MARCH 27, 2008
Iraq’s deceased dictator, Saddam Hussein, paid for three Democratic members of Congress to visit his country right before the U.S.-led invasion and the trip was arranged through a federally indicted Iraqi spy who operates an Islamic charity in Michigan.
The three House members—Jim McDermott of Washington, David Bonoir of Michigan and Mike Thompson of California—were opposed to the war and Hussein’s U.S. spy, Muthanna Al-Hanooti, was in charge of providing the Iraqi government with the names of U.S. lawmakers in favor of lifting sanctions against Iraq and arranging for delegations of those legislators to visit the country.
If this sounds like some sort of fabricated movie script, simply read the 13-page federal indictment against Al-Hanooti. It provides alarming details of how Hussein’s agent recruited sympathetic U.S. legislators while he operated the Muslim Charity Life for Relief and Development in Detroit. According to the indictment, the Iraqi Intelligence Service gave Al-Hanooti $34,000 for the three Democrats’ visit to the country in September 2002. Al-Hanooti was rewarded with 2 million barrels of Iraqi oil.
The Department of Justice assures that no member of Congress was aware of Al-Hanooti’s illegal activities therefore none has been charged. Thompson, who represents northern California, said he took the trip to learn as much as he could before voting on whether or not to commit U.S. troops to war. In a disclosure report of the trip, McDermott, whose district includes Seattle, wrote that it was a “fact-finding” mission. Bonoir, who served as House Democratic Whip, no longer serves in Congress and hasn’t bothered giving an explanation.
Should Americans believe that these highly educated, veteran lawmakers had absolutely not clue that a suspicious Muslim charity, operated by an Iraqi foreign agent, financed their trip to a nation on the verge of war with America?
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