Conservative author and self-declared historian David Barton told his radio audience on Friday that President Barack Obama purposefully allowed an attack on the U.S. embassy in Benghazi so that he can orchestrate his ultimate goal of banning free speech — and specifically, all criticism of Islam.
“We’ve seen all the stuff on Libya and it still comes out and I recently had some really interesting face-time with some members of Congress who have been briefed on all this stuff, as all the members of Congress have, and they were telling me stuff that I have not yet heard come out in the news,” he said before claiming that the Obama administration signed a pact with “57 Islamic governments” supporting “anti-blasphemy codes.”
He went on to describe a version of events in Libya that wildly contradicts the official story, including the debunked claim that the Obama administration ordered a stand-down. Published reports in The Wall Street Journal and ABC News said Friday that’s not true at all, noting that the Central Intelligence Agency did send a security team in but they were delayed by Libyan officials and were fired upon at the scene.
That didn’t faze Barton, though. “So we’re watching this thing develop, we watched four lives get lost and then what happens is we’re told ‘oh, it’s this video, we can’t be criticizing Islam, this video that criticized Islam, it cost four people.’ This is the perfect set-up for the anti-blasphemy resolution that we joined on to and said we’re going to be a part of. I think it backfired; I really think that’s where they were headed.”
The anti-blasphemy resolution Barton is referring to isn’t some sort of mandate: it actually calls for Islamic nations to work on preventing violent eruptions through education and community outreach, not through force. Still, some countries like Egypt and Pakistan have enshrined the prohibition into law in the wake of an American-produced film created solely to offend Muslims, which succeeded in triggering mass protests and rioting in September.
The growing trend of anti-blasphemy laws in the Islamic world attracted Obama’s criticism during a speech to the United Nations in September. “I accept that people are going to call me awful things every day, and I will always defend their right to do so,” he told the General Assembly. “Americans have fought and died around the globe to protect the right of all people to express their views — even views that we profoundly disagree with.”
Barton, whose historical fiction is frequently cited by conservatives like former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) and former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA), recently saw his book “The Jefferson Lies” pulled from stores by one of the nation’s largest Christian publishers. It was also voted “Least credibly history book in print” by The History News Network at George Mason University.
This audio is from David Barton’s “Wall Builders,” published Friday, November 2, 2012.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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