A Nov. 2 WorldNetDaily article by Aaron Klein purports to quote "senior terrorist leaders" who "ay they hope Americans sweep the Democrats into power because of the party's position on withdrawing from Iraq." But Klein is unusually cozy with the terrorists he quotes, and they have a history of popping up to reinforce conservative talking points.
For instance, Jihad Jaara, who Klein describes as "a senior member of the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades" and who he quotes here as saying, "Of course Americans should vote Democrat," did a cozy sit-down interview with Klein and radio host Rusty Humphries that aired in January.
Abu Ayman, an Islamic Jihad leader in Jenin who Klein quotes as saying that he is "emboldened" by those in America who compare the war in Iraq to Vietnam, is positively chatty with Klein. Just three days earlier, Klein quoted Ayman saying that Ramadan prayers "helped the mujahedeen fighters to mark a great victory" over the U.S. in Iraq.
Upon the death of an American teenager, Daniel Wultz, from injuries suffered in a suicide bombing in Israel in May, Klein reported that Ayman "threatened all Americans and Jews worldwide and expressed regret Wultz was not imediately killed in the blast."
Another terrorist confidante of Klein's is Abu Abdullah of Hamas, whom Klein quotes as saying that a U.S. withdrawal from Iraq would "convince those among the Palestinians who still have doubts in the efficiency of the resistance." In an Oct. 14 article, Klein quotes Abdullah as claiming that Hamas is "open" to attacking the U.S. And as part of Klein's crusade against Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert, he quoted Abdullah in a July 7 article as touting the range of Hamas missiles.
WND was more than happy to play partisan with Klein's article. A Nov. 3 column by Joseph Farah used the article to attack Democrats, claiming that "the terrorists really do want the Democrats to win."
Nowhere in Klein's article does he mention that he may be counterproductive. You may recall that conservatives spun a video released by Osama bin Laden shortly before the 2004 presidential election as evidence that bin Laden supported the election of Democrat John Kerry. In fact, in his book "The One Percent Doctrine," author Ron Suskind reported that CIA analysts agreed that "bin Laden's message was clearly designed to assist the President's reelection."
When CNN aired a video of an insurgent sniper in Iraq targeting U.S. soldiers, conservatives rushed to attack CNN for it, claiming that it was airing terrorist propaganda. Yet Klein's frequent consorting with terrorists gets no notice from these same conservatives, though he is doing the exact same thing -- repeating terrorist propaganda. Why?
Do the terrorists Klein hangs out with know that he's just using them, promoting their statements to whip up conservative sentiment against them and to smear the political enemies of Klein and his employer? Or are they in on Klein's game?
UPDATE: Regarding Jarra, Klein notes that he is living in exile in Ireland, but does not explain how he can be a "senior terrorist leader" though he lives so far from the Middle East. Klein has also done a previous interview with Jarra in which he asks if the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades "used pages of the Bible as toilet paper" during a 2002 siege of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem.
UPDATE 2: Klein also pulled this stunt in 2004, claiming that Yasser Arafat had endorsed John Kerry.
UPDATE 3: A more thorough examination of Klein's article is here.