The “Women’s March” on Washington in January 2017, organized by media darling Linda Sarsour, targeted the newly inaugurated President Donald J. Trump as a supposed threat to women’s rights.
But almost a year later, President Trump is still in office, and it’s Sarsour herself who is under fire as an enabler of sexual assault.
Sarsour, an Islamist organizer who has called for “jihad” against President Trump while simultaneously claiming to be a champion of women’s rights, is being accused of ignoring allegations of sexual harassment during her time as executive director of the Arab American Association.
Asmi Fathelbab, the alleged victim, told the Daily Caller website Sarsour body-shamed her, dismissed the allegations and called her a liar.
Fathelbab, a New Yorker raised in an Islamic household, named one Majed Seif as her attacker. Seif lived in the building where the Arab American Association’s offices were located. In 2009, while Fathelbab was working for Sarsour at the Arab American Association, Fathelbab was allegedly harassed and stalked by Seif.
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Fathelbab claims Seif would sneak up on her, pin her against the wall and even approach her sporting a full erection. The harassment was so bad that Fathelbab would occasionally “scream at the top of my lungs,” according to her account in the Caller.
When Fathelbab reported the behavior to Sarsour, Sarsour allegedly threatened her and called her a liar, suggesting her account wasn’t credible. Another one of Fathelbab’s superiors, Ahmed Jaber, president of the board of directors, dismissed the accusations because he believed Seif was a “God-fearing man.”
Sarsour went further by threatening Fathelbab with lawsuits if she continued to make accusations against Seif. Fathelbab says she was given disciplinary action because of her complaints, was forced to talk to a detective about the “consequences of making false claims to the authorities” and was menaced with negative career consequences. Fathelbab accuses Sarsour of backing up these threats, claiming Sarsour used her influence to deny Fathelbab steady employment for a decade.
The Daily Caller corroborated Fathelbab’s account by confirming Seif’s presence at the building during the time Fathelbab worked there. The publication also cites two anonymous sources who confirm Fathelbab’s account of the Arab American Association as an “unsafe” work environment.
A “New York political operative,” quoted by the Caller on the condition of anonymity, also backs up Fathelbab’s story and paints a damning portrait of Sarsour as a hypocritical and selfish figure operating in the midst of the Arab American Association’s toxic culture.
“Sarsour was there to protect the men,” the source told the Caller. “She’s not for other women. The only women she’s for is herself.”
Another anonymous “insider” quoted by the Caller says there have been other complaints about Sarsour, and accuses her of protecting “the patriarchy” in exchange for promotions and power.
Sarsour has been no stranger to controversy in the months since the Women’s March. At the 54th annual convention Islamic Society of North America on July 1, she expressed the hope standing up “to those who oppress our communities” would be accepted “by Allah” as a form of “jihad.”
Sarsour has also been accused in the past of using her Muslim identity to pose as a member of the “oppressed” for political advantage. As critics have pointed out, Sarsour herself says wearing her hijab transformed her image.
“When I wasn’t wearing a hijab, I was just some ordinary white girl from New York City,” she said in a video featured on Vox. “Wearing hijab made you know that I was Muslim.”
Thus far, leftist organizations have not disavowed Sarsour, even letting her speak at events about how to combat anti-Semitism.
Fathelbab says more details will come out, too.
“Just wait until more people start to talk,” she told the Caller. “Sarsour is no champion of women. She is an abuser of them.”
Sarsour, the Women’s March Organization, the alleged attacker Seif and the Arab American Association did not respond to repeated requests to comment by the Daily Caller.
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