MAGIC MOMENTS Barack, Burt (inset) (Photo: Getty Images) Barack Obama's tractor beam of charisma proved powerful enough yesterday to pull the full weight of a Democratic dinosaur and his family. But can it reach the souls of America's most committed enemies? Burt Bacharach, a guy who knows a little something about matters of the heart, says absolutely.
The legendary schmaltz-peddler cooed over the Illinois hope-monger in an interview with an Australian newspaper yesterday, admitting that he cried at a recent Obama speech: "It excited me. Here's somebody who's like nobody I ever heard talking." And the composer of "What the World Needs Now Is Love" was confident that the Obama effect would reach radicalized youth in other parts of the world. "What kind of message could that Obama's election send to the deprived and underprivileged world ... kids who aspire to blowing themselves up as suicide bombers in that part of the world, to suddenly see 'Hey, there's a young black man who's the president of the United States.'"
Reached for comment in his hovel in the Baqa'a Palestinian refugee camp in Jordan, a 16-year-old prospective suicide bomber confirmed Bacharach's suspicions. "My family lives in absolute squalor, and I blame America with every fiber of my being for providing Israelis with weapons and political support that have caused decades of unimaginable suffering for all Palestinians. But if it's a charismatic black guy that's facilitating the oppression of my people, that's totally different. I'm fired up and ready to go—for Barack Obama in 2008!"