Chas Freeman Shows His Ugly Side

On March 11, the fifth anniversary of the Muslim terror attacks on Madrid, I found in my inbox an excited email from a Palestinian group urging Americans to wake up -- the "threat" of the world Zionist conspiracy is real. I very nearly deleted it until I realized it contained news of the withdrawal of Charles Freeman from his proposed appointment as director of the National Intelligence Council. His statement, published on March 10 in the Wall Street Journal, indicates he is removing himself from the nomination because he feels he has been irrevocably smeared by a "powerful lobby."

Woo-hoo! It's the Jooze again. Let me provide some background from my perspective over here in the United Kingdom. Right now the nation is in shock over the three murders, in rapid succession, of two British soldiers and a policeman in Northern Ireland. Two different terrorist groups have claimed responsibility. It is appropriate that the people of Great Britain, its leaders, and its media spend a great deal of time agonizing over this new state of affairs. After all, in the past year we have heard the schizophrenic media and politicians suggesting we hug a terrorist and listen to his grievances, and we have had judges in England urging the public to give former Guantanamo prisoner Binyam Mohamed a wonderful life. It is gratifying to see that Britons are expressing outrage over the murderous activities of the Real IRA.

How does this link to the Freeman story? In the past fortnight various writers, including Melanie Phillips, have been discussing the ill-advised appointment of Charles Freeman to the National Intelligence Council post. Right now there are those out there who believe the head of a security agency should have a clear understanding of Islamic and other terror networks and be, as it were, squeaky clean.

I have tried to give Freeman the benefit of the doubt: many critics in the past few weeks have despaired over his close association with Saudi Arabian officials. Well, I reply, the Bush family was not exactly in estrangement from the Saudis. When the head of Time Warner introduced Donald Rumsfeld at a major dinner bash during the heyday of the Bush administration, Prince Bandar was the guest of honor. In fact, in March 2009 a 75-year-old Saudi woman is to be flogged 40 times for meeting with two men in her flat; the world seems unconcerned and continues to do business with Saudi Arabia.

I decided to stand back and breathe deeply when Newsmax, the Weekly Standard, Fox News, and various right-wing Israeli bloggers fumed about Freeman's connection with the Middle East Policy Council. It published "The Israel Lobby and U.S. Foreign Policy" by John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, regarded by many as a thinly veiled anti-Semitic rant wrapped in a respectable academic screed spreading the myth of war-mongering Jews running the world.

Newsmax, which I often dismiss as scare-mongering, reported in early March:

The MEPC's political action group publishes a book that teaches children that Muslims discovered the New World. ... When explorers reached the New World, according to the sources, they met "Iroquois and Algonquin chiefs with names like Abdul-Rahim and Abdallah Ibn Malik."

Newsmax adds:

[Freeman] said in an interview with the Associated Press less than a month after Sept. 11 that he was still "discussing proposals with the Binladen Group -- and that won't change.