- By Josh Rogin
Josh Rogin covers national security and foreign policy and writes the daily Web column The Cable. His column appears bi-weekly in the print edition of The Washington Post. He can be reached for comments or tips at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Previously, Josh covered defense and foreign policy as a staff writer for Congressional Quarterly, writing extensively on Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantánamo Bay, U.S.-Asia relations, defense budgeting and appropriations, and the defense lobbying and contracting industries. Prior to that, he covered military modernization, cyber warfare, space, and missile defense for Federal Computer Week Magazine. He has also served as Pentagon Staff Reporter for the Asahi Shimbun, Japan's leading daily newspaper, in its Washington, D.C., bureau, where he reported on U.S.-Japan relations, Chinese military modernization, the North Korean nuclear crisis, and more.
A graduate of George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, Josh lived in Yokohama, Japan, and studied at Tokyo's Sophia University. He speaks conversational Japanese and has reported from the region. He has also worked at the House International Relations Committee, the Embassy of Japan, and the Brookings Institution.
Josh's reporting has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, CBS, ABC, NPR, WTOP, and several other outlets. He was a 2008-2009 National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellow, 2009 military reporting fellow with the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism and the 2011 recipient of the InterAction Award for Excellence in International Reporting. He hails from Philadelphia and lives in Washington, D.C.
President Barack Obama is a socialist, was raised by communists, and wasn’t born in the United States, according to the former Navy SEAL who founded the group Special Operations Speaks (SOS), which aims to portray Obama as anti-military in this election season.
Earlier this week, a different group of former Navy SEALS calling themselves the Special Operations OPSEC Education Fund rolled out its campaign to criticize Obama for leaking national security information and taking what it believes as undue credit for the killing of Osama bin Laden. That group claims to be non-political.
But the founder of SOS, a similar group with the same mission and the same tactics, says he has no problem admitting that he is against Obama’s politics, personality, and believes that America’s current president is lying about his origins.
"I have to admit that I’m a Birther," said SOS founder Larry Bailey, a retired 27-year veteran of the Navy SEALs, in an interview. "If there were a jury of 12 good men and women and the evidence were placed before them, there would be absolutely no question Barack Obama was not born where he said he was and is not who he says he is."
Bailey, who is part of the leadership of SOS’s effort to mobilize thousands to take to the streets to denounce Obama’s treatment of the military through an SOS project called Operation Street Corner, doesn’t only believe that the president is a foreigner. He also believes that he is not actually the son of Barack Obama, Sr. Bailey trumpeted the conspiracy theory that the president is actually the love child of Ann Dunham and writer Frank Marshall Davis.
"In his books, Obama said his mentor was a fellow named Frank Marshall Davis. Frank Marshall Davis was a member of Communist Party USA, he wrote for the communist party’s Hawaii newsletter, he was a close friend of Obama’s mother, and there’s a strong case that Frank Marshall Davis rather than Barack Obama, Sr. was Barack Obama, Jr.’s father and that Barack Obama, Sr. was just an administrative father of convenience," Bailey said.
Bailey isn’t shy about his dislike of Obama personally and admits freely that his extensive efforts to mobilize special operations veterans and their supporters around the country is rooted in his personal dislike of the president and his desire to see him replaced.
"Barack Obama’s a born red-diaper baby. He’s a socialist. His beliefs are the very antithesis of my beliefs. As far as I am concerned he is one of the most unlikeable and unprepared politicians we’ve ever had," Bailey said. "I don’t like him because he believes that America is responsible for most of the problems in the world and he wants to cut her down to size."
Bailey is also a veteran of efforts to portray Democrats as anti-military during previous presidential election cycles. He was involved in the 2004 effort called Vietnam Vets for the Truth, an organization that was separate from but worked with Swift Boat Veterans for the Truth to attack John Kerry’s military record. Together they organized a "Kerry Lied" rally on Capitol Hill that had 5,000 attendees.
Bailey said he came up with the idea for SOS earlier this year and organized some fellow former special operations guys, mostly in their 60s and 70s, with the mission of helping Obama’s opponent win.
"I had an idea that we could lend a hand to the effort of getting the White House expunged of what’s there now and elect someone more to my liking," Bailey said.
The group has a Facebook page with more than 22,000 likes, and "Operation Street Corner" now has 30 coordinators spread out across 20 states to encourage and enable people to get out on the street and set up displays attacking Obama’s handling of national security.
"What we’re doing right now is establishing an infrastructure that will put us in good stead to influence the outcome on Nov. 6," said Bailey. "You can expect some television ads but we are more focused on prosecuting the ground war rather than the air war."
SOS now has former Army Rangers, Army Special Forces, Navy SEALS, Air Commands, Marine Special Operations Commands, and representatives from other special operations groups as well. The group has set up a quasi-military command structure Bailey calls a "Joint Task Force" to manage its operations. SOS has already raised thousands, but aims much higher.
"I want somebody to give me $1.5 million. We think we’re going to get $1.5 million," said Bailey. We’re going to be so effective with that $1.5 dollars getting the message out that people will be standing in line to help us help them."
Bailey wears his views on his sleeve and wants anyone who’s interested to know he is fighting not only for the special operations community but also against an ideology he views as dangerous.
"The Obama administration and the liberal progressive path that our country is going down is going to be nothing less than disastrous for our civilization," he said.