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Monday, April 21, 2008
Aaron Klein's Newest Terrorist Buddy, Or, What's Wrong With This Picture?
Topic: WorldNetDaily

WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein has gotten a lot of mileage out of his guilt-by-association attacks on Barack Obama. The latest is a April 14 article in which he touts an interview by him and radio host John Batchelor in which Ahmed Yousuf, "Hamas' top political adviser in the Gaza Strip," expressed support for Obama. This has gotten some traction: John McCain has built a fundraising appeal around it, and NewsBusters' Warner Todd Huston ponders why it hasn't gotten even more coverage. 

Perhaps because there are too many unanswered questions about this interview -- specifically, the motivations of all involved.

First of all, why would a Hamas representative have a friendly conversation with two conservatives -- Klein and Batchelor -- who despise both Hamas and Obama? As one profile points out, Batchelor "does not stray far from the political leanings of Laura Ingraham and some of his other WABC counterparts," which translates to a strong pro-Israel stance. He has also written an attack piece on Obama for the conservative Human Events.

Klein, an orthodox Jew, has expressed his disdain for Hamas, even criticizing Condoleezza Rice for calling it a "resistance" movement while pointing out that the State Department "labels Hamas a terrorist organization. And of course, Klein hates Obama even more than Batchelor, to the point of writing dishonestly about him: As we noted, while Klein has been trying to tie Obama to Hamas since January, it wasn't until his April 14 article on the Yousuf interview that he told his readers that Obama opposes negotiating with Hamas.

Further, as we've also detailed, Klein has a coterie of terrorists he calls on -- compiled in his recent book -- all of whom conveniently reinforce conservative talking points and attack liberals.

In other words, Yousuf has no obvious motivation to talk to Batchelor and Klein, and Batchelor and Klein have every motivation to smear Obama. Was there a quid pro quo between Yousuf and his interviewers? Have Batchelor and Klein considered the possibility that Yousuf is using them? After all, as author Ron Suskind reported, CIA analysts agreed that a message Osama bin Laden released just before the 2004 presidential election, which conservatives seized upon to paint as an endorsement of John Kerry, "was clearly designed to assist the President's reelection." Indeed, this trio may very well be working together toward a shared goal -- defeat of Obama.

This "endorsement" should be considered a murky, premeditated political hit job until Batchelor and Klein can otherwise explain themselves.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:36 AM EDT
Updated: Monday, April 21, 2008 1:16 PM EDT

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