Editor’s note: This is a continuation of an ongoing series of columns by Debbie Schlussel exposing the lies, distortions and criminal activity of terrorists in the United States and the organizations and people who support them.
In my previous column, I discussed the newfound patriotism of several American Islamic leaders. Their prior statements and actions – when they were not under the scrutiny of the sharper post-Sept. 11 lens – belie their current terrorism denouncements.
While there are moderate Islamic leaders who truly oppose terrorism, a look at the prominent American Islamic leaders occupying the stage with President Bush, once terror struck America, should disturb all peace-loving, tolerant Americans.
At the National Cathedral service on the Friday following the attacks, at a later appearance at the Islamic Center of Washington mosque, and at subsequent meetings, Bush has surrounded himself with leaders of the most extremist Islamic groups – the American Muslim Council (AMC), the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC).
All of these groups have and continue to voice support for Hamas, Hezbollah, and Islamic Jihad terrorist groups. In fact, CAIR is an outgrowth of a Hamas front group, Islamic Association for Palestine. On the same day that President Bush was hanging out with leaders of these groups, Sept. 14, the Wall Street Journal, in a front-page story detailing “Bin Laden’s Far-Flung Network,” identified Islamic Jihad and Hezbollah as two of the top five components of Bin Laden’s al-Qaida terrorism network.
CAIR’s website features pictures and gushing articles about a Sept. 26 meeting at the White House between Bush and Muslim leaders, including Yahyah Basha of AMC and Muzammil Siddiqi of the Indiana-based ISNA.
Dr. Basha’s AMC features Abdurahman Alamoudi as its founder
and the secretary of its board (and its former executive director). During the 2000 campaign, both candidates Bush and Clinton (Hillary) had to return contributions from Alamoudi, due to his support for various terrorist groups, including those that participated in the Sept. 11 attacks. Not to mention Alamoudi’s peaceful statement, “Oh Allah, destroy America,” declared at a 1996 pro-Hamas convention in Chicago. He justified this to the New York Post (Sept. 15, 1998), saying, “If we are outside this country, we can say, ‘Oh Allah, destroy America.’” Last time I checked, Chicago was still in America. In January, Alamoudi participated in a Beirut conference alongside the Who’s Who of Terrorism – leaders of Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad and Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaida. Dr. Basha’s organization still embraces this man and his views.
Then there’s Dr. Siddiqi, ISNA’s President . Reminding Americans that Siddiqi was the imam (Muslim cleric) who “led the service at the National Cathedral,” President Bush, at the White House, said, “he did a heck of a good job, and we were proud to have him there.”
Proud? Should our president be proud of a man who praised jihad and martyrdom, saying, “Those who die on the part of justice, their place is with [Allah], and they receive the highest position, because this is the highest honor”? (Kansas City Star, “Contradictory to the Faith,” January 28, 1995)
Or how about his support of an Islamic state in America – “Allah’s rules have to be established in all lands, and all our efforts should lead to that direction”? (Pakistan Link, “Issues and Questions,” Oct. 18, 1996)
Then there’s Siddiqi’s opposition to Muslims serving in the U.S. Army: “Islam will not allow a Muslim to be drafted by non-Muslims to defend concepts, ideologies and values other than those of Islam. A Muslim shall defend non-Muslim lands not.” (The Message International, “Basic Principles of Involvement in War in Islam,” February 1991).
In a letter published by the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (a publication strongly supportive of terrorist groups and rumored to be funded by them), Musa Abu Marzook, head of Hamas’ Political Bureau and a well-known terrorist operative, thanked Siddiqi’s ISNA for supporting him while he was in U.S. prison awaiting extradition. The Marzook Legal Fund was also given a platform at ISNA conferences throughout the U.S.
In President Bush’s speech to Congress, he emphasized, “You are either on our side or the terrorists’ side.” Like these other groups, it’s not hard to figure out which side CAIR is on. Its website features articles glorifying Barbara Lee, an America-hating, former Black Panther, who is the lone member of Congress to vote against funding the war on terrorism.
Another CAIR cause celebre is H. Rap Brown, now known as Jamil Abdullah Al-Amin. Another former Black Panther, he is nothing more than a cop killer who is about to stand trial. Brown/Al-Amin was Chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) and served prison time for a 1971 gun battle with police. This man, who bragged, “Violence is as American as cherry pie,” killed one sheriff’s deputy and wounded another in March 2000. Like his friends in CAIR, isn’t it interesting that those who claim to oppose violence (i.e., “Nonviolent Coordinating Committee”), are always the supporters of it? But because he is a Muslim, he is apparently something to be revered by Bush’s new allies at CAIR. Nihad Awad, CAIR Executive Director, was seated near Mrs. Bush at the president’s speech to Congress, and he stood next to the president at the Washington mosque.
In August 1998, when the U.S. first attacked bin Laden (for blowing up U.S. embassies, etc.), a Los Angeleno put up a billboard with bin Laden’s picture and the caption, “Enemy No. 1.” CAIR protested this, insisting the billboard be removed.
President Bush: With friends like this, who needs enemies?
More on Radical Islam’s phony patriotism in my next column.