insists the FBI was behind the murder.) Countless authors have since parroted the lies in a series of politically-motivated books, most notably Peter Matthiessen’s In the Spirit of Crazy Horse, Ken Stern’s Loud Hawk, and Professor Ward Churchill’s Agents of Repression. These books are easily exposed as sham histories shrouded in half-truths, distortions, and shameless lies...
According to News From Indian Country sources, WKLDOC [Wounded Knee Legal Defense Offense Committee] attorney Bruce Ellison is said to have encouraged the idea that Anna Mae might be an informant.
In his article "Anna Mae Awaits Justice," (6-30-07) Joe Trimbach writes (scroll down):
[W]hen [Anna Mae] realized the end was near, she asked to pray on her knees. (The request was denied.) Months before he placed a gun to [FBI agent] Ron Williams’s head, [Leonard] Peltier had placed a gun in Anna Mae’s mouth, in one of her early interrogations. She died six months after [Peltier murdered FBI agents Coler and Williams], partly because it was feared that she would repeat Peltier’s boast [that he shot FBI agent Ron Williams in the face] which she heard “straight from the horse’s mouth.”
People familiar with the case believe that once Graham is on American soil, AIM’s legacy is up for grabs. As the embattled Professor Ward Churchill likes to say, the chickens have come home to roost. The professor, however, would presumably not want the description applied to his old warhorse buddy, AIM leader Russell Means. On a cold morning in 1976, Means and his brothers boycotted Anna Mae’s funeral, evidently believing her guilty as charged. AIM war chiefs and Anna Mae’s erstwhile friends must now reposition themselves for the coming storm. An old rusty prosecutorial engine is finally turning over, powered by an unlimited statute of limitations for murder in the first degree. Former members know that aiding and abetting carries the same penalty that awaits Graham: life in prison. And so they are naturally concerned that Graham may cut a deal and sing like a canary. Stay tuned. This could get very interesting.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

American Indian Movement (AIM) Members Cooperating with Federal Authorities

Picture of Joseph and John Trimbach's 2007 book American Indian Mafia.

"The Aquash case may have implications for leadership members of the American Indian Movement [AIM] alleged to have been involved in several murders of those they believed were informers going back to the occupation of Wounded Knee in 1973...according to AIM members now cooperating with federal authorities. "---News From Indian Country

News From Indian Country has chronicled the multi-national investigation of the December 1975 murder of the Canadian Indian AIM activist Anna Mae Aquash. She was murdered because AIM falsely believed that she was a government informant.

Soon NFIC will publish some new documentation about this murder investigation:

Part V - Index of Individuals, Grand Jury/Cooperating Witnesses, Conspirators/Associates. Under Construction/Readying Completion/Projected Publishing June 2008

Part VI - Relationship Tree: Family member relationships and AIM hierarchy. Under Construction/Readying Completion/Projected Publishing June 2008

Maybe this information will be made public on June 26, 2008, the 33rd anniversary of the 1975 murder of FBI agents Jack R. Coler and Ronald A. Williams.

The retired FBI Agent Joseph Trimbach and his son John write:

In front of four witnesses, [Leonard] Peltier boasted of killing the Agents. As one of the men pleaded for his life, Peltier allegedly said, “…I shot him anyway.” Both Agents died instantly after being shot in the face at point-blank range. Shell casings ejected from Peltier’s weapon matched a shell casing found at the murder scene. Peltier was convicted of aiding and abetting in the murders of the Agents.

In American Indian Mafia (p. 452), the Trimbachs write that Ka-Mook Nichols testified in court that Anna Mae was one of four people who heard Peltier's confession:

We were sitting one day at the table in this motor home. Anna Mae was sitting by me, and my sister was on the other side, and [Ka-Mook's former husband]
Dennis [Banks] was standing in the aisle, and Leonard...started talking about June 26, and he put his hand like this [gesture holding a gun] and he started talking about the two FBI agents...He said the motherfucker [FBI agent] was begging for his life, but I shot him anyway.

According to News From Indian Country:

Aquash told several close friends that Peltier had "put a gun in her mouth" during his questioning of her. The bragging incident in November of 1975, while Peltier was on the run on murder (Jumping Bull FBI agent shooting) and attempted murder charges (Milwaukee, Wisconsin) may have played one of several motives for her killing.

Here is a video that shows the truth about the murders of FBI Agents Jack R. Coler and Ronald A. Williams. The video exposes Peltier's lies: Peltier damns himself right out of his own mouth because he keeps changing his story.

This video was made by Richard Two Elk [see also his media company OG Productions]. A commentary posted at No Parole Peltier explains:

Richard Two Elk is a direct descendent of Oglala Dakota Chief Two Elk and has devoted much of his life to research, education and lecturing on Native American traditions, history and social issues. To learn more about Richard Two Elk and the American Indian Movement, see the definitive history of AIM, Wounded Knee II and Resmurs in American Indian Mafia by Joseph H. Trimbach and John Trimbach.

In 2003, the Canadian Indian John Graham was arrested and charged with the 1975 murder of Anna Mae Pictou-Aquash. Arlo Looking Cloud, Graham's co-defendant, has already been tried and on 2-6-08 was found guilty of aiding and abetting in the first-degree murder of Anna Mae. Looking Cloud is serving a life sentence.

American Indian Mafia authors Joseph and John Trimbach write:

Aquash was one of the few AIM members who was alcohol and drug free, and who genuinely held the beliefs and ideals AIM should have aspired to.

Trimbachs write:

The American Indian Movement leadership ordered the execution of Anna Mae Aquash because they believed (mistakenly) that she was an FBI informant. Once convinced that she had not betrayed them, the AIM leadership concocted a series of conspiracy stories blaming the FBI for the murder. Wounded Knee Legal Defense Offense Committee lawyers were a party to the conspiracy and joined efforts to blame the killing on the FBI. (AIM lawyer and WKLDOC member Bruce Ellison was allegedly among those present at the meeting where Anna Mae’s fate was discussed by a round table of co-conspirators. Upon learning that Anna Mae was bound with rope, Ellison allegedly said, “Untie her.” Today, Ellison insists the FBI was behind the murder.) Countless authors have since parroted the lies in a series of politically-motivated books, most notably Peter Matthiessen’s In the Spirit of Crazy Horse, Ken Stern’s Loud Hawk, and Professor Ward Churchill’s Agents of Repression. These books are easily exposed as sham histories shrouded in half-truths, distortions, and shameless lies...

In their timeline of notable events in the history of the American Indian Movement, Trimbachs note:

December 10 (on or about), 1975: Anna Mae is carried from the Denver home of Troy Lynn Yellowwood by John Graham and Arlo Looking Cloud and put in the back of Theda Clarke’s red Pinto hatchback. Several witnesses observe that Anna Mae is bound and carried against her will. She is eventually taken to the offices of the Wounded Knee Legal Defense Offense Committee in Rapid City, where she is questioned by AIM members. Anna Mae is moved to two residences owned by Thelma Rios-Conroy. AIM leaders hold further discussions about Anne Mae’s loyalty. According to News From Indian Country sources, WKLDOC attorney Bruce Ellison is said to have encouraged the idea that Anna Mae might be an informant.

December 12, 1975: Anna Mae is driven to the reservation home of Bill Means where AIM members Clyde Bellecourt and David Hill are said to be waiting. Later that night, Theda Clark, Arlo Looking Cloud and John Graham drive Anna Mae to a remote part of the Pine Ridge Reservation. After Looking Cloud and Graham force Anna Mae out of the car, they drag her to the edge of a cliff. Graham allegedly shoots her in the head.

Anna Mae, the mother of two little girls, was shot in the head and pushed over a cliff near Wanblee, on the Pine Ridge Reservation of South Dakota.

Her body was found by a rancher on February 24, 1976, and her fingerprints were identified by the FBI on March 3, 1976.

News From Indian Country has reported (May 2007):

Looking Cloud told FBI agents in a videotaped statement shown in court that he saw Graham kill Aquash. Looking Cloud had previously told friends and relatives about his and Graham's involvement in the murder as well according to court testimony.

According to News from Indian Country (May 2007):

[AIM] has been tied to gun running, bombings, and drug dealing during the 1970's in several federal cases.

...AIM was also involved in the occupation of Wounded Knee, S.D., in 1973 where activists and authorities exchanged gunfire during a 71-day stand off which destroyed the village...

The Aquash case may have implications for leadership members of the American Indian Movement alleged to have been involved in several murders of those they believed were informers going back to the occupation of Wounded Knee in 1973. Those murders include that of Black civil rights worker and Martin Luther King disciple Perry Ray Robinson Jr ., according to AIM members now cooperating with federal authorities.

Senator Obama Goes Ballistic

“If they bring a knife to the fight, we bring a gun...We don’t have a choice but to win...folks in Philly like a good brawl. I've seen Eagles games” ---Senator Obama on how to win the 2008 Presidential election

It's telling that Senator Obama talks this way about Republicans but claims that we can't win the war in Iraq.

Senator Obama would leave all those Iraqis to the tender mercies of terrorists. He would let terrorists control Iraq's oil and use their profits to blow up, shoot, and decapitate even more people in the Middle East and all over the world.

I believe that "we don't have a choice but to win" in Iraq. Senator Obama, on the other hand, bet his political fortunes on America's failure in this war, so he can't afford to let us win.

If Senator Obama wants to show us he is brave, he might start by correcting his former minister Rev. Wright, who claims that the U.S. government invented AIDS to kill black people.

Senator Obama should explain that in 1992 Yevgeni Primakov, the head of Russia's foreign intelligence agency, admitted that the KGB spread the lie that the U.S. government invented AIDS to kill blacks.

All Senator Obama has to do is cite Yevgeni Primakov in Izvestia. He doesn't need a gun for this. He needs a copy of Izvestia.

The Russian newspaper Izvestiya (3-19-92) reported:

[Primakov] mentioned the well known articles printed a few years ago in our central newspapers about AIDS supposedly originating from secret Pentagon laboratories. According to Yevgeni Primakov, the articles exposing US scientists' 'crafty' plots were fabricated in KGB offices.

Senator Obama should clear up this lie, which even today can destroy the lives of young blacks who believe it.

An informative Washington Post article (1-25-05), published a few days after the State Department memo (1-14-05) that contained Primakov's admission explained:

More than 20 years after the AIDS epidemic arrived in the United States, a significant proportion of African Americans embrace the theory that government scientists created the disease to control or wipe out their communities, according to a study released today by Rand Corp. and Oregon State University.

That belief markedly hurts efforts to prevent the spread of the disease among black Americans, the study's authors and activists said. African Americans represent 13 percent of the U.S. population, according to Census Bureau figures, yet they account for 50 percent of new HIV infections in the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention...

Phill Wilson, executive director of the Black AIDS Institute in Los Angeles, said past discrimination is no longer an excuse for embracing conspiracies that allow HIV to fester.

"It's a huge barrier to HIV prevention in black communities," Wilson said. "There's an issue around conspiracy theory and urban myths. Thus we have an epidemic raging out of control, and African Americans are being disproportionately impacted in every single sense."

Black women made up 73 percent of new HIV cases among women in 2003, and black men represented 40 percent of new cases, according to the most recent federal figures available. Among gay men, blacks represented 30 percent of new infections, and adolescents ages 18 to 24 accounted for nearly 80 percent of new HIV cases.

"The whole notion of conspiracy theories and misinformation . . . removes personal responsibility," Wilson said. "If there is this boogeyman, people say, 'Why should I use condoms? Why should I use clean needles?' And if I'm an organization, 'Why should I bother with educating my folks?' The [Tuskegee]syphilis study was real, but it happened 40 years ago, and holding on to it is killing us."

Senator Obama has a new minister named Bishop Arthur Brazier, and I liked what Fox News (6-15-08) reports that he said:

[Obama] has done something [in] this country that I never thought I would live to see...I am filled with emotion because I have lived through some very tough times in America. But the America today is not the America of yesteryear. And I don’t think, I don’t think it behooves us well to keep talking about the past. The Apostle Paul said forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out to the things that are before.

Senator Obama also spoke in his new church on Father's Day:

Too many fathers are also missing. Too many fathers are MIA. Too many fathers are AWOL. Missing from too many lives and too many homes. They’ve abandoned their responsibilities, they’re acting like boys instead of men, and the foundations of our family have suffered because of it. You know and I know this is true everywhere, but nowhere is it more true than in the African American community...We can’t simply write these problems off to past injustices. Those injustices are real. There’s a reason why our families are just in disrepair, and some of it has to do with a tragic history, but we can’t keep on using that as an excuse...The change we need is not just gonna come from government. It’s not just gonna come from a president. It’s gonna come from us. It’s gonna come from each and every one of us. We need families to raise our children. We need fathers to recognize that responsibility just doesn’t end at conception. That doesn’t just make you a father. What makes you a man is not the ability to have a child. Any fool can have a child. That doesn’t make you a father. It’s the courage to raise a child that makes you a father.

Bishop Brazier's son led the prayer:

We ask that you give [Senator Obama] great wisdom, knowledge, power and understanding. We pray that you give him the mind of Christ, so that when he speaks, demons will tremble, mountains will be removed, and when the firing guards of the enemy are flung his way, that the prayers of the saved protect him and let the world know that no weapon formed against him shall prosper.

I also hope that Senator Obama will have wisdom and be safe, but I wondered who the Bishop's son meant by "the firing guards of the enemy."

Maybe the Bishop's son meant violent racists who might try to hurt Senator Obama. Maybe he meant America's terrorist enemies. But maybe he meant the Republicans or people who ask legitimate questions about Senator Obama's true beliefs, intentions, and troubling relationships with political radicals who advocate violence.

I didn't like how Senator Obama said he was going to "bring a gun" to the Presidential contest, even if it was only a metaphor.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

The Rape of the Wart

And now, unveil'd, Paine's Toilet stands display'd,
Each silver Vase in mystic order laid!

With such a prize no mortal must be blest,
So Ben decrees! With Ben who can contest?

There Tryworks nit-wits rest in formite [sic] vases,
And Wart resides in snuff-boxes and tweezer-cases.

Cages for gnats, and chains to yoke a flea,
Dry'd butterflies, and tomes of casuistry...

But trust the Muse--she saw the Wardo's lies,
Tho' mark'd by none but quick, poetic eyes.

Oh, Blogosphere! Behold Wart's Rumor as it flies,
And monstrous grows to spread half-truths and lies!

Her keys, the fiery Termagant aflame,
Tuned up, and hissed, "A pox on Wardo's name!"

(When to mischief mortals bend their will,
How soon they find fit instruments of ill!)

Just then, a Pirate drew with tempting grace
A two-edg'd weapon from his shining case.

The Pirate spreads the glitt'ring Forfex wide,
T' inclose the Lie; now joins it, to divide.

The meeting points old Wardo's lies dissever (Heh!)
From the ex-Professor, for ever, and for ever!

Then flash'd the living lightning from his eyes,
And screams of "Cointelpro" rend affrighted skies!
Not louder shrieks to pitying heav'n are cast,
When spouses, or when Indnz breathe their last.

Methinks already I your tears survey,
Already hear the horrid things they say,
Already see you: a degraded toast,
Your honour shredded by a blogger's post!

The pox forever curse this hated day,
Which snatch'd Wart's best, his fo'mite lie away!

For, after all the murders of your eye,
When, after millions slain, yourself shall die,

Your reign of lies shall end, as end it must,
Tho' all Paine's marbled bathrooms turn to dust.

Wart's faux pox, the Muse shall consecrate to shame,
And to the Blogosphere consign Ben Whitmer's name!

(Picture credit for the toilet; Apologies to Alexander Pope!)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Cheated of Childhood: Russian Street Children

"This picture taken by Polish photographer Hanna Polak and handed out 19 December 2006 by UNICEF shows Russian street children Roma (4 years), Svieta (5 years) and Sergiey (12 years) living next to warm tubes in a dirty and unhealthy environment in Moscow. Hanna Polak, freelancer, won with her picture the third prize of the "UNICEF Picture of the Year 2006" award."---HANNA POLAK/AFP/Getty Images

Here is a video called "Cheated of Childhood" about the lives of street children in St. Petersburg and the adults who are trying to help them:

At first sight, 11 year old Yuriy and his 13 year old friend Max look like normal, happy children. But after family problems forced them to leave home, they've been reduced to living on the streets. "For me, the most dangerous thing about living on the street is paedophiles," states Max. "I know a lot of people who have been abused." Despite this risk, both boys would rather remain homeless than return to their families. Max and Yuriy are just two of the millions of children thought to be living on the streets. Once homeless, many children turn to glue sniffing and become infected with HIV. The issue of street children is a relatively new problem for Russia. The collapse of communism triggered many family breakdowns, driving children as young as seven onto the streets. The fear is that if something is not done to help them now, it may be too late to save future generations.

Blood Libel in Our Time

"Twin towers" of Birkenau crematorium (1943)

Immediately after our people were attacked and murdered on 9-11, Colorado's now-discredited ex-professor Ward Churchill wrote a screed called "Some People Push Back." He characterized the innocent people who were incinerated and went up the chimney on 9-11 as "little Eichmanns." He gloated about their deaths and said the victims deserved their horrifying fate.

Ward Churchill is a vicious, twisted person who often writes about who deserves to die. He even "jokes" that American children should be snuffed.

Ward Churchill is defended by a blog called Tryworks, which is hosted by another former University of Colorado teacher, Churchill apostle Ben Whitmer.

Now a Tryworks guest author who calls himself "Business Major" has characterized the blogger Mr. Paine of PirateBallerina as "Herr Eichmann" because Mr. Paine supposedly has an "utterly unearned country estate" and nice bathrooms.

But what if Mr. Paine were an Indian? Would "Business Major" still maintain that it is unjust for Mr. Paine to own an "utterly unearned country estate"?

For example, the ancestors of today's Osage purchased their own land in Oklahoma, and some of these oil-rich ancestors of today's Osage used to vacation in the summer on lands they also purchased in Colorado. If an Osage inherits the family's Colorado ranch, is that an "utterly unearned country estate"?

"Business Major's" ignorant post is very reminiscent of Ward Churchill's screed about 9-11, "Some People Push Back," which claimed that due to the UN sanctions on Iraq "vast legions of brown-skinned five-year-olds sat shivering in the dark, wide- eyed in horror, whimpering as they expired in the most agonizing ways imaginable."

Adolf Eichmann was one of the architects of the Holocaust. He organized the extermination of millions of Jewish children and their parents; Eichmann wasn't just a rich person with "well-appointed bathrooms." Eichmann was a mass-murderer who gassed Jews in "showers."

When "Business Major" said that Mr. Paine's nice bathrooms are responsible for starving black and Indian children in Colorado, he reminded me of some medieval person making a blood libel against the Jews.

Blood libel was when supersitious medieval Christians would claim that the Jews kidnapped Christian children at Passover, tortured them, and used their blood to make matzo bread for Passover. Blood libel is a particularly vicious anti-Semitic canard, like saying that the Jews poison the wells of the Christians with plague.

Tryworks posters and Ward Churchill are always calling other people NAZIS, but to me they are the ones who sound like NAZIS.

Because Mr. Paine publicized Ward Churchill's plagiarism, literary hoaxes, and lies---lies that hurt Indians---"business Major" invokes the old blood libel and depicts Mr. Paine as a rich Jew who is killing babies.

The same blood libel can be seen in the communist depiction of the "greedy" Kulaks. Kulak, a pejorative term for a peasant, means "fist." The communists' libels about the Kulaks were really based on traditional anti-Semitism, only this time the persecution was also directed against Orthodox Russian peasants, not just against Jews. Blood libels are just rationalizations for killing and stealing.

Mr. Paine is so strong that he can take all this on himself and laugh at these twisted Tryworks freaks.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Bird Flu: Worldwide Pandemic or Chicken Little Alert?

Here is a picture and an MSNBC (4-20-06) story about bird flu or avian influenza. This story takes the position that fears about bird flu in the United States are overblown and may be "sapping money and attention from more serious health threats":

Doomsday predictions about bird flu seem to be spreading faster than the virus itself. But a small group of skeptics say the bird flu hype is overblown and ultimately harmful to the public’s health.

There’s no guarantee bird flu will become a pandemic, and if it does there’s no guarantee it will kill millions of people. The real trouble, these skeptics say, is that bird flu hysteria is sapping money and attention away from more important health threats.

“I have a bunch of patients coming in here who are more worried about bird flu than they are about heart disease,” said Dr. Marc Siegel, an internist and associate professor of medicine at the New York University School of Medicine. “The fear is out of proportion to the current risk.” [Full text]

The Voice of America has an avian flu site with good links. The VOA site tracks outbreaks of bird flu and the efforts of scientists all over the world to study, control, and erradicate this disease. The real danger is that this virus could change so that it could be transmitted from person-to-person.

In Russia, Gennady Zyuganov, the head of the Russian Communist Party, has spread the ignorant anti-American canard that the U.S. government made the bird flu, but Russian researchers don't believe this. Russian researchers "believe the avian flu was carried into Russia by migratory wild birds" (3-16-06).

Another theory posits that domestic fowl are the principal carriers. Dr. Richard Thomas, an expert at Birdlife International, observed (2-28-08):

From the pattern of spread that we saw last autumn the spread [of the disease] just did not follow known migration routes. What it did follow, you can trace it from western China across to Eastern Europe," he says. "And you see a good correlation with the transport routes, with the railway that runs from Lanchow city heading west through Kazakhstan and southern Russia right away across to Romania.

The different theories are available at the avian flu site of the Voice of America and also at the links found there.

Unfortunately, there are still ignoramuses around---like the feather-headed Turkey Gennady Zyuganov---who have a medieval approach to diseases. In medieval times, Europeans didn't understand much about how diseases spread and blamed the Jews for poisoning their wells with plague. In medieval Europe, Jews lived in segregated ghettos and had less contact with their Christian neighbors. They had different sanitary practices and did not take communion in churches.

The NAZIS resurrected these medieval anti-semitic canards, which included claims that Jews were dirty and spread disease.

An excellent article in Wikipedia explains:

An antisemitic canard is a deliberately false story inciting antisemitism. The word "canard" is French for "duck," referring to a hoax. Despite being thoroughly disproved, anti-Semitic canards are often part of broader theories of Jewish conspiracies. According to Kenneth S. Stern,

"Historically, Jews have not fared well around conspiracy theories. Such ideas fuel anti-Semitism. The myths that Jews killed Christ, or poisoned wells, or killed Christian children to bake matzo, or "made up" the Holocaust, or plot to control the world, do not succeed each other; rather, the list of anti-Semitic canards gets longer. The militia movement today believes in the conspiracy theory of the Protocols, even if some call it something else and never mention Jews. From the perspective of history, we know that this is the type of climate in which anti-Semitism can grow."

Anti-semitic canards are spread by propagandists on the right and left as well as by extremists in the Middle East.

Anti-semitic canards were spread by the Soviet propaganda during a time of anti-semitic hysteria called the "Doctors' Plot." It was claimed that Jewish doctors in the Soviet Union were trying to exterminate the leadership of the Communist Party and the Soviet Army. Pravda spread this conspiracy about the Jewish doctors in a 1-13-1953 article.

Soviet anti-semitic canards were transformed into anti-American canards when the KGB spread the lie that the U.S. Army had created AIDS to kill black people.

In 1987, the Soviet media/KGB exploited the Russian people's xenophobia against China: They claimed that Brent Anderson, an American tourist in China who had become critically ill with AIDS, was really a "biological weapon" directed against the Soviet Union. According to this stupid lie, Brent had been sent on a mission to China by the CIA in order to infect millions of Chinese with AIDS because "China has a long border with the Soviet Union." [I read this article in Russian, probably in 1987.]

Why would the American government send a sick person to China in order to give the Russians AIDS?

State Department pressure made the KGB stop spreading this lie after Brent's death in 1987, but the anti-American canard continued to be spread. It resurfaced in Senator Obama's church 20 years later. Senator Obama's former Minister Rev. Jeremiah Wright told his congregation that AIDS was invented by the American government to kill blacks.

I think that Senator Obama should tell his old church that this lie came from the KGB. According to a 2005 State Department document, even the KGB has admitted that it spread this lie:

In March 1992, then-Russian intelligence chief and later Russian Prime Minister Yevgeni Primakov admitted that the disinformation service of the Soviet KGB had concocted the false story that the AIDS virus had been created in a US military laboratory as a biological weapon. The Russian newspaper Izvestiya reported on March 19, 1992:

"[Primakov] mentioned the well known articles printed a few years ago in our central newspapers about AIDS supposedly originating from secret Pentagon laboratories. According to Yevgeni Primakov, the articles exposing US scientists' 'crafty' plots were fabricated in KGB offices."

The KGB spread this lie to damage race relations in our country and to damage our reputation internationally, but this canard also had had an unanticipated effect: it made some young blacks believe that they have no future because the U.S. government is out to get them. This anti-American AIDS canard makes some young blacks careless about safeguarding their health.

This vicious and destructive KGB lie may be one reason why 80% of new HIV cases are young blacks.

It would be a good thing for Senator Obama to put a stake through the heart of this KGB lie. All he has done so far is say that he doesn't believe that "somehow" the American government made AIDS. He could really educate the public about how enemy propaganda can injure our people. Exposing the source of this lie would help race relations, encourage young blacks to be more hopeful about their futures, and safeguard our people's health. These are all goals that Senator Obama has espoused. He should have a press conference and explain all about this lie.

The AIDS canard is not the only lie about the American government spreading diseases. The ex-professor Ward Churchill was fired for fabricating research that claimed that the U.S. Army had deliberately spread AIDS to the Mandan Indians.

Many academics who consider themselves liberals defended Churchill, the purveyor of vicious anti-American canards. Churchill also claimed in the KGB-sponsored Covert Action Information Bulletin that FBI-backed death squads killed 342 Indians.

Churchill's fabricated "histories" about the American government being genocidal remind me of that infamous forgery and anti-semitic libel, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

Canards about smallpox were used in the past to provoke Indians against whites, too. E. Wagner Stearn, Ph.D. and Allen E. Stearn, Ph.D, the authors of The Effect of Smallpox on the Destiny of the Amerindian (1945), wrote:

Mischief makers tried to provoke the Indians against the whites by telling them that they were to be exterminated by smallpox, introduced in clothing sent to them (102).

There is no evidence that the American Army ever deliberately infected the Indians with smallpox. There is some documentation that the British military considered giving Indians infected blankets during a war, but smallpox is normally not spread by fomite transmission but by close contact with the saliva of an infected person.

The discredited ex-professor Ward Churchill "cites" The Effect of Smallpox on the Destiny of the Amerindian (1945) by E. Wagner Stearn, Ph.D. and Allen E. Stearn, Ph.D. to give the impression that his claim is documented by these respected scholars. In fact, this book actually chronicles in painstaking detail the attempts of Americans to innoculate Indians against smallpox. Near the end of the book, the authors even write:

If, in the foregoing pages, some facts have been stated which incriminated the white conquerers and settlers, the history is replete with instances of great heroism and devotion of large numbers of white men throughout the centuries, who labored to alleviate the sufferings of, and finally brought the protection to, the conquered people through vaccination at their own trouble and expense (139).

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

What is Senator Obama's Position on the Killers Peltier and Mumia?

Senator Obama's site has blogs where people can post their views. One poster defends the murderers Leonard Peltier and Mumia.

The blog says that its purpose is "To focus the attention of the Obama Campaign and it's [sic] supporters on injustices against Leonard Peltier and other Indian issues."

Peltier is a dangerous criminal who belongs in prison. Anyone who doubts that should read the book American Indian Mafia by Joseph and John Trimbach. Visitors can watch the video called "Leonard Peltier: In His Own Words" and see Peltier incriminate himself with all his contradictory statements. The video is also here on Youtube.

The Trimbachs have written:

Perhaps no convicted murderer in U.S. History has appealed his case as many times as Peltier. Here is a mind-boggling summary of how sworn officers of the court have gummed up the docket sheet with virtually meaningless appeals. [See more documentation here.]

I don't know what Senator Obama's views are on the convicted criminals Peltier and Mumia. Now that a blogger has brought up this topic on the Obama blog, I would like the Senator to speak up and tell the people his views on freeing these vicious convicted killers.

Senator Obama was quiet when he should have refuted the big lie his minister told about AIDS. Until he was embarrassed, Senator Obama sat quietly in the church of Rev. Jeremiah Wright, an America-hater who blamed the U.S. government for AIDS.

Senator Obama took his two little girls to Sunday School in a church where the children and parents are taught that their own government made a disease to exterminate them.

When children get this message, why should they take responsibility for their health? 80% of the new AIDS cases are young blacks. I know that Senator Obama, who graduated from Harvard Law School, would never tell his own precious little daughters that they have no future because their government is trying to exterminate them, but he let Rev. Wright tell this destructive anti-American canard to poor people's children. What kind of leadership is that from a person who says he wants all Americans to have better heath?

Only when Rev. Wright's anti-American canard about AIDS was exposed by the media and Senator Obama was embarrassed, did he speak up and denounce the false belief that "somehow" the U.S. invented AIDS to kill black people.

"Somehow" just doesn't cut it for me. This lie didn't "somehow" happen." This lie came from the KGB. In 1992, the KGB admitted they fabricated this lie; their admission was published in Izvestia; and the State Department publicized this admission on 1-14-05, near the end of Colin Powell's tenure.

I would like Senator Obama to thoroughly discredit this lie, which has been so destructive to the health of many young blacks and their babies.

Phill Wilson, executive director of the Black AIDS Institute in Los Angeles, has written:

[Conspiracy theories are] a huge barrier to HIV prevention in black communities...There's an issue around conspiracy theory and urban myths. Thus we have an epidemic raging out of control, and African Americans are being disproportionately impacted in every single sense...[Black] adolescents ages 18 to 24 accounted for nearly 80 percent of new HIV cases. The whole notion of conspiracy theories and misinformation...removes personal responsibility...If there is this boogeyman, people say, 'Why should I use condoms? Why should I use clean needles?' And if I'm an organization, 'Why should I bother with educating my folks?' The [Tuskegee] syphilis study was real, but it happened 40 years ago, and holding on to it is killing us.

Senator Obama has never explained that this lie was fabricated by the KGB, even though the head of the Russian intelligence Yevgeni Primakov admitted in front of Russian university students that the KGB was responsible for this lie.

The Russian newspaper Izvestiya reported on March 19, 1992:

"[Primakov] mentioned the well known articles printed a few years ago in our central newspapers about AIDS supposedly originating from secret Pentagon laboratories. According to Yevgeni Primakov, the articles exposing US scientists' 'crafty' plots were fabricated in KGB offices."

Senator Obama says that he is a Christian. I would like Senator Obama to respect his congregation enough to tell them the truth. To me, his continuing silence suggests contempt for his fellow parishioners.

Sometimes the truth hurts, but it is the lies that kill. This is a lie from the Soviet-era KGB, an organization that from its inception has closed or infiltrated churches and has murdered, repressed, manipulated, and exploited Christians. Abroad, the KGB used collaborationist Soviet clergymen as mouthpieces to deceive American churches and to promote Soviet foreign policy and stupid anti-American propaganda. Church leaders who told the truth and who refused to cooperate with the state security and propaganda apparatus were put in prison.

I think that a Senator who is active in his church has the responsibility to speak up. People say that Christians should try to "speak the truth to power." That should be especially true of a U.S. Senator with a degree from Harvard who is running for President of the United States.

Often the truth is hard to know; however, in this case the truth is not in doubt. The KGB admitted its own lie. Senator Obama says he is not be afraid to confront Iran; but if Senator Obama doesn't have the courage to confront his own church with an unpleasant truth, I doubt he will have the courage to confront Iran or the respect to tell me the truth.

Senator Obama, who is running for the leader of the free world, says he just wants a church where he can take his family and "worship quietly."

I think Senator Obama is just afraid. He made a big deal of his Christian faith in his book. That wasn't worshipping quietly. Now he is meeting "behind closed doors" with American religious leaders. Are the doors closed so that he can "worship quietly"?

I just want to hear this Harvard lawyer, this Christian, this Senator, this man who cares about our health, and who is running for President of the United States open his mouth and tell black boys and girls the plain truth: this vicious lie that their government made a disease to kill them came from the KGB.

I know from personal experience about this stupid, vicious KGB lie. I had a childhood friend named Brent Anderson who became critically ill in China with AIDS in 1987.

Brent had studied Chinese in college, and I think he wanted to visit China before he became too sick. When he became ill in China, his father had to pay 40,000 dollars for the US Air Force to go to China and bring him home because no airline would take him.

Brent died shortly after he returned home. The Soviet media claimed that he had been sent to China as a biological weapon against the USSR! His "mission" was supposedly to infect billions of Chinese because "China has a long border with the USSR." I read this moronic article myself in the Soviet media more than 20 years ago.

Does anyone really believe that the US government tried to spread AIDS to the USSR by sending a dying person to China? This stupid KGB lie showed a lot of contempt for its audience, Soviet people.

According to the State Department, our government put pressure on the Soviets, and the Soviets abandoned this lie in August 1987, about the time Brent died.

How could a Christian minister be spreading this destructive KGB lie so long after it has been exposed? Rev. Wright is really ignorant, or worse. And Senator Obama, who wants to be President, never said anything until he was embarrassed.

Historically, our great black American leaders opened their mouths and gave us the word of Christian truth, not lies. They defended black Americans from bigotry, hatred, and injustice. Their words of truth lifted all our people out of ignorance, fear, and prejudice.

What are you going to do, Senator Obama?

In the old days, people used to watch movies and laugh at the black person being scared by a boogieman, but Rev. Wright shows an un-Christian contempt for black boys and girls when he tells them that the American boogeyman is giving them AIDS. The black children need to hear the truth about this lie that is killing them.

A man who wants to be the leader of the free world can't just say "I didn't know."

Monday, June 09, 2008

Shakirullah's Teachers Betrayed His Trust

Fourteen-year-old Shakirullah now says the madrasah teachers at his "religious" Pakistani boarding school lied to him -- giving him "bad advice and trying to kill me along with other Muslims."

In the German novel by Erich Maria Remarque, All Quiet on the Western Front, a German high school boy named Paul and his classmates are indoctrinated by their teacher Kantorek and marched down to the recruiting station to enlist in the army.

When their first classmate is killed, Paul and his friends realize that their teacher, who behaved "in a way that cost [him] nothing," betrayed their trust.

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (6-6-08) tells the sad story of Shakirullah, a fourteen-year-old Pakistani boy from South Waziristan, who was sent by his family to a "religious" boarding school so he could study the Koran. Shakirulah's teachers also betrayed his trust.

Perhaps some day Shakirullah will have an opportunity to receive a real education and will write a Pakistani novel like All Quiet on the Western Front.

After studying the Koran at the boarding school for only half a year, Shakirullah's Pakistani teachers forced him to become a suicide bomber and sent him to Afghanistan. He was captured near a security checkpoint in Khost Province when Afghani soldiers noticed his oversized vest and stopped him from killing himself and others.

I doubt Shakirullah's mother and father had this tragic outcome in mind when they sent their beloved young son to a nearby boarding school. They were poor people in a small Pakistani border village who wanted their son to learn to read the Koran.

When he asked to see his mother and father, the abusive teachers increased their pressure on him to become a suicide bomber. They told him that he couldn't see his parents before the attack but that he would "come back" after the attack and be able to see his parents.

The soldiers at the checkpoint saved this boy's life, but thanks to his abusive Pakistani boarding school teachers, this young boy is now in prison.

Ignorant, abusive ideologues in America like the ex-professor Ward Churchill also betray their young students' trust by inculcating deliberate falsehoods rather than teaching students how to honestly search for the truth.

Propagandists like Ward Churchill, who published his "research" in a publication controlled by the Soviet and Cuban intelligence services, also behave in a way that costs them nothing when they incite their young audiences to use terrorism to overthrow a democracy.

Fourteen-year-old Shakirullah is happy to be alive and says he has been well cared for, but he misses his mother. He would like to continue his studies so he can understand how his "religious" boarding school teachers, who were nothing but child-abusers, cynically betrayed his trust and led him astray.

RFE/RL (6-6-08) reports:

Ever since he was caught three months ago in Afghanistan's Khost Province trying to carry out a suicide attack, 14-year-old Shakirullah has been pondering how he went from childhood in Pakistan to imprisonment in Kabul as an international terrorist.

Just one year ago, Shakirullah was living with his family in his native tribal region of South Waziristan, in Pakistan. The world Shakirullah knew in his village of Jandul revolved around his father, Noor Ali Khan, his mother, and three older brothers.

But Shakirullah's childhood in the rugged mountain region near the Afghan border came to a dramatic end last fall when his family sent him to a religious boarding school -- the nearby Salib madrasah in South Waziristan -- to receive instruction from conservative Islamist clerics.

The boy says teachers had taught him the Koran for half a year, then gave him an explosives-packed suicide vest and took him across the border into Afghanistan.

Shakirullah was picked up before he could blow himself up near U.S. troops, a mission that minders at his Pakistani madrasah assured him would bring him eternal life.

He is now being held at a facility run by Afghanistan's national intelligence service -- a detention center that keeps the teenager separated from older Taliban fighters, hardened criminals, and convicted murderers.

'Never Die'

When Afghan officials allowed RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan into the facility to interview Shakirullah, the boy describes a militant network in Pakistan that "forced" him to become a suicide bomber. The teen also directly implicates clerics at the madrasah as being part of that network.

"[I was attending] Salib madrasah. About 50 other people were attending," Shakirullah said. "The teachers were all from Pakistan. I was there for five or six months."

Shakirullah says that his instruction focused entirely on the Koran while he was at the madrasah. But he says the clerics started urging him to become a suicide bomber after he finished studying the Koran.

Shakirullah also says several of the teachers at the madrasah told him that he would "never die" if he sacrificed himself as a suicide bomber in neighboring Afghanistan.

According to Shakirullah, his teachers increased their pressure on him to commit a suicide-bomb attack after he asked to see his mother and father. He says his teachers told him he was not allowed to see his parents before the attack, but assured him that he would "come back" to see them afterward.

Shakirullah identifies a teacher at the madrasah named Azizullah as the person who transported him across the border into Afghanistan's Khost Province, urging him to blow himself up. He says Azizullah also provided him with an explosives-laden vest and instructed him to detonate the device when he got close to a group of U.S. soldiers.

"They told me to go to Afghanistan and carry out a suicide attack and that I would come back," Shakirullah says. "[Azizullah] didn't allow me to inform my family. I was forced to come [to Afghanistan]. When I finished [studying] the Koran, they told me, 'Now you carry out a suicide attack and you will come back to visit your parents.' Then I was brought to Afghanistan."

...Shakirullah says his Afghan jailers have treated him well and that he has not been abused or tortured during the many interrogation sessions he has undergone.

He says that in the three months since his arrest, he has had plenty of time to think about how his teachers at the madrasah took advantage of his impressionable age.

Shakirullah now says the madrasah teachers lied to him -- giving him "bad advice and trying to kill me along with other Muslims."

As for the future, Shakirullah says he is happy just to be alive and safe. But he says he wants to continue his studies to better understand how he was led astray by the madrasah teachers. The boy also says that he misses his mother and wants desperately to see her again. [Full text]

Saturday, June 07, 2008

The Obama Tape Rumor and a 2006 Political Thriller

"[T]here are a lot of good reasons to vote against Barack Obama; but what people claim Michelle Obama says on a tape that no one can produce and no one has seen isn't one of them."---Jim Geraghty, National Review Online

I reported here about an apocryphal rumor that there was a tape that would embarrass Senator Obama.

Jim Geraghty of the National Review Online (6-6-08) has now written an article called "Why Does the Michelle Obama Tape Rumor Match a 2006 Novel?"

Geraghty's article chronicles the similarities of a political thriller by the novelist and investment banker Stephen Frey to Senator Obama's candidacy. The novel even has a rumor about an alleged tape.

Geraghty writes:

Sometimes, this rumor of this alleged tape of Michelle Obama denouncing “whitey” sounds like something out of a clichéd political thriller novel.

Actually, it sounds exactly like something out of a clichéd political thriller novel. Specifically, Stephen Frey’s The Power Broker, published in 2006 by Ballantine Books.

A major plot line of the novel is the presidential campaign of Democrat Jesse Wood, aiming to be the country’s first African American president — “Wood was handsome, smart, charismatic, and being mentioned increasingly often in the press as someone who could unite a twenty-first century America growing more, not less, racially and economically divided.” (p.35)

He’s a U.S. Senator from New York and former senior partner at a prestigious law firm. His backers include “some of the old Black Panthers.” He wants to make Puerto Rico a state, and a recurring figure in his campaign is a controversial minister from Philadelphia called “Jefferson Roundtree.”

And by page 130, his opponents find a videotape that could ruin his candidacy…

Geraghty concludes:

Either author Stephen Frey is clairvoyant, writing this book in 2006. Or this is one of the all time amazing coincidences. Or whoever started this rumor got the idea from a novel...

Why is a conservative blogger putting this much effort into dispelling a rumor that, on paper at least, would hurt Obama? Because those who prefer a president besides Obama should not go through the summer and fall convinced that a magic-bullet devastating tape is going to appear as an October surprise to save the day.

Also, there are a lot of good reasons to vote against Barack Obama; but what people claim Michelle Obama says on a tape that no one can produce and no one has seen isn't one of them. [Full text]

Blogger AJStrata speculates about political skullduggery here, and I chip in my two-cents worth in several comments.

UPDATE: A former CIA employee named Larry Johnson, who has promoted this tape rumor, gives the latest version of his side of the story here.