A Last, Desperate Plea to Excuse Hamas Support

hamas-pleaIPT NewsJanuary 12, 2017:

As President Obama’s tenure reaches its final days, Islamists in the United States are waging a furious lobbying campaign aimed at securing the freedom of five men convicted of illegally routing millions of dollars to Hamas.

An open campaign urges the president to pardon five former officials from the defunct, Texas-based Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), casting them as victims of “anti-Muslim hysteria” triggered by the 9/11 attacks. In 2008, a jury convicted the five – Shukri Abu Baker, Ghassan Elashi, Mohammed El-Mezain, Abdulrahman Odeh and Mufid Abdulqader – of using a network of Palestinian charities controlled by Hamas to funneling money to the terrorist group.

It is not clear whether the requests to pardon the five, or to commute their sentences and release them from prison, is being considered seriously. Obama’s pardons thus far involved somewhat less serious crimes including fraud, embezzlement and non-violent drug offenses.

But advocates are pushing social media campaigns and online petitions aimed at securing a pardon, or, short of that, a commutation of the five men’s sentences to set them free. The campaign also has enlisted support from at least one member of Congress.

Left unspoken is an undeniable truth behind the pardon/commutation campaign, and behind any ongoing defense of the Holy Land Foundation: Advocates do not believe Hamas support is wrong.

The Muslim Legal Fund of America (MLFA) is leading the charge, supported by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and pro-Palestinian groups.

CAIR’s appeal provided a White House switchboard number for supporters to call and request commutations. Some sites even include contact information for key members of Congress, urging supporters to emphasize the “cruelly disproportionate” length of sentences – from a low of 15 years for El-Mezain, to 65-year terms for Baker and Elashi.

CAIR’s Arizona director Imraan Siddiqi described the prosecution as “a political lynching of charity workers … Its effects still haunt American Muslims.”

After reviewing the entire record in 2011, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals saw it quite differently.

Pleas from the MLFA and Siddiqi ignore the exhibits – many of them internal HLF and related documents – showing the family ties between some defendants and Hamas leaders, a reliance on Hamas officials to speak at HLF fundraisers along with other, consistent pro-Hamas messages.

In addition, records show, HLF (formerly known as the Occupied Land Fund) was part of a network called the “Palestine Committee” in the United States. That committee answered to the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s mandate that global chapters create “Palestine Committees” in their home countries. Their task was “to support Hamas from abroad,” the Fifth Circuit noted in upholding the convictions and sentences. In the United States, that task fell in part to Hamas political leader Mousa Abu Marzook, who helped create HLF and two other branches – a propaganda wing known as the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) and a think-tank called the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR).

CAIR was added to the Palestine Committee after its 1994 founding.

“The evidence showed that the long-standing connection between HLF and Hamas began in the late 1980s when HLF arose as a fundraising arm for the Palestine Committee …” the appeals court ruling said. “This fact was notably evident from the … [internal Palestine Committee] documents, which showed that HLF was created along with the IAP.” In addition, Palestine Committee bylaws “specifically recognized HLF as ‘the official organization for fundraising.'”

HLF apologists claim the group was merely interested in helping needy widows and orphans. But, the court pointed out, the orphans included Yehia Ayyash’s children. Ayyash was Hamas’s top bomb maker, nicknamed “The Engineer,” before being killed by Israel.

“An audio tape from 1996 that was seized from HLF’s offices contained songs praising Hamas and discussions of suicide bombers as heroes,” the ruling said.

“We believe that a jury could not help but infer from the above evidence that the defendants had a close association with Hamas and that HLF acted to fund Hamas both before and after Hamas’s designation as a terrorist organization.”

Still, CAIR’s Texas chapter called the five convicted HLF officials “humanitarians,” and described their imprisonment as “an immense wrong.” It cited defense attorney Nancy Hollander’s claim that there was no evidence showing her client, HLF executive director Shukri Abu Baker, breaking the law. “Not a word from his lips that he hated Jews. Not a word from his lips that he supported Hamas. These were fictions,” Hollander said.

1933That cannot be said for Mufid Abdulqader, who performed and acted in a singing troupe that helped raise money for HLF at IAP events. In this video, admitted into evidence during the 2008 trial, he is shown wearing camouflage and a kaffiyeh as he sings, “I am Hamas, O dear ones … I swear to wipe out the name of the Zionist. And protect my land, Palestine.” Then, he pretends to strangle an actor portraying an Israeli.

Hollander failed to mention that Baker ran HLF and was responsible for who spoke and what was said at its fundraisers. Those events routinely featured Hamas leaders and activists. She also neglected to mention her client’s participation in a secret 1993 Philadelphia gathering of Hamas members and supporters who schemed about how to “derail” the U.S.-brokered Oslo peace accord without coming off looking like terror supporters.

It was Baker who set a key ground rule for the talks, which were secretly recorded and translated by the FBI: No one should mention Hamas by name, he instructed. Instead, call it “Sister Samah,” which is Hamas spelled backward.

The gathering, Baker said, was “a joint workshop between the Holy Land Foundation and the IAP.” Participants should not mention Hamas by name.

Hollander then compared the HLF case – brought against a handful of men with documented and recorded connections to Hamas – to the mass internment of 117,000 Japanese American men, women and children during World War II.

The current campaign would settle for a sentencing commutation, essentially freeing the men on time served. The sentences, from 15 to 65 years in prison, were overly harsh, advocates say.

But the Fifth Circuit had considered this, too, rejecting defense department arguments. Its ruling noted that the probation office’s presentence recommendations included significant terrorism enhancements because HLF gave money to Hamas “in order to rid Palestine of the Jewish people through violent jihad, HAMAS’ mission.”

It added that “the trial was replete with evidence to satisfy application of the terrorism enhancement because of the defendants’ intent to support Hamas. The Hamas charter clearly delineated the goal of meeting the Palestinian/Israeli conflict with violent jihad and the rejection of peace efforts and compromise solutions. The defendants knew that they were supporting Hamas, as there was voluminous evidence showing their close ties to the Hamas movement.”

Those claiming the HLF defendants suffered an injustice, or that they somehow deserve relief, lie about this record or pretend it does not exist. To acknowledge reality is to shatter their own argument, or to come clean about their true feelings about Hamas terrorism. They know that’s a losing hand. It’s something Shukri Abu Baker talked about in that 1993 Philadelphia meeting.

They need to mislead people if they are going to be successful, Baker said.

“War is deception,” he said. “Deceive, camouflage, pretend that you’re leaving while you’re walking that way … Deceive your enemy.”

Huffington Post Claims Key Evidence Against MB “Discredited.” A Federal Court Said Otherwise.

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One piece of evidence presented by Justice Department prosecutors to the court went uncontested by the defense. There’s plenty more to back it up.

CounterJihad, by Paul Sperry, January 20, 2017:

The Huffington Post is not known for rigorous research and reporting, but its standards hit a new low last week when it tried to discredit an internal Muslim Brotherhood document calling for “a grand jihad” against the U.S. in an attempt to derail proposed legislation designating the group as a terrorist organization.

In a lengthy Jan. 13 article, “Ted Cruz vs. The Muslim Brotherhood Boogeyman,” HuffPo falsely claimed the Brotherhood document — “An Explanatory Memorandum: On the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America” — has been “discredited.” In fact, the memo was entered as prosecutorial evidence in federal court in the largest terrorist-financing case in US history, and the defense did not contest it.

The 18-page document is one of several pieces of evidence underpinning a bill reintroduced last week by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, requiring the State Department to consider designating the Muslim Brotherhood, along with its front groups, as a “foreign terrorist organization.” The “Muslim Brotherhood Terrorist Designation Act” has several prominent co-sponsors in the Senate, while a companion bill has attracted 71 co-sponsors in the House, including two Democrats.

Several years ago, the U.S. Justice Department submitted the Brotherhood memo as a key piece of evidence — “Exhibit 3-85” — in its successful prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation, a charitable front group established by the Muslim Brotherhood to support Hamas terrorists, and its authenticity has never been in dispute. In fact, even lawyers for the defendants agreed the document was legitimate. .

In that 2008 terrorism case, which ended with guilty verdicts on all 108 counts, the government proved that the US-based Muslim charity was helping the Muslim Brotherhood funnel more than $12 million to Hamas, the Palestinian branch of the Brotherhood. The Holy Land Foundation verdict has survived two court appeals.

The HuffPo article, authored by national reporter Christopher Mathias (christopher.mathias@huffingtonpost.com), studiously avoids mentioning the Holy Land Foundation case while questioning the merits of the memo.

This is an egregious and inexplicable oversight. Using the “Explanatory Memorandum” along with other of the Brotherhood’s own internal records, federal prosecutors further demonstrated that the Egypt-based Brotherhood operates a secret network of front groups inside America that are conspiring to carry out “a grand jihad to eliminate and destroy Western civilization from within.” In addition to the Holy Land Foundation, the memo lists more than two dozen American Muslim groups the Brotherhood uses as cut-outs to infiltrate and “sabotage” the US government with the long-range goal of turning it into an Islamic state.

The Justice Department, in turn, listed these and other US-based Brotherhood front groups as unindicted co-conspirators in what was revealed to be a massive criminal scheme to provide material support to Hamas terrorists. Chief among them are the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT).

While HuffPo would have the public believe these groups are “peaceful,” the government has fingered them as dangerous agents in a subversive plot to Islamize the United States. Introduced in federal court as Exhibit 3-85, the government stated that the “Explanatory Memo” “described the Brotherhood’s strategic goal as a kind of ‘grand jihad’ ” against America.

Damning as it is, the ”memo,” dated May 22, 1991, is just the tip of the iceberg of evidence showing the Brotherhood runs a conspiracy network to take down the US system of government. It was seized by FBI agents along with some 75 boxes of Muslim Brotherhood archival material during a 2004 raid of the Annandale, Va., home of a suspected Hamas terrorist and Muslim Brotherhood figure, Ismail Elbarasse, aka Abdul Hassan, aka Abd el Hassan.

Yet HuffPo claims such hard, government-certified evidence amounts to an “anti-Muslim conspiracy theory.”

It even tried to suggest the “Explanatory Memo” does not carry much authoritative weight because its author “does not appear to have been a significant player in the Muslim Brotherhood.” In fact, the government described the author, Mohamed Akram Adlouni, as a “US-Muslim Brotherhood Shura Council member,” which means he was part of the governing body of the Brotherhood’s secret North American network. The memo, moreover, “was approved by the Shura Council.”

More astounding, HuffPo turned to a group cited in Brotherhood documents as a member organization — the Council on American-Islamic Relations — to help pooh-pooh the government’s assertion that such outwardly moderate Muslim groups in the US are secretly hellbent on committing “civilization jihad” on behalf of the Brotherhood, as if CAIR were a credible and objective source on the subject.

It quoted CAIR denying any links to the Muslim Brotherhood, even though the Justice Department identified CAIR and its founder Omar Ahmad as “individuals/entities who are and/or were members of the US Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestine Committee and/or its organizations,” while designating both of them as unindicted co-conspirators” in the Holy Land Foundation case.

Ahmad attended a 1993 meeting at a Philadelphia hotel, secretly recorded by the FBI, “where leaders of the organizations under the Muslim Brotherhood umbrella met to discuss the future of the Brotherhood” and to devise a plan to support and collect money for Hamas, a designated terrorist group, according to federal court documents. Ahmad was joined at the secret meeting by current CAIR executive director Nihad Awad.

CAIR has also been implicated in a separate terrorism case in Virginia, “US v. Sabri Benkahla,” in which the government concluded that the group was founded by the Muslim Brotherhood.

“From its founding by Muslim Brotherhood leaders,” wrote Assistant U.S. Attorney Gordon D. Kromberg in the 2007 terrorism case involving CAIR, “CAIR conspired with other affiliates of the Muslim Brotherhood to support terrorists.”

Washington-based CAIR is lobbying hard against the proposed Brotherhood ban because it could spell its own doom, along with other Brotherhood front groups.

Still, HuffPo insists Cruz in his bill erroneously “named CAIR and two other groups — ISNA and the North American Islamic Trust — as ‘affiliates’ of the Muslim Brotherhood.”

The article goes on to claim “there’s ‘no evidence’ that American Muslim groups are fronts for the Brotherhood.”

In fact, the evidence is overwhelming, if only the HuffPo’s reporter bothered to look.

For example, “The following are individuals/entities who are and/or were members of the US Muslim Brotherhood: Islamic Society of North America, aka ISNA, [and] North American Islamic Trust, aka NAIT,” according to the Justice Department’s unindicted co-conspirators list.

An internal Brotherhood document, titled “Preliminary vision for preparing future leadership” and entered into evidence as Government Exhibit 3-64, further ties ISNA to the Muslim Brotherhood by listing it as an “apparatus” of the Brotherhood.

“The evidence introduced at trial established that ISNA and NAIT were among those organizations created by the US-Muslim Brotherhood,” argued former US Attorney James T. Jacks in a 2008 court filing. The lead prosecutor in the Holy Land Foundation, Jacks was awarded a special commendation by Attorney General Eric Holder.

As U.S. District Court Judge Jorge Solis ruled in 2009, the “government has produced ample evidence to establish the associations of CAIR, ISNA and NAIT with Hamas” and the Muslim Brotherhood. Specifically, Solis cited the “Explanatory Memo” and other documents federal agents recovered from a sub-basement in Brotherhood leader Ismail Elbarasse’s home just outside Washington DC.

The judge added that the government proved “by a preponderance of evidence that a conspiracy existed” between these American Muslim organizations and the Muslim Brotherhood.

The shocking truth is, the largest and most important Islamic groups in America are part of a Brotherhood conspiracy to support jihad and subvert the American system of government, asserts former Pentagon official and retired Army Major Stephen Coughlin, author of “Catastrophic Failure: Blindfolding America in the Face of Jihad.”

“The Brotherhood’s goal in the United States is jihad,” he said — or more specifically, a “civilization jihad” achieved “through a process of infiltration and subversion” with the ultimate goal of replacing the US Constitution with Shariah law.

The government agrees.

“The Muslim Brotherhood, also known as the Ikhwan Al Muslimin, was founded in Egypt. Its ultimate goal is the creation of a global Islamic State governed by Sharia law,” former prosecutor Jacks asserted in a 2008 court filing.

“Muslim Brotherhood members first migrated to the United States in the 1960s, where they began their grassroots work on campuses through an organization called the Muslim Students Association,” he added, before spinning off ISNA and NAIT. “By the mid-1980s, the US-Muslim Brotherhood had grown exponentially, established numerous front organizations, developed a solid hierarchical structure, and received direction from the International Muslim Brotherhood’s General Guide.”

“Hamas was established in 1987 as an outgrowth of the Muslim Brotherhood,” Jacks continued, further outlining the conspiracy. “In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the US-Muslim Brotherhood was controlled by Palestinian Muslim Brotherhood members,” including CAIR’s founders.

Most law enforcement officials, as well as even some Middle Eastern governments, do not view the Brotherhood as the benign or moderate organization portrayed in the American media.

Over the past few years, a handful of Arab nations have officially designated the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization. Since 9/11, several known US-Muslim Brotherhood leaders — including Sami al-Arian and Abdurahman Alamoudi — have been convicted of terrorist activities.

Because Nothing Says ‘I CAIR’ Like a Pardon

cair-pleaNational Review, by Andrew C. McCarthy, January 18, 2017:

Thinking about what else could happen in the next 48 hours?

The Investigative Project on Terrorism reports that CAIR (the Council on America-Islamic Relations) is leading a furious lobbying campaign by Islamists in the U.S. to persuade President Obama to free the five Hamas operatives convicted in the Holy Land Foundation case.

Isn’t that rich?

The HLF prosecution is the most significant terrorism financing case the Justice Department has ever done. Hamas, a designated terrorist organization under federal law, is the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. In the HLF case, the government proved not only that leading Islamist organizations in America were helping the Brotherhood transmit millions of dollars overseas to Hamas; prosecutors further demonstrated – using the Brotherhood’s own internal memoranda – that the Brotherhood saw its mission in the United States as “a grand jihad to eliminate and destroy Western civilization from within.”

In this grand jihad, the Brotherhood was in cahoots with these leading Islamist organizations, many of which had roots in the Brotherhood. One of these was … CAIR.

Indeed, Hamas and Brotherhood activists created CAIR in 1993-94 because they realized they needed an organization with legal know-how and media polish to advance the Islamist agenda. Having studied the United States (in a way that we resist studying radical Islam), they also realized that if they labeled their new creation a Muslim “civil rights” organization, the media would play along – CAIR would be lauded as a social justice warrior rather than revealed as a jihadist mouthpiece.

So CAIR was shown to be an unindicted co-conspirator in the HLF case. After the convictions of the five HLF officials in 2008, however, the incoming Obama administration opted against prosecuting CAIR and the other Islamist organizations that had assisted the conspiracy to provide material support to a terrorist organization. In fact, early in his administration, Obama proclaimed his commitment “to working with American Muslims to ensure that they can fulfill zakat.”

As I explained at the time, zakat is often misleadingly translated as “charitable giving” by commentators and government officials. Actually, it is the fortification of the ummah (the notional worldwide Muslim community). Under classic sharia, zakat may only be contributed to Muslims. There are eight categories of permissible zakat recipients; one is Muslims who are fighting in jihad operations. (See the ancient sharia manual Reliance of the Traveller, sec. h8.17: “Zakat: The seventh category is those fighting for Allah, meaning people engaged in Islamic military operations for whom no salary has been allotted in the army roster[.]”)

I assume the president was simply uninformed about Islamic law – although this is Obama we’re talking about, so maybe it’s that he figures he knows more about how it should be construed than anyone on earth, including those who’ve spent their lives immersed in it. But Islamists would interpret his stated commitment to “ensure that they can fulfill zakat” as ensuring that they could do what the HLF defendants were convicted of doing: providing material support to terrorists. To Islamists, the five HLF convicts have been stuck serving between 15- and 65-year prison sentences for something they believe Obama has said should not be a crime in the first place.

Following the HLF convictions, it was reported that the Obama Justice Department had blocked prosecutions against a top CAIR official and leaders of other Brotherhood-tied organizations.

And now CAIR is pushing for the HLF defendants to be released from their very lengthy sentences. The Islamists’ narrative, as the Investigative Project explains, is that these Hamas operatives are really victims of, yes, “anti-Muslim hysteria.”

It’s a shrewd campaign. The Obama administration has been wholesale onboard the anti-anti-jihad bandwagon since day-one, and it often spouts the anti-Muslim hysteria party line. The administration has championed the Muslim Brotherhood; worked with Islamist governments to restrict American free speech rights (regarding criticism of Islam); armed and trained militias in Libya and Syria that were threaded with jihadists; and colluded with the Islamist government of Turkey’s Recep Tayyip Erdogan – a Muslim Brotherhood backer who is among the world’s leading supporters of Hamas. As illustrated by the administration’s shameful orchestration last month of an anti-Israel resolution at the U.N. Security Council, Obama is sympathetic to the hard left’s view that Palestinian terrorists are not really terrorists – they are members of “political organizations” whose regrettable brutality is best understood as “resistance” to “occupation.”

If he were to release the Hamas convicts from the HLF case, Obama would (again) be a hero to both Islamists and leftists. He would simultaneously enrage national-security conservatives in the United States and the Israeli government.

In other words, he’d be doing what he’s done for eight years.

Also see:

A Last, Desperate Plea to Excuse Hamas Support

cair-plea

IPT News
January 12, 2017

As President Obama’s tenure reaches its final days, Islamists in the United States are waging a furious lobbying campaign aimed at securing the freedom of five men convicted of illegally routing millions of dollars to Hamas.

An open campaign urges the president to pardon five former officials from the defunct, Texas-based Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), casting them as victims of “anti-Muslim hysteria” triggered by the 9/11 attacks. In 2008, a jury convicted the five – Shukri Abu Baker, Ghassan Elashi, Mohammed El-Mezain, Abdulrahman Odeh and Mufid Abdulqader – of using a network of Palestinian charities controlled by Hamas to funneling money to the terrorist group.

It is not clear whether the requests to pardon the five, or to commute their sentences and release them from prison, is being considered seriously. Obama’s pardons thus far involved somewhat less serious crimes including fraud, embezzlement and non-violent drug offenses.

But advocates are pushing social media campaigns and online petitions aimed at securing a pardon, or, short of that, a commutation of the five men’s sentences to set them free. The campaign also has enlisted support from at least one member of Congress.

Left unspoken is an undeniable truth behind the pardon/commutation campaign, and behind any ongoing defense of the Holy Land Foundation: Advocates do not believe Hamas support is wrong.

The Muslim Legal Fund of America (MLFA) is leading the charge, supported by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and pro-Palestinian groups.

CAIR’s appeal provided a White House switchboard number for supporters to call and request commutations. Some sites even include contact information for key members of Congress, urging supporters to emphasize the “cruelly disproportionate” length of sentences – from a low of 15 years for El-Mezain, to 65-year terms for Baker and Elashi.

CAIR’s Arizona director Imraan Siddiqui described the prosecution as “a political lynching of charity workers … Its effects still haunt American Muslims.”

After reviewing the entire record in 2011, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals saw it quite differently.

Pleas from the MLFA and Siddiqi ignore the exhibits – many of them internal HLF and related documents – showing the family ties between some defendants and Hamas leaders, a reliance on Hamas officials to speak at HLF fundraisers along with other, consistent pro-Hamas messages.

In addition, records show, HLF (formerly known as the Occupied Land Fund) was part of a network called the “Palestine Committee” in the United States. That committee answered to the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s mandate that global chapters create “Palestine Committees” in their home countries. Their task was “to support Hamas from abroad,” the Fifth Circuit noted in upholding the convictions and sentences. In the United States, that task fell in part to Hamas political leader Mousa Abu Marzook, who helped create HLF and two other branches – a propaganda wing known as the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) and a think-tank called the United Association for Studies and Research (UASR).

CAIR was added to the Palestine Committee after its 1994 founding.

“The evidence showed that the long-standing connection between HLF and Hamas began in the late 1980s when HLF arose as a fundraising arm for the Palestine Committee …” the appeals court ruling said. “This fact was notably evident from the … [internal Palestine Committee] documents, which showed that HLF was created along with the IAP.” In addition, Palestine Committee bylaws “specifically recognized HLF as ‘the official organization for fundraising.'”

HLF apologists claim the group was merely interested in helping needy widows and orphans. But, the court pointed out, the orphans included Yehia Ayyash’s children. Ayyash was Hamas’s top bomb maker, nicknamed “The Engineer,” before being killed by Israel.

“An audio tape from 1996 that was seized from HLF’s offices contained songs praising Hamas and discussions of suicide bombers as heroes,” the ruling said.

“We believe that a jury could not help but infer from the above evidence that the defendants had a close association with Hamas and that HLF acted to fund Hamas both before and after Hamas’s designation as a terrorist organization.”

Still, CAIR’s Texas chapter called the five convicted HLF officials “humanitarians,” and described their imprisonment as “an immense wrong.” It cited defense attorney Nancy Hollander’s claim that there was no evidence showing her client, HLF executive director Shukri Abu Baker, breaking the law. “Not a word from his lips that he hated Jews. Not a word from his lips that he supported Hamas. These were fictions,” Hollander said.

That cannot be said for Mufid Abdulqader, who performed and acted in a singing troupe that helped raise money for HLF at IAP events. In this video, admitted into evidence during the 2008 trial, he is shown wearing camouflage and a kaffiyeh as he sings, “I am Hamas, O dear ones … I swear to wipe out the name of the Zionist. And protect my land, Palestine.” Then, he pretends to strangle an actor portraying an Israeli.

Hollander failed to mention that Baker ran HLF and was responsible for who spoke and what was said at its fundraisers. Those events routinely featured Hamas leaders and activists. She also neglected to mention her client’s participation in a secret 1993 Philadelphia gathering of Hamas members and supporters who schemed about how to “derail” the U.S.-brokered Oslo peace accord without coming off looking like terror supporters.

It was Baker who set a key ground rule for the talks, which were secretly recorded and translated by the FBI: No one should mention Hamas by name, he instructed. Instead, call it “Sister Samah,” which is Hamas spelled backward.

The gathering, Baker said, was “a joint workshop between the Holy Land Foundation and the IAP.” Participants should not mention Hamas by name.

Hollander then compared the HLF case – brought against a handful of men with documented and recorded connections to Hamas – to the mass internment of 117,000 Japanese American men, women and children during World War II.

The current campaign would settle for a sentencing commutation, essentially freeing the men on time served. The sentences, from 15 to 65 years in prison, were overly harsh, advocates say.

But the Fifth Circuit had considered this, too, rejecting defense department arguments. Its ruling noted that the probation office’s presentence recommendations included significant terrorism enhancements because HLF gave money to Hamas “in order to rid Palestine of the Jewish people through violent jihad, HAMAS’ mission.”

It added that “the trial was replete with evidence to satisfy application of the terrorism enhancement because of the defendants’ intent to support Hamas. The Hamas charter clearly delineated the goal of meeting the Palestinian/Israeli conflict with violent jihad and the rejection of peace efforts and compromise solutions. The defendants knew that they were supporting Hamas, as there was voluminous evidence showing their close ties to the Hamas movement.”

Those claiming the HLF defendants suffered an injustice, or that they somehow deserve relief, lie about this record or pretend it does not exist. To acknowledge reality is to shatter their own argument, or to come clean about their true feelings about Hamas terrorism. They know that’s a losing hand. It’s something Shukri Abu Baker talked about in that 1993 Philadelphia meeting.

They need to mislead people if they are going to be successful, Baker said.

“War is deception,” he said. “Deceive, camouflage, pretend that you’re leaving while you’re walking that way … Deceive your enemy.”

Throwback Thursday: 2004 – MB Archives Discovered 10 Minutes from Nation’s Capital

Understanding the Threat, by John Guandolo, Sept. 15, 2016:

On August 20, 2004, Ismail Elbarasse and his family were traveling on the Chesapeake Bay Bridge in Maryland.  A law enforcement officer driving on the Bay Bridge at the time drove passed Elbarasse and noticed the middle eastern female passenger filming the support structures of the bridge.  She pulled the camera down quickly when she noticed the police officers vehicle, and resumed filming as he drove by.

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Upon stopping the vehicle and identifying the passengers, the police identified the driver as Elbarasse, who was wanted on a Material Witness Warrant in a Hamas case in Chicago.

The FBI case agent would later write in the search warrant affidavit for Elbarasse’s residence that it was his assessment Elbarasse was filming the bridge in support of a possible Al Qaeda operation to destroy the bridge.

The affidavit states:  “On the basis of the foregoing I have reason to believe that Elbarasse and his wife have been engaged in violations of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2339B in that they were providing material support, to wit reconnaissance and surveillance, to a foreign terrorist organization.”

As it turns out, Elbarasse was a member of the Board of Directors of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood and a senior Hamas official in the United States.  He worked directly with Musa abu Marzook, the leader of the U.S. Palestine Committee, which is Hamas America.  Numerous financial transactions tie Elbarasse to Hamas and monies going to fund Hamas overseas.

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Hamas is an inherent part of the Muslim Brotherhood.

When agents from the FBI’s Washington Field Office raided Elbarasse’s Annandale, Virginia home (10 minutes from the nation’s capital) they uncovered a treasure trove of documents, financial records, photographs, lists of Hamas/Muslim Brotherhood leaders, MB strategic documents, Palestine Committee (Hamas) by-laws and records, audio and video recordings and much more.

Elbarasse fled the country and his whereabouts are not known.

A large amount of the evidence found at the Elbarasse residence was entered as evidence in the US v Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development trial (Dallas, 2008) – the largest terrorism financing and Hamas trial ever successfully prosecuted in American history.

The totality of the evidence in the HLF trial, including the Elbarasse evidence as well as testimony and a large amount of other evidence from this fifteen (15) year FBI investigation, revealed there is a massive Hamas/Muslim Brotherhood network in the United States comprised of the most prominent Islamic organizations here.  The objective of this Movement is to wage Civilization Jihad until the United States is an Islamic State under Sharia.

Sadly, besides the Holy Land Foundation, all of the other organizations identified as Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas organizations from this evidence, like the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), the Muslim Students Association (MSA), and so many others are still in operation.

As a matter of fact they are being defended by our Secretary of Homeland Security, the Attorney General, and the President of the United States.

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DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson speaks at the ISNA Conference with a host of jihadis in September 2016.  ISNA is the largest MB organization in North America which raises money for Hamas, a designated terrorist organization.

BOOK RELEASE: Ikhwan in America: An Oral History of the Muslim Brotherhood in Their Own Words

574097527CENTER RELEASES ACCOUNT BY TOP MUSLIM BROTHER OF HIS ORGANIZATION’S PLANS AND PREPARATIONS FOR JIHAD IN AMERICA

(Washington, D.C.): The Center for Security Policy is proud to announce the second release in its Archival Series, Ikhwan in America: An Oral History of the Muslim Brotherhood in their Own Words.

Like the first volume in this series, The Explanatory Memorandum: From the Archives of the Muslim Brotherhood in America, this new volume provides context for the needed, far deeper understanding of the true nature of the Muslim Brotherhood (known as the Ikhwan in Arabic). It does so by making accessible an original source document – along with an evaluation of its ideological, historical and organizational significance to equip our countrymen and women, and their elected representatives, to make informed decisions about one of the most serious threats facing our country: the Islamic supremacist enemies within.

“Ikhwan in America” was the title given an early 1980s lecture about the Muslim Brotherhood by a man who was at the time one of the organization’s most prominent leaders: the chief masul (“guide”) of its executive office, Zaid Naman (a.k.a. Zeid Noman). The audience were participants in a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood camp in Missouri.

The audio of the lecture was found, translated and transcribed by the FBI. It was discovered in 2004 during a search of the home of another U.S. Muslim Brotherhood leader, Ismail Elbarasse. At the time it was raided, Elbarasse’s property held what amounted to the archives of the Brotherhood in North America..

Many of those documents, including The Explanatory Memorandum, only became available to the public when they were entered into evidence in support of the government’s 2007-2008 case against the Holy Land Foundation (HLF). The HLF was a Muslim Brotherhood front that masqueraded as a charitable organization. In fact, it engaged in, anFirefoxScreenSnapz081d was convicted of, material support for a designated terrorist organization, Hamas.

Among the many pieces of evidence made available by the government in the Holy Land trial, Naman’s lecture carries special significance since it represents a first-hand account, in the words of one of the Brotherhood’s top leaders, of the Ikhwan’s history and stealthy “civilization jihad” in this country.

Naman covers both the organization’s highs and lows here, from the early successes in establishing the Muslim Students Association and Islamic centers throughout the country, to struggles and infighting that finally led to the forging of a more united U.S. Muslim Brotherhood with its counterparts from many other countries.

The Center for Security Policy’s President Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. said upon the publication of Ikhwan in America:

The production of this transcription of Zaid Naman’s authoritative account of the Muslim Brotherhood in our country is especially timely. After all, it coincides with the consideration by the U.S. Congress of legislation calling for the Brotherhood’s designation as a terrorist organization for its role in fomenting jihadist violence.

Naman’s lecture explicitly discusses the Brotherhood’s equipping its members to engage in so called “Special Work,” meaning armed violence, and training its members in the use of firearms for that purpose – statements directly at odds with the Brotherhood professed commitment to nonviolence. It should be required reading for every legislator and other official with the sworn duty to protect our nation and its Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic.

The Center for Security Policy is proud to present this monograph as the latest in its Muslim Brotherhood Archival Series. Ikhwan in America is available for purchase inKindle and paperback format at Amazon.com. As with this Archive Series’ Explanatory Memorandum, this one can also be downloaded for free at www.SecureFreedom.org.

PDF: Ikhwan_in_America_20160418

The Bridge Initiative’s failed attempt to ‘debunk’ Federal evidence

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Center for Security Policy, March 8, 2016:

The Bridge Initiative, part of the Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim Christian Understanding at Georgetown University, delivered a broadside against what it described as a “Conspiracy Theory” around the piece of Muslim Brotherhood archival history known as the “Explanatory Memorandum”, by Mohammed Akram Adlouni, a senior U.S. Muslim Brotherhood member.

We have highlighted the ties the Bridge Initiative shares with the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood previously. In particular, we’ve noted that its head, Professor John Esposito, was an advisory board member for the Hamas-linked think tank the United Association of Studies and Research (UASR), along with a myriad of other Brotherhood associations. We’ve also previously highlighted their association with the International Institute of Islamic Thought, a group with ties to Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, and even Al Qaeda.

The Bridge Initiative is anxious to debunk the Explanatory Memorandum perhaps because it was quoted last week by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA), as part of his opening statement supporting H.R. 3892, calling on the State Department to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization.

The Bridge Initiative attempts to use guile, misdirection and ad hominem attack in its effort to protect the Muslim Brotherhood’s reputation, but fails miserably.

Firstly, the Bridge Initiative assertion dishonestly describes the Holy Land Foundation Trial in which the Explanatory Memorandum was submitted as evidence, as a “money laundering” trial. In fact it was a trial over a conspiracy to materially support the terrorist group Hamas. Every defendant was convicted on charges of conspiring to provide material support for terrorism, in addition to charges of money laundering. It is intentionally misleading to describe the HLF case as simply a “money laundering case”.

The Bridge Initiative attempts to cite the “opinion by the presiding Judge” that the Explanatory Memorandum did not provide “supporting evidence” of a conspiracy but fails to do so.

They instead link the “Government’s Amended Memorandum in Opposition to Petitioners Islamic Society of North America and North American Islamic Trust’s Motion for Equitable Relief,” not Judge Jorge Solis’ “Memorandum Opinion Order”, and in the linked document the words “supporting evidence” which the Bridge Initiative places in quotes, do not appear.

The words “supporting evidence” do appear in the Judge Solis’ opinion however, and assuming this is what the authors at Bridge Initiative intended to cite, it reads as follows,

“But a published list from the Government naming individuals or entities as co-conspirators without any supporting evidence is not subject to such scrutiny. Therefore, the Court finds it appropriate to seal the entire list of unindicted coconspirators but stops short of ordering CAIR, ISNA and NAIT’s names expunged from any documents filed or produced by the government.”

Just prior to this however, Solis had written,

“Evidence presented in a public trial is inherently different from the Government publishing a list of persons alleged to be co-conspirators. The public may make its own judgment from evidence presented at trial. The evidence may be examined and conclusions can be drawn as to whether the evidence establishes what the government claims it does.”

The “Explanatory Memorandum” falls into that category of evidence presented in a public trial. Elsewhere in the document however, Solis wrote specifically about the Explanatory Memorandum saying:

Government Exhibit 3-85 is titled “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America,” authored by Mohamed Akram of the Shura Council of the Muslim Brotherhood and dated May 22, 1991. (Gov’t Ex. 3-85 (Elbarasse 3) at 21.) The “Explanatory Memorandum” includes a section titled “Understanding the role of the Muslim Brother in North America,” which states that the work of the Ikhwan in the United States is “a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and sabotaging its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.” (Id.) Also contained in that document is a list of the Muslim Brotherhood’s “organizations and the organizations of our friends,” which includes ISNA, NAIT, the Occupied Land Fund (“OLF”) (HLF’s former name), and the United Association for Studies and Research (“UASR”). (Id. at 32.) Government Exhibit 3-64, titled “Preliminary vision for preparing future leadership” and dated December 18, 1988, further ties ISNA to the Muslim Brotherhood by listing it as an “apparatus” of the Brotherhood. (Gov’t Ex. 3-64 (Elbarasse 4) at 5.)

It can be seen that Solis notes that the groups mentioned by name in the Memorandum are also mentioned in other Brotherhood documents submitted at trial, and that this can be taken as authenticating the memorandum itself. You can also see that UASR is the same UASR that Bridge Initiative head Esposito was an advisor for.

The Bridge Initiative treats the Explanatory Memorandum as the aspirations of a single man, but ignores the fact that events described in the memorandum actually happened. Most notably, the merger of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) with the Muslim Brotherhood.

Akram makes reference in the Explanatory Memorandum to the discussed merger of the Group with the “Islamic Circle” (meaning the Islamic Circle of North America.) The “Shura Council Report” from 1991 also references two documents associated with the agreement between ICNA and the Muslim Brotherhood:

“Supp. #12: An Islamic work concept between the lkhwan and the ICNA (6/1991).

Supp. #13: A suggestion regarding the relationship with ICNA (6/1991).”

Additionally a Muslim Brotherhood document entitled, “Implementation Manual For the Group’s Plan for the year (1991-1992),” also references ICNA:

“5 – Arriving at a specific definition of the relationship with ICNA.”

It can in fact be shown that ICNA began to publicly identify with the Muslim American Society (MAS), which federal prosecutors have referred to as the “overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood” by holding joint MAS-ICNA conventions beginning in 2001.

Far from one man’s “fantasy” Akram describes in the Memorandum proposals for events which do in fact take place. Similarly his views on elements of the Muslim Brotherhood’s apparatus in the United States, such as the creation of Islamic Centers, matches other descriptions of Brotherhood’s efforts in the United States, such as the historical description of the MB’s activities provided by then leading MB member Zaid Noman in an audiotape dated sometime in the 1980s, and entered into evidence as Elbarasse Search-2. In other words, Akram’s explanatory memorandum fits into a historical context of what the Brotherhood had done in the past, was proposing to do, and what it in fact can later be shown to have accomplished.

The Bridge Initiative Team goes on to attempt to disarm the public from worrying about Mohammed Akram’s chosen phrase, “civilization-jihad” by claiming that such language is entirely unknown among Muslim Brotherhood documents, and can’t be found in any of a number of document troves they claim to have searched through.

Realizing that Akram’s memorandum was never intended to be read by the public at large at all, but only by high level members of his own organization, and the Bridge Initiative’s insistence that “his [Akram’s] ideas are not widespread online” loses much of its impact.

Interestingly enough though, the Bridge Initiative seems to have missed at least one key document, available online, and published in English, by the very same IIIT which Bridge Initiative’s partners with. A document which seems to contain ideas and concepts comparable to that proposed by Akram’s use of the term “Civilization jihad”.

In 1989, IIIT published Islamization of Knowledge: General Principles and Work Plan, edited by IIIT co-founder Abdulhamid Abu Sulayman. That’s only two years before Mohammed Akram wrote his “explanatory memorandum”, and it contains an interesting reference:

Unlike the past, the civilizational forces contending in this century can reach and overtake anyone without invasion or military occupation of his land. They can subvert his mind, convert him to their world view, neutralize and contain him as a puppet whether he is aware of it or not. Certainly these forces are contending with one another to dominate the world. And it is the decision of Muslims today whether Islam will be the victor tomorrow, whether Muslims will be the makers of history or merely the objects. Indeed, a civilizational battle now in progress in the world scene will not leave anyone unscathed.

Now admittedly IIIT uses the word “battle” not “jihad” (holy war), but the comparison otherwise tracks. Islamization of Knowledge is describing “civilizational battle” as a conflict between ideas advanced through “stealthy techniques” such as subversion and conversion rather than violence. It appears to suggest the author’s view that Islamic civilization must also engage in such techniques in order to emerge triumphant.

But Bridge Initiative mocks those who interpret Mohammed Akram’s statement of “Civilization jihad” as representing an exhortation to engage in just this kind of conflict.

Given the Bridge Initiative’s ties to IIIT, one would have thought they’d have been familiar with IIIT’s seminal work on “Islamization”, and not missed this obviously compatible reference if they were doing their “debunking” in good faith.

John Esposito and AbuSulayman both speaking at an IIIT-UK Conference

John Esposito and AbuSulayman both speaking at an IIIT-UK Conference

The Bridge Initiative attempts to convince readers that the view of the Explanatory Memorandum as representing a seditious conspiracy against the United States is reserved solely for groups like the Center for Security Policy, and former presidential candidate Ben Carson. But the reality is that this view of the document represents the very view of federal law enforcement at the time the document was discovered, and submitted at trial.

The Explanatory Memorandum was taken extremely seriously by key U.S. counterterrorism officials at the time of its discovery. Former U.S. deputy chief for Counterterrorism at the Department of Justice Jeff Breinholt says the Memorandum made:

“Pretty clear as to how they viewed their own objective. And they’re talking about the United States here. For the first time that was almost direct proof of what we had long suspected about their true political goals in the United States…

“Something like the explanatory memo is a bonanza for the art of intelligence because it actually is the target or the subject speaking in their own words about what they intend. You don’t have to read too much into that.”

Former FBI Agent and federal prosecutor Nathan Garret concurred:

“The organizations that were on that list represented a huge segment of the Islamic voice in North America at the time. The Memorandum not only named names, it candidly revealed just how the Brotherhood viewed the United States- as a target of conquest.”

In the sworn affidavit of an FBI agent in the case of Nabil Sadoun, a Muslim Brotherhood member deported from the United States for lying on federal immigration forms about his association with the Hamas-linked UASR (The same UASR for which Esposito was an advisory board member) an FBI agent writes:

The FBI seized numerous documents from Elbarasse’s home, including “An Explanatory Memorandum,” dated May 22, 1991, concerning the strategic goal of the US-MB. This document outlined in detail the US-:MB’s plan for jihad and the elimination of Western civilization from within the United States. [Exhibit A12]

That the Explanatory Memorandum represents a piece of evidence in a conspiracy by the Muslim Brotherhood to wage jihad against the United States is not just the opinion of Frank Gaffney, the Center for Security Policy, or Dr. Ben Carson. It was the view of the United States Government, affirmed by a jury when it convicted the Holy Land Foundation defendants of 108 counts of conspiracy to provide material support for terrorism and money laundering.

The Explanatory Memorandum is not a stand-alone piece of evidence, and it should not be considered as such. Rather it is a particularly eloquent and demonstrative piece of evidence in a mosaic of documents and events which explain the nature and history of the Muslim Brotherhood’s activities in the United States. It has singular importance as a document which opens up for investigation a wider network of Brotherhood activity and concepts.

It has always been the goal of the Center for Security Policy to open up the field of inquiry into these activities and to make them accessible to a wider audience, so as to better inform the public about the national security threat posed by the Muslim Brotherhood and its activities in the United States. The haphazard effort by the Bridge Initiative to muddy the waters is an attempt to obfuscate and manipulate the historical record.

That the Bridge Initiative is tied directly to the very organizations exposed by the publication of the Explanatory Memorandum should be cause enough for skepticism about their charges, but the individual reader is encouraged to examine the record and documents on their own in order to form their own opinion. All publicly released Holy Land Foundation trial documents are available at the website of the United States District Court, Northern District of Texas.