WASHINGTON – While the Council on American-Islamic Relations likes to bill itself as a Muslim “civil-rights organization,” it downplays its direct ties to the terrorist group Hamas, its lineage to the Muslim Brotherhood and its extremist history that includes dozens of its executives, board members’ and staffers’ indictments, convictions and prison sentences for terror-related crimes.
But sometimes CAIR leadership lets its guard down.
That’s what happened, apparently, in the early morning hours of Nov. 9, right after the election of Donald Trump as president became clear.
Hussam Ayloush, the long-time director of CAIR-Los Angeles, Tweeted out the following message:
“Ok, repeat after me:
“Al-Shaab yureed isqat al-nizaam.
“(Arab Spring chant)”
The second line in Arabic translates to “The people want to bring down the regime.”
“In other words, Ayloush unambiguously and directly called for the overthrow of the U.S. government,” observes scholar Daniel Pipes of Middle East Forum.
Ayloush is hardly a fringe character with CAIR. He has been around for a long time. Of late he has been peddling horror stories about a rash of Islamophobia and “hate crimes” in California, much of which doesn’t stand up to even the slightest scrutiny.
He’s an active member of the Democratic Party, serving as a delegate to the national convention in 2012. Officially, he has visited the White House at least twice times during Barack Obama’s administration. According to the Investigative Project on Terrorism, White House logs conspicuously omit three other meetings
“The dawning of Donald Trump’s victory was apparently a trying moment for Ayloush, so he let loose with an emotion he’d normally have kept under wraps,” observes Pipes. “In other words, he offered a rare, candid insight into the mind of one CAIR apparatchik.”
Pipes notes that 18 U.S. Code § 2385, “Advocating overthrow of government,” prescribes specific penalties for such behavior: “Whoever knowingly or willfully advocates, abets, advises, or teaches the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying the government of the United States … shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.”
The Department of Justice named CAIR an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land case, which convicted the charity of funneling more than $12 million to the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas.
The Muslim Brotherhood document presented as evidence in the Holy Land Foundation trial in Dallas in 2008 – the largest terror-finance case in U.S. history – was a “100-year plan” to gradually destroy the U.S. and Western civilization from within “so that it is eliminated and Allah’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”
FBI wiretap evidence from the Holy Land case showed CAIR founder Nihad Awad was at an October 1993 meeting of Hamas leaders and activists in Philadelphia. CAIR, according to the evidence, was born out of a need to give a “media twinkle” to the Muslim leaders’ agenda of supporting violent jihad abroad while slowly institutionalizing Islamic law in the U.S.
An internal FBI memo written by the former head of the FBI’s counter-terrorism division describes “all attendees” of the meeting – including Awad – as “Hamas members.” Along with CAIR, prominent U.S. organizations launched by Muslim Brotherhood leaders include the Muslim Students Association, North American Islamic Trust, the Islamic Society of North America, the American Muslim Council, the Muslim American Society and the International Institute of Islamic Thought.
As WND reported in 2010, a federal judge determined that the Justice Department provided “ample evidence” to designate CAIR as an unindicted terrorist co-conspirator, affirming the Muslim group has been involved in “a conspiracy to support Hamas.”
CAIR has cultivated a number of political supporters – mainly among leading Democrats in Washington – that include senior White House officials. Secret Service entry logs show several CAIR officials have visited the White House multiple times during the Obama administration.
In 2009, however, FBI Assistant Director John Miller wrote to Rep. Frank R. Wolf, R-Va., confirming that the bureau had “suspended any formal engagement” with CAIR field offices around the country. He explained that the move came ‘in part as a result of evidence gathered through FBI investigation and presented in connection with the Holy Land Foundation trial.”
CAIR filed suit in 2009 against former federal investigator David Gaubatz and his son, Chris Gaubatz, after the two carried out an undercover investigation of the Islamic group. The Washington think tank Center for Security Policy and three of its employees were later added to the suit for their part in commissioning a documentary about CAIR, along with attorney David Yerusalmi and his non-profit group SANE, which campaigns against the advance of Islamic law, or Shariah.
Evidence from the Gaubatzes’ investigation was published in the WND Books expose’ “Muslim Mafia: Inside the Secret Underworld That’s Conspiring to Islamize America.” The book documents CAIR’s support of radical jihad, recounting its origin as a front group for Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood
In the lawsuit, CAIR, did not defend itself against the claims of “Muslim Mafia,” and the FBI seized the CAIR material from the Washington law office of one of the Gaubtazes’ three high-profile lawyers. A previous filing in the case revealed a federal grand jury was investigating CAIR for possible violation of laws that ban financial dealings with terrorist groups or countries under U.S. sanctions.
The case likely will go to trial in 2017.
In candid moments, CAIR leaders have acknowledged the Muslim Brotherhood aim of turning the U.S. into an Islamic state. CAIR co-founder Omar Ahmad, according to a local newspaper, told a group of Muslims in Northern California in 1998 that they were in America not to assimilate but to help assert Islam’s rule over the country.
“Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant,” a paper paraphrased him as saying. “The Quran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth.” Ahmad insists he was misquoted, but WND found the reporter stood by her story, and an FBI wiretap transcript quotes Ahmad agreeing with terrorist suspects gathered at the secret Philadelphia meeting to “camouflage” their true intentions.
He compared it to the head fake in basketball.
“This is like one who plays basketball: He makes a player believe that he is doing this, while he does something else,” Ahmad said. “I agree with you. Like they say, politics is a completion of war.”
In a 2003 telephone conversation with WND, CAIR’s communications director, Ibrahim Hooper, insisted Ahmad “never made the statement, and we have sought a retraction.”
Pressed several times to specify whether CAIR already has contacted the newspaper, he repeated the statement then finally said someone from CAIR’s California affiliate made the contact.
When confronted with the fact that the newspaper’s editors say CAIR has not contacted them and the reporter stands by the story, he ended the call with, “If you are going to use distortions, I can’t stop you; it’s a free country. Have a nice day.”
Hooper called back, however, and said he wanted to change his statement to say, “We will seek a retraction, and we have spoken to the reporter about it in the past.”
Three years later, a group of Muslim leaders confronted Ahmad, expressing concern that someone from their community could voice such radical sentiments.
Ahmad told the Muslim leaders – and WND in an interview – the attribution is a “total fabrication” and assured them the newspaper, the Fremont Argus in California, issued a “clarification” after he “challenged” reporter Lisa Gardiner.
That seemed to satisfy the Muslim leaders, but WND contacted Gardiner again and she said she continued to stand by the story, and Editor Steve Waterhouse said he was confident she got it right.
Hooper also has expressed a desire to overturn the U.S. system of government in favor of an Islamic state.
“I wouldn’t want to create the impression that I wouldn’t like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future,” Hooper said in a 1993 interview with the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “But I’m not going to do anything violent to promote that. I’m going to do it through education.”
Despite all this, the Obama administration has sought to involve CAIR in its “anti-terror” efforts. The most recent example it was revealed that the Department of Homeland Security and the State Department have worked with CAIR’s Florida branch on a training session for a French police delegation. This in spite of the fact the FBI has concluded that “until we can resolve whether there continues to be a connection between CAIR or its executives and HAMAS, the FBI does not view CAIR as an appropriate liaison partner.”
CAIR’s mission in this assignment: to facilitate “in conjunction with DHS and the State Department, a week long training and tour for a delegation of French officials on how to effectively challenge violent extremist individuals of all backgrounds and prevent hate crimes, while protecting civil rights and challenging profiling and discrimination.”