CAIR Loses San Diego Schools Partnership

by John Rossomando
IPT News
July 26, 2017

SAN DIEGO – The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) tried to have it both ways – claiming to be a civil rights organization when it suits its purposes, but admitting at other times that its mission is religious.

That duplicity has cost CAIR a partnership with San Diego public schools and threatens to sabotage a plan to take an educational program national.

San Diego school board members agreed Tuesday night not to work with CAIR on a campaign to specifically fight anti-Muslim bullying generated by an exaggerated CAIR report. Instead, the Anti-Defamation League is poised to work on a program that aims “to comprehensively address the issue of bullying of all students.”

The agenda item specifically mentioned that school board “staff is redirected from forming a formal partnership with CAIR to forming an intercultural committee which shall include representatives of from all faiths and cultures and which shall provide input to District staff on issues of cultural sensitivities and the individual needs of various subgroups within our diverse community.”

Still, speaker after speaker criticized the proposal for excluding CAIR and for not specifically emphasizing anti-Muslim bigotry and “Islamophobia.” CAIR-San Diego Executive Director Hanif Mohebi managed to make that argument while still denying CAIR was singularly focused.

“We have never come out saying that it should only be one group. But I think also we should realize that it might be a mistake not to focus on groups that are targeted much more than the rest,” Mohebi said. “So that being said, we expect the district to publicly acknowledge and recognize the work that we have done for over a decade with the school district.”

While the Anti-Defamation League also has a focus on protecting a specific group – Jews – Regional Director Tammy Gillies said its mission also is to “secure justice and fair treatment for all. That ‘and’ is the most important part of our mission statement. When one community is unsafe we are all unsafe.”

The ADL program, she noted, has been evaluated by Columbia University, the University of Pennsylvania, Yale and other respected institutions.

The board agreed to work with CAIR in April. CAIR’s program aimed to increaseeducation about Islam in the classroom. Parents and religious liberty advocates balked at singling out Muslim students for safe places without providing similar accommodations to other faiths. Muslim holidays would have been added to the school calendar, and campus events falling on those holidays would be rescheduled.

It was obvious, though, that board members reluctantly decided to implement a broader policy addressing bullying across cultures and religious backgrounds. Vice President Kevin Beiser reaffirmed his support for CAIR and thanked it for over a decade of partnership, but said supported the revised proposal “because I believe it codifies the board’s commitment and my commitment to making sure that all students are safe. We do have certain groups of students who are bullied at much higher rates than other students.

“We need to work together to solve that problem,” Beiser said, “and we want to thank CAIR and all of you in the Muslim community for your partnership.”

The anti-bullying program was never about “promoting a religion” as some critics claimed, said Board President Richard Barerra.

But lawyers with the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund (FCDF) sued the school district in May, claiming the program did place Muslim students above others, violating the First Amendment’s establishment clause, the Fourteenth Amendment and California law barring assistance to religion. They also claimed the anti-bullying program was a solution to an exaggerated problem.

None of the speakers advocating for CAIR’s continued involvement addressed that Constitutional concern.

A report by CAIR’s California chapters, “Growing in Faith: California Muslim Youth Experiences with Bullying, Harassment & Religious Accommodation in Schools” inspired the program, FCDF’s lawsuit claims.

The school district’s decision to back away from partnering with CAIR is an important victory, FCDF Executive Director Daniel Piedra told the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT). But he remains concerned that CAIR still may partner with the school district on other programs.

Mohebi and his allies seemed upset that they will not be able to use the school district to further their agenda, Piedra said after the meeting.

“They talk about equality, but it’s really Orwellian because in their philosophy and the school board’s philosophy, they are really saying that all students are equal but that some students are more equal than others,” Piedra said.

The FCDF lawsuit remains alive despite Tuesday’s decision to switch from CAIR’s program to the ADL’s. The group wants to learn more about CAIR’s role in drafting the anti-bullying program. If it turns out that CAIR was intimately involved, the lawsuit may move forward because students’ rights would have been violated, Piedra said, and to ensure that CAIR loses future opportunities to shape policy.

FCDF could seek monetary damages, he said, but it may ask a judge to impose a consent decree compelling the school district to not partner with CAIR again.

“We are willing to work with them; however, violating the Constitution is a serious allegation, and we are going to hold that to the school district every step of the way,” Piedra said.

Under the now-abandoned program, students accused of bullying Muslim students were supposed to face “restorative justice,” requiring them to reconcile with the other student. The school district would provide monthly reports on the bullying of Muslim students and post them online.

The district’s reversal follows the FCDF’s amended complaint filed last month, which challenged CAIR’s local effort to hide behind the label of being a “civil rights organization.” It pointed to testimony by CAIR co-founder and Executive Director Nihad Awad, who told the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) that it lacked jurisdiction over a fight over unionizing CAIR employees because CAIR is a religious organization.

CAIR letterhead includes the invocation, “In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful,” which opens every chapter in the Quran, Charles L. Posner, regional director of the National Labor Relations Board, wrote in an April 7 ruling.

This religious acknowledgement goes to the heart of the Establishment Clause‘s separation of church and state.

The loss of the San Diego program is a set-back for CAIR’s desire to take an “anti-Muslim bullying” program national. It represents the biggest government rebuke to CAIR since the FBI instituted a policy in 2008 to break-off outreach programs due to CAIR’s documented history in a Muslim-Brotherhood created Hamas-support network in the United States.

And it should send a message to districts throughout the country, Piedra said, warning CAIR that his organization will sue any public school district that partners with it in a similar anti-bullying program.

“We want to be sure for the benefit of our schoolchildren that CAIR is kept out of America’s schools,” Piedra said.

How CAIR Shaped San Diego’s Public Schools

Islamist Watch, by Susan Ouellette
California Political Review
June 15, 2017

In April 2017, the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) School Board approved a plan to address anti-Muslim bullying in schools. Beginning this fall, students will “learn more about [Islam] in social studies….Schools…will review and vet materials related to Muslim culture and history…and provide resources and material for teachers…and…promote a more positive image of Islam.” The driving force behind the plan, however, is the Council on American-Islamic Relations – San Diego (CAIR-SD), which has a history of ties to radical Islamists.

CAIR-SD and the SDUSD School Board have a long-standing relationship. In November 2015, the Board commended CAIR-SD for “ten years of teaching students to accept and honor religious and cultural differences,” as well as its partnership with “the District’s Office of Race/Human Relations and Advocacy,” and its involvement “in mediating situations…that involve discrimination.”

In July 2016, Hanif Mohebi, CAIR-SD’s Executive Director, lobbied the School Board to adopt an official anti-Muslim bullying plan. Over the past six months, Mohebi has lectured students and teachers on “Islamophobia” at more than a dozen District schools. At these sessions, Mohebi has distributed a pamphlet offering to help Muslim students “file a complaint” against school administrators and to provide students with “resources about your faith…(to)… share with administrators and teachers.” But should Mohebi and CAIR-SD be teaching students their particular brand of Islam?

On social media, Mohebi has encouraged his Facebook followers to support the “cause” of Khalifah al-Akili, a prominent Taliban sympathizer imprisoned for felony possession of a firearm. To “FBI snitches” who “frame our community members unjustly,” he warns, “KNOW that we are watching you.”

In addition, he has circulated videos attacking homosexuality, written an article comparing ISIS to Israel, and published a number of posts attacking “Jewish colonial settlers.”

Other CAIR-SD leaders have posted inflammatory rhetoric on social media. CAIR-SD official Lallia Allali has lamented the deportation of Sami Al-Araian, a leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad in North America.

CAIR-SD has a history of promulgating Islamist ideology and giving platforms to extremist clerics, including Yasir Qadhi, who has said “…this is a part of our religion to stone the adulterer and to chop the head off of the sorcerer and so many other things, and to kill, by the way, the homosexual – this is also our religion.”

CAIR-SD’s tireless lobbying against “Islamophobia” has facilitated its inroads into SDUSD schools. CAIR officials, particularly Mohebi, whose ties to the Board date back at least seven years, appear to enjoy excellent working relationships with Board members and school officials. SDUSD School Board members Kevin Beiser and Sharon Whitehurst-Payne have spearheaded efforts to create a District-wide anti-Muslim bullying plan. Beiser has endorsed the Forum on Religious Freedom, a CAIR-SD organization designed “to support the Muslim Community against Bigotry and Islamophobia.” At a 2016 SDUSD-sponsored diversity event, Nawabi published photos of him with Beiser, SDUSD Superintendent Cindy Marten, and School Board members Whitehurst-Payne and Michael McQuarry.

Beyond its ties with the School Board, CAIR-SD has relationships with at least two other District employees. Kamal Boulazreg, an SDUSD psychologist, and Agin Shaheed, SDUSD’s Race/Human Relations Manager, spoke at a 2014 “Stop Bullying” event sponsored by CAIR-SD and the Islamic Center of San Diego, a mosque with ties to two 9/11 hijackers. In fact, CAIR-SD and Shaheed have an official working relationship, and CAIR-SD’s website features a lengthy, hagiographic profile of him.

In light of CAIR’s extremism, in May, the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund, on behalf of a group of District parents, filed a federal lawsuit to halt the implementation of CAIR’s program. The lawsuit itself may not cool the warm relationship between SDUSD and CAIR-SD, an organization that is not the benign, tolerant, civil rights group it claims to be.

After all, SDUSD does not seem to fazed by CAIR’s notorious designation by federal prosecutors as an unindicted co-conspirator during the Holy Land Foundation federal terrorism case, nor CAIR-SD’s history of promoting hate speech. As such, and barring a court ruling against the School District, CAIR-SD’s agenda has become the District’s.

Susan Ouellette is a contributor to Islamist Watch, a project of the Middle East Forum.

Documentary Exposes Surging Campus Anti-Semitism

Truth Revolt, May 10, 2017:

The anti-Semitism on today’s college and university campuses “has metastasized into a cancer,” says Charles Jacobs, special consultant on the recent documentary Hate Spaces: The Politics of Intolerance. The title pointedly takes aim at the college fad of  “safe spaces” to protect minorities from bigotry and oppression — unless you’re Jewish. Anti-Semitism is not merely tolerated in higher education; it is “tacitly encouraged,” wrote Andrea Peyser at The New York Post, “by the frequent inaction and support of woefully politically correct administrators and radical leftist professors.”

Hate Spaces examines that ugly phenomenon, which often masquerades as anti-Israel activity such as the Boycott, Divestment, and Sactions (BDS) movement. The documentary, put out by the Americans for Peace and Tolerance organization, of which Jacobs is president, notes that anti-Semitism at Hunter and elsewhere is fueled by well-funded organizations with missions to destroy Israel, particularly Students for Justice in Palestine, the nationwide organization which the Horowitz Freedom Center has been targeting with its Stop the Hate on Campus campaign.

Hate Spaces is executive-produced, directed and written by Ralph Avi Goldwasser, who 12 years ago helped create the documentary Columbia Unbecoming, in which students and graduates of Columbia University describe being intimidated by professors for expressing pro-Israel views. “Since then, it’s only gotten worse,” Goldwasser told Peyser.

As an example, Peyser reported that the Million Student March last year at Manhattan’s Hunter College, part of the City University of New York, devolved from a rally for students demanding free tuition and lodging other grievances into a frenzy of Jew-hatred. “Death to Jews! Death to Jews!” the crowd chanted. Hunter’s president and student leaders released a tepid statement a day after the rally condemning the anti-Semitic comments. Too little, too late.

Other examples: a screening of a pro-Israel documentary last year at UC Irvine drew protesters who blocked the exits and chanted, “Long live the intifada!” A pro-Palestinian group slipped mock “eviction notices” under the dorm room doors of students perceived to be Jewish at New York University in 2014 and at least a dozen other campuses since then.

Near the film’s end, noted attorney Alan Dershowitz says, “We have to do more, we have to fight harder . . . because the facts are on our side, morality is on our side, history is on our side.”

Read more and order your copy of Hate Spaces here.

San Diego: Ground Zero for Islamic Indoctrination in American Public Schools

San Diego Unified School District trustees have approved a plan to fight Islamophobia and bullying against Muslim students. Concerns about discrimination against Muslims have been expressed on many campuses this year, including at UCSD in the above photo. http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/education/sd-me-islam-unified-20170405-story.html

American Thinker, By Janet Levy, May 5, 2017:

With a decade-long history of yielding to Islamic demands and recent, more alarming submissions, San Diego city schools appear to be ground zero for Islamic indoctrination within American public schools.  The current capitulation includes an Islam-centric curriculum with input and resources from a Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated organization, which raises First Amendment issues as well as serious concerns of favoritism toward Muslims students over students of other faiths.

The San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) history of accommodation to the demands of Muslim students began in 2007.  That year, Carver Elementary School in East San Diego ignited controversy when 100 Somali Muslim students transferred from a closed charter school.  To accommodate these new students, the school rescheduled its recess periods to allow a 15-minute break each afternoon for Muslim prayer.  The school also added Arabic to its curriculum and removed pork and other non-halal food from the cafeteria.  The outcry forced the school to rescind the break, but it simply shifted the lunch hour to accommodate Muslim prayer.  SDUSD wasn’t as accommodating to a Christian student in 1993 and was successfully sued when it denied a high school student’s request for a lunchtime Bible study group.

This past week, SDUSD, in collaboration with the Council on American Islam Relations (CAIR), instituted an anti-bullying campaign aimed specifically at protecting Muslims students.  In launching the initiative, SDUSD cited an unsubstantiated study by CAIR claiming that 55% of American Muslim students surveyed in California said they were bullied because of their religion.  The new program will include adding lessons on Islam to the social studies curriculum that emphasize prominent Muslims in history, creating Muslim-only “safe spaces,” adding Muslim holidays to the school calendar, and providing support and resources for Muslim students during Ramadan.

According to Stan Anjan, SDUSD’s executive director of family and community engagement, the new program will focus on promoting a positive image of Islam.  Special disciplinary measures will also be created for the so-called bullying of Muslims cited by CAIR.  Instead of detention, the school plans a “restorative justice” program in which students dialogue with each other about perceived bullying words or actions.  Educational materials on Islam and resource listings will be provided to parents and school personnel as well.

CAIR, “a radical fundamentalist front group for Hamas,” according to terrorism expert Steve Emerson, was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in a Hamas terror-funding case brought by the Justice Department in 2007.  CAIR operatives have repeatedly refused to denounce terrorist groups Hamas and Hezb’allah, and several CAIR executives have been successfully prosecuted and incarcerated for terrorist activities.  CAIR was designated as a terrorist group by the UAE in 2014.

In 2015, Kevin Beiser and Michael McQuary, two members of the SDUSD Board of Education, issued a formal proclamation in support and recognition of CAIR San Diego, citing ten years of “constructive civic engagement” in San Diego and Imperial Counties.  They praised the organization’s work to “promote not only religious and cultural tolerance and understanding but also justice and equality for all who live in the United States.”

CAIR director Hanif Mohebi was specifically complimented for his commitment to “promoting equitable educational opportunity for all students and preparing them to succeed in a culturally diverse society.”  The trustees recognized a community partnership with CAIR in mediating school situations involving “discrimination and other behavioral issue[s]” and announced CAIR’s upcoming tenth anniversary banquet, centered on the theme “Strengthening Our Voices, Advancing Together.”

CAIR, billing itself as a benign Muslim civil rights organization, has long been at the forefront in pressuring schools and businesses to accommodate the special needs of Muslims.  In 2009, CAIR complained of favoritism when Christian students in Roseville, a Detroit suburb, were given permission slips to attend off-site Bible study classes.  Yet CAIR pushed in 2012 for Dearborn public schools to accommodate Muslim prayer on school grounds and early Friday dismissals for Jumu’ah prayers.  The organization has pressured schools to have a say on textbook selection and to feature its own lecturers for school assemblies.  When a public school teacher in Concrete, Washington referenced the Taliban and Hamas while citing examples of the use of violence to bully people, CAIR cried “racism” and called for a federal investigation, saying the teacher had veered off topic to make anti-Muslim statements.  The school district responded that the teacher’s comments were taken out of context.

Mohebi, the head of CAIR San Diego, has been pushing the “anti-Islamophobia” program.  He recently tried to prevent the San Diego Police Department from attending a training session on Islamic terrorism featuring Ryan Mauro, national security analyst for the Clarion Project, a nonprofit dedicated to exposing the dangers of Islamic extremism.  Mohebi said officers would be learning “conspiracy theories” from Mauro.  Further, Mohebi importuned that no taxpayer dollars should pay for the training and that the SDPD should not confer continuing education credits for attendance.  In a further attempt to control police training on Islam, Mohebi requested the ability to monitor police training to vouch for its accuracy and to provide clarifications throughout the session.

CAIR’s recent activity and its incursion into the San Diego schools’ curriculum has been criticized by Charles LiMandri, president and chief counsel of the Freedom of Conscience Defense Fund (FCDF).  LiMandri said the San Diego program represents a “wholesale realignment of school curricula and the students’ learning environment to the recommendations of a religious organization whose stated mission is to “enhance the understanding of Islam” and “empower American Muslims.”

The FCDF maintains that the First Amendment prohibits a government agency from attempting to effect a secular goal by the propagation of religious concepts.  LiMandri points out the litigious pitfalls of a curriculum which could easily be construed as a governmental endorsement of a religion.  He also cautions that CAIR’s interpretation of the term “bullying” could extend to the stifling of criticism of Islam, further impinging on First Amendment protections.

Citizens for Quality Education San Diego, a non-partisan group of citizens concerned about public education, voiced their opposition to the new Islamic-friendly curriculum and characterized it as an attempt to implement at local schools “anti-American sharia law,” incompatible with the U.S. Constitution.  The group criticized the blatant singling out of the Muslim religion for special accommodations and demanded that the policy be rescinded.  Despite widespread community outcry, the district seems to be moving ahead.

If allowed to stand, the SDUSD anti-bullying program – geared specifically to the CAIR-identified needs of Muslim students – could mark a dangerous departure from treasured constitutional principles and First Amendment protections.  This case warrants serious attention, as it has grave implications for the direction of education and the supremacy of Islam in the nation.

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Video: Pamela Geller Discussing Islamization of San Diego Schools on One America News

By Pamela Geller, April 24, 2017:

I appeared on One America News network’s The Daily Ledger to discuss the islamization and madrassing of the San Diego public schools.

The islamization of public schools has been proceeding for many years.

Jewish students are the most bullied, but there are no safe places or Judaism lessons in public school. Or for Christians, Hindus, Buddhists, etc. This is part of the escalation of the islamization of the workplace.

It is telling that the public school district is working with a designated terrorist group, CAIR.

This is nothing short short of surrender to an brutal, invading ideology.

Textbook companies have their material on Islam vetted by Islamic groups that turn them into dawah presentations, proselytizing for Islam.

Innumerable textbooks and other material used in public schools today presents a rosy and whitewashed picture of Islam, while being harshly critical of Judaism and Christianity.

Our children are being taught to despise and be ashamed of their own heritage and culture, and to think that any negative word about Islam, even in connection with jihad terror attacks, is racist and Islamophobic. This is a recipe for surrender and subjugation.

Also see:

CAN demands Dept. of Education remove Islamic indoctrination program

Pro-Islam Lessons Found in All Grades in Public Schools

The taxpayer-supported Department of Education (DOE) is funding an Islamic indoctrination program in America’s public schools in grades 5 through 12, Christian Action Network has learned.

Students are taught to learn Islamic scripture, give the meaning of that Islamic verse, and explain how they can use it in their daily lives.

“How can this be anything other than indoctrination?” said Martin Mawyer, president and founder of Christian Action Network (CAN).

The DOE offers no similar lesson plans for Christianity, Mawyer added. “There is absolutely no balance in the curricula offered. Only Islam is given a full course of study.”

“Access Islam,” from the PBS web site, funded by the U.S. Department of Education.


The Islamic education program, funded by the DOE, is primarily disseminated through PBS LearningMedia and the Educational Broadcasting Corporation.

The U.S. Department of Education’s funding of an Islamic indoctrination curricula is the topic of a new video produced by Christian Action Network.

The curriculum is called “Access Islam” and includes such lessons as:

  • The Five Pillars of Islam, in which students in grades 5 through 12 explore and understand the basic beliefs of Islam, as well as “the Five Pillars that guide Muslims in their daily life … students will create posters about the Five Pillars for classroom display.” Students also learn the proclamation of Islamic faith — which is akin to learning the Christian “prayer of salvation.” (More information here)
  • Salat: Prayer in Muslim Life, in which students in grades 5 through 12 learn “the importance of the Quran in daily worship.” The students are asked, “What do you see and hear when Muslims pray? How do the words sound? What is the purpose of praying five times a day?” (More information here)
  • Quran: Sacred Scripture of Islam, in which students in grades four to six are taught that the Quran “is considered the word of Allah.” Students must review quotes from the Quran and Hadith.  They must then to present one of the Islamic quotes to the teacher and “describe the passages practical application…” (More information here)

“Can anyone imagine The Lord’s Prayer recited in a classroom?” asked Mawyer. “Or students taught that the Bible is the inspired, infallible final Word of God? Or displaying the Christian cross in the school classroom? Or lesson plans that encourage students to pray to Jesus Christ? It’s out of the question! Christ, the Bible, the cross and Christian prayer were thrown out our public schools decades ago.

In one DOE funded video, students are introduced to a man who has converted from Christianity to Islam.  The Muslim man tells students that Islam “is the true worship of God.” The man then instructs children to “submit yourself” to Allah.

Mawyer said he was so shocked when he learned that the Islamic curriculum was funded by the DOE that his organization fired off a legal “Letter of Demand” to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos demanding that the Islamic program be defunded and removed from access to the public schools of America.

In the Five Pillars of Islam lesson plan, students are told to “focus on learning about the core duties of Muslims” and to “read about what it means to proclaim faith or belief as a Muslim.”

“As I scanned through the information online, it became obvious to me that the material is much more like a Sunday School lesson plan than a proper educational lesson on Islam,” said Mawyer. “These lessons are teaching our children and grandchildren how to be, act and live like Muslims. It’s outrageous! And every Christian and Jewish parent in America should be appalled at how our children are being indoctrinated into the Islamic belief system and lifestyle.”

Students are taught in detail how to pray like a Muslim in the lesson plan “Salat: Prayer in Muslim Life.”  The lesson plan includes prayers that can be recited by students, descriptions of how and when to pray, and refers students to the web site “islamicity.com” to get more information about Islamic prayer times around the world.

In this same study students are told to memorize the following prayer from Quran 96:1-5:

“In the name of thy lord who created man from a clot. And thy lord is the most generous who taught by the pen, taught man that which he knew not.”

Mawyer noted that students are NOT taught that Jesus is Lord, but they DO learn that Allah is God.

“I am calling on all Americans to demand the Department of Education dump this program,” said Mawyer. “This is an outrageous abuse of our taxpayer dollars, and an affront to the rights of parents to teach their children the religion of their choice.”

As well as the DOE video, CAN has also released a video that takes a broader look at Islam in the Schools. It can be viewed here.

Download Christian Action Network’s letter of demand to the Department of Education here.

Preview for CAN’s latest film “Islam In The Schools A Quick Look”. To order the full version and learn more about this topic visit us at www.ChristianAction.org

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Advocate: Dept. of Education Funding Materials About Islamic Faith

Also see:

Georgetown University and Radical Islamists: It’s a Family Affair

IPT News
March 28, 2017

Georgetown University’s Qatar campus is set to host Sami Al-Arian for a lecture tonight in Doha. According to a news release from the school’s Middle Eastern Studies Student Association, Al-Arian is a “civil rights activist” who hopes to challenge students to “make it a better, and more equitable and peaceful world.”

Those are charitable descriptions for Al-Arian, a documented member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s Majlis Shura, or board of directors. According to the Islamic Jihad’s bylaws, which law enforcement agents found during searches of Al-Arian’s home and offices, there can be “No Peace without Islam.” The group’s objective is to create “a state of terror, instability and panic in the souls of Zionists and especially the groups of settlers, and force them to leave their houses.”

It’s an agenda Al-Arian took to heart. Following a double suicide bombing in 1995 that killed 19 Israelis, Al-Arian solicited money from a Kuwaiti legislator. “The latest operation, carried out by the two mujahideen who were martyred for the sake of God, is the best guide and witness to what they believing few can do in the face of Arab and Islamic collapse at the heels of the Zionist enemy…” he wrote.

“I call upon you to try to extend true support of the jihad effort in Palestine so that operations such as these can continue, so that the people do not lose faith in Islam and its representatives…” he wrote. Four years earlier, he spoke at a fundraiser in Cleveland, introduced as the head of the “active arm of the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine.”

Why, then, is a Jesuit university, albeit at a campus in Qatar, hosting a leader of a designated terrorist group’s “active arm”?

There’s a family bond between Georgetown University and the Al-Arians. Son Abdullah is an assistant professor at Georgetown’s Qatar campus, teaching history in its School of Foreign Service. He earned his Ph.D. at Georgetown, writing his dissertation about the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood during the 1970s, a time his father acknowledges being part of the global Islamist movement.

Jonathan Brown, Al-Arian’s son-in-law, also works at Georgetown, as the [Saudi] Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Chair of Islamic Civilization. Brown recently drew criticism for a lecture in which he argued that slavery isn’t inherently “morally evil” if the slave is treated well. He also minimized sexual consent as a recent social more, arguing no one is really free enough to grant consent anyway.

Property records show Brown and his wife Laila Al-Arian bought a modest house just outside Tampa in 2015. Brown also owns a $1.1 million house in Mclean, Va.

Brown’s boss, Georgetown University Professor John Esposito, has been a staunch Al-Arian defender. Al-Arian is “an extraordinarily bright, articulate scholar and intellectual-activist, a man of conscience with a strong commitment to peace and social justice,” Esposito wrote in a letter to a federal judge.

Brown’s slavery and sexual consent lecture was hosted by the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT) in Herndon, Va. The IIIT was a prime financial supporter of a think tank Al-Arian founded in Tampa called the World and Islam Studies Enterprise (WISE). It provided cover for at least three other members of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s Shura Council, including his brother-in-law Mazen Al-Najjar, an academic named Basheer Nafi and Ramadan Abdullah Shallah – the Islamic Jihad’s secretary general since late 1995.

Federal prosecutors wanted Al-Arian to tell a grand jury what he knew about the IIIT’s financial support for terrorists. He refused. Al-Arian was charged with criminal contempt after maintaining that stance even after a judge granted him immunity for his truthful testimony.

The case never went to trial. Al-Arian was deported to Turkey in 2015, pursuant to terms in his 2006 guilty plea connected to his Palestinian Islamic Jihad support. He now works as “director of the Center for Regional Politics at Istanbul Sabahattin Zaim University,” the Georgetown Middle East students group’s news release said.

Al-Arian is a computer scientist.

Sabahattin Zaim opened in 2010 and claims to have about 1,100 undergraduate students.

While the Georgetown University program is organized by a student group, promotional material lists Mehran Kamrava as moderator. Kamrava directs the Georgetown School of Foreign Service’s Center for International and Regional Studies.

His presence adds the university’s imprimatur to the Al-Arian event. In addition, the School of Foreign Service posted the news release promoting Al-Arian’s lecture.

Qatar has supported Hamas, the Islamic Jihad’s rival Palestinian terrorist group, providing money and refuge for Hamas leaders. In that light, Al-Arian’s invitation doesn’t seem out of place. But it is still an event hosted by a Georgetown University campus, moderated by one of its prominent faculty.

While Al-Arian has tried to deny his Islamic Jihad activities, or at least minimize them, his work to advance the group’s bloody ambitions is undeniable. He self-identified as the Shura Council’s secretary. In his plea agreement, he admits lying about Shallah’s prominent role in the Islamic Jihad.

During his 1991 remarks in Cleveland after his “active arm” introduction, Al-Arian urged donations for jihad. “Your brothers in Palestine are struggling with their beings,” he said, “so let us struggle here with our money.”

“This is the way of giving,” he said earlier. “This is the way of struggle. This is the way of battle. This is the way of jihad. This is the way of martyrdom. Thus is the way of blood, because this is the path to heaven.”

The student association’s news release failed to mention this background as a convicted felon, describing the former University of South Florida professor as a “civil rights advocate.” It fails to mention Al-Arian’s guilty plea, and whitewashes his resulting deportation to Turkey by saying “Al-Arian relocated.”

The federal judge who saw all the evidence against Al-Arian, who watched him lie about his true identity and violent ambitions, called him a “master manipulator.” Old habits die hard, apparently. The question in this case is whether Georgetown and its student groups are being duped or are witting accomplices in whitewashing a terrorist into a “human rights advocate.”