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Jewish World Review April 11, 2002/ 30 Nisan, 5762

Ann Coulter

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Not moving on, Part II | You know you've lived a good life when both Fidel Castro and Bill Clinton mutter your name in disgust. If Vlad the Impaler knew about Orlando Bosch, he'd have belched out Bosch's name, too.

Just a few months ago, Fidel Castro was regaling an audience in Havana's Plaza de la Revolucion with tales of Bosch's perfidy. In the sort of crisp, punchy speaking style that draws millions to hear him (nearly as much as the threat of execution), Castro compared Bosch to the Sept. 11 terrorists. Bosch, Castro said, was the perpetrator of a "monstrous terrorist act."

Similarly, Clinton invoked Bosch's name recently while being interviewed for Newsweek's Clinton Rehabilitation Project. Angrily describing ruckus over his fire sale on presidential pardons, Clinton sneered: "I swore I wouldn't answer questions about Marc Rich until (former president) Bush answered about Orlando Bosch."

(Note that Clinton's position is that the Rich pardon "wasn't worth the damage to my reputation" -- which was unblemished until then. Rich deserved a pardon, but if he had to do it over again, Clinton would have withheld the pardon solely to protect his own reputation.)

In the honest reporting Americans have come to expect from the mainstream media, Newsweek went on to explain that Bosch -- quote -- "blew up an airliner in 1976, killing 73, and was freed from jail in 1990 by then-President Bush under pressure from his son Jeb and Cuban exiles."

On the basis of the Newsweek account, one might think that Bosch blew up an airliner in 1976, killing 73, and was freed from jail in 1990 by then-President Bush under pressure from his son Jeb and Cuban exiles. In fact, Bosch was cleared of any connection to the airline bombing. Twice. In Venezuelan courts.

When not trying to rehabilitate Clinton, liberals wail that Venezuelan courts are human-rights violators more malignant than Ken Starr. Yet it was Venezuela's criminal justice system that produced two acquittals for Bosch -- in both civilian and military courts.

It took DNA evidence and a score of witnesses for liberals to stop shouting "allegedly" about Clinton's crimes. But an anti-Castro Cuban is deemed guilty even of the crimes of which he has been formally acquitted. Twice. In Venezuela.

Bosch's only known violent crime -- admittedly not proved with DNA evidence and a score of witnesses, but found by a jury nevertheless -- was to fire a rifle at a Polish ship docked off of Miami in 1968. No one was hurt and the ship was only slightly damaged, making it a more successful operation than John F. Kennedy's Bay of Pigs invasion. But, inexplicably, it is a crime to fire a rifle at communist freighters headed to Cuba.

For his one crime -- taking a shot at the Polish ship -- The New York Times labeled Bosch "one of the hemisphere's most notorious terrorists." (The other being Ken Starr.) Liberals so love Castro's Cuba, the last Great White Hope for a socialist paradise, they sometimes forget that being an anti-communist is not generally regarded as a terrorist act.

Bosch was paroled in 1974, but soon violated his parole by fleeing rather than testifying against a fellow anti-Castro Cuban. When Linda Tripp made a different choice about testifying against a friend, the Times didn't like that either. You can't win with these liberals.

After being held in Venezuelan jails for a decade while being (repeatedly) found innocent by Venezuelan courts, Bosch flew to Miami, turned himself in, and served three months in prison for his earlier parole violation.

But instead of releasing him, Attorney General Dick Thornburgh decided to deport Bosch in order to make room for Muslim terrorists interested in attending flight school. Surprisingly enough, the only country itching to admit Bosch was Cuba. So in 1990, when Bosch was in his 60s, the Bush Justice Department released him from a deportation holding cell with the proviso that he renounce violence and wear an electronic ankle bracelet for monitoring by federal agents.

The New York Times hysterically denounced the decision to release Bosch, claiming that Bosch was "known" for bombings. With slightly more plausibility, Bill Clinton is "known" for murdering Vince Foster. The Times also accused Bosch of being "a hero in the anti-Castro communities." If liberals hated homicidal Muslim fanatics half as much as they hate anti-communist Cubans, all of America would finally be behind the war on terrorism.

After Clinton skulked out of the White House with the silverware and pardon bribe money in his pocket, there were a dozen articles written by Clinton's most devoted media pets citing the dread case of Orlando Bosch, Terrorist. Bosch should probably be happy the Clinton Rehabilitation Project isn't calling him a stalker.

JWR contributor Ann Coulter is the author of High Crimes and Misdemeanors: The Case Against Bill Clinton.

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