Here is the mosque-building crowd that the leftist punditocracy is defending:
The developers behind the Islamic center planned for a site near Ground Zero won’t rule out accepting financing from the Mideast — including from Saudi Arabia and Iran — as they begin searching for $100 million needed to build the project. The religious organization and the development company behind the center declined to say how much of the $100 million needed to build the facility has already been raised. …
“We’ll look at all available options within the United States to start. We’re hoping to fund this predominately from domestic donors. That can be everything from institutions all the way down to personal [contributors],” said [spokesman Oz] Sultan.
When asked if they would then turn to foreign donors, Sultan replied, “I can’t comment on that.”
Pressed on whether the developers were willlng to rule out accepting donations from the governments of Saudi Arabia or Iran, he repeated, “I can’t comment on that.”
It is hard to see how the mosque builders could be promoters of religious reconciliation if they’d take money from Saudi Wahhabists or the despots of Iran. Maybe they are, you know, trying to make a different sort of statement, pitching to potential donors that they, too, can have a piece of the edifice at Ground Zero. Would they sell naming rights? (The Ahmadinejad Social Hall. The Anwar al-Awlaki Courtyard.) The possibilities are endless.
And none of the chest-beaters preening over their devotion to “tolerance” — not Obama, Bloomberg, Pelosi, and certainly not the left blogosphere — thought to inquire about the very issue that concerned so many of the mosque opponents. Now we face the prospect that a mosque will be built on Ground Zero by those who sponsor jihadist attacks:
Fifteen of the 19 [9-11] terrorists were Saudi Arabian and funding from that country could further anger those already opposed to the mosque. Many mosques in the U.S. have been funded in part with Saudi money. Iran has been designated a sponsor of terrorism by the U.S. government.
Maybe David Axelrod and crew “missed” the issue, or maybe no one can raise concerns about exactly which Muslims the president is fawning over at the moment. He’s not one for inconvenient news, so after a while it would be human nature for staff to avoid raising issues, however basic and obvious, with a president insistent on making grand gestures, the facts be damned.
The controversy is indeed beginning to worsen the president’s already diminished standing with the voters. Wait until the voters hear that Iran and Saudi Arabia may be paying for the Ground Zero mosque.