Did an Arabic-language presentation at a Philadelphia mosque in which children called for the decapitation of people who stand in the way of Islam conquering Jerusalem reflect the views of management?
It was the owner of the building, the Muslim American Society Islamic Center in North Philadelphia, that uploaded video of the children at the April 17 “Ummah Day” event to its Facebook page.
Apparently nobody had a problem with the presentation or the video until its contents were translated from Arabic into English and spotlighted Friday by the Middle East Media Research Institute.
The reaction of outrage by the American Defamation League and others prompted statements from the mosque’s national overseers, the Washington, D.C.-based Muslim American Society, or MAS.
MAS, which was founded by members of the Muslim Brotherhood, insisted the video was not “properly vetted,” calling it “an unintended mistake and an oversight.”
“While we celebrate the coming together of different cultures and languages, not all songs were properly vetted,” MAS said.
“This was an unintended mistake and an oversight in which the center and the students are remorseful. MAS will conduct an internal investigation to ensure this does not occur again.”
MAS said the children were part of a school unaffiliated with the Philadelphia chapter that organized the April event and had rented the space at the center.
MAS issued a follow-up statement saying “the person in charge” of the event has been “dismissed.”
And the mosque “will form a local commission to aid in sensitivity training and proper oversight for future programs.”
MEMRI is known for translating similar videos of children in the Palestinian territories who pine for “martyrdom” and vow to eliminate the Jews from the Holy Land.
‘We will subject them to eternal torture’
One girl in the Philadelphia video, according to MEMRI’s translation, reads “we will chop off their heads” to “liberate the sorrowful and exalted Al-Aqsa Mosque” in Jerusalem.
“We will defend the land of divine guidance with our bodies, and we will sacrifice our souls without hesitation,” she reads. “We will chop off their heads, and we will liberate the sorrowful and exalted Al-Aqsa Mosque. We will lead the army of Allah fulfilling His promise, and we will subject them to eternal torture.”
Another girl reads: “We will defend the land of divine guidance with our bodies, and we will sacrifice our souls without hesitation. We will lead the army of Allah fulfilling his promise, and we will subject them to eternal torture.”
In other videos of the event posted on the center’s Facebook page, students sing songs about the “blood of martyrs.”
MAS secretary-general Shaker Elsayed acknowledged in 2004 that his organization was founded by members of the Muslim Brotherhood, which aims to see America governed by Islamic law, or Shariah.
At the 2007 Holy Land Foundation trial, the FBI presented a personal phonebook that listed the MAS founders as Muslim Brotherhood leaders in the United States.
And like the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the United Arab Emirates designated MAS a terrorist organization.