Bush supporter turned terrorist, Sami Al-Arian was acquitted on the major charges in his case today. The story behind this guy is nothing short of fascinating. You can find tons of interesting stuff here on Wikipedia, but I’ll paraphrase some amusing stuff here.
For his background, the Wikipedia link above should be consulted, but the FBI started investigating him in the 1990’s for various degrees of first amendment usage. Following that, who better to befriend than Bush himself: “After his brother-in-law, Mazen Al-Najjar was imprisoned on secret evidence, Al-Arian became politically active in the United States. He campaigned against the use of secret evidence in immigration cases and was for George W. Bush during the 2000 presidential election, and was photographed with Bush that year in Plant City, Florida. ”
Okay well thats something special right there. But what then?
The following year, Al-Arian’s son, Abdullah, became a congressional intern, but was by a mistake kicked out of a White House meeting, sparking a walkout by twenty other Muslims in attendance. However, President Bush soon apologized to the Al-Arian family for the incident. On June 20, 2001, Sami Al-Arian’s attended Eisenhower Office Building for a briefing, led by Karl Rove, with 160 other Muslim leaders.
Ah he must be a terrorist if his own brother is a Congressional intern deemed important enough to get an apology from the President himself. Then O’Reilly invited him on his show and accused him of being a shady character. Fun times.
Well as we know, O’Reilly attracts the most intelligent and productive members of society to watch his show, so they decided to take matters into their own hands.
Following the airing of the program, USF received several death threats for Al-Arian. University president Judy Genshaft placed Al-Arian on paid leave and barred him from the campus on September 27, ostensibly for his own safety and the safety of others at the university.
Thanks Bill, you’ve done the country a real service as always. I wonder if those lovely fellows in Kansas got hints from your show or parent network. I wouldn’t be surprised.
On February 20, 2003, the FBI arrested Al-Arian after indicting him and seven others on 50 terrorism-related charges. United States Attorney General John Ashcroft alleged at a press conference that Al-Arian was the North American head of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), and the secretary of the PIJ’s international organization.
FIFTY charges. If I have heard correctly, Ashcroft used this case to exemplify his backing of the Patriot Act and said that this is the result of putting it to good use. Clearly he was right.