October 23, 2008

John McCain and..Hezbollah?

While people are assailing Senator Barack Obama for serving on a board with William Ayers, I thought I'd return the favor to the GOP and post some stuff about John McCain's "associations."

Associations like Ali Jawad, who served on the McCain Campaign in Michigan on the campaign's Michigan Finance Committee.
"Apparently he is a well known member of the Arab-American community in Dearborn," a McCain staffer tells ABC News. "He is also a known Republican donor and former Bush finance committee member."
Jawad is president of Armada Oil & Gas Company and founder of the Lebanese American Heritage Club.

Back in 2002, Ali Jawad argued that Hezbollah is NOT a terrorist organization.

Here is a quote from an Arab-American newsletter:
Jawad, 45, rejects talk that Hezbollah is a terrorist organization that should be shunned by the United States and other governments.

"Killing innocent people -- we reject that," he said. "Hezbollah does not fit this category. It has protected its people."
Debbie Schlussel did some digging, and here's what she learned about Ali Jawad:
Jawad is known as one of the most important agents of Hezbollah in the U.S. He is related (through his brother's marriage into the Safieddine family) to Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah and the man Iran has designated as Nasrallah's heir apparent, Hachem Safieddine (currently a member of the 7-member Hezbollah ruling council, the Shurah Al-Karar). The Jawad and Safieddine families have many business dealings together. Both Ali Jawad and the Safieddines own many gas stations throughout the Detroit area. Armada Oil--of which Jawad is CEO--also distributes gas to gas stations throughout the Detroit area.

Jawad isn't shy about his support for Hezbollah. He defended Ali and Mohamed "Mike" Boumelhem, when they were caught by U.S. Customs agents trying to smuggle weapons to Canada and ultimately to Hezbollah. And he told The Detroit News that the terrorist group, which murdered more Americans than any other besides Al-Qaeda, isn't a terrorist group.

I think that John McCain needs to explain his association with Ali Jawad in greater detail. After all, Obama only served on a board with Ayers because someone else asked each of them to serve; they had no direct connection to each other.

But Ali Jawad served on McCain's campaign: he was working for McCain. Don't we deserve to know how a Presidential candidate came to have someone supporting a known terrorist organization working on his campaign?


In the interests of full disclosure, and because I'm not a lying weasel like anyone working on the McCain campaign, I am here appending the fact that the McCaign Campaign dumped Jawad from the campaign when Schlussel published her article. But even though I'm being more fair than Obama's detractors, I'm using this insanely small font to piss you off. And I'm using this stupid low-contrast color to make it even more difficult to read. But it's here, and that's more than you'll get from lying weasels like Hannity or O'Reilly.

The perfectly valid question remains: why was Jawad permitted to serve in the first place? Is this another facet of McCain's "maverick" tendencies? I find this reminicent of the way he selected his vice-presidential candidate: a poorly researched selection intended to curry favor with a minority of the total population. As much as Obama's detractors insist he will make inappropriate appointments, one has to look at McCain's records and ponder what bone-headed selections he'll make. And un-make. And make again.

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