by: Ryan Mauro
On November 22-25, activists with links to the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas will come together at the Oak Brook Hills Marriott Resort in Illinois for American Muslims for Palestine’s (AMP) Conference for Palestine in the U.S.: A Movement United. The event also highlights the Islamists’ success in forging interfaith partnerships with Reverend Donald Wagner of Evangelicals for Middle East Understanding as one of the speakers.
American Muslims for Palestine isn’t just about Palestinian statehood. It’s about the elimination of Israel. Michael Rubin points out that “Its home page depicts the conference logo—a map of Palestine made from birds showing the Palestinian state encompassing all of Israel. So much for the two-state solution.”
AMP conferences promote Islamist thought. In 2004, its chairman, Hatem Bazian, praised the “uprising in Iraq” (which was against U.S. soldiers) and the “intifada in Palestine” and said an American intifada is needed to “change fundamentally the political dynamics here.” He boasted, “They’re gonna say some Palestinian [is] being too radical – well, you haven’t seen radicalism yet.”
In June, Bazian described the U.S. as a racist country that tries to get “darker people [to] fight our war.” He teaches that the “military-industrial complex” is promoting “Islamophobia” and is persecuting Muslim leadership in the U.S. in order to build support for wars against Muslims overseas.
AMP board member Osama Abu Irshaid, another speaker at the conference, describes the firing of rockets into Israel by Hamas as a form of “legitimate resistance.” He used to be the editor of an Arabic publication made by the now-defunct Islamic Association for Palestine, which the American Muslim Brotherhood’s internal documents identify as having been one of its fronts set up to support Hamas.
Another board member is Salah Sarsour. His brother was arrested by Israel in 1998 and informed his interrogators that Salah was financing Hamas through the Islamic Association for Palestine and the Holy Land Foundation. The latter was shut down by the U.S. government and five of its officials were convicting of funding terrorism. He even said that Sarsour transferred funds to a Hamas military commander.
The conference, which has Turkish Airlines as a sponsor, features some of the top Brotherhood-linked speakers, including:
Nihad Awad, the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). The federal government named CAIR as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land trial, listing it among “individuals/entities who are and/or were members of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestine Committee.” Awad declared his support for Hamas in 1994. In 2004, he refused to condemn Hamas and Hezbollah, instead choosing to call them “liberation movements.”
Safaa Zarzour, the Secretary-General of the Islamic Society of North America. Like CAIR, it was designated an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land trial and was listed by the government as a Muslim Brotherhood entity. FBI investigators identified ISNA as a Brotherhood front as far back as 1987. A 1991 American Muslim Brotherhood document also lists it as one of “our organizations and the organizations of our friends.”
Jamal Badawi, who is listed in an American Muslim Brotherhood directory from 1992 and is a listed unindicted co-conspirator for his fundraising on behalf of the Holy Land Foundation. He is a founder of the Muslim American Society, a Brotherhood front. In 1999, he justified suicide bombings, saying, “So when an act of heroism like that is required to save others, it is self-sacrifice, you cannot really call it suicide.” In February 2009, he criticized the West for describing “martyrs” from the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip as terrorists. In March 2010, he said Islam justifies the “combative jihad” of Palestinians.
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