- The Washington Times - Tuesday, September 14, 2010

BEDSIDE READING

It’s new for the stack of stuff to be read on those long, thoughtful autumnal nights. And it’s free. As detailed in The Washington Times national security editor Bill Gertz’s front-page report, the Team B II report “Shariah: The Threat to America” is being introduced Wednesday, ushered in at the U.S. Capitol by the primary authors and a trio of Republicans - Reps. Trent Franks of Arizona, Michele Bachmann of Minnesota and Pete Hoekstra of Michigan.

The 177-page report exposes the clear threats and present dangers posed by Shariah, the Islamic legal-political-military doctrine, and is authored by, among 17 others, Center for Security Policy President Frank Gaffney, former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence Lt. Gen. William G. “Jerry” Boykin and R. James Woolsey, former director of the CIA. The report will be released as a softcover book next month. But hello. As of 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, the content will be available online to download - for free - at www.shariahthethreat.com.

“I do a lot of public speaking and have found that my audiences are desperate to find out what’s going on, when they compare what their common sense tells them to their government’s characterization of the threat we face,” Mr. Gaffney tells Inside the Beltway.

“They want the dots connected, and they know it’s imperative that America gets it right on this threat. They also want to know what they can do about it. We tried to address both those sides in this book, and we’ve got recommendations from citizens who want to be involved,” he adds.

MATCHES THE SAXOPHONE

Manhattan is bracing for the upcoming, four-day Clinton Global Initiative, described as “a room filled with the most innovative, action-oriented, and socially responsible leaders in the world.” Organizer -in-chief former President Bill Clinton - whose socially responsible guests include Barbra Streisand and Demi Moore - will appear Thursday on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” to chat up the mighty big doings, his sixth appearance on the program.

“Only two more appearances and he gets a gold jacket. Then, he’ll have accomplished something,” observes host Jon Stewart.

WAVE BYE-BYE

“Need a Job? Fire Pelosi!”

Motto emblazoned across the broad sides of the Republican National Committee’s new Fire Pelosi Bus, which embarks on a 14,000-mile, 100-city, coast-to-coast get-out-the-vote tour of the nation on Wednesday morning. The full-size, Red State red-painted vehicle will be launched with much ado by RNC Chairman Michael S. Steele and Rep. Pete Sessions of Texas. Track the whereabouts of the bus named for House Speaker Nancy Pelosi here: www.firepelosibus.com

NEVER FORGET

Opening Wednesday on the A Ring, third floor of the Pentagon: the hugely expanded Prisoner of War/Missing in Action Corridor, to honor the more than 88,000 Americans missing since World War II. Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Michele Flournoy escorts journalists and guests - including a World War II POW - around for a look-see. The exhibit is now part of the Pentagon public tour and is the first upgrade since the 1980s.

“It’s huge,” says Defense Department spokesman Larry Greer. “The artifacts and mementos include items POWs themselves smuggled out when they were freed. There are books, letters from families, bumper stickers and items from crash excavations and burial sites. This exhibit goes the distance of an entire corridor.”

FUNDING FONDUE

Only in the nation’s capital, perhaps. The Project on Government Oversight’s monthly Muckrakers’ Happy Hour at a svelte watering hole on Wednesday features the usual cast of journalists, nongovernmental organization do-gooders and Capitol Hill staffers swirling their dirty martinis around and talking shop, with an added incentive.

“Thanks to a grant from the Fund for Constitutional Government, light appetizers will be provided,” the group advises prospective revelers.

But wait. There’s an hors d’oeuvres grant floating around out there, like for Sevruga caviar and, oh, foie gras? Uh, these are journalists we’re talking about here.

“It is not that big of a grant, so it usually gets you some barbecue wings and nachos,” explains spokesman Keith Rutter.

WHAT’S UP, DOC?

The “tea party” idea is handy enough to go beyond Colonial themes. Witness the National Doctors Tea Party rally in Salt Lake City on Saturday, staged in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. Senate hopeful Sharron Angle from Nevada is the featured speaker and the attending docs and nurses have been told to wear their white coats or scrubs. The rally calls “for total defunding and repeal of ObamaCare,” organizers say.

“It is time to let people know why physicians believe the Obama administration is taking medicine in the wrong direction,” says spokesman Dr. Wayne Iverson, a California cardiologist.

POLL DU JOUR

- 57 percent of Americans say Iraq is “better off” now than before U.S. troops arrived in 2003.

- 19 percent say the nation is “worse off”; 24 percent are not sure.

- 49 percent say the war in Iraq was “worth fighting.”

- 38 percent say it was not worth fighting; 14 percent are not sure.

- 39 percent say the war made the U.S. “safer.”

- 35 percent say it is now “less safe”; 26 percent are not sure.

Source: BBC World News/Harris Poll of 2,340 adult Americans conducted Aug. 19-23 and released Tuesday.

News, blues, views, boos to jharper@washingtontimes.com