A New York City Imam, who wants to build a 100-million dollar mosque near ground zero, and who blamed the 9/11 attacks on American foreign policy, is going on a "good will" trip. And guess who is paying?
Yes! You and me.
Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf will be winging to the middle east, all expenses paid by the United States State Department, to tell his fellow Muslims in that part of the world what a great place America is.
Of course, it would be nice if the Imam believed what he is supposed to be proselytising to fellow Muslims. There is little evidence of that.
It was almost comical today watching State Department spokesman P. J. Crowley, who last worked for the George Soros-financed Center for American Progress, stammer and studder his way through an explanation of why this trip and why this Imam.
What is even worse is this will be the third such fully paid vacation on American taxpayer's dime for this radical Imam. His two previous trips were during the Bush Administration.
First of all, it is bad enough that in a time of financial uncertainty and high unemployment in this country Michelle Obama takes a pricey trip to a luxurious Spanish resort, mostly on our dime. Now we find out about a State Department program that pays for Imams and the like to be sent abroad to spread the word about America and its culture.
What a waste of money.
Is there no Internet in the Middle East? The State Department would be better served by setting up websites that enlighten that part of the world about living in a society where citizens are free to speak, to vote, to run for political office, to drive a car if you are a female, to attend the church, synagogue or mosque of your choice, to not be forced to cover your head and face if you are female, to have the privilege to be born, live and die in a country where individual freedoms are valued and protected; where life is valued and protected.
Imam Faisal Abdul Rauf has shown no respect for those values by his support of Hamas.
Undoubtedly, he will use the free trip to raise the 100-million needed to build a mosque two blocks from the site where radical Muslims brought down the World Trade Center and murdered nearly 3,000 people.
If Republicans are fortunate enough to gain strong majorities in the Congress in November, a top priority should be to overhaul the State Department. It is long overdue.