While the European Union investigates mosques for ties to Islamic terrorism, the U.S. government is giving mosques security grants that are designed to protect churches, synagogues and other nonprofit groups from Islamic terror.
Most recently, the Islamic Society of Baltimore landed a $15,000 grant from the Department of Homeland Security to upgrade security at its Maryland mosque.
The Council on American-Islamic Relations since April has been urging leaders of mosques and Islamic schools across the nation to apply for the DHS grants, even though the agency’s program was set up to help protect nonprofit facilities that are at high risk for attacks by Islamic terrorists.
In a recent “Action Alert” posted on its website, CAIR encouraged its Muslim members to take advantage of $24 million in federal funds DHS has made available – specifically, DHS says, for nonprofit organizations “deemed high-risk for a potential international terrorist attack.”
Organizations in 46 urban areas designated high risk for Islamic terror attack are eligible to participate in the new Nonprofit Security Grant Program.
The CAIR alert issued April 29 to Muslim members reads as follows: “ACTION REQUESTED: All eligible 501(c)(3) American mosques and other Islamic institutions are urged to begin the application process to receive training and to purchase equipment such as video cameras, alarm systems and other security enhancements.”
Several Islamic institutions already have applied and are receiving government approval.
U.S. officials who spoke to WND on condition of anonymity expressed dismay that CAIR would drain limited federal funds away from higher risk targets for terrorism. They argue mosques are among the lowest risk for such attacks.
In fact, a number of mosques across the nation actually have promoted Islamic terrorism and have been tied to Islamic terrorists, including the large Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Center in Washington, where some of the 9/11 hijackers received spiritual guidance, as well as help obtaining housing and IDs.
Terrorism experts note some 80 percent of U.S. mosques are funded and controlled through the Saudi Arabian government.
“Mosques have tended to serve as safe havens and meeting points for Islamic terrorist groups,” said terror expert Steve Emerson. “Of course, we are not referring to all mosques, but there are at least 40 episodes of extremists and terrorists being connected to mosques in the past decade.”
Meanwhile, European Union security officials earlier this month announced they will analyze member-state mosques, examining the training and funding sources of imams, in a project to be completed by fall.
Even in the wake of 9/11, remarkably, U.S. authorities have yet to conduct any similar sweeping investigation of the nation’s 2,000 mosques. There also has been no nationwide effort to identify Muslim clerics who preach terrorism, even as an alarming number of imams have been caught up in separate terrorism investigations.
Law enforcement sources blame the hesitancy on political pressure applied by Washington-based CAIR, which sits on the FBI’s community advisory board and routinely lodges complaints about case agents who question mosque leaders and followers. The bureau seldom makes a raid in the Muslim community without first contacting CAIR officials.
CAIR claims mosques have been victims of “terrorist” attacks since 9/11, which the group says triggered a backlash of “Islamophobic” vigilantism.
When pressed, the group cites only scattered cases of vandalism, however, many of which the FBI has investigated and ruled out as “hate crimes.”
No mosque in America has suffered a bombing attack, and there are no examples of international Muslim terrorists attacking mosques in America – the whole point of DHS’ target-hardening grant program.
CAIR itself has had ties to terrorism. The nonprofit lobby group is a foreign-funded spin-off of a Hamas front group, and it has seen several of its executives convicted of terror-related crimes since 9/11.