By: Cliff Kincaid
Accuracy in Media
A new kind of investigative reporting was unveiled at The New York Times on Monday. A story about the communist connections of a major politician was plastered across page 19 of the paper. Democratic mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio, just endorsed by President Obama, was the subject of a long story about his support for the Communist Sandinistas in Nicaragua in the 1980s.
Whatever the reason for the scrutiny, the paper has opened the door to additional investigations of Democratic Party politicians, including Obama himself.
The story represents vindication for the late Senator Joseph McCarthy (R-WI), who gave rise to the term, “McCarthyism,” a search for Communist connections and anti-Americanism that was considered objectionable by progressives collaborating with enemies of the U.S. McCarthyism, it seems, is now in vogue at The New York Times.
There’s no reason to stop with de Blasio. Trevor Loudon’s new book The Enemies Within: Communists, Socialists and Progressives in the U.S. Congress, looks at dozens of other Democratic Party politicians who call themselves progressives and have Communist connections that go even deeper than that of de Blasio.
Salon, whose editor has endorsed de Blasio as a “real progressive,” calls the Times article on de Blasio an “anti-lefty hit piece.” By the liberal Times? What is going on here?
“References to his early activism have been omitted from his campaign Web site,” the Times said about de Blasio, in a revelation that could have also applied to Barack Obama’s relationship with Communist Frank Marshall Davis, and his run for the presidency.
So what we have here is a cover-up of the first order.
In de Blasio’s case, the paper undertook investigations that would have made Senator Joe McCarthy proud. It said, “…a review of hundreds of pages of records and more than two dozen interviews suggest his time as a young activist was more influential in shaping his ideology than previously known, and far more political than typical humanitarian work.”
This is simply incredible, as well as admirable, on the part of the Times and its reporter, Javier C. Hernandez. The Communist background of a major political figure has suddenly become newsworthy. The paper even noted that de Blasio went on an illegal honeymoon to Communist Cuba.
It appears that his real “honey” was Fidel Castro. No wonder he is engaged in a cover-up.
Despite the Times’ investigative work, it is clear that more scrutiny is needed, even of his family connections. The Times says de Blasio’s mother, “then working at the Office of War Information in New York, was accused of being a Communist for attending a concert featuring a Soviet band.” It’s doubtful that attending a Soviet concert is all there is to this particular subversive connection.
Bringing the story back to de Blasio, the paper added that he “studied Latin American politics at Columbia and was conversational in Spanish, grew to be an admirer of Nicaragua’s ruling Sandinista party, thrusting himself into one of the most polarizing issues in American politics at the time.”
Trying to explain the situation at the time, the paper said, “The Reagan administration denounced the Sandinistas as tyrannical and Communist, while their liberal backers argued that after years of dictatorship, they were building a free society with broad access to education, land and health care.”
Of course, the Sandinistas were indeed puppets of the Soviets and the Cubans, and remain so to this day, except that the Soviets have become the Russians and the late Hugo Chavez of Venezuela emerged as one of their modern-day mentors, in addition to the Castro brothers.
This is not completely an old news story, since the Sandinistas have returned to power in Nicaragua. Indeed, the Communists are on the rise throughout Latin America.
The Times added that “de Blasio became an ardent supporter of the Nicaraguan revolutionaries. He helped raise funds for the Sandinistas in New York and subscribed to the party’s newspaper, Barricada, or Barricade. When he was asked at a meeting in 1990 about his goals for society, he said he was an advocate of ‘democratic socialism.’”
The Times said de Blasio did most of his work on behalf of the Sandinistas through the Quixote Center in Maryland, a group I came across while writing about the wars in Central America for Human Events in the 1980s. A spin-off, the Christic Institute, filed a frivolous lawsuit against supporters of the Nicaragua freedom fighters. You can still see my 1987 debate with Daniel Sheehan of the Christic Institute on C-SPAN.
When I noted the Communist links of the Christic Institute during the debate, Sheehan’s predictable response was: “Joe McCarthy.” His frivolous lawsuit was thrown out of court in a case that I described as “legal terrorism” against anti-communists.
The FBI file on the Christic Institute is helpful in analyzing its political contacts, such as then-Senator John Kerry, used in order to make support for the anti-Sandinista, pro-freedom cause into a “scandal.”
The Quixote Center was “founded by Catholic leaders,” as the Times points out, but these “leaders” were on the far left and dedicated to the belief that communism and Christianity could mix. It is also known as liberation theology.
De Blasio also raised money for the Nicaragua Solidarity Network, the Times said. “In 1991, at one of his final meetings with the Nicaragua Solidarity Network, he argued that the liberal values the group had defended were ‘far from dead’ around the world, with blossoming movements in places like Mexico, the Philippines, El Salvador and Brazil, according to minutes of the meeting,” the Times reported. “He spoke of a need to understand and build alliances with Islam, predicting it would soon be a dominant force in politics.”
This alliance with Islam is, of course, typical of many leftists, such as Carlos the Jackal, the terrorist trained by the KGB who converted to Islam and became devoted to Osama bin Laden.
Promoting a Marxist alliance with Islam, in view of 9/11 and the anti-American terrorism around the world, is something that takes on ominous and frightening implications.
Such talk is highly relevant today because, as mayor, de Blasio could dismantle the New York Police Department’s aggressive campaign to uncover jihad plots targeting the citizens of that city and the nation.
But Joan Walsh of Salon hails his “bold stands on police controversies.”
He is the frontrunner for mayor and has the endorsement of Barack Obama, who says, “Progressive change is the centerpiece of Bill de Blasio’s vision for New York City, and it’s why he will be a great mayor of America’s largest city.”
As for de Blasio himself, today he, too, “describes himself as a progressive,” the Times reports.
His endorsements include not only Obama and the Clintons, but also such figures as Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY), George Soros, editor of The Nation Katrina vanden Heuvel, Alec Baldwin, Jeffrey Sachs of Columbia University, and former ACORN head Bertha Lewis.
Following up on the Times investigation, the CBS affiliate in New York confirmed, “De Blasio’s official biography on his campaign website makes no mention of his activism.”
Activism? Is that what organizing for communist revolution has become?
In any case, why would he want to hide his “progressive activism” on behalf of the Communists? Perhaps the connections go far beyond what the paper itself calls items on the “social justice” agenda.
In fact, the paper said he gave them a recent interview and that de Blasio said his views then—and now—“represented a mix of admiration for European social democratic movements, Mr. Roosevelt’s New Deal and liberation theology.”
So a mix of communism and Christianity is still appealing to him.
At the bottom of his campaign website, one finds the category of “transparency,” where we find “hosts of campaign-sponsored events,” but nothing about his Marxist background.
It would appear that the Times has uncovered a Pandora’s box of connections that the candidate never wanted to be discovered.
What else is he hiding? And after de Blasio is completely exposed, can we turn our attention to President Obama?
Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at [email protected].