Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Trump’s Reported Finalist For Deputy Secretary Of State Stoked A Muslim Conspiracy Theory

ohn Bolton, President-elect Donald Trump’s reported finalist for deputy secretary of state, was a guest on an Islamophobic radio show four years ago and stoked an anti-Muslim conspiracy theory.
John Bolton, 68, has served in four presidential administrations and was most recently the UN Ambassador for President George W. Bush. (On Tuesday, Trump announced his nominee for secretary of state — ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, who has strong ties to Russia.)
In 2012, Bolton appeared on Frank Gaffney’s radio show. Gaffney, who is behind the anti-Islam conspiracy group Center for Security Policy, is described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as “one of America’s most notorious Islamophobes.” In particular, Gaffney believes that the Muslim Brotherhood has infiltrated all levels of US government.
Bolton’s came on the show as former Rep. Michele Bachmann asserted that the Muslim Brotherhood had infiltrated the government, focusing her attack on Hillary Clinton’s aide, Huma Abedin. Members of her own party — including John McCain and even her own presidential campaign chief — criticized her for the assertion.
Gaffney, in a question to Bolton, first recounted Bachmann’s call for an investigation and then asked, “What do you make of this controversy and particularly the criticisms, the vicious criticisms, that have been mounted against these folks for their warnings from within their own ranks?” Bolton responded by saying, “What is wrong with raising the question?” His full answer:
What I think these members of Congress have done is simply raise the question, to a variety of inspectors general in key agencies, are your departments following their own security clearance guidelines, are they adhering to the standards that presumably everybody who seeks a security clearance should have to go through, are they making special exemptions? What is wrong with raising the question? Why is even asking whether we are living up to our standards a legitimate area of congressional oversight, why has that generated this criticism? I’m just mystified by it.

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