Obama Lacks a Moral Compass
Monday, October 20, 2008
By: Ronald Kessler
With the election two weeks away, one thing has become clear: Barack
Obama is not only the most liberal presidential candidate in recent
memory, he lacks a moral compass.
How else does one explain his sitting in the pews of the Rev.
Jeremiah Wright's church as Wright spews forth hateful fabrications
about America, whites, and Israel? How else explain his being
"friendly" with admitted domestic terrorist William Ayers, who told
the New York Times he does not rule out engaging in bombings again?
In a chilling video on YouTube, Larry Grathwohl, a former member of
the Weather Underground which Ayers helped found, says the
organization planned to take over the U.S. government and give parts
of the country to Russia, Cuba, North Vietnam, and China. The plans
included "re-educating" Americans as Marxist-Leninist revolutionaries.
In the video, Grathwohl says he asked 25 leaders of the Weather
Underground who were discussing the plans, "Well, what is going to
happen to those people that we can't re-educate, that are die-hard
The reply, says Grathwohl, was that they would "have to be
eliminated." When he pursued the question further, they estimated
that "they'd have to eliminate 25 million people in these
re-education centers. And when I say eliminate, I mean kill 25
As repugnant as Obama's relationship with Ayers is, the fact that for
two decades Obama attended a church where paranoid hatred of America
was preached on a regular basis is more telling. The senator counted
as his minister, friend, and advisor a man who says that America
created the AIDS virus to kill blacks, puts blacks in prison rather
than killing them off, and deserved to be attacked on 9/11 because of
When the press finally picked up on stories Newsmax was running on
Reverend Wright, Obama said he would not have belonged to the church
if he had regularly heard Wright's hate-filled statements. Yet when
he announced for the presidency, Obama disinvited Wright from giving
an invocation because his sermons can get "kind of rough." Why did
Obama not resign from the church then?
Last December, Wright gave an award to Louis Farrakhan for lifetime
achievement. Why did Obama not resign then? Instead, after Newsmax
broke the story on Jan. 14, Obama dissembled about the issue, saying
the award was for Farrakhan's work with ex-offenders. Neither the
presentation nor the article about it in the church magazine
mentioned anything about ex-offenders.
The truth is that Obama joined the church and adopted Wright as his
friend and mentor because he feels an affinity for Wright's radical
views. Why else would he expose his kids to Wright's "God d America"
tirades? Michelle Obama's comment that, for the first time in her
adult life, she feels proud of America, highlights the fact that she
has the same blame-America-first mentality Wright promotes.
As with his minister, Obama repudiated Ayers only when press
disclosures became too embarrassing.
As Max Noel, a former FBI agent who worked the Weather Underground
case, tells me, "They [the Weather Underground] were a violent,
violent, anti-government, domestic terrorist organization. Obama has
not only associated with those people, he continued associating with
racist people like his minister Jeremiah Wright over a period of 20
years. I don't think that's by happenstance. It's just amazing to me.
The American people are being led by the nose by people who say this
In fact, Oliver "Buck" Revell, a former associate deputy director of
the FBI who at one time oversaw the applicant and hiring process at
the bureau, tells me the FBI would not hire such an individual as an agent.
"One of the principal purposes of the background investigation is to
determine who an applicant associated with and the degree of
association with any questionable associates," Revell says. "Obama
would certainly not have been hired on my watch."
The Obama campaign has refused to say when Obama became aware of
Ayers' terrorist background. When Obama began going to Columbia
University in 1981, both Ayers and his future wife Bernardine Dohrn,
an FBI most wanted fugitive, were frequently in the news. Ayers'
violent past was well known in Chicago, where he was quoted regularly
and described as a former radical and former fugitive.
Ayers orchestrated an event at his home that launched Obama's
political career. Obama continued to serve on the board of the Woods
Fund of Chicago with Ayers for more than a year after Ayers expressed
regret in the New York Times for not bombing more people.
According to Grathwohl, Ayers and Dohrn "probably had the most
authority" within the Weather Underground.
Last April, Obama defended his relationship with Ayers. Obama said in
a Democratic debate that he is also friendly with Rep. Tom Coburn
(R-Okla.), whom he described as favoring the death penalty for those
who carry out abortions.
"Do I need to apologize for Mr. Coburn's statements?" Obama asked.
"Because certainly I don't agree with those, either."
Radical as Coburn's position may be, he was proposing legislation to
be passed by Congress. That is quite different from Ayers's admission
that he bombed innocent people in violation of criminal law and that
he wished he had set off more bombs.
Instead of finding ways to excuse them, Obama should have been
denouncing both Wright and Ayers. Instead of voting "present" 130
times in the Illinois Senate, he should have been doing his job and
taking a stand.
As Karl Rove has told me, "The public wants a president with
convictions and the courage to act on them. They want a leader who is
steady and firm, who can withstand strong political headwinds and
won't be blown about by events."
As crushing as the financial crisis has been, it seems to me unlikely
that Americans will send to the White House a man whose views are not
only left of center but who doesn't know right from wrong.
Ronald Kessler is chief Washington correspondent of Newsmax.com.
Society needs to remember the victims of terrorist acts
October 20, 2008
Over the last several months, most of us have read or heard stories
about a 1960's radical named William Ayers. You have probably been
reminded that he formed a domestic terrorist group known first as the
Weathermen and later as the Weather Underground. Stories have
circulated about the robberies and bombings of government buildings
for which this group was responsible.
A few of the articles have even mentioned some of the other more
notable Weather Underground members, such as Bernadine Dohrn and
Katherine Boudin. However, I will bet that you never heard of Waverly
"Chipper" Brown, Ed O'Grady, Joe Trombino, Pete Paige and Artie
Keenan. They are the true American heroes and the ones I wish to
remember and honor today.
On this date, 27 years ago, each of those men were hard-working,
respectable citizens and each was working at his job. Trombino and
Paige were Brink's Security guards who were going about their
business of picking up money from a bank located at a mall near Nyack, N.Y.
As they exited the bank, a group of men known as "The Family"
ambushed them. Most of the assailants were linked to the Black
Liberation Army, a radical political group that had aligned itself
with the Weather Underground.
Armed with shotguns and automatic rifles, the ambushers immediately
began shooting at the security guards. Forty-nine year-old Paige was
murdered, and 48-year-old Trombino had his arm blown off. Although
this was the first and only contact with a terrorist group for Paige,
it would not be so for Trombino. He would later be killed at the
World Trade Center during the 9/11 attacks.
After this group shot and robbed the security guards, they fled to a
nearby U-Haul truck that was occupied by members of the Weather
Underground for their getaway.
Brown, O'Grady, and Keenan all worked for the Nyack Police
Department. O'Grady was a 33-year-old sergeant who had served as a
Marine in Vietnam. Brown was a very popular 45-year-old officer in
the community, and Keenan was a detective.
All of them would be involved in the stop of a U-Haul truck that was
described as a possible robbery getaway vehicle. As Katherine Boudin
exited the vehicle, she told the cops to put their guns away, and she
protested their innocence. At about that same time, six men burst out
the rear doors of the truck and began firing hundreds of rounds at
the police officers with automatic weapons. Hit with multiple rounds,
Brown and O'Grady were killed. Keenan was wounded.
Nyack is a small community of approximately 6,000 residents and was
obviously shaken by the events that occurred on Oct. 20, 1981. It is
the kind of community that thought, "It can't happen here." That
belief was shattered in just a few short moments.
The point of recounting this incident is not to heighten a sense of
fear over domestic terrorism or make any declarations over what our
future may hold in terms of national security at home or abroad. I
simply feel that this tragic incident is rarely described in a way
that underscores the sacrifice made by the police and security
professionals that day. I am certain that the nine children of the
three men who were murdered on that day, and many others in Nyack,
will be remembering those horrific events on this anniversary date.
Let us do the same.
Naperville Police Chief David Dial's column appears every other Monday.