Opinion

Rewarding Terrorism In New York

Some years ago, famous radio personality Paul Harvey exposed questionable attitudes towards Mexicans in two news items: One, he decried the fact that tortillas had become the number one “bakery” product in the United States displacing sliced “white bread’” and, two, he carried on and on about 12 arrests at a Cinco de Mayo (5th of May) celebration in Los Angeles. Bad Mexicans…

What he didn’t say was that over 500,000 people – almost all Mexican Americans — were at the downtown celebration. He also didn’t say that the arrests were for drinking alcohol in public.

One wonders what he would have said Sunday when New York City had its annual “Puerto Rican Day” parade Grand Marshalled by Puerto Rican terrorist/bomber Oscar Lopez Rivera. President Barack Obama essentially pardoned Lopez Rivera when he commuted Lopez Rivera’s sentence after he had served 36 years of a 55 year sentence (which included additional 15 years for planning an escape).

He was convicted and sentenced in 1981 for his leadership of the pro-Puerto Rican independence militant group “Armed Forces of National Liberation,” or “FALN.” It was linked to more than 100 bombings with dozens of injured, some seriously and five killed in Chicago and New York. Puerto Ricans in Chicago have named a street for Lopez Rivera, an “honorary” street name, of course; what an “honor” considering he is a convicted terrorist.

Though Lopez Rivera wasn’t directly linked to any specific bombings of the 100 bombings, he was convicted on multiple charges that included seditious conspiracy, plotting to overthrow the U.S. government, and myriad other charges. He was not alone.

The Puerto Rican Nationalist Party founded in 1922 was the political parent of the FALN, the militant revolutionary group of terrorists. Its founder and leaders served various prison sentences after fighting broke out in 1950 in Puerto Rican towns that killed police officers and some of the ersatz “rebels.” Though the Puerto Rican Army National Guard as well as some U.S. Air Force planes put down the mini-rebellions in 1950 after a few days, the reputation of the independence movement was terroristic not of romantic freedom fighters or of a massive rebellion like the Mexican Revolution of 1910-1920.

Two New York City resident FALN supporters tried to assassinate President Harry Truman in 1950 during his morning walk and four more shot up the House of Representatives wounding five Congressmen in 1954. The four shooters were convicted and sentenced to life in prison. President Jimmy Carter pardoned these terrorists in 1979.

Joining Jimmy Carter in his repugnant pardons and/or commutations of Puerto Rican terrorists was President Bill Clinton who tried to pardon Oscar Lopez Rivera and his fellow FALN terrorists in 1999. Lopez Rivera refused Clinton’s offer because not all imprisoned Puerto Rican terrorists were included in the offered commutations and/or pardons.

Despite Presidential attention by Presidents Carter, Clinton and Obama, the Puerto Rican independence activism of the FALN was fanatical, criminal and terror-based. Fortunately, it was tiny and inconsequential except for the political pandering of the three Democratic Presidents. Their use of the ultimate Presidential pardoning/commutation power to romance Puerto Rican voters in New York, Chicago, New Jersey and Florida is – disgraceful and quintessentially corrupt.

Just as disgraceful is the appearance and support of the Oscar Lopez Rivera-Grand Marshalled Puerto Rican Day parade in New York City in which Mayor Bill DeBlasio (real name – Warren Wilhelm, Jr.) participated in the parade. Thankfully, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo stayed in Albany rather than honor a terrorist.

Unlike Paul Harvey’s fact-shading to fit views that were at best heavily prejudiced, the facts are clear in the history of terrorism by Puerto Rican fanatics who delved in bombs, killings and attempts at political assassination for an independence movement with little support. Once again, a popular plebiscite in Puerto Rico this week was carried overwhelmingly by supporters of Puerto Rico entering the Union as the 51st state. Votes for FALN-demanded independence were minimal.

Democrat New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio – today — and Democrat Presidents Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama have no shame or as we say in Spanish they are “sin verguenza.” They released killers from prison for political gain and DeBlasio honors them; that is more than shameful; it is almost criminal.

Raoul Lowery-Contreras is the Author of THE ARMENIAN LOBBY & AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY (Berkeley Press 2017) and THE MEXICAN BORDER: IMMIGRATION, WAR AND A TRILLION DOLLARS IN TRADE (Floricanto Press 2016), he formerly wrote for the New American News Service of the New York Times Syndicate…