Grover Norquist & Co. Build Islamist Influence in GOP

Grover at CPACClarion Project, by Ryan Mauro, Tue, March 4, 2014

How the GOP Came to Embrace the Muslim Brotherhood Lobby

Islamism is not a partisan issue. Special interests, major companies and foreign powers have long tried to affect both political parties—and the Muslim Brotherhood lobby is no different. Ten former senior officials, including a former CIA director, have issued a  joint statement with meticulous documentation about how the Republican Party was and is influenced by this lobby.

The Beginning

When the Muslim Brotherhood arrived in the U.S. in the 1960s, it recognized that violent action is counterproductive. Instead, it began political organizing so it could lead the growing Muslim-American community and use it to affect U.S. policy.

In the 1980s, the FBI recruited a confidential source deep inside the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood lobby. He warned that the Brotherhood established a network of front groups including the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), Muslim Students Association,Islamic Society of North America and North American Islamic Trust. One of the chief objectives was to penetrate the U.S. government with sympathizers and IIIT already claimed success.

The network was so impressive that Pakistani intelligence bred itsown influence operation from it in 1990 with the Brotherhood’s support. It donated to campaigns on both sides of the political aisle and met with officials involved in foreign policy.

The U.S. Muslim Brotherhood drafted a secret plan in 1991 that defined its “work in America as a kind of grand jihad…in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within.” It was not a doctrine of violence, but of activism based on aligning with non-Muslim political forces. It listed about 30 of “our organizations and the organizations of our friends” to accomplish it. This document was recognized as authentic by the U.S. Department of Justice as was introduced as evidence in the Holy Land terror financing trial.

In 1993, the FBI wiretapped a secret meeting of top Brotherhood operatives in Philadelphia. A key theme was deception and secrecy in support of their non-violent activism. In the words of one participant, the objective was “forming the public opinion or coming up with a policy to influence…the way the Americans deal with the Islamists, for instance.”

The Brotherhood decided that a new front with an apparently clean track record was necessary. Two of the participants in that meeting founded the Council on American-Islamic Relations the following year. By 1994, the infrastructure of the Brotherhood lobby was in place, though it would continue to expand with new organizations and name changes.

The Influence Peddlers

The most senior elements of the Brotherhood lobby handled outreach to the Clinton Administration and both political parties, especially the presidential campaign of then-Texas Governor George W. Bush.

SamiSami al-Arian was a central figure. He admits having been a Muslim Brotherhood member from 1978 to 1982, but his involvement in the American lobby continued after that. In a 1992 letter, al-Arianacknowledged that his organization and IIIT, the aforementioned Brotherhood front, were essentially one and the same. He was convicted in 2006 of the charge of conspiring to provide services to the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), a specially designated terrorist organization.

Another central figure was Abdurrahman Alamoudi and his American Muslim Council. He developed intimidate ties to both political parties, despite his support of terrorist groups. In 2004, he was indicted on terrorism-related charges. He later wrote from his prison cell, “I am, I hope, still a member of the Muslim Brotherhood organization in the U.S.A,” as reported by the Grand Deception documentary.

In 2000, Alamoudi was asked by an Islamic website how Muslims should “decrease the influence of the Zionist lobby on presidential candidates.” He said they must elect sympathetic candidates like Rep. Tom Campbell (R-CA).

Rep. Campbell spoke at the Brotherhood lobby’s events and touted their causes. He became the example and was rewarded with political support and donations to his Senate campaign in 2000, including a fundraiser that brought in $35,000. The man guiding Campbell was Suhail Khan, his campaign coordinator in 1995 and press secretary and legislative assistant from 1996 to 1999.

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Ryan Mauro is the ClarionProject.org’s National Security Analyst, a fellow with the Clarion Project and is frequently interviewed on top-tier TV stations as an expert on counterterrorism and Islamic extremism.

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MAS Islamist Hugs for Hatred and Terror

farrBy Joe Kaufman:

It’s said that you wouldn’t want to wish serious illness on your worst enemy. Well, in December 2010, such an illness did indeed come to one of America’s worst enemies, Muslim extremist Mahdi Bray. Bray, then-Executive Director of the MAS Freedom Foundation, the former activist arm of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood front, the Muslim American Society, suffered what was described as a “massive stroke.” Now, three years later, he is back doing what he does best, embracing hatemongers and getting involved in the pro-terror cause.

Johari Abdul-Malik is the Outreach Director of Falls Church, Virginia’s Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Center. He was brought in to head the mosque, after his predecessor, Anwar al-Awlaki, left the United States to become al-Qaeda’s leader in Yemen. Since Abdul-Malik has been employed by al-Hijrah, he has supported and/or defended a number of convicted terrorists, including one that plotted to assassinate Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah; one that plotted to assassinate President George W. Bush; and one who instructed his followers to wage war on the United States.

Abdul-Malik has a YouTube page, where he actively uploads videos. On September 25, he uploaded a 28-second one featuring himself and the Executive Director of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), Salam al-Marayati. Marayati, who is close to the Obama White House, is a defender of Hezbollah and has previously suggested that Israel be named a suspect in the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon.

However, the main event of Abdul-Malik’s video short was Mahdi Bray and Louis Farrakhan, the controversial leader of the Nation of Islam (NOI), hugging and professing their love for one another.

Farrakhan is known for his inflammatory rhetoric against whites, Jews and homosexuals. He has called whites “potential humans [who] haven’t evolved yet.” He has referred to Jews as “satanic” and “wicked.” And he has called gays “degenerate.” Farrakhan’s group currently publishes a number of anti-Semitic books and DVDs for sale on its website, including such titles as ‘And the Jews Planned’ and ‘Jews Selling Blacks.’

The scene from the video is not the first time Bray has embraced such a vile individual as Farrakhan. In March 2009, a photo of Ahmed Yassin, the former spiritual leader and founder of Hamas who was killed in an Israeli airstrike, was uploaded to Bray’s personal web page found on what used to be a MAS Freedom website. [The MAS Freedom organization was shut down shortly after Bray’s stroke.]

The Muslim American Society was founded in 1992 by associates from the Muslim Brotherhood, including Mohammed Mahdi Akef, who would later become the international head of the Brotherhood. Given the radical roots of the organization, it stands to reason that Bray would cling to such extremism – as he did last month, when he attended an event sponsored by a group advocating for the restoration of the regime of Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi in Egypt. Morsi was taken from power by the Egyptian Military, which has since outlawed the Brotherhood, designating the Islamist group a terrorist organization.

As reported by Steve Emerson and the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT), also attending was ex-USF professor Sami al-Arian, who previously had been sentenced to prison for his role as a North American leader of Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and is currently under a separate indictment for criminal contempt in another terrorism case.

Read more at Front Page

 

 

Al-Arian Resurfaces in New American Brotherhood Campaign

IPT EXCLUSIVE: Pro-Morsi Rally in D.C. A Grand Deception

by Frank Spano:

Interfaith Event Teaches That U.S. Is ‘Aiding’ Oppression

mpacBy Ryan Mauro:

The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) returned to All Saints Episcopal Church in Pasadena, California on May 5 to address the topic of radicalization in the wake of the Boston bombings. The church leader said there is a “crisis” of “Islamophobia” in America. MPAC denounced violence but said terrorism is a response to the U.S. “aiding and abetting oppression” at the behest of the military-industrial complex.

At the May 5 event, church leader Rev. Ed Bacon said that he “literally had my life changed and my thinking changed because of these two leaders,” referring to MPAC leaders Maher Hathout and Salam al-Marayati. He went so far as to say that the Islamic Center of Southern California, where Hathout is a spokesman and Muslim Brotherhood texts are used, is “my mosque.”

At the event, both MPAC leaders denounced terrorism and said Muslims must provide a counter-narrative to the violent themes that radicalize. Hathout said that too many Muslims are “soft” in confronting the radical ideas and have a “gang” mentality where they automatically side with other Muslims against non-Muslims.

However, Hathout said America is run by an elite minority beholden to lobbyists. He said that American democracy is threatened by “Islamophobia”  driven by supremacists who believe “the other” doesn’t deserve equal rights.

Al-Marayati rightly pointed out that there is an ideological struggle and reform in Islamic teaching is needed, but attributed the conflict to anger over the aggression of America and its allies.

“When a superpower is aiding and abetting oppression and there are grievances, and people react in a violent way, they [Americans] look at the violence and they say it is not time to deal with the grievances,” he said.

He claimed that there is a “cottage industry” of anti-Muslim activists that is part of a “larger machine,” including the military-industrial complex and special interests. These conspirators “want more contracts for more weapons to countries that only use these weapons against their own people or against civilians.”

MPAC held its last annual conference at this church, where Reverend Ed Bacon denounced “evangelical Zionism” as an evil on par with slavery. The church and MPAC held a press conference to declare their critics “right-wing extremists” who are “hateful.”

The critics noted that MPAC was founded by Muslim Brotherhood ideologues, including Senior Adviser Maher Hathout’s brother who was a “close disciple” of the group’s founder, Hassan al-Banna. Maher Hathout says he remains “very proud” of his time in the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, but emphasizes it was 60 years ago. His brother said they came to the U.S. to spread the “Islamic Movement” of al-Banna.

After coming to America, one or both of the Hathout brothers was connected to the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, as a 1989 document shows. MPAC has maintained a close alliance with U.S. Brotherhood entities ever since. In 1997, Maher Hathout promoted Hassan al-Banna as one of the “reformists,” along with other Islamists like Rachid al-Ghannouchi, who MPAC still hosts. In 1998 and 1999, he and al-Marayati legitimized Hezbollah’s attacks on Israeli soldiers.

In 2000, Hathout said a “general intifada” would overthrow Arab governments guilty of “treason” for not confronting the “butchers” of Israel. Around this time, MPAC started becoming more conscious of the language it was using. Hathout said he regretted the “harshness of my remarks” when they received negative attention, but not the message. Tellingly, a radical named Mahdi Bray continued to serve as MPAC’s Political Director.

Read more at Front Page

MPAC-Linked All Saints Church: ‘Evangelical Zionism’ Is ‘Evil’

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On December 15, All Saints Episcopal Church of Pasadena hosted the annual convention of the Muslim Public Affairs Council, a group with Muslim Brotherhood origins and a controversial past. The question of why All Saints would collaborate with this specific group persisted. The answer came during the event when Reverend Ed Bacon listed “acts of evil” committed by Christians and included “evangelical Zionism.”

The first hint of a political objective behind this interfaith gathering came during a December 6 press conference. Salam al-Marayati, the president of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), said that his organization seeks to help the U.S. act as an “honest broker” for peace in the Middle East. This is a soft way of saying that the U.S. must take a tough stand towards Israel, as evidenced by MPAC’s record of anti-Israel activism. The All Saints Episcopal Church leadership was standing with him.

During the opening session, Reverend Ed Bacon talks of his “heartbreaking” visit to the Gaza Strip in 2002, where he visited the “Red Crescent Society” and met with its leader. Presumably, he was referring to the Palestine Red Crescent Society, an anti-Israel humanitarian group that accuses Israel of “continuous targeting of civilians and their properties and hampering the access of medical personnel and ambulances to casualties.”

In a later session, Bacon said that he’d speak about problems in his own religion’s past. He said “the history of Christianity is littered with acts of evil.” He mentioned the Crusades, slavery, the Jim Crow laws, Islamophobia and “evangelical Zionism, where Christian right-wing evangelicals are paying for the growth of settlements in the West Bank.” He claimed that there are “an awful lot of people who are paid by the industry of fear.”

Al-Marayati said at the convention that MPAC has worked with All Saints Church since 1990. This means that the partnership was not severed when al-Marayati said in 1999 that Hezbollah’s attacks on Israeli soldiers is “legitimate resistance” and MPAC founder and senior adviser Maher Hathout’s 1998 statement that Hezbollah is fighting for “an American value—freedom and liberty.”

In 1999, MPAC said that Hezbollah’s bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Lebanon in 1983 “was not, in a strict sense, a terrorist operation” and was “exactly the kind of attack that Americans might have lauded had it been directed against Washington’s enemies.” In 2006, MPAC said it “completely deplore[s] the attack” but was pointing out a “highly relevant fact.”

In 2003, though, MPAC opposed the designation of Hamas and Hezbollah as terrorist groups and suggested it was “based on political considerations.” Former MPAC Political Adviser, Mahdi Bray, has a history of extremist rhetoric and went to Egypt in February 2008 to stand in solidarity with prosecuted Muslim Brotherhood members.

The MPAC-All Saints partnership withstood Maher Hathout’s speech in October 2000 where he said, “Israel is an apartheid state against every fiber of the modern world” and referred to it as “butchers.” He predicted that the Arab governments “will be flushed down in the cesspools of history of treason” by a “general intifada.” He later said he regretted the “harshness of my remarks” but stands by them.

Read more at Front Page

Muslim Public Affairs Council Debates RadicalIslam.org

MPAC's President Salam Al-Marayati (l) and RadicalIslam.org's Natioanl Security Analyst Rayn Mauro

MPAC’s President Salam Al-Marayati (l) and RadicalIslam.org’s Natioanl Security Analyst Rayn Mauro

by: Ryan Mauro

Yesterday, RadicalIslam.org National Security Analyst Ryan Mauro debated the President of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), Salam Al-Marayati on Airtalk about his article on the group’s holding of its convention inside the All Saints Episcopal Church of Pasadena, C.A. MPAC is also holding a press conference about the “right wing extremists” criticizing the church.

The press release failed to address a single fact in the article. In his discussion with Mauro, Al-Marayati repeatedly accused Mauro and RadicalIslam.org of lying, bigotry and hatred without offering a substantive rebuttal to the facts we presented.

Al-Marayati denied that the MPAC is linked to the Muslim Brotherhood and said it does not accept foreign money “even though foreign groups offered it to us.” He also claimed that he is not seeking to convert anyone to Islam because “we have more than enough Muslims.”

You can listen to the debate by clicking here.

When Mauro challenged MPAC to unequivocally condemn and stand against the Muslim Brotherhood as a way of improving the image of the Muslim-American community, Al-Marayati called it a “ridiculous suggestion.”  He said, “You want us to get into a political fight with these [Islamist] groups, it’s not worth our time…We are speaking to the masses.”

While MPAC is quick to condemn its opponents as “right-wing extremists,” its website does not condemn the Muslim Brotherhood as hundreds of thousands of Egyptians protest against it. Al-Marayati made a number of demonstrably false and misleading statements about MPAC on the radio show:

Claim: “[MPAC Founder Maher Hathout] has never said and I challenge anyone to come up with a statement or anything in any meeting or gathering that we are for the Muslim Brotherhood. It has never been stated.”

Maher Hathout, who Al-Marayati calls “the father of the Muslim-American identity,” has praised Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan Al-Banna as a “reformer.” He is a spokesman for the Islamic Center of Southern California, which he and his brother founded and MPAC originated in. The mosque recommends a book on Sharia Law titled Fiqh us-Sunnah by Sayyid Saabiq, a Muslim Brotherhood member working under the guidance of Al-Banna. It also recommends a book by senior Brotherhood cleric Shiekh Yousef Al-Qaradawi.

Hassan Hathout, former MPAC President and Maher’s brother, describes himself as a “close disciple of the late Hassan Al-Banna of Egypt” in their 1989 book. He says that Al-Banna is “the person who most influenced my life” and “centuries might roll over before a similar personality is produced.”

Before coming to the U.S., the Hathout brothers were arrested in Egypt, which banned the Muslim Brotherhood. Hassan Hathout strongly suggested that it was their involvement with the group that led to their detainment, saying, “Long after Hassan Al-Banna, when Egypt had been through the Revolution and the new Regime, but Islam was always considered an enemy. We were persecuted; we were in jail, including my brother and myself.”

The two came to the U.S. in the years following Maher’s release from an Egyptian prison in 1968. Hassan said they sought to start the “Islamic Movement” in the U.S., which is the term that the Brotherhood uses to describe its work and that of fellow Islamists. He explained in 1997, “America needs Islam. If you look objectively you will see that this current civilization harbors in its body the seeds of its own destruction.”

The language mirrors that of an internal U.S. Muslim Brotherhood document from 1991 that describes “its work in America as a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within.” The battle, the Brotherhood wrote in its private communications, was a “civilization jihad.” A 1989 U.S. Muslim Brotherhood Financial Committee document discusses working with someone by the name of Hathout that is “in the field.”

Claim: “There’s never been any mention of the Muslim Brotherhood since the inception of the Muslim Public Affairs Council.”

The Muslim Brotherhood is mentioned in MPAC’s policy paper, Building Bridges to Strengthen America. It states that “Conservative groups like the Muslim Brotherhood pose long-term strategic threats to violent extremists by siphoning Muslims away from violent radicalism into peaceful political activism.”

The paper also depicts the Brotherhood as an effective counter to Al-Qaeda and cites an article titled, “The Moderate Muslim Brotherhood.” The depiction of the Brotherhood is wholly positive.

MPAC’s former Political Director Mahdi Bray went to Egypt in 2007 to, in the words of an Egyptian news site, “express solidarity with Muslim Brotherhood detainees on trial before a military court and to call for an end to the crackdown on the Egyptian opposition.”

Claim: “We are the ones that are your hope in terms of reforming the Muslim world … [to] bring that moderate voice up.”

MPAC upholds Brotherhood-linked Islamists as “moderates” and “reformists,” putting this statement in a different light. As mentioned, it depicts the Brotherhood as a moderate group and Hassan Al-Banna as a reformist.

Read more at Radical Islam