Skip to comments.The Intimidation of Writers and Journalists by CAIR The American connections to Islamic Terror
Posted on 11/11/2005 6:36:45 PM PST by strategofr
The following is the official prepared statement of Steven Emerson before the Senate Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology, and Government Information, on February 24, 1998. It was obtained through the Federal News Service via the Library of Congress.
Copyright 1998 Federal Information Systems Corporation Federal News Service
SECTION: IN THE NEWS
LENGTH: 23591 words
HEADLINE: PREPARED STATEMENT OF STEVEN EMERSON BEFORE THE SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE SUBCOMMITTEE ON TERRORISM, TECHNOLOGY AND GOVERNMENT INFORMATION SUBJECT - FOREIGN TERRORISTS IN AMERICA: FIVE YEARS AFTER THE WORLD TRADE CENTER BOMBING
The subject of today's hearing, the foreign terrorist threat in the United States, is one of the most important issues we face as a society today. With the advent of chemical and biological weapons, we now face distinct possibilities of mass civilian murder the likes of which have not been seen World War II. The specter of terrorism carries with it the threat of violence aimed at targets merely because of their religious, ethnic or national identities. The threat of terrorism, particularly in the age of instant telecommunications, also carries a major psychological dimension-through an electronic multiplier effect that has the ability to inject fear and fright into the hearts and minds of tens of millions of Americans.
At the outset it important to note several points about these hearings:
One. Foreign terrorists and extremists are no different than home grown terrorists and extremists. Terrorism is terrorism-no matter who carries it out. The threat from domestic terrorists who see the United States government from a paranoid lens is no less problematic than foreign terrorists view us in the same manner. As evidenced by the Oklahoma City bombing, bombings of abortion clinics, and other acts of terrorism, the ultra right wing militia, the Christian Identity Movement, Arian Nations, and neo-Nazis are intent on inflicting murder and mayhem against innocent civilians.
Two. The absence of bombs going off more regularly should not lull us into a false sense of security. The presence of foreign terrorist groups means that they have the capabilities of launching attacks here and the ability, which they exploit to their maximum advantage, of using the United States as a springboard to launch attacks against our allies and friends. It is a matter of vital national interest to hold hearings on the presence of foreign terrorist groups on American soil. There are various groups in the United States tied to international and foreign acts of terrorism. This includes the offshoot of the militant Jewish Defense League known as Kahane Chai, the Irish Republican Army and militant Sikhs, among others.
Three. Terrorism does not develop in a vacuum. It requires intellectual, financial, and often religious sustenance and nurturing. The bombing of the World Trade Center for example, and the Oklahoma City bombing, sprang from a much larger communal constellation of like minded believers and supporters. The physical act of terrorism may appear to come out of the blue but in fact is almost always predicated in larger movements that justify such acts of terrorism as legitimate. And yet, by virtue of the great freedoms enshrined in our laws and constitution, most activities of extremist groups, including known terrorist fronts in the United States, are legal and protected. While some activities were made illegal in the 1996 Anti-Terrorism Act, the vast majority of activities carded out by extremist groups remain protected because they fall quite appropriately--in the category of free speech. Yet, such legal protections do not extend to protection from journalist inquiries or other public scrutiny. In fact, it is the prospect of this scrutiny that has assisted in the past in eradicating domestic extremist movements and unmasking those extremists under false facades. As Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once said, "Sunshine is the law's best disinfectant." Thus, the public has a right to know and expect that an educational curriculum is not being secretlymanipulated by foreign radicals, that journalists are not serving as witting or unwitting pawns of extremists, and that public and elected officials are not legitimizing militant groups.
Four. In any discussion of the threat of radical Islamic fundamentalism, it is imperative to point out that militant Islamic extremism is not synonymous with mainstream Islam. Those who engage in extremism today are simply practicing their totalitarian interpretation of a religion. The vast majority of Muslims do not support in any way the politics of the extremists. Nevertheless, to deny the existence of radical Islam--as some groups have aggressively assert ... or to pretend it does not exist is tantamount to defending the militants as one and the same with peace-seeking moderates. Rather than protecting the moderates from being tarred with the extremist brush, it only paints them further. For the militants, of course, the deliberate blurring of the distinction between militant and moderate Islam is designed to hide under the protection of mainstream Islam. Extremists in Islam are no different than other religious extremists-- whether it be a Jewish terrorist who shot the Israeli Prime Minister because he believed he was commanded to do so by God, or the anti- abortionist assassin who believes he has the right to kill anyone in the name of God or a Christian militant in Northern Ireland who kills innocent civilians. A religious extremist differs only in the religion he invokes to commit a crime.
Five. The attacks on today's hearing and on me by various Islamic and Arab advocacy groups illustrates the growing danger of allowing militant groups to masquerade uncritically under the banner of self- anointed "civil rights" and "human rights" status. These groups are no more deserving of civil rights status than the Ku Klux Klan's patently transparent efforts to masquerade under civil rights monikers advocating "human rights" for whites. In particular, the Council on American Islamic Relations and American Muslim Council, as well as others, have sent out emails and internet alerts "warning" their supporters about these hearings this morning. In effect, the message disseminated by these groups was that merely discussing the presence of Islamic radicals on American soil is to be construed as an attack on Islam. The same type of message was issued by Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman, spiritual ringleader of the World Trade Center bombing-related conspiracy, when he claimed that his conviction was "an attack on Islam." This type of contrived delusion is but a transparent effort to prevent a free discussion of the threat of militant Islamic fundamentalism in the United States. On Sunday night, an even more incendiary email alert was distributed by the "Free Arab Voice" when it labeled this hearing an "attack on Islam."
The Threat to Free Speech and Thought: If not confronted, the efforts by radical Islamic groups such as the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the American Muslim Council (AMC) to intimidate those who speak out on the threat of militant Islamic fundamentalism poses one of the greatest dangers to the freedoms in American society. In point of fact--elucidated later in this testimony--these groups are actual political wings of radical Islamic fundamentalist organizations. They have defended terrorist groups, terrorist leaders including Hamas chieftain Musa Marzook and WorldTrade Center bombing conspiracy ringleader Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman, and the Sudanese terrorist regime currently engaged in a genocidal war against the Christian minority. Both of these groups have sponsored visits in the United States of leading international militants and known anti-Semites (including those who exhorted their followers to kill Jews) and consistently attacked American writers for exposing the threat of militant Islamic extremism. These groups pose a clear and present danger to American freedoms and society, not to mention moderate Muslims around the globe.
Congress ought to actively defend the right of journalists, writers, and others to speak out against the militant activities of radical fundamentalists, free from the threat of intimidation and violence.
It is intolerable that writers and American citizens on American soil should have to endure the same defamatory campaigns and threats as Salman Rushdie. As a result, few journalists have dared to expose the international terrorist connections of seemingly benign Islamic institutions that hide under demonstrably false veneers of moderation and tolerance. The courageous individuals who have taken on these groups have been subjected to frightening campaigns of intimidation that do not pass unnoticed by their colleagues. The result is that stories describing the true nature of radical Islamic activities in the U.S. and their growing menace to American society are few and far between. Moreover, the menace of radical Islam to secular and moderate Muslims, women, and intellectuals has been ignored almost entirely.
Militant Islamic fundamentalist groups continue to propagate their views throughout the United States, crowding out the views of the vast, overwhelming majority of Muslims who are against terrorism and violence. The radical groups operate below the conventional political radar screen that normally detects fringe and extremist organizations. Thus, these militant groups, and the politicians who associate with them, are allowed to maintain an unwarranted respectability. In the end, these radical groups are helping to solidify the political foundations of an extremist ideological belief system that sanctions savage suicide attacks in Israel, wanton murder of foreigners in Egypt, decapitation of young Algerian women who refuse to wear the Islamic veil, and death sentences against intellectuals and writers such as Taslima Nasreen and Salman Rushdie for writing things deemed "offensive."
Already, The New Republic, U.S. News and World Report, the Dallas Morning News, HBO, the Tampa Tribune, the Reader's Digest, The Journal of the American Medical Association and even the Weekly Reader's Current Events have become the subjects of well-coordinated campaigns of intimidation and implicit threats of violence for publishing stories deemed offensive to militant Islam. Hollywood studios that have produced "Executive Decision," "Not Without My Daughter", "Father of the Bride II" and "Path to Paradise" (a docu-drama about the World Trade Center bombing) have been the targets of vicious attacks by militant Muslim groups falsely invoking "anti-Muslim stereotypes" and violations of "Muslim human rights." While any racism must be condemned unequivocally, the attacks on these films falsely contended that the mere portrayal of Muslim terrorists or Islamic militants is a wholesale fabrication. This line of argument holds as much legitimate substance as the argument that films about the Mafia, Asian and black gangs, Russian mobsters, German Nazis and corrupt CIA agents are slurs against their respective nationalities or institutions. Militant Islamic groupshave actually claimed that the notion of Jihad or Holy War in Islam was concocted by the West as part of a campaign to defame Islam. Unless exposed for their ulterior agenda, these radical Islamic fundamentalist groups, hiding under politically-correct jargon, will continue to increase in strength and become more influential.
My Own Personal Experience: The fact that I have been forced to accept physical security in coming to this hearing this morning provides a personal insight into the scope of the current and growing problem. In November 1994, I served as the executive producer and reporter for the PBS documentary "Jihad in America". The film included previously unknown videos of the clandestine activities of radical Islamic terrorist groups operating in the United States, and featured interviews with moderate Muslims and federal counter-terrorism officials speaking for the first time about the magnitude of the threat posed by militant Muslim groups on U.S. soil. I was gratified by the fact that the film served as the impetus for the counter-terrorism legislation passed by Congress, and that it became a standard part of federal law enforcement education and training. "Jihad in America" also earned a George Polk Award for best documentary and the Investigative Reporters and Editors Award for the best piece of investigative reporting in book, print or television.
Until now, I have not told my personal story because I never wanted to become part of the story that I have covered as a journalist. Yet, I no longer have the luxury of keeping quiet. Immediately following the release of "Jihad in America," I became the target of radical fundamentalist groups throughout the United States (and internationally) who fiercely denied the existence of "Islamic extremism" and accused me of engaging in an "attack against Islam." For this "transgression," my life has been permanently changed.
Explaining the details of just one incident--to pick among a whole series--will help you understand the changes I have been forced to endure. One morning, in late 1995, I was paged by a federal law enforcement official. When I returned the call, this official immediately instructed me to head downtown to his office and specifically directed me to take a taxi rather than my car. The urgency in this person's voice was palpable. When I arrived at the office, I was ushered into a room where a group of other law enforcement officials was waiting. Within minutes, I found out why I had been summoned: I was told a group of radical Islamic fundamentalists had been assigned to carry out an assassination of me. An actual hit team had been dispatched from another country to the United States. The squad, according to the available intelligence, was to rendezvous with its American based colleagues located in several U.S. cities. Compounding the jolt of being told about this threat was an additional piece of information: The assassination squad had been able to successfully elude law enforcement detection. I was told that I had limited choices: Since I was not a full-time government employee, I was not entitled to 24 hour a day police protection. However, I could probably get permission to enter the Witness Security Program under the fight circumstances. But the prospect of beingspirited away and given a new identity was not acceptable to me--specially since that would afford the terrorists a moral victory in having shut me down. Frankly, however, the alternative option was not that attractive either--being on my own and taking my own chances. And yet that for me was the only effective option.
The Intimidation of Writers and Journalists by the Council on American Islamic Relations:
This is the reality of the political environment which exists today. Unfortunately, the new fears engendered by the stridency of militant Islamic groups attacking writers for their "antiIslamic" views are all too real and palpable. All one need to is to ask the editor a children's magazine who had the temerity to include an article on international terrorism which included on a list of terrorist events the World Trade Center bombing in addition to the Oklahoma City bombing; a Catholic priest who favorably reviewed a book on the historical treatment of Jewish and Christian minorities under Islamic rule hundreds of years ago; even screenwriters who authored films based on real events in which radical Islamic protagonists carried out terrorist events against the United States.
In the October 1997 issue of First Things, Fr. John Richard Neuhaus reviewed The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam: from Jihad to Dhimmitude, by Bat Ye'or. He favorably reviewed the book and commented about the growing threat of militant Islamic doctrine. The Council on American Islamic Relations(CAIR) one of the groups leading the attack on today's hearing--responded with a press release calling upon the Catholic Church to investigate Fr. Neuhaus because:
He portrayed Islam as a permanent threat to Western society, used racial and ethnic slurs against Arabs, offered inaccurate and offensive information about the spread of Islam, seemed to agree with those who think Muslim immigration is a 'low-level jihad' and suggested Christian-Muslim dialogue might be a 'delusion.' . . . (In a letter to the General Secretary of the National Council of Catholic Bishops) Awad called for an investigation to determine whether Father Neuhaus' article reflected authentic Church doctrine, with appropriate actions to bring Father Neuhaus into conformity with these teachings. 1 Following CAIR's statement, Father Neuhaus received a flood of hostile communications. They included such terms as "venomous diatribe," "hateful xenophobia," "doing the work of Adolph Hitler," "agitating for a new Crusade" and "obviously mentally ill." Father Neuhaus commented:
The attack initiated by CAIR produced dozens and dozens of letters from as far away as Australia, some of them accompanied by hundreds of signatures of Muslims who claimed to be deeply offended by the review... The campaign obviously had the aim of intimidating into silence anyone who dares to say anything less than complementary about things Muslim. 2
Following the brutal massacre of tourists in Luxor last fall, Montreal Gazette cartoonist Terry Mosher produced a cartoon of a mad dog in Arab headdress, labeled "Islamic Extremism" and captioned "With Apologies to Dogs Everywhere? Nihad Awad responded: It is unconscionable that members of any faith be portrayed in such a manner The is (sic) an example of the current trend toward demonization of Islam and dehumanization of Muslims. We share Mr. Mosher's revulsion at the recent massacre in Egypt, but he does not have the right to incite anti-Muslim hatred and bigotry by equating all Muslims with mad dogs. The cartoon referred exclusively to Islam and made no mention of the massacre...
The cartoon refers not to Islam, but to Islamic extremism. Awad thus treats an attack on extremism as an attack on Islam. His revulsion at the massacre does not prevent him from the defending the ideology that produced it. After CAIR's notice, the Gazette received numerous hostile and threatening communications, mostly by electronic mail .5 Mosher himself received death threats and was forced to vacate his home.
Most recently, CAIR attacked columnist Nat Hentoff, a consistent and forthright advocate of human rights and free expression, for two columns criticizing Louis Farrakhan and Jesse Jackson, among others, for failing to speak out against slavery in the Sudan and Mauritania. Ibrahim Hooper responded that: "Perhaps this hesitancy results from a reluctance to indulge in politically and religiously motivated sensationalism that plays on and amplifies existing Islamophobic tendencies in Western society. Mr. Hentoff demonstrated the nastier aspects of this trend with his use of offensive terms such as 'Islamic enslavement'..." 6
Hooper also argued with Hentoff's facts, but his primary argument is that Hentoff--and Farrakhan and Jackson--should not discuss slavery in the Sudan because of the alleged negative impact of such a discussion on American Muslims. Before joining CAIR, Hooper also attacked the distinguished writer Paul Theroux for defending Salman Rushdie. 7
Pretending to be a civil rights group, CAIR is representative of the new transformation of militant Islamic groups. CAIR's origin and the affiliations of its founders. It was formed not by Muslim religious leaders throughout the country, but as an offshoot of the Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP). Incorporated in Texas, the IAP has close ties to Hamas and has trumpeted its support for terrorist activities. Its publications, the Arabic al-Zaytuna and the English language Muslim World Monitor, frequently praise terrorist actions,s Nihad Awad, the founder and executive director of CAIR, was contributing editor of the Muslim World Monitor when CAIR began operations .9 IAP has issued Hamas communiques calling for the killing of Jews, produced training videos for Hamas operatives, and actually recruited for Hamas in the United States. 10 Oliver Revell, former head of FBI counter-terrorism, has called the IAP a "Hamas front."11 CAIR has used the IAP Web Site for its early Internet publications. 12 The close connection between Hamas, IAP, and CAIR reveals CAIR's true purpose.
The connections between CAIR and Hamas extend beyond Nihad Awad. Mohammad Nimer, the director of CAIR's Research Center, was on the board of directors of the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR). This innocuous sounding organization is the strategic arm of Hamas in the United States. One Hamas terrorist operative, caught and convicted by Israeli authorities, called UASR "the political command of llamas in the United States?13 There are numerous other indicators of the close connections between UASR and Hamas.14 Nimer's transition from UASR to CAIR paralleled Awad's transition from IAP to CAIR. Another founding director of CAIR, Rafeeq Jabar, is president of the Islamic Association of Palestine. At the October 1997 Council for the National Interest Convention, Jabar described Israel as "living in apartheid," and Zionism as a "racist movement." He asserted that "when a Jew passes by a cross, they (sic) have to spit" and said of Israel, "never treat this cancer with a bandage."15
Five Years After the World Trade Center Bombing
In 1997, the United States racked up two important victories in the battle against international terrorism. Ramzi Yousef, a Pakistani citizen with Palestinian parentage, was sentenced to life in prison in 1997 for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. Yousef, an engineer, was the bomb builder and was the technical mastermind behind the explosion. The explosion miraculously resulted in the deaths of only 6 individuals. According to Federal Agent Brian Parr, Yousef indicated that if the bombing had gone as planned, the goal was to kill as many as 250,000 people. Following the sentencing, Ramzi Yousef told the court, "Yes, I am a terrorist and am proud of it."
Mir Aimal Kasi shot and killed two CIA agents during a shooting rampage outside of CIA headquarters on January 25, 1993. In November 1997, Kasi was in court in Fairfax, Virginia, for the penalty phase of his trial. On Wednesday, November 12, 1997, while jurors were deliberating on Kasi's fate, four American oil workers were gunned down in Karachi, Pakistan. A group called the Aimal Secret Committee claimed responsibility for the killings. The group threatened "if Aimal Kasi is martyred (given the death penalty), then we will not spare any American Jews on Pakistani soil and we will destroy the American Embassy in Pakistan." The group also threatened to kill President Clinton. (Star Tribune, November 16, 1997)
Yet, despite these victories, five years after the 1993 World Trade Center bombing in New York, the reverberations of the bombing are still being felt. At first, the initial assumption by law enforcement was that the immediate national security threat was contained to a small band of extremist followers of a charismatic but obscure Islamic religious leader named Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman. Sheik Rahman, a militant cleric from Egypt, had arrived in the United States in 1990 and recruited a band of fanatic followers who were mobilized by his calls for Jihad (Holy War) against the West.
In fact, in the five years since the bombing, intelligence officials and law enforcement agents have discovered that militant Islamic extremists have established extensive networks throughout the United States. Although there is no established hierarchy that centrally coordinates the activities of the myriad militant networks, the intelligence and law enforcement communities agree that the entire spectrum of radical groups from the Middle East has been replicated in the U.S.
These include: Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Hizzbullah, Hizba-Tahrir (Islamic Liberation Party), Islamic Salvation Front (Algeria), Armed Islamic Group (Algeria), En-Nahda (Tunisian), Muslim Brotherhood, Ga'mat Islamiya (Egypt), Islamic Salvation Front (Algeria), Abu Sayyaf Group, followers of Osama bin Laden, Taliban (Afghanistan), Jamat Muslimeen (Pakistan and Bangledesh), and support groups of mujahideen (Holy Warriors) in Bosnia, Philippines, Chechniya and other places. These groups have created large networks ofsupporters from whom they have raised tens of millions of dollars for their movements, recruited and trained new followers, underwritten their brethren organizations in the Middle East and elsewhere, and even remotely directed terrorist operations back in the Middle East or Europe. As stated by Oliver Revell, former Associate Deputy Director of the FBI, "the United States is the most preferred and easiest place in the world for radical Islamic groups to set up their headquarters to wage war in their homelands, destabilize and attack American allies and ultimately move against the United States itself."
For American Muslim moderates, the harsh reality of having their organizational gravity taken over by radicals is something they have to confront all the time. "Radical Islamic groups have now taken over leadership of the 'mainstream' Islamic institutions in the United States and anyone who pretends otherwise is deliberately engaging in self-deception," said the late Seif Ashmawi, an Egyptian-American newspaper publisher. Mr. Ashmawi died recently in a tragic car accident. A genuine American hero, Mr. Ashmawi had been the target of death threats for his criticism of Islamic militants in his New Jersey area, particularly that of the group supporting World Trade Center bombing leader Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman. He appeared in my film Jihad in America and testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee nearly two years ago about the dangers of extremist groups and their activities in the United States. The Modus Operandi of Militant Islamic Extremist Groups on American Soil:
In examining presence of militant Islamic groups on American soil, it is important to point out that the traditional paradigm associated with conventional groups does not apply. First there is no linear command structure as there exists with groups such as Irish Republican Army or the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Rather the structure of militant Islamic groups tends to be amorphous with non- intersecting circles of like-minded supporters who subscribe to the same core ideology of doctrinal Islamism but who act independent and without any strategic coordination.
What ever coordination does exist is the result of ad-hoc collaboration. Interestingly, in the Islamic fundamentalist diaspora, there appears to be more operational collaboration between different militant groups than there is in the Middle East. Hence the unprecedented collaboration of five different groups who coalesced in the World Trade Center bombing conspiracy and related terrorist plots: Gamat Islamiya (Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman of Egypt); Sudan's National Islamic Front (members of the Sudanese Mission in New York and five Sudanese arrested for the second series of bomb plots in Manhattan); Hamas (Mohammed Saleh, owner of a Yonkers gas station who was to supply the fuel for the second bombing WTC-connected plot and who was also a pivotal Hamas figure in arranging for Hamas military training in the Sudan and for acquiring military equipment for Hamas forces in Jordan); Islamic Jihad (Islamic Jihad head Abdul Azziz Odeh was an unindicted co-conspirator but is believed by law enforcementofficials to have known about the bomb plots); and A1-Fuqra (a militant black- Pakistani organization with adherents in Colorado, New York, Canada and Pakistan).
The structure of a militant Islamic movement is that much of the overt activities revolve around dawa or non-violent propagation of an extremist ideology that justifies the use of violence. Thus spreading the message, mobilizing supporters, indoctrinating the young with the values of militant Islam, recruiting new members and galvanizing religious adherence to a decided political platform-remember that that there is no separation of church and state in Islam-becomes the core focus of various Islamic groups like Hamas and the Hizzbollah. Carrying out terrorism is a small percentage of the overall activities carried out by Hamas. But if not for the vast Hamas social and educational outreach, its terrorist wing would have a hard time surviving. As revealed in its own charter, Hamas is dedicated to establishing an Islamic world order and perforce believes in the innate evil of the Jews and the West. Mere social activism--such as stopping hunger for the sake of stopping hunger--is not part of llamas' platform. Rather, it is to bring new adherents into its religious greenhouse from which an elite few are selected to carry out violent jihad against the enemy.
Of course, living in the West and in particular the United States has provided militant Islamic groups with freedoms and maneuverability like they never experienced in their native lands. Freedom to disseminate extremist propaganda calling for death and violence; to raise an almost unlimited amount of funds for their organizations; to remotely direct terrorist operations back in their host countries; and to exploit the other freedoms of American society. Yet, the Islamists are caught in a web of self-contradictions. Their recognition of the need to protect their new-found paradise is balanced by their ideological hatred for the United States, for its support of western countries in the Middle East and for the institutional concepts of secularism, democracy, and western culture. The bombing of the World Trade Center was not a blow directed against any one specific religion or but rather a deliberate act of political terrorism designed to "punish" the United States for its democracy and western identity-in other words its existence. In other words, the ideological foundations of militant Islamic fundamentalism puts it into permanent conflict with western values and policies. Hamas and other groups are capable of inflicting simultaneous attacks across the United States if they so desired. And yet, at the same time there is also recognition of the need to acquire political legitimacy, thus leading to the appearance of self-restraint that has deterred major outbreaks of terrorism in the United States.
Yet in the end, the rage of militant Islamic fundamentalists, reinforced by the extremist ideology propagated by the militant Islamic infrastructure in the United States, will not be permanently contained. But for good fortune, two episodes in recent years could have have resulted in much greater tragedy. The murderous rampage of Ali Abu Kamal, a Palestinian from Gaza whose selfadmitted hatred of the United States and of Jews propelled him into the attempted execution of tourists atop the Empire State Building. Abu Kamal ended up killing one young man and permanently wounding another young man-- rendering him brain damaged for the rest of his life. Abu Kamal finally turned the gun on himself. Although not publicly revealed, law enforcement officials found out that Abu Kamal had received assistance in Florida frommembers of mosque who helped him get his gun, accompanied him on target practice and escorted him on planned but aborted shooting in Miami.
Last summer, two militant Palestinians were arrested in New York hours before their crudely made bombs were apparently set to be detonated in the busy underworld of the New York City subway system. Had the attack not been prevented by an informant who stepped forward, the possibility is great that thousands could have been killed. Police breathed a sigh of relief when it was determined that the two men were not part of a larger Hamas conspiracy; yet the absence of a larger conspiracy is precisely what should be so worrisome. The two men had apparently been ultra-radicalized by the Islamic fundamentalist infrastructure in the United States and became emboldened on their own to strike a blow here on American soil. The self-activation of individual bombers and terrorists, indoctrinated in the propaganda disseminated by radical Muslim organizations, is far more difficult to prevent than organized acts of strategically premeditated terror. El Sayyid Nossair, the militant Egyptian who shot radical Rabbi Meir Kahane in 1990 and who was connected to the larger World Trade Center bombing conspiracy, had actually come to the United States as a westernized immigrant. He initially wore western clothes, dated women and tried to assimilate. Yet, he was lured into a radical Islamic fundamentalist orbit in Pittsburgh, setting in motion one of the most horrendous attempted acts of terrorism ever carried out on American soil.
A vast infrastructure has been developed in dozens of cities the result of which has given has now seen the entire replication of Islamic fundamentalist spectrum. Briefly
1. Hamas. Hamas has developed the largest network of all militant Islamic organizations in the United States. Its origins go back to 1981 when it started in Plainfield, Indiana. Today, Hamas. operating largely but not exclusively under the names the Islamic Association for Palestine and the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development--- has offices, branch chapters or a major presence in Richardson and Houston Texas; Chicago and Bridgeview, Illinois; Kansas City, Missouri; Los Angeles and Santa Clara, California; Patterson, New Jersey; Brooklyn, New York; Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona; and Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Its public activities largely consist of rallies and conferences (calling for jihad and death to the Jews), fundraising drives for "charitable" purposes, publication of Hamas newspapers and propaganda, efforts to reach out to local politicians to acquire political legitimacy and most frequent, constant efforts to mobilize support against Israel and pro-western Arab regimes and on behalf o the "Islamic movements" in Palestine and elsewhere. In previous years, conferences of the Islamic Association for Palestine have been vehicles to recruit and train terrorists to attack the Israelis.
2. Islamic Jihad. Tampa, Florida had served as the effective command and control center of the Islamic Jihad in the United States until federal agents descended in November 1995 upon the homes of suspected Islamic Jihad leaders who also served as professors at the University of South Florida in Tampa. The resulting trove of intelligence materials seized from the home an engineering professor and from the office of Professor Ramadan Abdullah Shallah--who suddenly surfaced in Damascus as official head of the terrorist group--wasthe largest such seizure seized since the World Trade Center arrests. Islamic Jihad still has a major but reduced presence in Tampa and is also known to have a major presence in Chicago.
3. Hizzbollah. The Lebanese Islamic fundamentalist group has kept an unusually low profile in the United States despite an advanced infrastructure of intelligence agents and operatives. The major centers of support today are in Bethesda, Maryland; Detroit and Ann Arbor, Michigan; and Chicago, Illinois. Hardcore Hizzbollah cells are known to exist in New York; New Jersey; Texas; Miami and Boca Raton, Florida.
4. Gamat Islamiyah. This Egyptian extremist movement, whose head Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman is now serving a life sentence, has an active presence in San Diego (operating through the American Islamic Group); Baltimore and College Park, Maryland (which publishes "New Trends" a magazine that sanctions violent attacks on Jews and the United States); North Carolina; Jersey City; and Boston, Massachusetts.
5. Abu Say-yaf. The militant Islamic fundamentalist group headquartered in the Philippines and also tied to Ramzi Yousef. Believed to have cells in northern California.
6. Jamat Muslimeen from Pakistan and Bangladesh. A militant Islamic fundamentalist movement with large presence in Brooklyn and Queens New York; California; and New Jersey.
7. AI Muhajirun. An extension of the British based Islamic group believed to be funded by radical Saudi expatriate Osama bin Laden. Located in Queens, New York
8. Muslim Arab Youth Association. Dominated by militant Egyptians and Palestinians, MAYA is one of the largest constituent organizations of the Muslim Brotherhood. Its annual conferences feature some of the most extreme Islamic leaders in the world. At previous conferences, terrorist training sessions have been held. It has chapters or has held conferences in Oklahama City, Oklahoma; Phoenix and Tempe, Arizona; Ontario and Los Angeles, California; Detroit, Michigan; Jersey City, New Jersey; Chicago, Illinois; Houston, Texas; and Kansas City, Missouri.
9. Hizba-Tarir. Islamic Liberation Party. Headquartered in northern California and in Queens New York. It openly calls for jihad and attacks against western regimes and the overthrow of proWestern Arab regimes.
10. United Association for Studies and Research. The strategic arm of llamas in the United States; located in Springfield, Virginia.
11. The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). It grew out of the Hamas organization (the Islamic Association for Palestine) in Texas in 1994 and has evolved in a major propaganda arm of Islamic extremist groups, in particular Hamas. CAIR now has chapters in cities coast to coast, with its particularly aggressive headquarters operating in Washington D.C. Two of the three founding directors of CAIR occupied senior positions in the Islamic Association for Palestine, a front group for Hamas.
12. The American Muslim Council. Headquartered in Washington DC, the American Muslim Council serves as the defacto lobbying arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in the United States. It has lead the campaign to stop Salman Rushdie from meeting with President Bill Clinton, lobbied against the counter-terrorist legislation, defended the terrorist regime of the Sudan against charges that it is engaged in terrorism, championed Hamas chieftain Musa AbuMarzook and other Islamic terrorists, and attacked all critics of militant Islam as "antiMuslim."
The Use of Non-Profit and Tax-Exempt Foundations The primary vehicle through which radical groups have established a "legitimate" presence in the United States has been the establishment of non-profit charitable, religious, academic, and educational institutions. During the past seven years, there has been a proliferation of radical Islamic groups hiding under false cover using 501 c(3) and other non-profit status. Every year, scores of new organizations receive non-profit charity status to raise millions of dollars annually to fund their "charitable" arms in the Middle East such as Hamas hospitals, schools and religious institutions. (It is through this Hamas social welfare infrastructure in which Hamas recruits new followers and cultivates its selection of soon to be terrorists.) Although some observers have contended that the social- welfare arm of Hamas is innocent, the fact is that these Hamas institutions are designed to bring the population at large under their influence and control.
Sometimes the monies raised go directly to purchase weapons and military supplies, although most of the time the tax-free money raised in the United States goes to underwrite the socialwelfare budgets of groups like Hamas, freeing up local funds for terrorist operations since money is fungible.
The locations of the radical groups span the entire United States. Certain areas are known to have larger concentrations of Islamic radicals and are the sites of offices of Islamic militant groups that raise funds, recruit new members, disseminate propaganda, and in some cases, recruit terrorists, provide military training and even direct terrorist operations back in the Middle East. These areas include Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles, Santa Clara, New York, Washington, D.C./northem Virginia, North Carolina, Miami, Tampa, Dallas, Oklahoma City, San Diego, Orlando, Arizona, Kansas and New Jersey. Even with the known location of front groups, Islamic militants pose a more difficult challenge to law enforcement than any other terrorist group operating in the United States. "What makes these groups so troublesome is that they hide under a religion, do not have a traditional linear hierarchy, speak a foreign language and generally go about as far as they can in pushing the limits of the law without our being to being track them when and if they go over the line," says former FBI official Revell. "Their agenda in the United States is to not only build their infrastructure and raise funds but also to be in position to ultimately move against the United States."
The Rise of Hamas and Mousa Abu Marzook:
The first manifestation of Hamas' presence in the United States was the creation of the Islamic Association for Palestine for North America in 1981--and it was soon followed by the replication of this organization in various cities. Among the founders were Dr. Mousa Abu Marzook, Ghassan al-Ashey and his brother Bassam al-Ashey. Marzook and the al-Asheysdeveloped extensive business holdings and corporate entities worth tens of millions of dollars. An examination of Marzook's achievements is instructive in understanding how Hamas has been able to develop a widespread network on American soil with neither scrutiny nor restrictions.
Born in 1951 in the town of Rafiah in the Gaza Strip, Marzook earned a college degree in engineering in Cairo in 1975 and moved to Louisiana soon after to attain his doctorate. By the early 1980's, Marzook had become increasingly involved with a growing community of militant Muslims in the U.S. whose worldwide ideological fundamentalist fervor was unleashed by the Iranian revolution in 1980, the assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat in 1981, and the jihad against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan.Marzook would later be elected head of the Islamic Assocation for Palestine Majlis al-Shura or consultative council that oversaw all the groups' activities. By the mid-1980's--several years before Hamas came into formal existence in December 1987--the IAP had established offices in Indiana, Arizona, Illinois and California, and was publishing a militant magazine called Ila Falastin, which routinely called for the death of "infidels and Jews". Moreover, internal Hamas documents strongly suggest that parts of the Hamas charter, a virulent anti- Semitic tract that incorporates elements of both Nazi dogma and the notorious turn-of-the-century Protocols of the Elders of Zion, was first written by members of the IAP in the United States in the early to mid-1980's.
As Hamas began leaving its special violent trademarks--stabbings and mutilations of its victims--in Israel, Gaza and the West Bank, it was from the United States that Hamas was controlled and funded. Marzook was busy further establishing the Hamas network under the guise of seemingly innocent religious groups, research institutions and investment companies. In 1989, Marzook became the founding president of the United Association of Studies and Research (UASR), a self- described Islamic "think-tank" which in reality served as a covert branch for planning Hamas operations and disseminating propaganda. In an interview with the Washington Post, Ahmed bin Yousef, current head of the Virginia-based UASR, denied any affiliation with Hamas and claimed that Mr. Marzook was only a "businessman" who briefly served on UASR's board of directors.
In June 1991, the largest international gathering of Islamist leaders ever held in the United States convened in the outskirts of Washington, DC. At the time this conference was held, U.S. law enforcement and intelligence were totally unaware of its existence. Such gatherings provided opportunities for the worldwide militant Islamic network to coalesce and establish new linkages.
Sponsored by the UASR, the extraordinary conference focused on the need to respond to the Western "crusades" against Iraq, the need to destroy the "Jewish state" and the threat of American-Crusader imperialism; it was represented by nearly every major radical fundamentalist organization, including Islamic Jihad, Hizba-Tahrir, Hizbollah, al-Jihad, Jamat Muslimeen and others. Representatives at this extraordinary conference included, to name a few, Marzook, Ahmed bin Yousef, Abdulrahman al-Amoudi ( until last week executive director ofthe Muslim Council and now head of the AMC Foundation), Sami al- Arian (head of the Tampabased Islamic Jihad front group known as the Islamic Committee for Palestine), Ramadan Abdullah Shallah (now head of the Islamic Jihad and former head of the Tampa-based Islamic Jihad front known as the World Islamic Studies Enterprise, or WISE), and many senior terrorist chieftains from overseas. The presence of so many militants has made this gathering the alltime "All-Star" terrorist conference in U.S. history. Scores of papers and resolutions were presented that condemned the United States and Jews as part of a diabolical world plot to destroy Islam. 16 Marzook rose to become chief operating office of Hamas, responsible for orchestrating and designing the group's terrorist apparatus and activities. He continued to come and go to and from the United States as he pleased, keeping homes in Ruston, Louisiana and Falls Church, Virginia. But all that changed--at least with regard to his use of the United States as a safehaven on July 25, 1995, when was detained at Kennedy Airport upon his return to the States. As Marzook attempted to reenter the United States, a routine primary inspection by an INS agent revealed that Marzook's name and date of birth matched a computer entry in the INS database that had been recently entered into a "terrorist watch" lookout. In his possession at the time of his arrest was paperwork showing his business companies to be worth more than $10 million, which law enforcement officials believe to have been part of a massive money laundering operation for Hamas in the U.S. Equally significant was the discovery of Marzook's personal telephone directory that contained the telephone numbers of nearly every top terrorist in the world today.
Interestingly, more than 20 percent of the phone numbers are those of Marzook's contacts and senior terrorist collaborators in the United States. At least ten of these close contacts still live in the Northern Virginia area.
The Arrest of Mousa Marzook
On August 7, 1995, the Deputy United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, acting in accordance with the extradition treaty between the United States and Israel and on behalf of Israel, requested the arrest and extradition to Israel of Marzook. An investigation undertaken by the Government of Israel had determined that Marzook should be prosecuted for murder, manslaughter, harm with aggravating intent, grievous harm, wounding, and harm and wounding under aggravating circumstances.
The Israeli Government contended that Marzook was criminally liable for ten incidents because of his high-level role in allegedly directing, controlling, and financially supporting the terrorist activities of Hamas. Because of his position, and Hamas' long history of violent and murderous attacks against civilian targets spanning from 1988 to the present17, the Israeli Government contended that "Abu Marzook was clearly aware of the nature of such attacks."18 The United States government endorsed the extradition request and affirmed the authenticity and accuracy of the evidence introduced showing that Marzook was intimately involved in planning terrorist operations.
In addition to compelling information from other Hamas members, Marzook incriminated himself during an October 10, 1994 television interview broadcast from the "A1 Manar" television station in Lebanon. On October 9, the day before the interview, Hamas terrorists killed two and injured eighteen, including one American when they opened fire in a crowded Jerusalem pedestrian mall. During his interview, Marzook took responsibility for Hamas by claiming:
(The) (d)eath is the wife of every Muslim, and every fighter hopes to die for the land of Palestine. This is not the first time that the heroes of Izz Al-Din AI-Qassam (i.e. the military wing of Hamas) undertook suicide and sabotage missions...We took suicide and sabotage missions...We perpetrate these activities for a noble cause: to fully reinstate the rights of the Palestinian People.
On May 7, 1996, Judge Kevin Duffy (SDNY) issued a memorandum and order that stated:
In light of the evidence offered against Abu Marzook, I find that there is probable cause to believe Abu Marzook engaged in and intended to further the aims of the conspiracy by his membership in and support of the Hamas organization. I also find that probable cause exists that Abu Marzook knew of Hamas's plan to carry out violent, murderous attacks, that he selected the leadership and supplied the money to enable the attacks to take place, and that such attacks were, therefore, a foreseeable consequence of the conspiracy.
The evidence against Marzook came from a variety of sources including: American retrieval of Marzook's U.S. banking records showing payments to Hamas subordinates and couriers; internal Hamas documents and records verified by American intelligence; Marzook's own public statements taking credit for "martyrdom" and other terrorist operations; and a voluminous amount of information provided by Muhammad Salah, a Chicago-based used car salesman appointed by Marzook as head of llamas' worldwide military wing. Salah's information, was in turn confirmed by documents in his possession and by information provided by other Hamas terrorists arrested by Israel. Salah was arrested in Israel on January 25, 1993, in possession of approximately $97,000 in cash, intended for distribution to members of Hamas. In scores of hours of conversations with other inmates and in a freely written confession in Arabic, Salah explained in detail the entire history and infrastructure of the Hamas organization, whose primary financial and political headquarters were based out of the United States and Great Britain.
Marzook and his American champions have claimed that Salah's confession was not valid asserting it was in Hebrew and that he was "tortured." However, United States District Judge Kimba Wood, in a ruling affirming the correctness of Judge Kevin Duffy's ruling supporting Marzook's extradition, confirmed the validity and truthfulness of Salah's confession. 20 Moreover, in the initial U.S. government brief supporting the extradition of Marzook, the Justice Department concluded that information provided by Salah about Marzook's role in orchestrating and directing acts of terrorism "is considered especially reliable since it is based, in part, on a report that Salah prepared for individuals whom he believed to be fellow high-level Hamas operatives but who, in reality, were cooperating with Israeli authorities. The information obtained from Salah shows clearly that Abu Marzook took significant steps to further the violent activities of Hamas."21
Salah revealed Salah had been authorized by Abu Marzook to recruit individuals for training in the uses of explosives to fight in the "holy war." Salah began the training of ten recruits, and three were chosen to carry out attacks. Marzook instructed Salah to develop biological and chemical capabilities in the Hamas arsenal of available acts of terror in addition to the building of conventional bombs, assembly of explosives, and remote detonation devices. That Hamas' had put a premium on acquiring the capability of using biological and chemical agents clearly puts Hamas in the forefront of terrorist organizations of promoting chemical and biological warfare: Musa Abu Marzook, in charge of the activity, was responsible for the Muslim Brothers Organization in the U.S. and resigned from this job in order to devote his time to activities dedicated to Palestine. My task was to collect names of brothers and to mention them during the first meeting in the U.S, attended by Muslim brothers from Palestine, the occupied land. I carried out this activity in the name of the Security Committee...The activity (of the committee) was conducted as follows: Collection of all the names of Palestinians from the Occupied Land, together with the following details: Their fields of study, the date when they completed their studies, date of return to the occupied land, their ability to express themselves, military activity, and the ability to work with chemical materials...such as remote-control activation, agricultural pesticides and basic chemical materials for the preparation of bombs and explosives .... and in the use of instruments to jam telelphone conversations, and watches to activate explosive charges...(emphasis added.)22
(We chose them) also according to their expertise, which were: chemistry, physics, poisons, military material, and computers .... For example, in chemistry we asked him what is your specialization? Or what is your level...toxins chemistry? Can you prepare poisons?23
In addition, Salah advised Marzook that he and another member of Hamas had discussed the possibility of murdering Seri Nusseibah, an avid supporter of the "Middle East Peace Process." Marzook expressed enthusiasm for the idea but ultimately did not activate the plan.
As for planning specific operations, Marzook--according to the confession of Mohammed Salah and confirmed independently by the statements of other Hamas operatives--told Salah and other Hamas operatives which terrorists to meet and how much money each was to be given. According to two Hamas members who were interrogated following their arrest in 1991 and who were convicted of terrorist activity, Marzook traveled to Gaza in 1989 in order to reorganize the infrastructure of Hamas. To finance these activities, Marzook used his own personal bank accounts in the United States, and transferred $300,000 to Hamas operatives in the West Bank and Gaza. The two Hamas members further stated that during the reorganization, Marzook played an important role in supervising the military wing and in appointing individuals to important leadership positions.24
Marzook gave Salah, prior to his departure from the U.S., the location of the body of an Israeli soldier kidnapped and murdered by Hamas in order to negotiate the release of imprisoned Hamas leaders. Marzook sent Salah to the territories in 1990 to create a military-security apparatus for Hamas and a means of coded communication for Hamas operatives to communicate to their commanders in the United States and London. Marzook secretly visited the West Bank and Gaza in 1989 and 1990 to provide firsthand instructions to his troops on the ground.
In the confession provided by Salah, he revealed that he elected to stop military training in the United States because of active investigations by American law enforcement into the alleged ties between "Iraq and Muslim Arabs in the United States" for the procurement of military equipment for Iraq:
The purpose (of meetings) was to exploit their knowledge in demolition materials and weapons. However, we stopped the meetings after some time, as a result of the Gulf War...
Following the (Gulf) War, we decided to stop the training because the American Intelligence Service investigated the ties between Iraq and Muslim Arabs in the United States, and especially as regards the procurement of complex equipment?
But because of the war which was uppermost in our minds we thought that we would have to stop- since the American Intelligence was actively surveilling Iraqi connections, especially with Muslim Arabs in America- for purchasing complex materials.26
It is clear that charitable institutions in the United States provided money for Hamas' terrorist activities in the Middle East:
They (interviewers) asked me about the charity associations collecting funds for the Islamic world. The Mosques also collected funds for the deportees during the Friday prayers, immediately after the deportation. Since there is a large Islamic community in Chicago, they collected an enormous amount of money, and that is what brought me before the others, and the correct thing is that the money was deposited by Musa Abu Marzook .... 27
They (interviewers) asked me for the reason why I came and I said: humanitarian activity, for allocation of charity funds to the families of the poor and the deported. These are funds from charity institutions?'
The Islamic Association for Palestine
Despite the slight disruption caused by Marzook's arrest and deportation, the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) remains Hamas' principal American support group. IAP's main offices today are in Chicago, Illinois and in Richardson, Texas just outside of Dallas. IAP has set up an elaborate publications and video operation to promote Hamas, in both Arabic and English. While the Arabic publications brazenly support Hamas, IAP's English-language literature and videos clearly intended for non-Muslim Western audiences--are relatively tame, refraining, for the most part, from advocating terrorism and hatred against Jews and Christiansbut not entirely.
One IAP publication entitled "America's Greatest Enemy: The Jew and an Unholy Alliance," has been routinely distributed at Islamist conventions. Another lAP brochure, authored by Yusef Islam, formerly known as the singer Cat Stevens before he converted to Islam, contains plain old anti-Semitism:
The Jews seem neither to respect God nor his creation. Their own holy books contain the curse of God brought upon them by their prophets on account of their disobedience to Him and mischief in the earth. We have seen the disrespect for religion displayed by those who consider themselves to be 'God's chosen people.'...There will be no justice until all the land is given back to its rightful owners... Only Islam can bring peace back to the Holy Land ....
In the past, IAP has published and disseminated Hamas communiques. One Hamas communique disseminated by lAP urged the "killing of...the bloodsuckers...and killers of prophets." Another condemned the "American enemy" as a "full participant in the conspiracy" to wipe out the Palestinians, specifically blaming the U.S. for participating in the Sabra and Shatilia massacres. And following the dispatch of U.S. forces to Saudi Arabia after Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in 1990, IAP published another Hamas communique:
History repeats itself. Once more the Ummah is exposed to a fierce crusade, an imperialist attack, an oppressive Western alliance, to target its dignity, break its power and unity .... The only justification for a crusading alliance is another antiIslamic war to complete the deficient Zionist actions, so thousands of Jews are smuggled to Palestine in pitch darkness .... Bum Israeli and American flags...
In late August 1990, the lAP held a special one-and-a-half day conference in Kansas City, with more than 100 representatives from militant Islamist groups from the Middle East and Persian Gulf. The group issued a resolution which "regret(ted) the state of affairs between Iraq and Kuwait for using force to resolve disputes." But its primary rage was directed at the United States. The IAP "condemn(s) the American crusades leading arrogant international forces."29
In the past, IAP also operated a once-a-year training camp and retreat for six years in Arizona. In advertisements in Ila Falastin, the camp was promoted as a "jump-start" in preparation for waging jihad. Hamas recruits in the Tucson area conducted military training, similar to the training carried out in the northeastern United States by members of the Jihad organization led by Sheikh Omar Abdul Rahman.
The IAP has also distributed terrorist recruitment videos through a company called Aqsa Vision, housed in IAP headquarters. One such video, called Iz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, opens with dramatic shots of bearded Palestinian men armed with Kalashnikovs jumping out of trees and aiming their rifles. Hamas fighters are featured arming and preparing weapons, machine guns, and molotov cocktails. Interspersed with the operational video, fighters are interviewed, and boast of their heroic killings of Jews and Palestinian "collaborators." There are even chilling interviews of blindfolded Palestinians "confessing" to their "crimes" moments before their execution. The end of the video says, "To order your copy, call Aqsa Vision," and gives the Texas phone number of IAP. (The Aqsa Vision office and address are the same as that of IAP. The labels of other publicly available tapes state "lAP Aqsa Vision." Although Aqsa Vision is Hamas' audio-visual arm, it is operated under a separate corporate entity known as the American Media Group.)
Today, the internet has created opportunities to spread extremist messages around the world in the tap of a keyboard. The IAP's website frequently contains glorification of terrorist violence by Hamas. It also has used the site to disseminate Holocaust denial material.
I see three principal reasons for the widespread but erroneous belief in the legend of millions of Jews killed by the Germans during World War II: U.S. and British troops found horrible piles of corpses in the west German camps they captured in 1945 (e.g. Dachau and Belsen), there are no longer large communities of Jews in Poland, and historians generally support the legend...When Germany collapsed in chaos then of course all such defenses ceased, and typhus and other diseases became rampant in the camps, which quartered mainly political prisoners, ordinary criminals, homosexuals, conscientious objectors, and Jews conscripted for labor. Hence the horrible scenes, which however had nothing to do with "extermination" or any deliberate policy?
In recent years, IAP has organized several extraordinary conferences of militant leaders. Even though the central theme is Hamas and the jihad in Palestine, the conferences serve as an umbrella for the core members of the most militant Islamist groups. These conferences serve as covers for recruitment, training, and fundraising of terrorist organizations, beyond their overt function of introducing new groups to one another so they can network with one another from their indigenous bases. At some of these annual conferences, actual terrorist training classes have been held close by.
One extraordinary IAP conference attended by 1,200 people was held in Kansas City in December 1989. A videotape, made by the IAP, captured the highlights of the conference, which featured the core of militant Islamist leaders. Behind a long table at the head of a large auditorium was a 30-foot sign with the Arabic words "Palestine is Islamic from the River to the Sea" superimposed over a blood-red map of Israel.31 The highlight of the conference was the appearance of a veiled Hamas commander. As he rose to his place, a Hamas flag in one hand and a Qur'an in the other, the crowd roared, "Allahu Akbar walillahi'l-Hamd!" ("Allah is the greatest and to Allah the praise!") the slogan of the international Muslim Brotherhood movement. "Allahu Akbar!" This was the moment everyone seemed to have been waiting for.
His face still cloaked in a red-and-white checkered keffiyeh, the Hamas commander then spoke: "Greetings... from the occupied land...I extend thanks to all those who stood on our side at times when our allies were few. By this I mean the Islamic Association for Palestine, the Occupied Land Fund (renamed as the Holy Land Fund for Relief and Development), the AI Munasarrah Welfare Comitttee and the International Islamic Organization." (Significantly, at least three of the groups have maintained offices in the United States.) For the next 20 minutes, the commander gave a report describing in methodical detail Hamas terrorist attacks against Jews, reveling in the bloody nature of each assault.." Naturally, the war moved into Israel's '48 boundaries. One day in Tel-Aviv, one of the brothers entered a building and began stabbing all the people .... The last operation I am going to tell you about is the operation of the bus...
Shouts of "Allahu Akbar" erupted from the crowd, which seemed to know what he was going to discuss. The Hamas commander continued: "Abd al- Hadi Salim Ighneim was on the bus to Jerusalem, bus 405, and he steered it off the road .... And the bus plunged into the water--16 Jewish soldiers were killed!" (In fact, 17 civilians, including one American, were killed when a fundamentalist steered bus 405 into a ravine.) "...I call upon my brothers to take up arms with us...to take up arms and arms alone!" The crowd responded with thunderous ovation and chanting of "Allahu Akbar."
Nine years later, the Islamic Association for Palestine's annual conferences are just as incendiary. The 1996 and 1997 conferences held in Chicago featured militant Islamic leaders and repeated exhortations to support terrorist attacks as well as condemnations of the United States. The 1997 IAP Annual Conference, for example, attracted several thousand Muslims for three days of militant lectures focused on Palestine, Islam, Israel and Jews. Of all the conferences held by militant American Muslim groups in 1997, IAP's convention was, without doubt, the most radical. Featured speakers included an impressive array of Hamas supporters from the Islamic Action Front (IAF) in Jordan, as well as a number of prominent militant American Muslim leaders.
Perhaps the most incendiary speech at the convention was delivered by Ahmed al-Qattan, a militant Palestinian cleric based in Kuwait:
"Greetings to those who shoot at the Jews with the catapult, and to those who poke out the eyes of the Jews with the slingshot .... In 1967...the Jews sang, 'Muhammad is dead and he gave birth to girls'...(and we answer), 'O sons of pigs and monkeys, Muhammad is not dead and he did not give birth to girls.' Rather, Khaybar, Khaybar o Jews; Muhammad's Army will return!..."Conference speakers included: Shukri Abu Bakr, Director of the Holy Land Foundation; Agha Saeed, President of the American Muslim Alliance; Omar Ahmed, Chairman of CAIR's Board; Ahmed Yousef, Executive Director of the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR)--Yousef replaced Hamas head Musa Abu Marzouk at UASR after he was deported from the United States; Ishaq al Farhan, Jordanian MP and member of the Islamic Action Front; Merve Kavakci, a Cabinet Minister of Erbekan's (now outlawed) Islamic Refah party in Turkey; and Sami al Arian, Former Director of the World Islamic Studies Enterprise (WISE) who is currently under investigation by the FBI for his ties to the Islamic Jihad.
Speakers delivered lectures in English and Arabic on panels with titles such as: "Zionism: A Racist and Colonial Ideology," "Contemporary movements of Islamic Renewal and the Societal Plan," "The Settlement Process in the Middle East: Results and Expectations," "The Dome of the Rock: the First Qibla (Muslim direction of prayer) or the Eternal Capitol of the Jews?" Lectures varied in their level of militancy and vitriol toward Jews, with the Arabic lectures being decidedly more militant. For example, during one lecture, a panelist made several jokes about suicide bombers which were greeted by the audience with thunderous applause. At the Friday prayer service, Sheikh al Hanooti, the Prayer leader of Dar al Hijrah mosque in Falls Church, Virginia announced that "Jews were the enemy of Allah."
IAP's reach has blossomed. Its flagship publication, al-Zaitonah, is one of the largest indigenous Arabic-language publications in the United States. Although dedicated to promoting Hamas, the newspaper also supports other Islamist militant liberation movements, including those in Kashmir, the Philippines, Egypt, and Algeria. AI-Zaitonah frequently celebrates successful Hamas attacks. In its October 27, 1994 issue, for example, al-Zaitonah's headline was: "In its greatest operation, Hamas takes credit for the bombing of an Israeli bus in the center of Tel Aviv." Articles routinely warn of international "Mossad plots" and other Jewish and Americanled worldwide anti-Muslim conspiracies.
But al-Zaitonah does not limit its venom to Jews. An article in al- Zaitonah in 1993 discussed the role of gays and lesbians in the Clinton Administration under the title "Perverts in the American Centers of Decision Making": "The active movement of those perverts has led many of those who previously used to hide their perversity to declare openly that they are perverts. Amongst them, Congress member Barney Frank, a Democrat from Massachusetts..."
lAP also publishes an English-language newspaper called the Muslim World Monitor. Following the convictions of four men in the World Trade Center bombing, the Muslim World Monitor published an editorial claiming that the guilty verdicts represented "the degree to which anti-Muslim venom had penetrated society" and that the U.S. government suppressed evidence showing that the Mossad, Egyptian intelligence and FBI were all involved in the bombing. Frequently the Muslim World Monitor publishes articles alleging diabolical conspiraciesperpetrated by Jews and other "enemies of Islam." Articles routinely glorify Islamic terrorist attacks, praise the policies of radical Islamic regimes such as Sudan, and brazenly exhort their readers to support militant Islamic movements wherever they may be found. One article asserted that Jews ritually slaughter non-Jews during the holiday of Purim, thus "explaining" the actions of the Jewish terrorist Baruch Goldstein in his massacre in Hebron. The Holy Land Foundation The Holy Land Foundation was founded as a non-profit charity in 1987 in Richardson, Texas. Although Holy Land Foundation claims merely to be concerned with global crisis and with the Palestinian cause, it is an active Hamas supporter, and acts as a financial conduit for Hamas. In addition, the Holy Land Foundation strives to legitimate Hamas' activities by putting a humanitarian veneer on supporting terrorist activity in the Middle East.
Evidence strongly suggests that the Holy Land Foundation provides a crucial financial service for Hamas - family annuities to suicide bombers. These annuities assure a constant flow of suicide volunteers, and buttress a terrorist infrastructure heavily reliant on moral support of the Palestinian populace. In the words of its literature, Holy Land Foundation supports "families of detainees, deportees and martyrs."
In its publications, the Holy Land Foundation solicits tax deductible contributions for charitable causes. Yet, some of that money is forwarded to Hamas organizations which use that money either to support military squads or to indoctrinate Muslim youth with radical Islamic ideology.
On May 6, 1997, the Israel Ministry of Defense issued a decree, which shut down the local office of Holy Land Foundation, and its director is currently on trial after being arrested for furthering terrorist activities. Confiscated documents along with the confession of the director indicate that Holy Land Foundation is a Hamas fundraising front that channels money from its Richardson, Texas office to its Israeli office in support of llamas terrorists activity in the Middle East.
Both Holy Land Foundation and Hamas are officially committed to assisting the families of "martyrs." Holy Land Foundation is explicit in its literature concerning the targets of their fundraising campaigns, which include orphans, widows, and the bereaved families of martyrs. A Holy Land Foundation pamphlet distributed at the Muslim Arab Youth Association conference in Dayton, Ohio in December of 1996 enumerates how it alleviates the suffering of the destitute Palestinian population: "Poor Family Assistance, aiding distressed families of detainees, deportees, martyrs and other impoverished families to be uplifted to a more mainstream life."32 During a Ramadan charity drive, Holy Land Foundation distributed pamphlets that explained who its principal beneficiaries should be: "Cold...Hungry... Sick...Sad...words that are not normally associated with Ramadan! But this is the case for many Palestinian families. They have lost their bread-winners who are now dead, detained, or deported. They are hurting so much now, So won't you help their pain if you can?" The accompanying pledge card read: "Yes. I can and want to help needy families of Palestinian martyrs, prisoners and deportees"33 (emphasis added). Furthermore, the Holy Land Foundation has declared its intention to provide more financial assistance to the families of suicide bombers for financial assistance. Although the HLF purports to allocate money to the needy, a disproportionate amount reaches the hands of llamas activists and their families. The Israeli Government has stated that:
While the (Holy Land) foundation does give occasional small grants to ordinary orphans, the vast majority of its assistance goes to the families of llamas terrorists who have been killed, deported or imprisoned.
By giving the terrorists the assurance that their families will be cared for if anything happens to them, the state said, the foundation encourages and sustains terrorism?
The Israeli Government further stated that:
The General Security Service's examination of recipient lists showed that most of the families who received only the minimum assistance of $100 had no known connection to Hamas. However, almost all those who received donations of $200 - $800 ($800 is the maximum donation per family) were Hamas families. On the list of aid recipients, 25 of the 28 families in the $200 - $800 category were the family of known Hamas activists who had been killed, deported or imprisoned...The state also found that 23 of the 26 charities which the Holy Land Foundation works are run by known Hamas activists?
Despite evidence of its ties to terrorists, the Holy Land Foundation has continued to operate unimpeded in the United States. On Sunday, June 8, 1997, Professor Abdel Rahim A1 Ukur, a Minister in the Jordanian parliament and a member of the militant Islamic Action Front, spoke at the Islamic Center of Passaic, New Jersey. The Islamic Center and the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development sponsored the lecture. During his talk, AI Ukur spoke of the importance of Palestine to Muslims. He asserted that the conflict in Palestine was a religious conflict (because Jews have not adhered to their agreements throughout history) not a conflict over a piece of land. At the end of his lecture, A1 Ukur discussed various projects of the Holy Land Foundation (HLF). He alluded to the idea that HLF's funds are a component in the introduction of Islam to the battle over the land of Palestine.
The Hamas Paradigm Many Western observers and analysts are under the misconception that the organizational and social structure of llamas and its activities follows the same definitional parameters as in Western society. Two misconceptions are prominent. First, that the social welfare Hamas provides its constituency is akin to what we understand social welfare to mean. Second, that there is a real divide between Hamas' political and military leadership.
A Washington Post article dated August 18, 1997, provides examples of both misconceptions. It said of Hamas' "social work": "Idle youth are attracted in droves to (Hamas) seaside camps where they find recreation mixed with Islamic evangelism. Clinics run by Hamas offer free medical care to the ill and infirm. The same article reports that it was Hamas' "military wing" that has "claimed responsibility for numerous attacks on Israelis in recent years," yet "Hamas leaders deny any role" in the suicide bombing in a Jerusalem market place in July 1997, killing fourteen.
A careful reading of interviews and statements made by militant Islamic leaders themselves show a different picture. Sheik Omar Bakri is leader of the al-Muhajirun Group based in London. In a December 1997 interview on the tourist attack in Luxor, Egypt in the Cairo "Rose al-Yusuff publication, Bakri shed light on the thinking of militant Islam and on its fundraising apparatus. Bakri stated that democracy is inconsistent with Islam because "it considers the vote of Abu-Bakr al Siddiq (a Muslim Caliph) as equal to the vote of any prostitute woman," that "God ordered us to fight those who obstruct the implementation of his laws," and that he received military training because "fighting is every Muslim's duty." Bakri stated he based his views on the Koranic verse: "And fight them until there is no more sedition and justice and faith in God prevail."
Asked his position on the killing of tourists in the Luxor massacre, Bakri answered: "... the tourists went to Egypt with manners and conduct that conflict with those of Islam, the manners of alcoholism, indecency, and gambling. These-people are out of line with Islam and 1 cannot discuss their business. We believe in the principle of establishing shari'ah (Islamic law) even if this means the death of all human beings."
The interviewer reported: "Alarmed, I asked him: Even if this leads to the death of all humans? He confidently replied: Even if this leads to the death of all mankind." Much of Bakri's interview centered on the support his organization gives to the militants in Egypt trying to overthrow the Egyptian regime and install an Islamic government. It was in this context that Bakri stated that his group channels monies from Britain to the families of extremists in Egypt. When asked by the interviewer how this financial channel is established, Bakri replied: "The donations reach through networks that include individuals, companies, and charities. We do not want to delve into details. We send donations to all parts of the Arab World and the Islamic World .... "
Bakri revealed that the London police summoned him for interrogation after the Luxor attack. He denied during the interrogations that his organization sent donations to military operations in Egypt. The police however, according to Bakri, looked through his organization's recordkeeping of donations, as required by British law. Bakri stated that the donations are received from "Egyptian and Gulf businessmen and from companies and establishments in line with British laws," and that "the British authorities oversee all written documents and registers."
Bakri made two statements in this interview of particular relevance. First, that "All funds are sent only through companies and registered charitable offices. I do not rule out the possibility that some funds reached indirectly the brother mujahideen who endorse armed action." Second, that "Some funds are send to the families of the extremists and are not registered because the come from abroad and go abroad. And since they are not deposited in Britain, we do not have to register them."
Dr. Ibrahim al-Yazuri is one of the founders of llamas. In an interview published in the January 1998 edition of the London-based magazine Filastin al-Muslimah, al-Yazuri analyzed the role of social work in the framework of the Islamic Resistance Movement. AI-Yazuri stated that "Hamas is a Palestinian jihad movement that strives for the liberation of all Palestine - from the (Mediterranean) sea to the river (Jordan), from the north to the south - from the tyrannical Israeli occupation... Social work is carried out in support of this aim, and it is considered to be part of the Hamas movement's strategy. The important thing is that Hamas engages in its sacred struggle against the forces of evil and the Israeli usurpation." A1-Yazuri continued: The Hamas movement is concerned about its individuals and its elements, especially those who engage in the blessed jihad against the hateful Israeli occupation, since they are subjected to detention or martyrdom. The movement takes care of their families and their children and provides them with as much material and moral support as it can. This is one of the fundamental truths of Islamic work, and thus represents the duties of the Islamic states.., in accordance with the word of God's Prophet, God bless him and grant him salvation, which means: 'He who looks after the family of one who has gone to fight has himself fought.
Among the types of activities Hamas provides, according to al-Yazuri, are for example, assistance to orphans in Gaza and "study essentials" to "needy students and sons of martyrs." He also noted the "pure social role" that Hamas plays, such as Islamic singing and celebration groups. The purpose of all this activity, stated al-Yazuri, is "attracting and winning support and blessing from our Palestinian people on the street for the Hamas movement."
AI-Yazuri, who in this interview referred to suicide bombings as "martyrdom operations," stated: "I should say that the funds set aside for social work are set aside for this work only. Not a single penny goes to any other purpose. As for military work, it has its own apparatus and its own budget, and we have not the least knowledge of this."Though al-Yazuri indicated a separation between the military and social work financial mechanisms, in a January 1998 interview on Israeli television, Hamas leader Sheik Ahmad Yassin stated the Hamas military brigades "have commanders who issue their orders on the basis of the political date they receive from the politicians. There never be anything without a leadership, but the political leadership is separate from the military leadership for various security reasons of which you are aware. We have suffered many blows from the Israelis as a result of the connection between the two leaderships." American Islamic Group (AIG) The American Islamic Group (AIG), based in San Diego, California, purports to be a "nonprofit, non-sectarian, religious service institution primarily established to protect the rights of Muslims and to provide economic, humanitarian, educational assistance" to needy Muslims.36
Despite its humanitarian and civil rights-oriented veneer, AIG is in fact, an extremely radical Islamic organization, dedicated to establishing Islamic States around the world. The rationale behind AIG's mission is simple: "Since the establishment of the rule of Allah is the necessary prerequisite to fulfilling the final duty of judgement and government, its establishment is, of course, obligatory.
"37 AIG takes this obligation very seriously, and is working through a number of means, to promote the creation of Islamic States. An integral element of AIG's work involves promoting violent attacks on Jews, moderate Muslims, and any other "enemy of Islam."
On its email postings and in its publications, AIG disseminates communiques of Middle Eastern terrorist organizations, the most prominent of which are the Armed Islamic Group of Algeria (known as the GIA) and the Gamaah Islamiyya of Egypt. AIG distributes its literature and maintains contact with its supporters primarily via the internet. Its emails reach a wide audience through postings on the Muslim Student Association (MSA) email lists.
The American Islamic Group periodically publishes its radical magazine, Islam Report, on the internet as well. The stated purpose of Islam Report is to "expose and analyze threats against Islam and Muslims worldwide."38 In reality, Islam Report is a clearinghouse for AIG's militant Islamic propaganda. It is a vehicle through which AIG supports some of the bloodiest terrorist organizations in the Middle East.
One of the most radical groups endorsed by the American Islamic Group is the GIA, a terrorist organization whose raison d'etre is the overthrow of the "un-Islamic government" of Algeria-and the establishment of an Islamic State. To achieve its goal in Algeria, the GIA has slaughtered thousands of Algerians and French expatriates. In just two months, from June through the end of July 1997, GIA slaughtered over 700 innocent Algerian civilians.39 In August 1997, GIA slit the throats of over 300 non-combatant Algerian men, women and children. The GIA carried out a series of bomb attacks in France in 1995, which killed seven and injured over 170 persons? In 1995, the Armed Islamic Group (GIA)joined forces with the Islamic Salvation Front (FIS) in the effort to overthrow the government.41 Together, these organizations terrorize the Algerian population.42
According to the American Islamic Group, GIA is "the only legitimate leadership of Muslim resistance in Algeria."43 The reports of the numerous atrocities committed by the GIA-including a particularly gruesome attack in which GIA members kidnapped seven French monks and decapitated them--appear daily on the Islam Report. AIG is proud of these atrocities, and commends the GIA for its terrorism in Algeria.
AIG is also among the most outspoken supporters of Sheikh Omar Abdel Rahman, the mastermind of the World Trade Center bombing in 1993. Abdel Rahman was tried and convicted in 1995, for his role in this terrorist attack, and is currently serving a life sentence. Prior to coming to the United States and masterminding terrorist attacks on U.S. soil, Sheikh Omar was the head of the Egyptian Gamaah Islamiyya, an organization dedicated to toppling the current Egyptian Government and replacing it with an Islamic government. The terrorists who assassinated former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat were members of the Gamaah Islamiyya.
AIG raises money for Abdel Rahman's legal defense, posts editorials on the internet decrying the Sheikh's treatment in prison, and claims Abdel Rahman is innocent and falsely accused because he is Muslim.44 According to the American Islamic Group, the Sheikh's conviction was an attack on Islam?
In 1996, Islam Report carried a communique from the Gammah Islamiyya claiming responsibility for the attack on a Cairo hotel which killed 18 and injured 25. The attack was revenge against "the sons of monkeys and pigs and the worshippers of evil--the Jews--and to avenge the deaths of the martyrs in Lebanon."46
In addition to its extremely close ties to the Armed Islamic Group and the Gamaah Islamiyya, AIG is a major supporter of the Afghani mujahideen (holy warriors) in their struggle to establish an Islamic state in Afghanistan. Islam Report regularly features a section entitled "Theaters of Jihad," in which it provides a comprehensive and highly sympathetic update of the ongoing military operations of the Mujahideen against the "un-Islamic" government of Afghanistan.47
- AIG has published emails from militant Islamic organizations calling for the killing of Israelis.48
- In 1996, AIG published an exhortation for Muslims to kill Jews: "O Muslim, slave of Allah, there is a Jew behind me, come and kill him."49
- The American Islamic Group has asserted that Jews were "not real human beings," AIG claimed that the Torah was a forgery, and Jews were the "enemies of Allah."
"Let us then look to the Jews of our present time. The news of their repeated plotting even on the Torah and Talmud, which they have forged... (makes it) possible for the Jews, the enemies of Allah, to plot on the basis of the issued rabbinical order that is found in the forged Torah--which may not be credible?x
- When Mujahideen (holy warriors) are martyred (die in battle), AIG collects money, and provides financial support to their families. "'Go ye forth, whether equipped lightly or heavily, and perform Jihad and straggle with your money and your persons, in the cause of Allah. That is the best for you ifye know.' Victory for Mujahideen (holy warriors) will only come for the Almighty, however every Muslim must do his part in support of mujahideen Operations, in support of Mujahideen Families, in support of Martyrs Families, and in support of Muslim prisoners.., send your contributions and Donations in the cause of Allah the Almighty to: The American Islamic Group? 51
In addition to direct solicitation, AIG generates money for Sheikh Omar's legal defense fund by selling tapes of his pre-sentencing speech. This excerpt of Sheikh Omar's speech appeared in the Islam Report with instructions on how to purchase the tapes. Sheikh Omar's sentiment echoes AIG's belief that there is a conspiracy in America against Islam. "For more than one hundred years, the United States has been waging a war on Islam...America's harm and ill-treatment of Islam is nothing new, and what we see in this case is the latest of harms to Islam, and the ugliest, most hideous in its extent and effect. It is a plan put together by America...an assault on the words of Allah...What greater aggression there is after that?... Muslims and others are now aware that America wants to kill Islam and destroy the Qur'an because all that all have done is preaching Islam...everyone, led by America, have united to isolate and weaken Muslims, and the whole plan is for destroying Muslims."52
The Islamic Jihad From at least 1991, one of the world's most lethal terrorist factions was based out of City of Tampa, and a network of think tanks at the University of South Florida (USF) and operating university-affiliated think-tanks and study-centers. The terrorist formula was simple and lethal: Use the laws, the freedoms, and the loopholes of the most liberal nation on earth to finance, and direct one of the most deadly campaigns of bloodshed in the history of international terrorism. The strategy was one of absolute legitimacy and secrecy. The method of setting up a terrorist infrastructure in the United States was ingenious, involving an elaborate masquerade of legitimacy, achieved through the guaranteed academic and religious freedoms of expression, and the inalienable right to free speech. Each aspect of their operation, from establishing decisionmaking headquarters in Tampa, to conferences where funds were raised, was protected by a veil of ambiguous connections that called into play their basic freedoms and inalienable rights.
The crucible in the elaborate web of networks, fronts and operational guises was Sami A1-Arian, an engineering professor who came to the University of South Florida in 1986 to teach computer science and engineering. One of AI-Arian's first tasks was founding the Islamic Committee for Palestine, or ICP (it was also known as the Islamic Concern Project), a religious charity group that served, ostensibly, as a clearing house of thought and knowledge to promote Islamic thinking. It also served as the secret front group for the Islamic Jihad. AI-Arian also served as the administrative director for the World and Islam Studies Enterprise (WISE), an alleged and self- described think-tank on Islamic thought and politics that had been affiliated with the University of South Florida for several years. In fact, the affiliation was a full-fledged working relationship, with the USF co-hosting forums, training WISE-sponsored graduate students, and sharing university resources and libraries.
AI-Arian was also the leader of the Masjid AI-Qassam Mosque, located in North Tampa, named for Izzadin AI-Qassam, a martyr to Palestinian nationalism who was killed in 193 5 by British forces in Palestine. In fact, the name Izzadin A1-Qassam is used by Hamas, the Islamic Resistance Movement, as the title for its murderous military brigade responsible for scores of suicide attacks inside Israel. Located near the University of South Florida, the mosque had no official name until 1989, two years after Al-Arian's arrival in south Florida.
In an internal power struggle between the traditional leaders of the mosque, and zealous newcomers (such as A1Arian and another Palestinian and another WISE director, Mazen AI-Najjar) turned violent and involved an investigation by the Hillsborough County Sheriff's department. In interviews to local newspapers, A1-Arian declined any link between the name of the AI-Qassam and the Hamas terrorists, though he did say that "AI Qassam was a historical figure that people admired who became a symbol in Palestine of the first to resist and fight for freedom. He was strengthened by religion and devotion to God." While, Islamic studies experts agree, the name "AI-Qassam" is rare among mosques, the AI-Qassam mosque in Gaza is a known epicenter for terrorist activity and Hamas and Islamic Jihad recruitment.
Mr. Al-Arian was also the editor of "Inquiry," the official ICP magazine which served as an ideological propaganda ann. Inquiry routinely ran incendiary attacks on Jews and the United States. In one piece, the following passage was included, "The mistake of the Jews of today who occupy Palestine was made as well by the Roman aggressors of 933 AD is to underestimate the faith in Allah of our people in resisting all forms of evil, tyranny and aggression. Our Jihad is the greatest weapon we have which no nation or Zionist can take away. It is greater than the Japanese suicide Kamikaze missions for ours is for Allah and He is the greatest." In another issue of "Inquiry," in an interview, with M. T. Mehdi, a New York based Muslim leader, the following passage is included: "I said so, in a book of mine in 1960, that the head of the snake is in America and the tail of the snake is in Palestine. The Arabs and Muslims for the last forty years have been fighting the tail of the snake and forgetting the head of the snake, which is America. Of course, it is not impossible to kill the snake by fighting the tail. I pleaded with all the Arab leaders, intellectuals, Kings, Queens, President and Politicians, that the battleground for the liberation of Palestine is in America, even before being in Palestine."
The 1994 Spring issue of "Inquiry" carried an advertisement for the "Islamic Fund for Palestine"--a tax-exempt wing of the Islamic Committee for Palestine organization--soliciting donations for Moslems in Palestine facing great hardships from the brutal Zionist Occupation. According to ICP documentation, in pushing devotees to donate money to the Islamic Fund for Palestine, the fund would help the families of those who have been martyred (killed in the struggle with and in attacks on Israeli targets) and those who are detained by Israeli security personnel. Tape recordings of conferences organized by ICP show that funds were solicited in the United States for the explicit purpose of "sponsoring martyrs." At the ICP-organized Chicago conference held in 1990, one speaker enumerated the "operations"--i.e., terrorist attacks-carried out Islamic Jihad martyrs in Palestine. After graphic descriptions of the attacks, the speaker solicited funds: "We are giving you a list of 16 martyrs. Some of these died in amphibious operations. Some died in assault operations. The families need your assistance. Each martyr needs $1000 dollars. Is there someone here to sponsor ten martyrs?"
From the safety of his University position, AI-Arian and colleague, Ramadan Abdullah Shallah, organized the multiple activities of the Islamic Jihad. This included publication and distributionof an Islamic Jihad newsletter called "Islam and Palestine," which sometimes carried Islamic Jihad communiques in its pages, as well as interviews with Islamic Jihad leaders. Issues, dated from 1989 to 1991, included a dead-drop mailing address on Cyprus, as well as a post office box in Tampa also used by the ICP and WISE.
ICP's primary goal was serving as the primary support apparatus for the Islamic Jihad in the United States. In rallies where militant leaders from around the world were brought to the United States to deliver fiery sermons and to coordinate terrorist strategy, the ICP organized annual conventions and conferences in various U.S. cities, notably Chicago, St. Louis and Cleveland. An extensive review of more than 40 hours of recordings from five major conferences between 1988 and 1992 shows that these conferences: 1. Brought into the United States leaders of militant Islamic terrorist groups from all over the world including Egyptian militant Sheik Omar Abdul Rahman (later convicted in the World Trade Center bombing) and others representing Hizzbullah, Sudanese National Islamic Front, Tunisian An-Nahda, Hamas and Lebanon's Tawheed; 2. Raised money for Islamic Jihad "charities" and other front organizations connected to Islamic Jihad apparatus and "tax exempt" foundations; and 3. Presented platforms for overt and covert calls and plans to commit terrorist acts against Israeli, Egyptian, Tunisian, Algerian, and American targets.
The rhetoric was voluminous, incendiary, and openly called for terrorist attacks against Israel and its western backers. AI-Arian together with colleagues Shallah, Bashir Nail and Mazzen al Najjar organized the conferences, aligned the speakers, and recruited and secured visas and other immigration forms needed to bring a literal who's who of terrorism to the U.S. At one rally, held in 1991 conference organizer A1-Arian warmed up crowd of as many as 300 supporters with calls for Jihad and calls for "Death to Israel." A special guest was Islamic Jihad spiritual leader Sheikh Abdel Aziz- Odeh, whose very appearance helped raise additional thousands of dollars for the cause. Other conferences routinely featured open calls for a holy war to be waged against Israel and the west.
At the Fourth Annual ICP conference, for example, held in 1990, Abdel Azziz-Odeh delivered these chilling words, "A straggle of life and death, that we are leading today, with the forces of arrogance, is manifested in Israel, which has been implanted on Palestine .... The Jews are not giving up anything...They understand only one language: The language of Jihad, and the language of confrontation, and the language of sacrifice."
Interestingly enough, evidence uncovered at the World Trade Center bombing trials indicated that Sheikh Abdel Aziz-Odeh met followers of Sheik Abdel Rahman at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport prior to the bomb blast to discuss terrorist acts on American soil. Odeh remains today the only unindicted co-conspirator in the deadly February 26, 1993 bombing in New York City.
Two years later, once AI-Arian's activities became the subject of a federal counter-terrorist investigation, federal officials learned that AI-Arian had placed "numerous" phone calls fromhis ICP office to the Iranian Interest Section in the United States and to the Sudanese Embassy--both of which countries are on the official State Department list of nations supporting international terrorism? A1-Arian also made a series of calls to Siraj El-din Yousif, a Sudanese diplomatic operative in New York later implicated in and expelled for participating in the second series of attempted bombings in New York following the bombing of the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan?
A review of ICP tapes and publications shows that its activities in the United States focussed on raising money connected to Islamic Jihad--which was not prohibited by U.S. law until passage of the 1996 anti-terrorism bill--unless the monies were found to directly pay for bullets or direct support of terrorist operations as opposed to the surrounding tier of support for the social, religious and political institutions of the Islamic Jihad. Perhaps even more important was the central political role that AI-Arian and his colleagues had in fronting for the Islamic Jihad's command and control apparatus in the United States. At one ICP gathering held in the midwest, recorded on videotape, the ICP was actually identified as the active arm of the Palestine Islamic Jihad in the United States before the tape was turned off as the speaker announced that the subsequent discussion was too sensitive to be recorded. In that capacity, AI-Arian and his colleagues coordinated the visits of leading militant Islamic leaders as well as maintained active relationships with terrorist leaders and other organizations.
Sheikh Abdel Aziz-Odeh, like Sheikh Rashid el-Ghanoushi, the exiled Tunisian fundamentalist leader (called by some the "would-be Ayatollah of Tunisia") convicted in absentia of attempting to overthrow the government and Sudanese fundamentalist leader Hassan Turabi were all brought to the United States by the ICP and WISE to speak at such conferences, raise the fervor of the existing militant community, and raise large sums of cash from U.S based supporters. The ICP, under the guise of being a religious and benevolent office, was actually a fundamentalist underground railroad. Sheikh Odeh, for example, had visited Sami A1-Arian in Tampa several times, shuttling back and forth from his offices in Damascus, Syria, and the United Arab Emirates. Another speaker at the 1991 Chicago ICP conference, and one of the most remarkable figures in this intricate web was Ramadan Abdullah Shallah, a co-founder, along with Fathi Shikaki, of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Ramadan Abdullah Shallah's meteoric rise to power in the ranks of the Palestinian fundamentalist Islamic movement began in Egypt in 1981, where as a student he joined forces with another Palestinian, Fathi Shikaki, to found the precursor Islamic fundamentalist movement of the Islamic Jihad organization.
Returning to Gaza, Shallah lectured at the Islamic University where he developed the reputation as a fire-branding preacher who captivated his audiences. Shallah obtained his masters and doctorate from the University of Durham, in Great Britain, and in 1991, began his "stay" in Tampa where he would ultimately become a part-time professor of Middle East studies at the University of South Florida in Tampa. He also served as an officer, state corporate records prove, with the ICP, and the administrative director for WISE. Abdullah's brother, Omar Shallah, is also no stranger to the dangerous world of terrorism, either. In 1995, a Palestinian court sentenced him to lengthy prison term for recruiting Palestinian youths to carry out suicide attacks against Israelis.
The public links between the ICP and WISE and the true fabric of the Islamic Jihad's command echelon remained covert until finally exposed following the assassination, on October 26, 1995, of Islamic Jihad leader Dr. Fathi Shikaki in Malta. Shikaki, the organization's operations chief in Damascus, had run terrorist cells in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. and had issued tactical directives, often forwarded from Tampa, to his forces in the field. On Monday October 30, 1995, an Arabic-language newspaper published in Jerusalem confirmed that while in the United States, Ramadan Abdullah Shallah had, indeed, acted as the deputy leader of Islamic Jihad, serving as the No. 2 man in the organization. Most troubling to U.S. law enforcement officials was the fact that Shallah has been the terrorist group's second-in-command for an incredible five years before succeeded Fathi Shikaki in October 1995. It was during that time period, as Islamic Jihad deputy commander, that Shallah taught at the University of South Florida and served as director for WISE.
Ramadan Abdullah Shallah's masquerade as an academic was shattered when news clips showed him meeting the Syrian air jetliner bringing Fathi Shikaki's body back to Damascus, along with a full military honor guard and announcing him as the organization's newly elected leader. He delivered a fiery attack on Israel and the United States threatening to unleash waves of terrorism. It was a particularly daunting sight to military officers at MacDill Air Force Base, near Tampa, as well. On two previous occasions, Shallah had, as a result of the respect and status obtained as a WISE official, been invited to brief U.S. Central Command (Centcom).
Following Shallah's ascent to the overt reigns of power of the Islamic Jihad, officials at the University of South Florida went out of their way to defend both Shallah and A1-Arian, and to claim that the connection between the University of South Florida and ICP and WISE was a purely academic one and that no one ever suspected Shallah of being a clandestine leader of the Islamic Jihad. In fact, everyone began playing a game of charades. University Administrators pretended that they knew and saw nothing that would have alerted them--but in fact the University had been warned during the previous four years that something strange and politically suspicious was going on at WISE. Evidence was actually offered to the University showing that a radical Islamic cell had been implanted in their midst; but the administrators preferred to ignore the evidence. At the same time, Shallah's boss, Sami Al-Arian, claimed in a demonstratively false interview that he did not know about Shallah's background (notwithstanding the fact that Al-Arian and Shallah were behind the Islamic Jihad apparatus in the United States for at least the previous five years). Finally, professorial colleagues of Shallah, such as Arthur Lowrie, a fierce apologist for militant Islamic and Arab extremis, contended that they were "surprised" by Shallah's new found employment. The only problem with Lowrie's denial was that Lowrie held views almost as radical as Shallah--and Lowrie had become soenamored of the militant anti-American Arab position that he sometimes articulated positions more extremist than those held by the extremists themselves.
The uncovering of the Islamic Jihad's Tampa connection opened a Pandora's box of federal law enforcement investigations into the ICP, WISE and the professors and teachers working at USF and at the Muslim think-tanks and religious centers. In November 1995, two Florida bank accounts--totaling some $17,000-- belonging to Ramadan Abdullah Shallah were frozen under the executive order earlier that year ordering the freezing of terrorist assets in the United States.
On Monday, November 20, 1995, federal officials searched the home and campus office of USF Professor Sami AI-Arian under a search-warrant for such offenses as violations of federal perjury and other immigration-related infractions. In the affidavit of William D. West, a Special Agent with the United States Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), it was revealed that, on applying for citizenship in the United States, Al-Arian had, in a signature performed under penalty of perjury, failed to list organizations which he belonged to prior to his arrival in the United States, and during his residence in the United States as a permanent resident alien. In applying for U.S. citizenship, AI-Arian had, under the penalty of perjury, listed the "Islamic Society of North America," the "Islamic Community of Tampa," the "IEEE" and the "IEEE Computer Society" as the sole organizations to which he belonged. He failed to list either ICP or WISE, even though Al-Arian had been listed as the founding officer for both, and both organizations were incorporated in the State of Florida prior to the submission of Sami Al Arian's application for naturalization and the INS processing of that form.
A subsequent search of Ramadan Abdullah Shallah's immigration files revealed additional discrepancies. Shallah had been in the United States on an H-1 temporary specialized worker who would be based at the WISE address in Tampa; AI-Arian, documents, proved, had petitioned on behalf of Shallah. Another WISE official whom A1-Arian petitioned for was one Basheer Nail, who was also in the United States, on behalf of WISE, as its "director of research."
Basheer Nail was no ordinary researcher lending his invaluable knowledge to a university-allied think tank. Although a professor of Arabic at the USF, Nail was, according to reports in the Amman, Jordan, newspaper Al-Urdan, one of the leading commanders in Islamic Jihad who had not been selected as heir apparent to the murdered Dr. Shikaki. As was the case of Ramadan Abdullah Shallah, one does not reach the pinnacle of terrorist power without being a major player in that organization for some time. Other information acquired by law enforcement showed that Nail was indeed a major "player" in the Islamic Jihad organization. Nail was arrested in June 1996 by U.S. INS agents outside the office of the International Institute of Islamic Thought in Herndon, Virginia, for violating his visa-stipulation that WISE would be his employer. He was soon deported. (The International Institute of Islamic Thought, controlled by the S.A.A.R Foundation -a billion dollar Saudi international conglomerate--was found to be a major source of funds to ICP and WISE. )Another WISE board member also under federal investigation, and in federal custody, as a result of government scrutiny of the Al-Arian, ICP, and WISE was Mazen A1- Najjar, another University of South Florida teacher responsible for running the day-to-day operations of WISE. He is currently awaiting deportation in immigration-fraud charges, including perpetrating a fictitious marriage, constructed by one Taiseer Abu-Zarka, to an American citizen on the sole grounds of obtaining permanent resident status in the United States. In an immigration hearing held in July 1996, INS Special Agent William West testified that A1-Najjar was a "mid level operative" in both ICP and WISE, which in turn, were deemed "front groups" for the Palestine Islamic Jihad in the United States.
As a WISE official, Al-Najjar signed many of the organization's checks, including those paid to Shallah that covered the time of his employment in the USF allied think tank. Other evidence seized from the WISE and ICP offices in regard to the Mazen A1-Najjar INS court case include: Islamic Jihad fax communiques announcing the "martyrdom" of a battalion leader in 1992, and claiming credit for an attack on Israelis; detailed biographies of Hizbollah, Hamas and Islamic Jihad leaders; and, an ICP draft charter which contained incendiary provisions calling for destruction of Israel and aggressively confronting the West.
When agents descended on the ICP/WISE office, as well as Al-Arian's home once search warrants were obtained, they uncovered computer files, bank records, faxes, internal records and audio and video- tapes. Federal agents carded out over twenty boxes of items from Al- Arian's home, and the ICP and WISE offices. Also seized among Al- Arian's files was a copy of a sealed complaint of the requested extradition of llamas political chief Dr. Musa Abu Marzuk, then being held in detention in New York City during deportation proceedings. Material uncovered in the search of Al-Arian's home and office played an instrumental role in untangling much of the intricate web of deceit, covert and legitimate front operations that, for years, had hid the activities of the ICP, WISE and the Islamic Jihad from public view.
Additional letters and material seized by federal-agents from Al- Arian's home included a letter in which funds are solicited for the Islamic movement in Palestine. The solicitation letter states that despite obstacles, the Islamic movement operates at a time when combined scores of Arab armies fail to accomplish its goals, and the Hamas brothers continue improving. This letter also appeals for support for the Jihad so that the people will not lose faith in Islam.
As a result of the potentially embarrassing disclosure of Islamic Jihad maintaining a USFsupported quasi-American headquarters, there has been an attempt to down-play the violent reality of the Islamic Jihad as a terrorist organization, and even to dilute the true connection between ICP, WISE and Islamic Jihad, though records recently released by the federal government indicate that Tampa wasn't just a convenient "home-away-from-home" for the Damascus-based terrorist group, but an actual command-and-control headquarters. Khalil Shikaki, the brother of gunned-down Islamic Jihad commander and one of the founders of the movement, was also an adjunct professor for the University of South Florida in 1992.In letters--released by the FBI--between Khalil Shikaki and Ramadan Abdullah Shallah, there are references to "Abu Omar," the Hamas nora de guerre of political chief Musa Abu Marzook. In other internal correspondence released by the FBI, there are internal letters between Shallah and the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR), Hamas' strategic arm in the United States. In the letter Shallah requested, in regard to an ad WISE sent to the UASR, "because of the general situation, we prefer not to publish it or take any steps that gives the idea that both institutions are connected to each other, something that would cause damage to one or both of them...I wish that the contact and the cooperation remain undisclosed.
Professor Khalil Shikaki seemed to possess such an impassioned voice for moderate political solutions to the Middle Eastern problems that it prompted the USF to finalize its cooperative relationship with WISE. Yet documents seized by federal officials uncovered a wealth of information, including incriminating letters, proving Khalil Shikaki using Shallah as a courier to ferry information, messages and even operational materials to his brother Fathi in Damascus, head of Islamic Jihad. When publicly asked however, Khalil always maintained he had no contact with his brother.
The American Muslim Council Although AMC claims it is against "violence and terrorism," its publications, conferences and internal materials tell a different story. AMC has repeatedly championed and supported Hamas and its leaders, routinely declaring Hamas "is not a terrorist group" and claiming that U.S. efforts to clamp down on terrorist funding in the U.S. are "anti-Islam." Following the 1995 arrest of Hamas terrorist commander Musa Abu Marzuk, then-executive director Abdulrahman. Alamoudi became Marzuk's primary defender. "I know the man, he is a moderate man on many issues," Mr. Alamoudi was quoted in the Washington Post adding," This (arrest) is an insult to the Muslim community?55 Soon, Mr. Alamoudi began organizing Marzook's defense fund. In 1996, Alamoudi stated on Arabic television, "I have known Musa Abu Marzook before and I really consider him to be from among the best people in the Islamic movement, Hamas...I work together with him."56
The AMC has provided office space to the Algerian Islamic Salvation Front, organized press conferences for visiting officials of the Sudanese National Islamic Front (an organization defined as "terrorist" by the State Department Terrorist), lauded the electoral victory of the radical Islamic Turkish Refah Party known for its open anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism, championed the radical Iranian- trained anti-American mujahideen (holy warriors) in Bosnia, portrayed President Clinton's meeting with Salman Rushdie as an insult to Muslims comparable to the Holocaust against the Jews, and attacked the media for exposing militant Islam's repression of women and their human rights.
In the end, militant Islamic groups are fully cognizant of the fact that should they draw too much unwanted and negative attention to their activities in the United States, it might jeopardize their status and relative immunity from overt scrutiny and freedom to operate unimpeded. On the other hand, the very premise of the Islamic groups' ideological identity is a hatred toward the United States, the West and to other "declared enemies of Islam." This delicate balance between the two conflicting emotions--torn between the need to keep the U.S. safe to organize Jihad and the need to carry out Jihad against the U.S.--is the principal determinant of when Islamic terrorism is carried out. When the rage of the fundamentalists exceeds the self-restraint, that's when terrorism is likely to be carried out in the United States.
The very fact that the top terrorist leaders of both Hamas and the Islamic Jihad radical groups were found to have been living in the United States should disabuse anyone of the notion that militant Islamic organizations are not using the United States for safe haven. FBI director Louis Freeh testified for the first time on the record that Hamas raises "substantial cash funds from the United States to areas in the Mid-East where we could show Hamas receipt and even expenditure of those funds."57 Both Hamas and Islamic Jihad have not only raised considerable amounts of funds in the United States but have also set up operational headquarters in the U.S. where terrorist attacks and military strategies have been orchestrated. In turn, both Islamic Jihad and Hamas have succeeded, in large part, in establishing their support infrastructure because both groups have networked together with other militant Islamic groups.
The culmination of this pan-Islamic militant partnership may have been seen in the World Trade Center bombing: Rather than being an attack dominated by the militant Islamic Jama from Egypt, evidence now shows that the bombing was the product of collaboration from five different radical Islamic organizations, including the Gama Islamiya, Islamic Jihad, al-Fuqra, Sudanese National Islamic Front and Hamas. The scope and breadth of these militant Islamic groups should demonstrate unambiguously that while not coordinated formally on an operational level, the militant Islamic groups network with one another in a sort of terrorist "Internet". At virtually every place on the globe today-- Paris, Rome, Dallas, New York or Manila, Peshawar, Gaza, Beirut and Khartoum--militant Islamic groups can network with one another in receiving or providing assistance, obtaining safe haven, and generating mutual support for all of their activities.
The absence of a traditional hierarchy within these terrorist groups has now created a new terrorist paradigm. In 1995 (April 6) testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, thenacting director Admiral William Studdman stated that the "(Islamic) groups are even more dangerous in some ways than the traditional groups because they do not have a wellestablished organizational identity and they tend to decentralize and compartment their activities. They are also capable of producing more sophisticated conventional weapons as well as chemical and biological agents. They are less restrained by state sponsors or other benefactors that are the traditional groups. These new groups appear to be disinclined to negotiate, but instead seek to take revenge on the United States and Western countries by inflicting heavy civilian casualties. The World Trade Center bombers are prime examples of this new breed of radical, transnational, Islamic terrorist."
- Steven Emerson. Appendix A. February 1998
THE COUNCIL ON AMERICAN ISLAMIC RELATIONS (CAIR): A Case Study of Deception: A Militant Islamic Group in Sheep's Clothing
- CAIR officials and AMC have engaged in repeated campaigns to defame journalists and slander writers and officials who speak out against militant Islamic terrorism and fundamentalist violence. It is clear from a review of CAIR's statements and activities that one of its goals is to further the agenda of radical Islamic terrorist groups by providing political support. By masquerading as a mainstream public affairs organization, CAIR has taken the lead in trying to mislead the public about the terrorist underpinnings of militant Islamic movements, in particular Hamas.
- CAIR has defended the terrorist regime of the Sudan (which is engaged is a genocidal holy war against Christians), the Hamas terrorist organization and its leader Musa Marzouk, and coordinated and sponsored visits of known international radical fundamentalists, including those that have called for the killing of Jews.
- CAIR has sponsored visits of Islamic extremists in the United States. For example, the September 1994 issue of CAIR News reports that CAIR coordinated a series of meetings for Bassam Alamoush, a Jordanian Islamic militant, with U.S. government officials. At the Muslim Arab Youth Association (MAYA) conference in Chicago in December 1994, Alamoush called for the killing of Jews. According to a video of Alamoush's speech, he said, "Somebody approached me at the mosque (in Amman) and asked me, 'if I see a Jew in the street, should I kill him?'" After pausing a moment with a dumbfounded face, Alamoush answered the question to a laughing crowd: "Don't ask me. After you kill him, come and tell me. What do you want from me, a fatwa (legal ruling)? Really, a good deed does not require one." Later in the speech, Alamoush was interrupted by an aide with a note "good news...there has been a suicide operation in Jerusalem" killing three people. Thunderous applause followed his statement.
- CAIR has routinely exaggerated or fabricated "hate crimes" against Muslims. CAIR criticizes "stereotyping" of Muslims but its definitions of stereotyping includes all articles that expose or detail Islamic extremism, discuss terrorism and cite other issues deemed "offensive" to CAIR. Thus, in the past four years, CAIR officials have attacked as "antiMuslim" The New Republic, U.S. News and World Report, The Atlantic Monthly (it had an article about the militant Islamic rule and oppression in the Sudan) the Dallas Morning News (it exposed the Hamas infrastructure in Texas), the Reader's Digest (it published an article exposing the repression of Christians by Communist regime and Islamic extremists) theTampa Tribune (it exposed the Islamic Jihad infrastructure in Tampa), the Weekly Reader's Current Events (its transgression was a story about international terrorism), The Journal of American Medical Association (its transgression was an article about the victims of terrorism), the travel writer Paul Thereux (he attacked the fatwa on Salman Rushdie), Vice President Albert Gore (he used the word Jihad), the Wiesenthal Center (it showcased Ayatollah Khoumeni's call for the death of Jews), Father Richard John Neuhaus (he favorably reviewed a book that documented militant Islamic repression of Christians and Jews), and New York Times columnist Abe Rosenthal (he praised the documentary "Jihad in America.")
- To substantiate its claims about "hate crimes," CAIR publishes annual reports on alleged hate crimes and discrimination against Muslims. Upon closer scrutiny, a large proportion of the complaints have been found to be fabricated, manufactured, distorted or outside standard definitions of hate crimes. The most egregious example of this is the fact that CAIR classified the arrest of Hamas leader Musa Abu Marzouk and the conviction of World Trade Center bombing conspiracy ringleader Sheik Omar Abdul-Rahman in its annual survey of "hate and bias crimes" against Muslims.
- CAIR's 1997 report on "hate crimes" goes even further, labelling the death of Ahmed Abdel Hameed Hamida as a "hate crime." Hamida drove his car into a crowd of Israelis at a Jerusalem bus stop on February 26, 1996, the day after one suicide bombing and six days before another. Hamida killed one woman and injured twenty-three other Israelis. He attempted to escape on foot but was shot to death by Israeli civilians. He shouted "Allahu Akbar," (God is Great!) as his car struck the crowd. There was literature from the Islamic Jihad extremist group in the car, and subsequent Israeli investigation determined that he had previously made a statement affirming his intent to kill Jews. Hamida was a terrorist; CAIR classified his death as a "hate crime."
- CAIR's head, Nihad Awad has expressed his tacit support for Hamas' military operations, including suicide bombings. In an interview on 60 Minutes (November 13, 1994), he was asked whether he supported the "military undertakings of llamas." Awad responded, "Well, I think that's-that's for people to judge there." Wallace persisted, "I'm asking you." Awad finally responded, "The--the United Nations Charter grants people who are under occupation to defend themselves against illegal occupation."
- At a symposium at Barry University (Florida) on March 22, 1994, Awad stated, "I am in support of the Hamas movement." (Video, Conference at Barry University)
- CAIR's founders have close institutional ties to Islamic extremist groups. Nihad Awad, CAIR's executive director, was formerly editor of the Muslim World Monitor, the English language newspaper of the Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP), an organization identified by law enforcement officials as a Hamas front. He was listed in the December 1995 editionof the Arab American University Graduate (AAUG) News as representing IAP at the AAUG's 1995 annual conference, a year after he joined CAIR.
- Rafeeq Jabar, a founding director of CAIR, is the president of Islamic Association of Palestine in Chicago. Mohammed Nimer, director of CAIR's research center, was a director of the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR) in 1992. UASR has been described as a component of Hamas. A terrorist operative, arrested and convicted by Israeli authorities, called UASR "the political command of llamas in the United States." (New York Times, "Israel Says That a Prisoner's Tale Links Arabs in US to Terrorism," February 17, 1993). Musa Abu Marzouk, the head of Hamas's political bureau who was deported from the U.S. in 1997, was the president of UASR from 1987 through 1992.
- The Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) where Awad served, has close ties to Hamas. IAP has distributed Hamas communiques calling for the killing of Jews, produced training videos for Hamas operatives and recruited for Hamas in the United States. Oliver Revell, former Associate Deputy Director of the FBI, has publicly called the IAP a "Hamas front."
- CAIR attacked the 1995 Executive Order Freezing Assets of Groups Linked to Terrorism as directed specifically at Muslim groups: "We've been fearing something like this for a long time," said Ibrahim Hooper, "because there have been some elements in the pro-Israeli lobby accusing Muslim groups of raising money for these kinds of purposes with no evidence whatsoever of diversion of funds. ("Clinton Freezes Assets of Mideast Groups Linked to Terrorism," Washington Post, January 25, 1995) - In the October 1997 issue of First Things, the journal's editor, Father Richard John Neuhaus, favorably reviewed The Decline of Eastern Christianity Under Islam: From Jihad to Dhimmitude" by Bat Ye'or. The book chronicled the formal second class citizenship and discrimination against Christians and Jews living under Islamic rule during the past 1000 years. Father Richard John Neuhaus also expressed his concern about the rise of militant Islamic fundamentalism. CAIR issued a press release calling upon the Catholic Church to investigate Fr. Neuhaus because he "portrayed Islam as a permanent threat to Western society, used racial and ethnic slurs against Arabs, offered inaccurate and offensive information about the spread of Islam... . and suggested that Christian-Muslim dialogue might be a 'delusion.'"(CAIR Press Release, October 16, 1997)
- After the CAIR press release, Father Neuhaus received a flood of hostile communications which used terms like "venomous diatribe," "hateful xenophobia," "agitating for a new Crusade," and "obviously mentally ill." Father Neuhaus commented that "the attack initiated by CAIR produced dozens and dozens of letters.., some of them accompanied by hundreds of signatures of Muslims who claimed to be deeply offended by the review... The campaign obviously had the aim of intimidating into silence anyone who dares to say anything less than complimentary about things Muslim" (Fr. Richard John Neuhaus, "Islamic Encounters," First Things, February 1998)- On August 23, 1996 and December 27, 1997, Washington Post columnist Nat Hentoff, a consistent and determined spokesman for human fights, published columns criticizing Louis Farrakhan and Jesse Jackson, among others, for failing to speak out against the enslavement of black Christians and animists in the Sudan and Mauritania. CAIR's Ibrahim Hooper responded that Jackson and others were silent "out of reluctance to indulge in politically and religiously motivated sensationalism that plays on and amplifies existing Islamophobic tendencies in Western society" and accuses Hentoff of "unacknowledged political or religious agendas, anti-Muslim stereotyping or cultural bias" (Letter to the editor, Washington Post, January 17, 1998).
- CAIR has sponsored visits of radical Islamic leaders who have issued racist remarks. At a May 18, 1997 CAIR fundraiser at Buena Park, California, CAIR featured former West German ambassador to Algeria and Morocco (who had converted to Islam). According to a tape of his comments, Hoffman stated:
"(C)entury old prejudices against Islam... are still being reinforced almost daily through certain media. .. During all this time of defamation of Islam, as a religion, our Prophet Muhammad in particular (pbuh) (peace be upon him, the common Muslim honorific for Muhammad) has been defamed like no other world personality before him or after him, far worse than people like Stalin or Hitler. And when Salman Rushdie published his blasphemies against Muhammad, he simply continued this tradition. And the Western legal system continue (sic) to treat Muhammad as an outlaw."
Hoffman went on to blame Zionism:
"Today, the defamation of Islam and Muslims serves.., a political purpose, because Israel, and the Zionist lobbies, and media around the world believe that Israel will fare better, the worse Islam fares. And as long as this is so, and as long as the most powerful country in the world seems to act like a dog wagged by its tall, that is Tel Aviv, our public relations efforts will remain an uphill battle."
- CAIR's public statements support the goals of Islamic terrorist groups by characterizing terrorist acts against Israel as legitimate self-defense or acts of desperation and despair. As such, these statements serve as the psychological warfare component of the terrorist campaign. CAIR disseminates disinformation by denying the ideological basis of terrorist actions, and the reality of Islamic extremism.
- CAIR denies that Islam includes a concept of holy war and that Islamic extremists advocate violence. CAIR has claimed publicly that: "'Jihad' does not mean 'holy war'...It is a central and broad concept that includes struggle against evil inclination within oneself... There is no such thing as 'holy war' in Islam. (CAIR Publication)
- CAIR's Board of Advisors and Directors and featured speakers include known militants and anti-Semites. Imam Siraj Wahaj, a member of CAIR's board of advisors, was listed by U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White as an "unindicted person who may be alleged as (a) conspirator" in the World Trade Center bombing conspiracy. Hamza Yousef, who serves on CAIR's Board of Advisors, spoke at an Islamic convention in 1995: "the Jews would have us believe that God has this bias to this little small tribe in the Middle of the Sinai desert and all the rest of humanity is just rubbish. I mean that this is the basic doctrine of the Jewish religion and that's why it is a most racist religion." (Speech of Hamza Yusuf, Islamic Society of North America, 1995)
Yusuf Islam, who was the featured main speaker at a CAIR fundraiser in Virginia on November 11, 1996. Islam has previously expressed his views about Jews in a pamphlet published by the Islamic Association for Palestine: "The Jews seem neither to respect God nor his Creation. Their own holy books contain the curse of God brought upon them by their prophets on account of their disobedience to Him and mischief in the earth. We have seen the disrespect for religion displayed by those who consider themselves to be "God's Chosen People." (Yusuf Islam, Eyewitness, Islamic Association for Palestine, 1988)
1 "Islamic Advocacy Group Calls on Church to Investigate Priest's Anti-Muslim Remarks," CAIR Press Release, October 16, 1997.
2 Fr. Richard John Neuhaus, "Islamic Encounters," First Things, February 1998.
3 Montreal Gazette, November 18, 1997.
4 CAIR Action Alert #154, December 5, 1997.
5 Terry Mosher, "Sometimes Satire Backfires: Some Events Are Simply Not Very Cartoonable; Others Prompt Protest," Montreal Gazette, December 27, 1997. 6 CAIR Press Release, January 17, 1998.
7 Ibrahim Hooper, "Insult to Islam," letter to the editor, Minneapolis Star Tribune, February 23, 1992.
8 In October 1994, A1-Zaytuna ran the following headline: "In Its Greatest Operation, Hamas takes credit for the Bombing of an Israeli Bus in the Center of Tel Aviv." The January 19, 1996, Muslim World Monitor describes the Israeli killing of Yahya Ayyash, the Hamas bomb maker known as "the Engineer" as "the latest in a string of terrorist attacks and murders carried out by Israel." The March 17, 1994 issue claimed that Baruch Goldstein's massacre of Palestinians at Hebron was part of a "Jewish tradition of slaughtering Jewish enemies at Purim," an unusual form of blood libel.
9 Nihad Awad is listed on CAIR's 1994 IRS form 990 as executive director by the name Nehad A. Hammad.
10 Steven McGonigle, "Paper Trails Leads to Hamas," Dallas Morning News, April 18, 1996. "Gaza PA, September 1992: Hamas Training and Recruitment," a video by AqsaVision, IAP's video production unit, is an example of the training videos.
11 Quoted in Steven A. Emerson, "The Other Fundamentalists: A Report on the Islamic Extremist Network in the United States," The New Republic, June 12, 1995.
12 For example, CAIR's press release on the 1996 summit meeting between King Hussein and Yitzhak Rabin appeared at the lAP Web Site ,www.iap.org/politics/peace/cair-jr.
13 Judith Miller, "Israel Says That a Prisoner's Tale Links Arabs in US to Terrorism," New York Times, February 17, 1993.
14 The vast majority of UASR publications support, and often extol, Hamas. The telephone records of Hamas terrorists arrested in Israel have shown communications between them and UASR offices in the United States.
15 Notes from a conference attendee. CAIR's IRS Form 990 for 1994 shows Jabar as a director.
16 Among the Jordanians was the radical parliamentarian Ishaq al- Farhan, who only a few months before gave a pep talk to 25 handpicked Hamas recruits in Chicago, and a few years earlier collaborated with Jordanian based Islamist Yusuf al-Azm on gunrunning for Hamas leader Ahmed Yassin in its preintifadah armament phase. Leith Shbeilat, another Jordanian parliamentarian present at the conference, was later caught with Ya'aqub Qarash maintaining a cache of weapons paid for by Iran, and implicated in a plot to assassinate King Hussein. He was convicted and then released by the King. (Days ago, he was arrested again on charges of fomenting anti-Amerian and proSaddam Hussein riots in Jordan.)
17 Since January 1, 1989 at least 188 civilians and 98 military or security personnel were injured, in addition to murders and injuries inflicted on local Arabs suspected of cooperating with Israeli authorities.
18 U.S. District Court Southern District of New York (USDC-SDNY), In the Matter of the Extradition of Mousa Muhammad Abu Marzook, 95 Cr Misc. 1, August 7, 1995, Sealed Complaint.
19 U.S. District Court Southern District of New York (USDC-SDNY), In the Matter of the Extradition of Mousa Muhammad Abu Marzook, 95 Cr Misc.1, May 7,1996, Memorandum and Order, P.61
20 U.S. District Court Southern District of New York (USDC=SDNY), In the Matter of Dr. Mous Momammed Abu Marzook against Warren Chrisopher as Secretary of State, et al., 96 Civ. 4107(KMW) Opinion and Orde: Judge Wood wrote that "even ignoring these statements that were taken down in Hebrew, the Arabic statement in Abu Ahrned's (Mohammed Salah's) own hand that was given by him to some other inmates furnishes strong support for Judge Duffy's ruling..."
21 U.S. District Court Southern District of New York (USDC-SDNY), In the Matter of the Extradition of Mousa Muhammad Abu Marzook, 95 Cr Misc. 1, August 7, 1995, Sealed Complaint.
22 Hamas- A Translation of Material Written by Muhammed Salah During His Interview, August 21, 1995.
23 Transcript of Muhammad Salah, June, 1993.
24 U.S. District Court Southern District of New York (USDC-SDNY), In the Matter of the Extradition of Mousa Muhammad Abu Marzook, 95 Cr Misc. 1, August 7, 1995, Sealed Complaint (later unsealed)
25 Hamas- A Translation of Material Written by Muhammed Salah During His Interview, August 2 I, 1995.
26 Transcript of Muhammad Salah, June, 1993.
27 Hamas- A Translation of Material Written by Muhammed Salah During His Interview, August 21, 1995.
28 Hamas- A Translation of Material Written by Muhammed Salah During His Interview, August 21, 1995.
29 During this conference, one of the speakers was Khalil al-Qawqaa, a Hamas leader from the territories: Dear brothers and sisters, we used to cross swords with America and with imperialism in a sportive way, by means of culture clash, by critique and writing in newspapers and journals and in debates. But the confrontation has reached a point of no return .... All veils have fallens. All barriers have broken down. And today, America is right here at your doorstep, in everybody's house. Ba'al, the idol, is back and stands erect in the Arabian peninsula. Is there a Muhammad to slay the Ba'al of our times? Is there an Abu Bakr, an Ummah, for this neo-Ba'al? The marines, dear brothers, are stealing the doors of your houses, and the doors of your mosques, in obstinate and open provocation. They are at our doors. Their plan is to penetrate the flesh of our girls. And our honor, and our values, in order to turn our society into a pervert nation...
30 Islamic Association for Palestine Website, A Short Introduction to the Study of Holocaust Revisionism by Arthur R. Butz, February 10, 1997.
31 To pick at random, here is an excerpt from a speech given by Egyptian-born Muislim Brotherhood leader Yousuf A1-Quardawi. "So if they fight us with Judaism, we will fight them with Islam! If they fight with the Torah, we will fight them with the Qur'an .... If they say their temple, we have the Masjid al-Aqsa. Because our religion is stronger than theirs .... On the Hour of Judgment, the Muslims will fight the Jews and kill them, until the Jews will hide behind the stone, and the stone and the tree will say, O Servant of Allah, O Muslim! There is a Jew behind me, come and kill him...Muslims will not be victorious by nationalism, and not by monarchy, and not by democracy, and not by Marxism -- they will only be victorious by Islam and they will only be liberated by Islam! Another speaker was Sheikh Rashid al-Ghannoushi, leader of the militant Islamist party in Tunis, alo Nahdah. In his Kansas City speech on December 1989 to IAP, Ghannoushi said: "O brother and sister mujahideen, I salute you and transmit to you greetings from your brothers in Tunis, including those who are behind bars, imprisoned in the past few days following a tempestuous march of solidarity with the triumphant march of the people of the intifadah, in its second commemoration, and peace be upon you, and the mercy of Allah, and his blessing. The Islamic Ummah: Once again it embarks upon the salvation of humanity, confronting the Zionist project in Palestine, seeking to save the civilization of mankind, the salvation of the Islamic Ummah. Humanity has surrendered to the Zionist project today, and there is no hope for the civilization of man, there is no hope for goodness and mercy and justice except that the vanguards of the Islamic Ummah lift away the damage (?) forever. What you are embarking on is not just a regional project. It is not merely the liberation of one land of the many well-known lands. Rather, you are embarking on the salvation of man, by the salvation of Islam -- the salvation of the civilization of humanity -- because the Zionist project is a danger to all goodness in the entire world."
32 The Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development: Programs & Objectives. "Human Services." P.9. Advanced Express Printing: Dallas (MAYA Conference Dayton, Ohio December 21-24, 1996)
33 Anti-Defamation League. "Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Muslim Brotherhood: Islamic Extremists and the Terrorist Threat to America." 1993
34 Gordon, Evelyn. "Holy Land Foundation Must Close." The Jerusalem Post. May 20, 1996
36 Islam Report, April/May 1994.
37 Islam Report, April/May 1994.
38 Islam Report, April 1996.
39 Paris AFP, August 7, 1997.
40 Reuters, November 26, 1995.
41 Islam Report, January 23, 1995.
42 Even journalists are not protected from the carnage. Mourad Si Ahmed, the former head of the GIA accused Algerian journalists of collaborating with the secular government, and threatened that those who fight Islam "by the pen" would "die by the sword." Agency France Presse, January 6, 1995.
43 Islam Report on MSA news, "A1-Qital Newsletter," May 12, 1996.
44 Islam Report, March 27, 1996, Islam Report, April 4, 1996.
45 Newsday, February 14, 1995.
46 Islam Report, April 20, 1996.
47 For example: Islam Report, March 13, 1996, Islam Report, March 15, 1996, Islam Report, May 12, 1996.
48 Islam Report, April 14, 1996.
49 Islam Report, April 20, 1996.
50 Islam Report, "The Jews of'94 Plot against the Torah," from the Arabic, April/May 1994
51 Islam Report, "Theaters of Jihad," April/May 1994.
52 Islam Report, January 9, 1996.
53 Affidavit of William D. West, United States Department of Immigration and Naturalization Service, November 17, 1995, United States District Court, Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division.
55 Washington Post, July 28, 1995
56 Interview with Abdularaham Alamoudi, March 22, 1996: Middle East TV.
57 Testimony of FBI Director, Louis Freeh, March 12, 1996. Foreign Operations Subcommittee of the Senate
Hmmm... 1998, place marker!
A very long read, but good, indeed.
Whoever wrote this is totally full of s#!t.
"A very long read, but good, indeed."
Thanks. I believe I heard Savage quoting your namesake the other night, apparently the original source of the phrase "the enemy within". Am I getting that reference right? Seems like for the moment, you are connected to the most famous quote of the day.
Any other notable thing about Cicero, you care to mention?
Cicero was a good citizen and public moralist. Aristotle was first responsible for naming the four cardinal virtues, but it was Cicero in de Officiis and other works who passed them on down to the middle ages and the Renaissance.
Prudence, justice, temperance, and fortitude.
Alasdair McIntyre, in After Virtue, made the point that one of the things that has gone wrong with the modern world is that we have fallen away from teaching the virtues in our schools and colleges.
In the Confessions, Augustine mentions that it was reading one of Cicero's books while training as a rhetorician that put him back on track in his search for God.
"Prudence, justice, temperance, and fortitude."
All extremely interesting, thanks.
I think it is clear WHY publicly Islam is called a religion of peace and why NO TV or radio hosts (with the exception of Michael Grahm, who was fired), will speak or write openly against islam!
Blackmail, intimidation, whatever you want to call it, it is there.
"The attacks on today's hearing and on me by various Islamic and Arab advocacy groups illustrates the growing danger of allowing militant groups to masquerade uncritically under the banner of self- anointed "civil rights" and "human rights" status. These groups are no more deserving of civil rights status than the Ku Klux Klan's patently transparent efforts to masquerade under civil rights monikers advocating "human rights" for whites.
In particular, the Council on American Islamic Relations and American Muslim Council, as well as others, have sent out emails and internet alerts "warning" their supporters about these hearings this morning. In effect, the message disseminated by these groups was that merely discussing the presence of Islamic radicals on American soil is to be construed as an attack on Islam.
The Threat to Free Speech and Thought: If not confronted, the efforts by radical Islamic groups such as the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the American Muslim Council (AMC) to intimidate those who speak out on the threat of militant Islamic fundamentalism poses one of the greatest dangers to the freedoms in American society. In point of fact--elucidated later in this testimony--these groups are actual political wings of radical Islamic fundamentalist organizations.[...]and consistently attacked American writers for exposing the threat of militant Islamic extremism. These groups pose a clear and present danger to American freedoms and society, not to mention moderate Muslims around the globe.[...]
It is intolerable that writers and American citizens on American soil should have to endure the same defamatory campaigns and threats as Salman Rushdie. As a result, few journalists have dared to expose the international terrorist connections of seemingly benign Islamic institutions that hide under demonstrably false veneers of moderation and tolerance. The courageous individuals who have taken on these groups have been subjected to frightening campaigns of intimidation that do not pass unnoticed by their colleagues. The result is that stories describing the true nature of radical Islamic activities in the U.S. and their growing menace to American society are few and far between. Moreover, the menace of radical Islam to secular and moderate Muslims, women, and intellectuals has been ignored almost entirely."
Thanks for the ping, I'm halfway through reading, that allah sure is a killer:
"We believe in the principle of establishing shari'ah (Islamic law) even if this means the death of all human beings."
It's a long article but it's a keeper!
They knew all this in 1998?
Move along...there is nothing to worry about here. This is all just a BIG misunderstanding!
Hey, it's all in a good cause; education!
I'd like to say I'm suprised....I'd really like too.
To bad this is relegated to the Bloggers & Personal getto.
Modern Islam Muslim scholar is moderate champion of democracy
Deseret News. ^ | 11/12/05 | Richard N. Ostling
He is equally severe in his denunciations of American Muslim leaders for ineptitude, which Khan says has made him a rather isolated figure.
Abou El Fadl says that after Sept. 11, U.S. Muslim leaders should have led a "massive" response and "expressed pure, unmitigated outrage." He also says they run undemocratic organizations and lack courage to denounce the Saudis for promoting "this radical ideology of hate."
Of America's Muslims, a community of somewhere between 2 million and 6 million, he says: "We have the numbers, we have the wealth, but not the power or influence or voice."
Because of his controversial views, Abou El Fadl no longer feels welcome at his local mosque, the Islamic Center of Southern California, and worships elsewhere. The center also stopped running his longtime column in its Minaret magazine.
"We believe in the principle of establishing shari'ah (Islamic law) even if this means the death of all human beings."
This is the goal, only the methods differ.
Knew what? You mean this?
In any discussion of the threat of radical Islamic fundamentalism, it is imperative to point out that militant Islamic extremism is not synonymous with mainstream Islam. Those who engage in extremism today are simply practicing their totalitarian interpretation of a religion. The vast majority of Muslims do not support in any way the politics of the extremists.But...but...but... I thought this was a trustworthy source! Is it not? ;-)
On a lighter note... it took me a couple of readings of "Militant Islamic groupshave actually . . ." to figure out it was a typo and what was meant. At first, I was picturing them passing the communal razor! Guess I need sleep.
Thanks for the ping, Jan!
Found this interesting -
"In a missive submitted to a U.S. Senate subcommittee in February, Emerson stated that a federal lawman and other authorities in 1995 told him 'radical Islamic fundamentalists had been assigned to carry out an assassination of me. An actual hit team had been dispatched...' Emerson claimed the authorities said he could probably 'get permission to enter the Witness Security Program' "After I sent Emerson's document to the Justice Department's Terrorism and Violent Crimes Section, this on-the-record response was made by spokesman John Russell on May 5.
"'You pushed the right button asking about your friend Steve Emerson,' Russell said. 'We've never given any thought to putting him in the witness protection program.' Is there any truth to the allegation of an assassination team? 'No, none at all,' Russell responded."
... and this - http://www.fair.org/index.php?page=1443
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