- The Washington Times - Monday, September 12, 2011

KING PIN

Liberal critics who dither over Rep. Peter T. King’s vigorous no-nonsense stand against Islamic radicalization take note: The New York Republican and chairman of the Committee on Homeland Security testifies in London on Tuesday before the British House of Commons Select Committee on Home Affairs. Mr. King — who treats national security with a strong and practical hand — will be the first member of Congress to testify before a parliamentary hearing in Britain.

“While I have consistently stated the overwhelming majority of Muslim-Americans are outstanding people, the reality is that radicalization within the Muslim-American community by al Qaeda and its affiliates is a real threat to the security of our homeland. Fortunately, the Obama administration recognizes this,” Mr. King says, adding that he’s honored to share his knowledge with the Brits, who have their own challenges.

“This is a unique opportunity to create an unbreakable bond between Westminster and Washington and more specifically between the Homeland Security Committee and the Home Affairs Select Committee,” observes Keith Vaz, member of Parliament and chairman of the committee. “I hope his visit will be the start of a close relationship between our two committees.”

Way to go, gentlemen.

BECKTOPIA

“Hello America, and welcome to the first episode, and to the future. This is GBTV, and the truth. … We don’t treat you like morons.”

Those were Glenn Beck’s first words on the debut of his new, high-definition network at 5 p.m. Monday. The centerpiece is the daily two-hour “Glenn Beck Program,” broadcast live from a quirky New York City set that includes model airplanes, a chalkboard, an Oriental rug, vintage radios, old telephones, an antenna TV, multiple video screens and a rapt studio audience. The forward-thinking Mr. Beck charges $5 a month for online access to this hybrid media venture, which has drawn attention from industry insiders for both its business model and big intentions. Details here: www.gbtv.com.

THE ENDORSEMENT DERBY

Let the kingmaking begin. The “significant” endorsement derby has begun in earnest among Republican presidential hopefuls in the past 24 hours. Two have added jewels to their crowns. Former presidential hopeful Tim Pawlenty has thrown his support to Mitt Romney, declaring him “alone among contenders” who can slay the evil economic dragons. Meanwhile, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal has endorsed Texas. Gov. Rick Perry.

But we’re just getting started here. Though the “mighty eight” candidates appear like clockwork at high-profile debates and town halls, there are some 30 noteworthy Republican hopefuls — including the ever fascinating and mysterious Sarah Palin — who can draw press attention and steer the public discourse with a mere tweet. One sampling of the wide-ranging field can be seen here: https://2012dreamticket.com.

Who will win Rudolph W. Giuliani’s coveted endorsement? How about a nod from Donald Trump, John Bolton, Jeb Bush or New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie? The mind reels. Inside the Beltway readers who have notions or predictions about potential matchups — who’s going to endorse whom — send them along, please.

CZECH LIST

Better late than never. Seventy years after Nazi troops destroyed it, a memorial statue honoring President Woodrow Wilson returns to its old location in Prague, rebuilt and spiffed up, to recognize the former president’s role in helping the Czech people achieve independence in 1918.

“The Czech people never forgot which country and which president did so much to secure their independence,” says Robert Doubek, director of American Friends of the Czech Republic, and director of the project.

It’s evolved into a four-day event in early October, complete with golf tournament, dramatic unveiling and a swank gala chaired by former Czech President Vaclav Havel and former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright. Yes, it’s in Prague, with U.S. Ambassador Norman Eisen and Czech Ambassador Petr Gandalovic in attendance. The original Wilson Monument, which stood in front of Prague’s main train station, was dedicated on July 4, 1928.

CIVIL (WAR) BEHAVIOR

Yes, most everyone knows the details of the Gettysburg Address or the Battle of Antietam. But there’s always a back story. Maryland outdoorsman, humorist and historian Tim Rowland has penned “Strange and Obscure Stories of the Civil War,” published by Skyhorse and on bookshelves Sept. 27.

These are the Civil War stories and misadventures that “don’t get told,” Mr. Rowland says — like the number of horses killed in conflict, the “medieval slugfest” that was the Battle of Franklin, Tenn., an analysis of the role coffee played in the Northern victory and this particular vignette:

“Two women successfully posed as men and served as soldiers, until they made a major mistake — they got drunk and fell in a creek, which attracted the attention of the authorities.”

POLL DU JOUR

• 75 percent of Republican voters would like to see their party nominate a presidential candidate who can beat President Obama.

• 80 percent of tea party supporters and 78 percent of conservatives agree.

• 24 percent overall would prefer a candidate who agrees with them on important issues.

• 20 percent of tea partyers and 22 percent of conservatives agree.

• 42 percent overall say Texas. Gov. Rick Perry has “the best chance” of beating Mr. Obama in the 2012 election.

• 26 percent cite Mitt Romney and 7 percent Sarah Palin.

Rep. Ron Paul, Rep. Michele Bachmann and Newt Gingrich each were cited by 5 percent, Herman Cain by 3 percent, Jon Huntsman Jr. by 1 percent.

Source: A CNN/ORC Poll of 1,038 U.S. adults conducted Sept. 9 to 11, which included a sampling of 446 Republicans.

Endorsements, complaints, the polite pitter-patter of applause to [email protected]


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