Thursday, May 19, 2022

Where in the world is Former President Barack Obama? I have a question for him.

July 19, 2020 by  
Filed under News, Opinion, Politics, Weekly Columns

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( For the last several years, Obama-friendly publications have been running headlines along the lines of “Where is Barack Obama?” or “Where in the World is Barack Obama?”

For the most part, these were written in the spirt of the Simon & Garfunkle lament in “Mrs. Robinson,” “Where have you gone, Joe Dimaggio?” In either case, our nation was supposed to be turning our lonely eyes to this hero of days gone by.

Lately, however, the question of Obama’s whereabouts has become more literal. Where exactly is he? Where has he gone to labor away on his long overdue and overpaid memoir? Insiders, I am told, worry about his mental health and his fondness for a stiff drink.

Barack Obama’s elusiveness should not surprise. He has a habit of disappearing, and the media have a habit of not inquiring too hard into where he has gone, most memorably on the night of Sept. 11, 2012.

Much has been written about the various blunders that led to the attack on the American consulate in Benghazi on Sept. 11, 2012. Not until 2016, however, when the indefatigable Ken Timmerman released his book “Deception,” subtitled “The Making of the Youtube Video Hillary and Obama Blamed for Benghazi,” did anyone write in depth about the filmmaker Obama held responsible for those attacks. That filmmaker would be Nakoula Basseley Nakoula.

Timmerman describes the White House response to Nakoula’s video as “disgraceful, un-American, illegal, and a clear violation of Nakoula’s constitutional rights.”Where in the world is Former President Barack Obama? I have a question for him.

He does not overstate the case. If anything, the major media’s treatment of Nakoula was more disgraceful. In the aftermath of Benghazi, journalists shamelessly conspired with the White House to sell a conspicuously false story that put an innocent man in prison. But then again, as George Zimmerman could attest, in an election year, bad things happened to good people.

The dissembling began while the consulate was in flames and the attack still underway. Needing to draw attention away from the administration’s duplicitous meddling in Libyan affairs, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton released a memo on the night of Sept. 11 blaming the attack on some “inflammatory material posted on the Internet.”

Obama’s role in the creation of this storyline has never been explored for the simple reason that no one knows where Obama was that night or what he did.

Incredibly, for eight months after the attack, not a single reporter asked the president or a spokesman the simple question Chris Wallace of Fox News finally posed on May 19, 2013, “What did the president do the rest of that night to pursue Benghazi?”

The man Wallace questioned was Dan Pfeiffer, a senior adviser to the president. A well-schooled flack, Pfeiffer dismissed Obama’s whereabouts that night as “irrelevant.”

Wallace wasn’t buying. “No one knows where he was, or how he was involved, or who told him there were no forces,” he pressed. Refusing to answer, the defiant Pfeiffer called Wallace’s line of questioning “offensive.” And that was that, another scandal dodged.

Equally incredibly, a week would go by after the attack on the consulate before Obama addressed the cause of it. Knowing his base, Obama went looking for a reliably clueless audience to hear his take on Benghazi and found one, of all places, at the Ed Sullivan Theater in New York, home of the “Late Show with David Letterman.”

Letterman had little use for organized religion. A year after Benghazi, for instance, he would say of Pope Francis’ appearance at World Youth Day, “I’m telling you, if there’s anything the kids can’t get enough of, it’s a 76-year-old virgin. Come on! World Youth Day. Or as the Vatican calls it, salute to altar boys.”

Catholicism, like Mormonism or Christian evangelicalism, was fair game for the left. Islam wasn’t. Obama knew he could count on Letterman to spare the “Prophet Muhammad” his usual irreverence.

“Here’s what happened,” Obama told his wide-eyed host a week after the assault. “You had a video that was released by somebody who lives here, sort of a shadowy character who – who made an extremely offensive video directed at Muhammad and Islam.”

Letterman reeled back in disbelief. “Making fun of the Prophet Muhammad!” he said solemnly. “Making fun of the Prophet Muhammad,” confirmed Obama.

The same president who defended the First Amendment rights of the Ground Zero imam showed a shocking indifference to those of Nakoula, a Christian and U.S. citizen of long standing.

With the media cheering on the administration, federal probation officers took Nakoula into custody on Sept. 15 and held him in secret without charge or without access to an attorney, “an extrajudicial prisoner in the United States of America,” writes Timmerman.

Nakoula was vulnerable. He was on parole for his involvement in a check-kiting scheme. Even more worrisome, he had quietly cooperated with the feds and fingered the scheme’s ringleader.

Less than 48 hours after Hillary Clinton first alluded to Nakoula’s video, someone in the Obama administration unsealed the indictment and exposed Nakoula to retaliation.

“Why did the government release the deal?” Nakoula asked me when I first spoke to him after his year in prison. “Why did they put my life in danger?”

I would still like to ask Obama. I just don’t know where to find him.

Written by Jack Cashill

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