Accuracy in Media

Defenders of President Clinton, as well as the Washington Post, have been screaming lately about alleged Republican links to white supremacists. Harvard law professor Allan Dershowitz started the assault during an appearance on the impeachment issue before the House Judiciary Committee. He went after Congressman Bob Barr, a leader of the pro-impeachment forces, for giving a speech to the Council of Conservative Citizens. The Post followed, with articles and columns attacking not only Barr but Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott for speaking to the group. Both men were unaware that the organization was anything other than a mainstream conservative group.

The top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, John Conyers of Michigan, has largely escaped media scrutiny for his ties to extremist organizations and his own extreme views on the issues. He is the sponsor of a bill demanding formation of a commission to formulate a reparations plan for descendants of slaves. These are government payments to blacks in compensation for slavery. The Detroit News has estimated the cost at $660 billion, in the form of $20,000 checks to every black American in the country. This has been called “The Campaign to Cash the Check.” Organizations backing the Conyers bill have announced that they want to take the campaign one step further by filing a class-action lawsuit for reparations. They want the courts to order U.S. taxpayers to hand over the money.

Conyers was one of only five members of the House of Representatives to vote against a resolution in support of U.S. troops in the Persian Gulf. This was passed after Clinton ordered the recent missile attacks on Iraq. Yet he was one of those Democrats calling for a postponement of the impeachment vote, saying a debate over getting rid of the president would send the wrong message to our soldiers in the field. Nobody in the media bothered to accuse Conyers of hypocrisy. During the Vietnam War, when American troops were fighting and dying, Conyers didn?t show any concern at all about proceeding with the impeachment of their commander-in-chief. He didn?t object to Richard Nixon?s impeachment because it would hurt the war effort. Indeed, he wanted to cut off funds for American military forces in combat, and he used a threat of that cut-off to force negotiations with the Communists that eventually paved the way for a total Communist victory.

On May 10, 1972, Conyers introduced an impeachment resolution against Nixon, charging him with “high crimes and misdemeanors.” These had to do with Nixon?s decision to order U.S. military retaliation against North Vietnam over a Communist offensive against the south. For the first time in the war, Nixon ordered the use of American B-52 bombers. They bombed Hanoi, the capital of North Vietnam.

To Conyers, a critic of the U.S. effort to save Vietnam from Communism, the bombing was a violation of both domestic and international law, including the United Nations Charter. Years later, when President Reagan ordered U.S. military troops to liberate communist-controlled Grenada, Conyers was at it again, introducing a resolution of impeachment that accused Reagan of violating international law. Conyers is a real extremist whose record should be exposed.

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