Thursday, October 27, 2016


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Amir Hekmati Marine Corps

On Thursday, we reported the story of the American pastor serving a prison sentence in an Iranian prison.

President Obama met with the family of Pastor Abedini before the recent State of the Union Address, telling his wife and children that the pastor’s release was a “top priority.”

The same day, Obama discussed the case of yet another American citizen imprisoned in Iran, Arizona-born Amir Hekmati. Amir is a combat-veteran of the United States Marine Corps.

Hekmati, was arrested in 2011 while visiting his grandmother in Iran.

He was charged with spying and forced to confess he was a CIA operative – which the State Department has denied.

Amir ended his active service contract in the Marine Corps in 2005 after serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom as a translator. A multi-lingual entrepreneur, he started a linguistics consultancy in 2006.

The Marine Veteran was initially sentenced to death after being declared by an Iranian court as “an enemy of God.”

The sentenced was later overturned by Iran’s Supreme Court and a retrial was scheduled, however the trial did not occur . . . at least in public.

Amir’s sister shed light on her brother’s fate when she announced last year that Amir was sentenced to 10-years after a “practical collaboration wit the U.S. Government” convicted him in secret.

During President Obama’s State of the Union Address, an empty seat was held in honor of the imprisoned Marine by Rep. Dan Kildee from Flint, Michigan, Amir’s hometown.

Kildee had a chance to discus Amir Hekmati’s case with the President before and after his address.

The Michigan rep did not disclose if he was also told by Obama that Amir’s release was a “top priority.”

In addition to Pastor Abedini and Amir Hekmati, Washington Post Reporter Jason Rezaian and possibly Robert Levinson are held in Iranian Prisons. Iran has not denied Levinson’s imprisonment but refuses to confirm it placing him “missing” limbo.

President Obama has not signaled any intent to pressure Iran to release the four Americans.

Chuck Norris has been significantly more vocal on these cases than the President of the United States and, given the lack of action by the U.S. Government, Iran may have more reason to fear Norris than Obama.

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On Wednesday, President Obama met with the family of an American Pastor who is imprisoned in Iran for his “Christian” activities.

Saeed Abedini, a former Muslim who converted to Christianity, is a resident of Boise, Idaho.

The pastor became a U.S. Citizen in 2008, and traveled frequently to his birth country of Iran to establish “house churches” in the country. He was responsible for starting 100 churches in 30 cities in Iran with a total congregation of over 2,000 parishioners.

In January of 2013, Abedini was sentenced to eight years in prison for “undermining the Iranian government by creating a network of Christian house churches.”

Later that year, Abedini was transferred to one of Iran’s harshest prisons notorious for rape, torture and murder.

In President Obama’s meeting with Pastor Abedini’s wife and two children, he told the family that their husband and father’s release was a “top priority.”

When Abedini’s 6-year-old son, Jacob asked, “Mr. President, can you please bring daddy home for my birthday?” Obama asked his birthday, March 17th, and then stated he would “try very hard” to bring the boy’s father home.

Five months ago, the family recorded a personal plea to the President and posted it on YouTube.

Seven-year-old daughter Rebekka asked Obama, “Why does our daddy need to be in prison for loving Jesus?”

The bilingual children also recorded a video to Iranian leaders in Farsi.

Obama, whether honest or not about his “top priority” to Abedini’s wife and children, has not shown sincerity in his actions with scores of vacations and golf outings within the last year alone at a significant tax-payer expense – well over $1 million per trip.

Placating a constituent with “feel good” words is a common practice among politicians; however giving powerful hope to children who dearly miss their father may be a new low . . . if the President fails to deliver.

Regardless, Abedini’s wife was thankful for the meeting stating, “The President was focused and gracious – showing concern to me and my children. I know that this meeting could not have occurred without prayer and I am grateful to the many people around the country and world who continue to pray for Saeed’s release. The President repeated his desire to do all that he can to bring Saeed home. That means the world to me and my children and has given me a renewed sense of hope.”



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