December 18th, 2017

Obama, Hezbollah enabler

Politico has issued an in-depth report on how the Obama administration put the kibosh on a task force against Iranian-backed Hezbollah’s cocaine operation, as part of its efforts to make a nuclear deal with the Iranians.

It’s a complex story, better read than excerpted. But here are a few quotes, to give you an idea:

The campaign, dubbed Project Cassandra, was launched in 2008 after the Drug Enforcement Administration amassed evidence that Hezbollah had transformed itself from a Middle East-focused military and political organization into an international crime syndicate that some investigators believed was collecting $1 billion a year from drug and weapons trafficking, money laundering and other criminal activities.

Over the next eight years, agents working out of a top-secret DEA facility in Chantilly, Virginia, used wiretaps, undercover operations and informants to map Hezbollah’s illicit networks, with the help of 30 U.S. and foreign security agencies…

But as Project Cassandra reached higher into the hierarchy of the conspiracy, Obama administration officials threw an increasingly insurmountable series of roadblocks in its way, according to interviews with dozens of participants who in many cases spoke for the first time about events shrouded in secrecy, and a review of government documents and court records. When Project Cassandra leaders sought approval for some significant investigations, prosecutions, arrests and financial sanctions, officials at the Justice and Treasury departments delayed, hindered or rejected their requests…

“This was a policy decision, it was a systematic decision,” said David Asher, who helped establish and oversee Project Cassandra as a Defense Department illicit finance analyst. “They serially ripped apart this entire effort that was very well supported and resourced, and it was done from the top down.”…

“The closer we got to the [Iran deal], the more these activities went away,” Asher said. “So much of the capability, whether it was special operations, whether it was law enforcement, whether it was [Treasury] designations — even the capacity, the personnel assigned to this mission — it was assiduously drained, almost to the last drop, by the end of the Obama administration.”…

As a result, the U.S. government lost insight into not only drug trafficking and other criminal activity worldwide, but also into Hezbollah’s illicit conspiracies with top officials in the Iranian, Syrian, Venezuelan and Russian governments — all the way up to presidents Nicolas Maduro, Assad and Putin, according to former task force members and other current and former U.S. officials…

… the damage wrought by years of political interference will be hard to repair.

For Obama-watchers and those who followed the Iranian deal and the years-long leadup to it, there is nothing surprising here. The Obama administration was focused on the Iranian deal from the start, and were doing everything they could to be nice to the powers that be in Iran and not ruffle their feathers. If it took winking at Hezbollah, that would have been considered to be a very small price to pay for the wonderful wonderfulness of the deal.

I haven’t yet read the entire article; it’s very long. In fact, I believe it’s one of the longest articles (if not the longest) ever to appear in Politico. It’s certainly the longest I can ever recall. Politico is not a right-wing site, and not a Trump-supporting one. It leans far more to the left, and yet every now and then it puts up something that isn’t the usual Democratic party line. This would certainly be one of those things, and I wonder why so much time and effort was put into it.

Whatever the reason, it’s always refreshing to see something in a publication that goes against the usual talking points. When I see something like that I think it has more of a tendency to be true, because of what the editors and/or authors had to overcome to decide to publish it.

I have little doubt that Obama-supporters will brush it off with assertions that the deal was worth it—or, alternatively, that the report’s a lie.

[ADDENDUM: More here:

While [according to the Politico article] it looks like the Obama administration neutralized efforts to stop a terrorist group from funding its operations through criminal enterprises in the United States — which should be a major scandal itself — according to Josh Meyer’s source-heavy reporting, it also decided to let a top Hezbollah operative named Ali Fayad, who had not only been indicted in U.S. courts for planning to kill American government employees but whom agents believed reported to Russian President Vladimir Putin as a key supplier of weapons to Syria and Iraq, to skate free.

You can, I’m sure, imagine what the reaction would be if this story had Trump’s administration rather than Obama’s secretly released Putin’s Middle East arms dealer?

This story should be highlighted in every newspaper, as it would be if it concerned Trump. I did a search at the site of the NY Times, and nothing showed up. When I did a Google search to see who was talking about the article, only sites on the right (and RealClearPolitics, which showcases both sides) appeared.]

51 Responses to “Obama, Hezbollah enabler”

  1. Artfldgr Says:

    just helping a connection from the choom days…

  2. Sam L. Says:

    ” I did a search at the site of the NY Times, and nothing showed up. When I did a Google search to see who was talking about the article, only sites on the right (and RealClearPolitics, which showcases both sides) appeared.]”

    What a surprise!!!

  3. Gary D. G. Says:

    Hmm.
    Almost everybody on the left has been requesting an examination of President Trump’s finances; I think it’s about time that the American public should request an examination of former president Obama’s finances.

  4. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    “I have little doubt that Obama-supporters will brush it off with assertions that the deal was worth it-or, alternatively, that the report’s a lie.” neo

    I’d bet on it. In their heart of hearts, I have little doubt that Obama-supporters, in their heart of hearts, know that the Iranians will never honor any deal. As, does anyone on the left really think that a death cult’s religious fanatics can be trusted?

    Appeasement and hate are their motivations, a lust to see “America’s chickens come home to roost”

    “The main obstacle to a stable and just world is the United States” George Soros

    “the erasure of the American Republic is the core agenda of the democrat Party” David Horowitz

  5. om Says:

    Ben Rhodes is unavailable for comment.

  6. parker Says:

    I read the politico article yesterday and immediately thought the real story is far more damaging to the messiah and his cabal. Under rocks in a stream there be leeches and traitors to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

  7. Steve57 Says:

    Blanking Iranians.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Neda_Agha-Soltan

    Death of Neda Agha-Soltan

    No finer Americans.

  8. Frog Says:

    Obama is the Great Satan.
    Am I alone in my belief that he was paid a commission of >$1 billion for the Iran deal?
    Don’t kid yourself; at the highest levels there are always going to be ways to hide moolah, regardless of laws and other sanctimonies that apply only to the middle class..

  9. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    What evidence do you have to offer for Obama being paid?

  10. John Guilfoyle Says:

    We haven’t even seem 0’s college records nor his real birth certificate…Why would anyone ever think we’re going to see his $$ details?

    But here’s the hard core reality…0 didn’t need any mullah-money. He never will. He’s got a lifetime of gravy from you & me. He’ll live fat and sassy on his POTUS pension & bennies. Him & the missus & the spawn. And that’s not counting the extra he’ll suck in from the other anti-USA millionaires & billionaires who think he’s done just dandy in hogtying the US for a generation.

    He’s a “true believer” in the USA-is-evil cult. That’s all the motivation he has ever needed. Look where that got him. What more could a man ask for?

  11. J.J. Says:

    For Obama and the left it is not hard to Imagine:
    “You may say that I’m a dreamer
    But I’m not the only one
    I hope someday you’ll join us
    And the world will live as one.”

    Their theory is that, if the U.S. will only show them some kindness and even handedness, the Mullahs will reciprocate. And when the Mullahs don’t, they can’t understand it. They have been raised on the idealism of “Imagine” and “It’s a Small World After All.” Obama and his cronies can’t deal with the world as it is, only with the world as they Imagine it could be.

    The only other explanation for Obama’s actions in office is that he’s a secret Muslim. There are plenty of people who believe that.

    I think he’s an idealistic ideologue, but I could be wrong.

  12. AesopFan Says:

    Gary D. G. Says:
    December 18th, 2017 at 4:38 pm
    Hmm.
    Almost everybody on the left has been requesting an examination of President Trump’s finances; I think it’s about time that the American public should request an examination of former president Obama’s finances.

    John Guilfoyle Says:
    December 18th, 2017 at 9:48 pm
    We haven’t even seem 0’s college records nor his real birth certificate…Why would anyone ever think we’re going to see his $$ details?

    But here’s the hard core reality…0 didn’t need any mullah-money. He never will. He’s got a lifetime of gravy from you & me. He’ll live fat and sassy on his POTUS pension & bennies. Him & the missus & the spawn. And that’s not counting the extra he’ll suck in from the other anti-USA millionaires & billionaires who think he’s done just dandy in hogtying the US for a generation.

    He’s a “true believer” in the USA-is-evil cult. That’s all the motivation he has ever needed. Look where that got him. What more could a man ask for?
    * *
    I agree with John that ideology is probably all that’s necessary for Obama to back (suck up to?) Iran, but even though he doesn’t “need” any more money, I doubt he would turn it down if offered. The Clintons couldn’t possibly “need” all the money they were “offered” but that didn’t stop them taking it.
    And yes, we won’t see the financials any time before we see the school records — which will be never. I greatly admire the iron discipline of the Left, which no one has broken in that regard, although someone with access could make big bucks leaking his grades.

  13. AesopFan Says:

    One of the sites looking at the report (which I read fully earlier today, and it is a blockbuster) is (who else?) PowerLine, with a very interesting connection to another Democrat scandal being resolutely ignored by the MSM.

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2017/12/hezbollah-narco-terrorism-and-the-awans.php

    “The “used cars” reference made me think of a post I wrote about the Awan scandal. This scandal, readers may recall, involves House staffers, most notably staffers of Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, with ties to Pakistan who are accused of stealing equipment from members’ offices without their knowledge and committing serious, potentially illegal, violations on the House IT network.”

    * *
    I think it is still outrageous that the Awans are not all in jail, and their Congressional employers out on the bread-lines looking for another job.

  14. John Guilfoyle Says:

    And in the spirit of Christmas cheer I’ll say this with a smile on my face…0 is not a Hezbollah “enabler.” He is a partisan. He wants the mullahs to win.

    He is no longer the choom-smoking fuzzy-headed kid from the shady side of Chi-town. He is the full-grown Ayers-hate-America disciple.

  15. Gringo Says:

    John Guilfoyle
    He is no longer the choom-smoking fuzzy-headed kid from the shady side of Chi-town. He is the full-grown Ayers-hate-America disciple.

    I don’t think O needed any persuading from Bill Ayers. It was rather that Billy Boy was a kindred soul. Obama already leaned that way, courtesy of of high school chats with Frank Marshall Davis. (BTW Neo had an interesting post on him back in ’09, w reply from his son.) John Drew knew him as a radical when O was at Occidental. Recall from Dreams From My Father, when O wrote that when he was at Occidental, in order to not be considered a sellout, he wold hang out with Marxists and other such people.

    Been that way for a LONNG time.

  16. Gringo Says:

    The “sellout” riff from Dreams From My Father.

    To avoid being mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully. The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists and punkrock performance poets. We smoked cigarettes and wore leather jackets. At night, in the dorms, we discussed neocolonialism, Franz Fanon, Eurocentrism, and patriarchy. When we ground out our cigarettes in the hallway carpet or set our stereos so loud that the walls began to shake, we were resisting bourgeois society’s stifling constraints. We weren’t indifferent or careless or insecure. We were alienated.

    Pretentious, moi?

  17. The Other Chuck Says:

    Steve57:

    The murder of Neda Aga Soltan with all the gruesome video footage, and Obama’s initial silence and later weak response, were taken up by Romney:

    “His silence validated the mullahs, despite the blood on their hands and the nuclear centrifuges in their tunnels,”

    Obama was a disgrace to this country – in many ways – but especially in his coddling of Iran.

  18. John Guilfoyle Says:

    Gringo…you won’t hear me argue against your point. The bud reached full bloom whenever/wherever it started to grow.

    And the point remains…His entire life in public office was designed to aid & abet all those who, like him, hate the USA. The mullahs in Iran were just one among many opportunities for 0 to sell out America.

  19. Steve57 Says:

    Gringo. I where it well.

  20. Steve57 Says:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=2&v=Jg1fxPrZ8zs

    There is no happy in Islam.

    “Iran Happy video – dancers sentenced to lashes and jail”

    Or maybe there is.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4OWYCgGOSMA

    “Pharrell Williams – HAPPY ( From TEHRAN )”

  21. Steve57 Says:

    That’s courage.

  22. Steve57 Says:

    I never liked the guy. For what he did to the Navy. And for writing out Nidal Hassan from the report on the Fort Hood massacre. And I knew he was going to do it.

    I may vomit. Still.

    Yet I get told the only reason I didn’t vote for the @77h*##e

  23. Steve57 Says:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R8CeURFTseU

    “Happy in Tehran We are from Tehran With Love”

  24. Barry Meislin Says:

    “…his coddling of Iran…”

    Except that Obama didn’t coddle Iran.

    He allied his administration with it, while supporting it financially (and hence militarily) and diplomatically.

    The supposed “deal” that was supposedly “negotiated” with Iran was the sheer pretext—the immaculate deception—to hide Obama’s alliance with the mullahs.

    The “deal” was intended to divert attention from Obama’s utter capitulation to Iran.

    Having decided to ally himself with the Iran, it should come as no surprise that Obama also allied himself with Iran’s proxies and allies.

    The “deal”, however, was not a deal; it was an utter capitulation.

  25. Steve57 Says:

    He ran on Fundamentally transforming us. And we voted for him.

    I may yet vomit.

  26. Steve57 Says:

    Still it’s hard to swallow how we sold out the Iranians.

  27. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Hussein’s admin is like Trum’s admin, the power behind the throne is always doing something that the public thinks is under election control but is not.

    For Reagan it was Iran Contra. For Nixon, it was the FBI.

  28. Ymar Sakar Says:

    This matters because more and more Americans are believing that the US leaders are not elected but selected. They are a parallel or counter formation to the Alt Right, which was a counter to the Leftist alliance or Ctrl Left.

    Control Left vs Alternative Right, then there is other groups forming factions in the US. It’ll be 1000 factions all fighting each other, rather than two sides.

  29. F Says:

    I am almost out of outrage. I thought Fast & Furious had done it for me, but Obama has really peaked the meter with this particular policy.

  30. Mike K Says:

    I know this sounds like crazy conspiracies heard at 4 AM but what if Obama was really “The Manchurian Candidate ?” Who helped him get into HLS ? Who paid his bills ? Why does the LA Times still hide his Khalidi speech ?

    I know, I know.

  31. Steve57 Says:

    Did forget to mention the rat b@st@rd sent a billion dollars on an unmarked plane to Tehran, a large portion which will go Hezbollah.

    i

  32. Steve57 Says:

    “I know this sounds like crazy conspiracies heard at 4 AM but what if Obama was really “The Manchurian Candidate ?” Who helped him get into HLS ? Who paid his bills ? Why does the LA Times still hide his Khalidi speech ?

    I know, I know.”

    I’ll let you in on an ever crazier thought. During his UN speech following the slaughter at Benghazi he said the future does not belong to those who slander the prophet Muhammad.

    The thing is per Islamic law slander is also a truth that one does not want known. Not a lie.

  33. Steve57 Says:

    He knew that.

  34. blert Says:

    Steve…

    The $$$$$$$ went to Al Quds division.

    The Majlis even went so far as to make the numbers obvious in a public budget… it was doubled at a stroke.

    !!!

    Al Quds — part of IRGC — is the ‘Wet Works’ wing of the IRGC.

    Al Quds = Jerusalem — as in “target: Jerusalem.”

  35. Esther Says:

    If Obama did it, it must be good, as all news reported during his 8 years were gushing his praises.

    Only bad Conservatives, Christians and Israelis dared question. Was polarizating and undermining them part of the effort to appeal to Iranian preferences?

    Meanwhile, there is a huge drug epidemic in this country. I’d hate to think appeasing Iran by abetting narcoterrorism was a tactic.

  36. Steve57 Says:

    Frog Said:
    “December 18th, 2017 at 7:55 pm

    Obama is the Great Satan.
    Am I alone in my belief that he was paid a commission of >$1… ”

    No. I was guaranteed my $1 dollar a day.

    And it irritated me that Trump was criticized when he eulogized the fallen Soldier by saying he knew what he was getting into.

    I would be more offended if people could say I didn’t know. I’m a Coast Guard brat. How my Dad didn’t end up as a red smear on a white hull I don’t know. I went to the dark side and joined the Navy. I grew up looking at the horribly burned from Vietnam.

    I was horrified at getting burned.

    https://www.defensemedianetwork.com/stories/bt1-andrew-gallagher-risked-his-life-to-save-others-aboard-uss-belknap/

  37. Steve57 Says:

    My DI who cleaned up his act for this video.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=415HQ1t2ZNI

  38. Steve57 Says:

    Don’t thank me for my service. I’d do it all over again. I’ve seen two nieces get married.

    I had my own reasons.

  39. Steve57 Says:

    It’s importantl

    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2017/12/how-obama-let-up-on-hezbollah.php

    I’d drive over the f^%&@# if they got my. Straight of Hormuz.

  40. Steve57 Says:

    I don’t care what happens to me anymore.

  41. Steve57 Says:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk:HMS_Rawalpindi

  42. Steve57 Says:

    On 26 August 1939 the passenger ship Rawalpindi of the P. & O. Steam Navigation Co Ltd, London was requisitioned by the Admiralty and converted to an armed merchant cruiser. Conversion was completed on 19 September 1939.

    Displacement: 16697 BRT
    Armament: 8x 152mm, 2x 76mm
    Speed: 17 knots

    Career:
    October 39 – November 39: Northern Patrol

    On 23 November 1939, HMS Rawalpindi (Capt. Edward Coverley Kennedy, RN) on Northern Patrol was shelled and sunk by the German battlecruiser Scharnhorst southeast of Iceland in the Iceland-Faroe passage in position 63º40’N, 12º31’W. 275 dead and 37 survivors. The battlecruiser had tried to break out into the Atlantic together with the sistership Gneisenau. The ships returned to Germany to avoid the now searching warships of the British Home Fleet.

    “We will fight them both, and that will be that.”

  43. Steve57 Says:

    “And they’ll sink us.”

  44. Ymar Sakar Says:

    I told people online that Hussein would always get this big phat smile on his face whenever he sees American patriots tortured and killed. (2009-2012)

    I doubt many people were paying attention to me or took me seriously. They may not have even taken the Alt Right, Trum, or Hussein seriously. That’s the fault of humans who think they know something.

  45. Ymar Sakar Says:

    Some of the same people who voted Hussein and greased the wheels for his Advent, are now running Trum as their puppet and new king/messiah.

    That will work out well, I am sure… not really.

    Purging the GOP E is all nice and good, but what good is that going to do when the Demoncrat Hussein and HRC voters hijack the Republican party by putting in a bunch of Goldman Sachs puppet on Trum’s admin? Is Bannon, our boy, going to stop it…

  46. Steve57 Says:

    Some of the same people who voted Hussein and greased the wheels for his Advent, are now running Trum as their puppet and new king/messiah.

    That will work out well, I am sure… not really.

    Purging the GOP E is all nice and good, but what good is that going to do when the Demoncrat Hussein and HRC voters hijack the Republican party by putting in a bunch of Goldman Sachs puppet on Trum’s admin? Is Bannon, our boy, going to stop it…

    I could be wrong but this is first I’m hearing of it.

  47. AesopFan Says:

    I had the wrong tab open for this comment, so will drag it over here.
    http://neoneocon.com/2017/12/18/what-are-the-odds-of-franken-actually-leaving-the-senate/#comment-2335561

    “AesopFan Says:
    December 18th, 2017 at 11:33 pm
    https://libertyunyielding.com/2017/12/18/larger-meaning-obama-letting-hezbollah-off-hook/

    “In writing this post, I want to do one thing in particular. There will be, as I said, a great deal written, on many topics, as the punditry chews over Meyer’s article. But here I want to focus on one main point: that the origin of the Obama administration’s attitude was not solely related to the desire for an “Iran deal.”

    That was no doubt a major part of it, especially in Obama’s second term. But there’s a key event in his first term that has been almost entirely overlooked, and that illuminates the more systemic perspective on international security that seems to have driven all of the administration’s decisions on these matters.”

    * *
    Longer excerpt on my misdirected comment, but best just to read the original post by Dyer.

  48. AesopFan Says:

    I had the wrong tab open for this comment, so will drag it over here.
    http://neoneocon.com/2017/12/18/what-are-the-odds-of-franken-actually-leaving-the-senate/#comment-2335561

    “AesopFan Says:
    December 18th, 2017 at 11:33 pm
    https://libertyunyielding.com/2017/12/18/larger-meaning-obama-letting-hezbollah-off-hook/

    “In writing this post, I want to do one thing in particular. There will be, as I said, a great deal written, on many topics, as the punditry chews over Meyer’s article. But here I want to focus on one main point: that the origin of the Obama administration’s attitude was not solely related to the desire for an “Iran deal.”

    That was no doubt a major part of it, especially in Obama’s second term. But there’s a key event in his first term that has been almost entirely overlooked, and that illuminates the more systemic perspective on international security that seems to have driven all of the administration’s decisions on these matters.”

    * *
    Longer excerpt on my misdirected comment, but best just to read the original post by Dyer.

  49. AesopFan Says:

    Mike K Says:
    December 19th, 2017 at 10:45 am
    I know this sounds like crazy conspiracies heard at 4 AM but what if Obama was really “The Manchurian Candidate ?” Who helped him get into HLS ? Who paid his bills ? Why does the LA Times still hide his Khalidi speech ?

    I know, I know.
    * * *
    Pulling in a comment Bill made on another story, because it’s relevant here.
    Bill Says:
    December 19th, 2017 at 2:29 pm

    I’m ex-GOP so take this as you want, but Republican hypocrisy about “jumping to conclusions” and “being fair” is breathtaking. I didn’t vote for him, but the idiocy around things like Obama’s birth certificate and all the unproven allegations that most GOPers accept without any qualms about O or HRC (who I also DIDN’T VOTE FOR) makes the 500 benefits of the doubt you people give to people like DJT and Roy Moore a bit hard to balance.
    * * *
    Because some of the allegations about Obama may not be “credible” doesn’t mean all of them are “incredible.”
    I can’t think of a thing that Obama did with regard to Iran that would differ from the actions of a paid political agent of the Ayatollah.

    And anyone who thinks these Politico stories would have surfaced under President Clinton (femme) needs to see a shrink really soon.

  50. blert Says:

    I went round and round with Bill over OPEC’s ‘math problem.’

    That was $20,00/ bbl ago.

    Bill is all passion.

  51. Steve57 Says:

    I hope everyone had a happy Chanukah.

About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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