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January 26, 2015; Department of Defense News

As a follow-up to our story on President Obama’s decision to cut short his trip to India to visit with new Saudi king Salman, we had to share this. Although worthy of The Onion, it is real—unless we, Mother Jones, the Washington Examiner, the National Review, and scores of other outlets have been snookered by a fabulous prank. On behalf of the Pentagon, General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, announced that the National Defense University would sponsor a research and essay competition in honor of the late King Abdullah, who died last week at the age of 90. Calling the dead king a “man of remarkable courage,” Dempsey said that the essay competition was “an important opportunity to honor the memory of the king, while also fostering scholarly research on the Arab-Muslim world.”

Give that some thought. An essay competition to honor the Wahhabi king who financed terrorism around the world, repressed his own people, denied some of the most basic rights to women, authorized mutilating or beheading “criminals”…oh, the list goes on and on. The fact that this competition was announced by President Obama’s military chief as the president goes to Saudi Arabia has given politically conservative outlets the opportunity to lambaste the president for honoring Saudi Arabia’s Wahhabi monarch.

Abdullah ruled as the regent, the de facto ruler of the