- The Washington Times - Thursday, August 17, 2006

Three pro-terror demonstrations held last Saturday — at the White House in Washington, D.C., in San Francisco and Los Angeles — provided a rare insight into the global networks that support jihadi Islamic fascists.

Only a few thousand showed up, according to D.C. police. After all, it is hard to bring out the masses when your poster boy is Sheik Hassan Nasrallah of Hezbollah. Sheik Nasrallah and his puppetmaster, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, repeatedly call for “Death to Israel, Death to America.” Hezbollah is responsible for the deaths, kidnapping and torture of hundreds of Americans.

On the same day, pro-Hezbollah, anti-U.S. and anti-Israel demonstrations took place in the streets of Mombasa, Kenya; Madrid, Spain; Damascus, Syria; Islamist-controlled Mogadishu, Somalia; Dhaka, Bangladesh; Karachi, Pakistan; and Jakarta, Indonesia, to name just a few.

The U.S. demonstrations were organized by ANSWER — which stands for Act Now to Stop War and End Racism — a coalition of leftists, “antiwar” and Hamas — and Hezbollah-supporting Arab Muslim organizations, including the National Council of Arab Americans (NCA), the Muslim American Society and the Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee.

There are important lessons to be learned from the ANSWER demonstrations. With security services worldwide working to wrap up the aborted London attacks, policymakers need to recognize the public dimension of the terror war — the battlefront of symbols, images and ideas and their influence on diplomacy and warfare. So far, jihadi supporters seem to have the upper hand.

During the Cold War, Soviet-funded front organizations tried to disarm the West, whether by supporting the North Vietnamese or trying to prevent deployment of U.S. Pershing missiles in Europe. Today’s jihadi supporters work to delegitimize any effort to protect against terrorist networks. Tracking the leadership and funding of such networks is a counterterrorist policy imperative.

There is a lesson to be learned about moderate and radical Muslims. No doubt, the tip that led to the bust-up of the most recent terror attempt in London demonstrates the importance of high quality intelligence-gathering, for which it is vital to keep good relations in the Muslim community. It is crucial to boost moderate Muslims and learn to distinguish between terrorist organizers, their unwitting prey within the Muslim community, and alternative, moderate Muslim leaders that seek to practice and teach Islam as a religion rather than a tool for promoting hatred.

At the same time, it is crucial to recognize that some in the Muslim community and among leftist organizations such as ANSWER operate a global network that not only provides public support to the likes of Hezbollah but may provide a recruitment pool for suspected terrorists such as those apprehended in Great Britain and Michigan.

It is also important to understand precisely what causes ANSWER serves. The organizer of Saturday’s outrage was Brian Becker, leader of the Liberation and Socialism Party, which recently split from the (Stalinist) World Workers’ Party.

ANSWER supports and promotes jihadi terrorism and seeks to help defeat the U.S. efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan. Its leaders also refuse to acknowledge Hamas and Hezbollah terrorism and advocacy of the destruction of the State of Israel.

As police in Britain, Italy, and Ohio were busy arresting suspected airliner bombers, money launderers, and untraceable detonator/ cell phone providers, the ANSWER demonstrations demanded the U.S. lay off terrorists, close Guantanamo, and keep the country’s borders open.

A recent ANSWER demonstration in San Francisco featured chants of “Palestine will be free from the river to the sea” and “Palestine is our country, the Jews are our dogs.” An ANSWER spokesman refused to condemn such hate speech, according to a report by Mark Matthews of San Francisco’s ABC7.

A key player in organizing this past weekend’s hate fest was Ramsey Clark, former attorney general under President Lyndon B. Johnson, who never met a dictator he didn’t like. Mr. Clark justified the Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini’s hostage taking in the U.S. Embassy in Tehran and hobnobbed with Libya’s Moammar Gadhafi. He is also connected with Lyndon LaRouche. According to Wikipedia, Mr. LaRouche’s critics have characterized him as a fascistic, homophobic, anti-Jewish cult leader.

For more than 12 years, Mr. Clark has been connected to the Workers World Party (WWP), which splintered from the Trotskyite movement in the 1950s and became Orthodox Stalinist. The WWP supported China’s repression of Tibet, the Tiananmen Square massacre and the communist coup against Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev.

Mr. Clark represented Radovan Karadzic, an indicted Bosnian Serb war criminal and met with former Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic when he was a wanted man in Belgrade, calling him “brave, objective and moral.” In 1990, Mr. Clark led a WWP effort to prevent former President George H.W. Bush from going after Saddam. He has since never ceased advocating for the mustachioed dictator.

Other ANSWER members include extreme old and “new left” activists, from Stalinists to Maoists, and such “blasts from the past” as the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP) and the Trotskyite Socialist Workers Party. ANSWER’s “big tent” also includes pro-Saddam mouthpieces; Palestinian propagandists; North Korean front organizations; and 1960s “flower children” who never grew up.

ANSWER founders also include the National Lawyers league, founded by the Communist Party USA (CPUSA); the Nicaragua Network and the Nicaragua Solidarity Committee, a leading pro-Sandinista organization. ANSWER’s connections to North Korea are also quite pronounced, as the coalition includes the Pyongyang-inspired Korea Truth Commission and the Congress for Korean Reunification, among others.

In the past, such people were called a Fifth Column, after the pro-fascist forces in Republican Madrid during the Spanish Civil War of the 1930s. Today’s Fifth Column glorifies the global jihad against the West. ANSWER and its co-sponsors hide behind slogans decrying civilian losses in Lebanon, while ignoring the murder of American soldiers and Israeli civilians (many of them Arab Israelis) committed by Hamas and Hezbollah.

Ariel Cohen is senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

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