ALL HOPE that the inspired Million Man March had brought Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan into moderation is shattered. On his month-long tour of African and Middle Eastern states, Minister Farrakhan has sought out as friends not only the enemies of the United States but also those singled out by black American leaders for condemnation as tyrants.
Most black members of Congress as well as Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke have joined Randall Robinson, the leader of TransAfrica, in denouncing Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha for suppressing dissent and now for the execution of Ken Saro-Wiwa. Minister Farrakhan made common cause with General Abacha.
Libya's President Muammar el Kadafi, who has boasted he would give $1 billion to support an Islamic lobby in Washington, has provided Mr. Farrakhan money in the past. He may have again on this visit, to "mobilize, in a legal and legitimate form, the oppressed minorities in the U.S." Mr. Farrakhan wrote in a guest book, "I implore God to punish our enemies hundreds of times, just as they did to us and against you."
Columnist Clarence Page pointed out on the page opposite, Feb. 2, the irony of Mr. Farrakhan, who talks of slavery in the U.S., failing to mention it to Colonel Kadafi. The genocidal attacks of Sudan's government against its black people have provided a stream of surviving women and children to slave labor in northern Sudan and, reportedly, in Libya.
Which brings up the most extraordinary Farrakhan visit. He called on Sudan's Gen. Omar Hassan Ahmed al-Bashir, who is destroying southern Sudan's black Christians and indigenous believers in the name of Islam. Mr. Farrakhan embraces its conversion policy.
Many black Americans have condemned Zaire's strongman, Gen. Mobutu Sese Seko. Mr. Farrakhan called on him. Most Americans condemn the narrow bigotry of Iran's extremist regime. Mr. Farrakhan celebrated the 17th anniversary of its revolution and said, "God will not give Japan and Europe the honor of bringing down the United States, this is an honor God will bestow upon Muslims." He went to see the brutal Saddam Hussein and called sanctions on Iraq a "crime against humanity."
In South Africa, Mr. Farrakhan was received by President Nelson Mandela, who lectured him on the need for tolerance to all racial groups and faiths. It did not sink in.