I just was reading a book about a scholar who studied Chinese history. Actually, the book was a disappointment: There were more elaborate passages about how the professor seduced one of his many mistresses than there was about Chinese culture.

But what really made me throw the book across the room was the professor’s blind support of the communist regime (including his “verifying” American germ warfare in the Korean war, a charge that later was proven by the KGB archives to be an elaborate hoax).

Yet the author dismissed this serious action (something that we simplistic folk would call treason).The real venom of the book was for those in the British Foreign office and those stupid Americans who wouldn’t give him a visa to visit American universities to spread the lies.

The author, except for one comment questioning why the professor didn’t wonder where all of his prewar Chinese friends had gone, never bothers to mention the real problem of the professor: that he actively supported a regime that was responsible for the deaths of between 40 million and 100 million people.

That an esteemed author wouldn’t think such a detail was worth mentioning suggests a major problem for the professor, for the university and for the author himself. After all, he was writing a book about an esteemed scholar,  an expert who freely visited China but seemed oblivious that during the times of his visits a lot of ordinary peasants who starved to death during the Great Leap Forward or died in concentration camps or committed suicide after being tortured by the Red Guard.

Ordinary people dying, partly because the professor of the book and hundreds of other important people in academia and diplomacy and business were too busy with important things (i.e. supporting communism) to bother to notice.

At a lesser level,  this is the problem with Obama’s Ayers connection.

Ayers, like the professor in the book, might be a cheerful and attractive fellow whose family connections and money got him an education, a lucrative job,  but unlike the professor,  who merely looked the other way, Ayers not only looked the other way when the regime he supported killed a lot of people,  but he actually was part of a “hands-on” gang who murdered.

Sorry, but to some of us, that’s not quite right.

Nor has Ayers repented: The same NYTimes that minimalized Ayers ties with Obama also published an editorial written by Ayers on 9-11-2001 where Ayers bragged about his “radical past” and said he just didn’t bomb enough back then.

So why should anyone care about the Weathermen, who are now aging radicals?The BBC report has a list of the Ayers group of the Weathermen:

From 1970 to 1975 the group bombed police stations, court and government buildings, and police cars.

In 1970 there were fatalities – a police officer died from his injuries after a pipe bomb was detonated in a San Francisco police station, while three of the group blew themselves up while building explosives in their New York apartment.

A more disputed Wikipedia report is a bit less sanguine:

Early on the morning of February 21, 1970 as his family slept, three gasoline-filled firebombs exploded at at home of New York State Supreme Court Justice Murtagh at the northern tip of Manhattan. The same night, bombs were thrown at a police car in Manhattan and two military recruiting stations in Brooklyn.

Murtaugh’s son has a more chilling version of the incident, pointing out that if a neighbor hadn’t doused the flames, they all would have died, since the bombs were placed in exit areas to make escape impossible. Murtaugh goes on to tell of his childhood living in fear for his life, going to school under police escort. And he points out that in the April 16th debate with Hillary Clinton, when the moderator asked Obama about Ayers, pointing out that Ayers never apologized for his actions. Obama’s answer:

  “The notion that somehow as a consequence of me knowing somebody who engaged in detestable acts 40 years ago, when I was eight years old, somehow reflects on me and my values, doesn’t make much sense,

Yet to the victims, it is of consequence.To ordinary people, who try to live by the rules, it is important.

These victims have names.

Policeman Sgt. Brian V. McDonnell was one victim of Ayers and his gang. Another was a nurse, Myrna Opsahl, a bystander at a robbery who was shot and bled to death while Ayer’s friends watched, was another.

Of course, Ayers and friends claimed they were forced to do it because they hated what the evil American government did to the poor Vietnamese people.

Yet, after their radicalism forced out American troops, did Ayers help resettle the hundreds of thousands of refugees who fled because they worked for the previous government, or were pious Catholics or Buddhists? Did he help the hundreds of thousands of Chinese ethnics who were the victims of ethnic cleaning? Did he ever protest the Cambodian holocaust?

Of course not. The “cause” was about evil Amerika, not about the victims of the cause they supported. Indeed, one rarely hears their deaths mentioned in polite society when former protesters recount their “glory days”.

There is a word for these type of people: sociopaths.

Now, if I wanted to run for the Senate, I surely wouldn’t allow such a sociopath to give the party to announce my candidacy.

But then, that’s just me.


Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. She writes about human rights at MakaipaBlog.

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