Hamas-linked CAIR complained, and King caved the next day.
No doubt it was just a coincidence, eh? Sure. And back on January 24, CAIR's "American Muslim News Briefs" mailing contained an item, "King Hearing Witness: 'We Are At War With Islam,'" linking to a piece entitled "Ayaan Hirsi Ali should not testify before Rep. Peter King," by Josh Rosenau at Science Blogs. That time, it took a couple of weeks for King to throw Hirsi Ali, a noble and courageous freedom fighter, under the bus, but by February 7 she was gone. This time, Phares was gone in a day.
And for what? Hamas-linked CAIR's press release claims that "Mr. Phares is a 'former official with the Lebanese Forces, a Christian militia.' This militia was implicated, by Israel's official Kahan inquiry and other sources, in the 1982 massacre of civilian men, women and children at the Sabra and Shatila refugee camps in Lebanon."
This is the guilt-by-association game that the Left and its Islamic supremacist allies love to play. They do it to me all the time: I was standing in the same room with someone, and therefore I must secretly approve of everything that person has ever said and done, and everything said and done by everyone else he knows also -- even if those words and deeds go against the principles I have consistently enunciated and acted upon. And so now with Phares. But there are some critical and unanswered questions: Did Phares order this massacre? Was he even there? Did he then or does he now approve of massacring civilians?
Hamas-linked CAIR doesn't ask them, of course, because the answers would most likely be inconvenient. Walid Phares is a fine researcher and analyst, with no "extreme" or "hateful" positions. It is rich indeed that CAIR, an organization with ties to a jihad terror group, Hamas, and an Islamic supremacist group, the Muslim Brotherhood, is setting itself up as the moral arbiter of King's hearings, and even richer that King is showing himself so acutely sensitive to public criticism that he is essentially allowing CAIR to play this role. CAIR is an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror funding case -- so named by the Justice Department. CAIR operatives have repeatedly refused to denounce Hamas and Hizballah as terrorist groups. Several former CAIR officials have been convicted of various crimes related to jihad terror. CAIR's cofounder and longtime Board chairman (Omar Ahmad), as well as its chief spokesman (Honest Ibe Hooper), have made Islamic supremacist statements.
And so another witness who might have added something useful and substantial to King's hearings bites the dust. And yet a number of anti-jihad groups and individuals are preparing a full-out expression of support for his increasingly absurd and toothless hearings -- evidently they're so abjectly grateful that someone, anyone, is even looking at this issue at all, that they're willing to overlook the ever-increasing signs that his hearings will be a worthless Muslim Brotherhood taqiyya charade led by Muslim Brotherhood-financed Congressman Keith Ellison (the Muslim American Society, the Brotherhood's chief arm in the U.S., paid for his hajj). Indeed, they're not only willing to overlook that evidence, but are doggedly pretending, despite the complete absence of any evidence whatsoever to support this hope, that King is poised to accomplish something regarding public awareness of jihad activity among Muslims in the U.S.
Well, I certainly hope he does. I'd be overjoyed to be proven wrong on this. But with King's shrinking-violent delicacy in the face of criticism, and dhimmi anxiety to accommodate his Islamic supremacist critics, it looks as if his hearings will only do any good by accident, at best.
"King: Phares not testifying," by Ben Smith at Politico, February 24:
A potentially controversial witness, Walid Phares, isn't expected to appear at Pete King's hearings on Muslim radicalization, King told POLITICO just now.
Robert Costa's report this week that the witness included Walid Phares, a Fox News analysts and conservative terrorism scholar, raised some eyebrows.
That's because King has told us, among others, that he plans to rely on Muslim witnesses. That angered some outside critics of the community, but King hoped it would lend the hearings credibility and avoid some distracting controversy.
But Phares is of Lebanese Christian descent, and Muslim groups accuse him of ties to Christian militias in Lebanon's brutal civil war (whose sectarian battles echo in various ways through the current American politics of Islam.
"As of now, he is not testifying," King said through a spokesman.