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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Obama's Shame, There's More, Silence

by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: Obama's Shame - Lame duck President Barack Obama has been working harder in recent weeks than he has in the past eight years. He has been busy attempting to delegitimize the election of Donald Trump and undermining the national security of the United States. He hit a new low yesterday when he commuted the sentence of Bradley/Chelsea Manning.

As you may recall, Manning stole and leaked more than 700,000 national security documents and handed them over to Wikileaks, which posted the information online. What Manning stole was so important that Osama bin Laden was obsessed with reading it in order to counter American war strategy in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The Taliban publicly stated that it would use the information to hunt down informants.

Manning was charged with 22 crimes, including aiding the enemy, which carries the death penalty. He pled guilty to ten charges, was convicted on several others and sentenced to 35 years in prison. Thanks to Obama, Manning will be released in May after serving just seven years.

In recent weeks, Donald Trump has been pilloried by the left and even some on the right for supposedly not respecting the men and women in the intelligence community who risk their lives to protect us. Barack Obama just slapped the intelligence community in the face.

Think about this for a moment. During last year's presidential campaign, Obama and the Democrats directed a lot of vitriol at Wikileaks for exposing John Podesta's emails and messages from the Democratic National Committee. Those emails were a mixture of gossip and embarrassing political commentary.

Almost every day since the election we have been told that the hacking of those political documents constituted a constitutional crisis. There has been an effort to undermine Trump's legitimacy. Sanctions were imposed on Russia. Multiple investigations are underway.

The documents Manning released were not gossip. They involved the national security secrets of the United States of America. Even CNN's Jake Tapper was shocked by the blatant contradiction involved in commuting Manning's sentence.

The DNC leak is insignificant compared to the gaping wound that Manning struck to the body of U.S. national security. With this one act, Barack Obama has shown the total hypocrisy of the hair-on-fire controversy we were subjected to regarding John Podesta's emails.

Every congressman and senator who expressed such grave misgivings about whether Russia was involved in the DNC leaks should be outraged over what the president just did in giving a "get out of jail free card" to one of the most despicable characters in modern American history.

Reaction - The reaction to Obama's commutation of Manning's sentence was fierce and bi-partisan. "This is outrageous," Speaker Paul Ryan said. "Chelsea Manning's treachery put American lives at risk and exposed some of our nation's most sensitive secrets."

"I'm stunned," said Sen. John McCain (R-AZ). "President Obama's commutation . . . is a grave mistake that I fear will encourage further acts of espionage and undermine military discipline. It also devalues the courage of real whistle-blowers."

Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) told MSNBC, "I think it's dead wrong. Absolutely dead wrong. . . This is treason. Espionage at the highest level." Manchin went on to suggest that Obama was giving a "green light" to other hackers.

Sen. Bob Menendez (D-NJ) said, "At a time when we are seriously questioning what Russia did, as it relates to our recent elections and the role of Wikileaks, I'm not sure what kind of message we send here. I'm really surprised that the president took this action."

And it is also being reported that Secretary of Defense Ash Carter opposed reducing Manning's sentence.

But Wait, There's More! Obama also commuted the sentence of domestic terrorist Oscar Lopez Rivera. Considered by the radical left to be a "political prisoner," Lopez Rivera was a member of the F.A.L.N., a Marxist terrorist group that was responsible for more than 100 bombings.

In 1981, he was convicted on several charges, including seditious conspiracy and armed robbery, and sentenced to 55 years in jail. In 1988, he got another 15 years for plotting to escape from Ft. Leavenworth.

Incredibly, Bill Clinton tried to free Lopez Rivera in 1999, but he rejected Clinton's terms for clemency, which included renouncing terrorism. What conditions, if any, did Obama demand?

The political left is applauding the release of this terrorist. Weather Underground terrorist Bill Ayers was "dancing in the aisles" at the news. Lin-Manuel Miranda, creator of the Broadway hit "Hamilton," tweeted yesterday, "Sobbing with gratitude here in London. OSCAR LOPEZ RIVERA IS COMING HOME. THANK YOU, @POTUS."

Silence - My friends, I don't need to tell any of you just how difficult life is today for many Christians around the world. According to a recent report, 2016 was the "worst year yet" for Christian persecution. But persecution has been a harsh reality for Christians ever since Christ was nailed to the Cross.

Silence, a new film appearing in theaters across the country, reveals the conditions Christians endured in 17th century Japan. The film follows two Catholic priests from Portugal as they travel to Japan in search of a missing mentor who was there to spread the faith.

I don't want to give away too much of the plot, but I will say that it's a story of deep and persevering faith in the face of unthinkable persecution. The priests and the small communities of Japanese Christians they minister to are terrorized for their faith by a government that feared what Christianity would do if it got a foothold in the country. They realized how powerful the Good News was, especially for the poor and marginalized.

This is not a movie for young children. It shows in detail just how terribly Christians suffered for their faith. It is also a disturbing reminder of the persecution that is taking place today in many parts of the world.

That said, Silence is a beautiful film, with rich cinematography and stellar acting. It has already won several film awards, and it's easy to see why. I recommend everyone go see it.
----------------
Gary Bauer is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families

Tags: Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, Obama's Shame, There's More, Silence To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!
Posted by Bill Smith at 3:49 PM - Post Link

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