US, UN-Backed #CVESymposium Exposes Farce of ‘Countering Violent Extremism’ Programs

CfX9i2GUMAAdI52.sized-770x415xcPJ Media, by Patrick Poole April 6, 2016:

A  backed by the Obama administration and the UN on “countering violent extremism” (CVE) is being held today at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington D.C. that inadvertently exposed the farce of the administration’s CVE policies.

Multiple news reports in recent weeks have documented how CVE programs launched by the administration in February 2015 at the White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism in Boston, Los Angeles and Minneapolis are failing miserably and are now openly opposed by the very same groups targeted by CVE programs.

And a look at today’s “CVE Symposium” exposes why those efforts are failing to actually counter “violent extremism”.

One of the keynote speakers today was DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson:

Johnson’s remarks make clear that the administration’s CVE programs are not unfairly targeting the Muslim community, but also identifying where the real culprit spreading violent extremism lies – GOP presidential candidates:

Johnson acknowledged that the government’s CVE efforts have focused on Muslim communities, but he pushed back against the idea that it zeroes in on the Islamic faith.“Many people ask me, ‘Are you targeting Muslims? Why are you targeting Muslims?’” he said. “We’re not targeting a religion or even a specific group. We have a generic mission.”

But, he said, CVE efforts have focused on American Muslim communities because the Islamic State, which he called “probably the most dangerous terrorist organization that we face right now,” is targeting American Muslims.

“So we must respond in counter to that effort, as a matter of homeland security,” Johnson said.

The secretary also pushed back against “overheated rhetoric” on the Republican presidential campaign trail about banning Muslims from entering the United States or increasing police patrols and surveillance in Muslim communities.

“There is no one American Muslim community, contrary to some of the political dialogue you may hear,” he said. “There is not one neighborhood or ghetto or city that one could encircle or surveil.”

Also addressing the CVE Symposium was UN General Secretary Ban Ki-Moon, promising to take action on CVE:

A concurrent CVE event was being held in Geneva:

Back at the symposium in DC, nothing says “countering violent extremism” as a lecture from the Saudi (!!!) ambassador:

Among the helpful insights from the CVE Symposium speakers was a panel that declared that US laws banning terrorist organizations hinder CVE efforts:

Former White House Director for Community Engagement George Selim, now at DHS, let slip how much a farce “countering violent extremism” really is by admitting it was just a term used by the DC ‘smart set’:

Read more

It’s Time for Candidates to Discuss the Enemy Within

EgyptElectionsConservative Review, by Daniel Horowitz, December 28th, 2015: (h/t @PoliticalShort)

When Congress returns in January, there will be a robust debate over the authorization of use of military force (AUMF) in Syria and Iraq to fight ISIS.  But while we debate a bunch of lousy options and the potential cost of lives and billions of dollars arming our enemies in endless Islamic civil wars, the politicians in both parties will never discuss the enemy within the United States.  This is where the presidential candidates must lead by example.

Donald Trump and Ted Cruz have already drawn attention to the first half of the homeland security threat – the endless migration from the Middle East as manifest through our suicidal immigration policies.  Unfortunately, Republicans didn’t listen, and despite the universally-accepted threat of the Syrian and Somali refugees, they gave Obama the full $1.67 billion for refugee resettlement in the Omnibus bill.

However, it is the second half of the equation – the most foundational threat to our homeland and society – that has garnered almost no attention from anyone in politics.  That is the threat of the Muslim Brotherhood organizations in America that have so much influence both on the Obama administration and the Muslim communities in our country.

Three questions should automatically come to mind in light of the San Bernardino attack and the nearly daily incidents of Muslims being arrested for plotting terror attacks or attempting to join ISIS.

  1. Why is our government expunging any mention of Islamic terror from their official documents and hampering investigations into connections to local radical Muslim Brotherhood groups?
  2. Why are so few moderate Muslims speaking out against the growing trend of radicalization?
  3. Why are so many Muslims in America, even those who were born here, being drawn into groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda?

The answer to all these questions, point to the Muslim Brotherhood and the influence of their three North American affiliates that were implicated in the Holy Land Foundation terror trial: the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), and the North American Islamic Trust.

Last Wednesday, I had the privilege of guest hosting the Sean Hannity show along with my colleague, Deneen Borelli, and we discussed why the Muslim Brotherhood represents a more foundational threat to our homeland than ISIS or Al Qaeda.  They are the enemy within that radicalizes American Muslims (the ones that weren’t already radicalized), marginalizes and intimidates moderates, and influences the government to eschew any policy that even mentions Islamic terror much less policies that actually combat Islamic terror.

[My segment on the Muslim Brotherhood can be found here.  You will hear national security expert, Patrick Poole, discuss how this problem started long before the Obama administration.]

 

This is why we need the GOP candidates to step up to the plate.  But until now they have largely been silent.  Ted Cruz has introduced an important piece of legislation, which would designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a terror group, but he needs to make this issue more front and center in his campaign.

Just last week, U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron took the unprecedented step to designate the Muslim Brotherhood a terror group after his government launched an exhaustive study into their activities.  They will now ban visas to Muslim Brotherhood officials and increase surveillance of their offices.   If the liberal Europeans are willing to protect themselves and root out their enemy within, cannot our “conservative” leaders muster the same courage?

Not surprisingly, Obama condemned Cameron’s move as a needless de-legitimizing of a non-violent group.  But their use of “non-violent” means of subversion in western countries to marginalize moderates and quietly radicalize the Muslim communities and mosques is exactly what will destroy both America and Europe from the inside.

It was recently reported that the U.K. is experiencing a sharp drop off in cooperation from local Muslims in rooting out terrorists from their communities.  Undoubtedly, the Muslim Brotherhood intimidation is a big part of this deterrent against cooperating with the authorities.

Earlier this month, Phil Haney, a former DHS counterterrorism official, wrote an expose on how he was stifled from connecting the dots between some of the very same foreign terror groups Tafsheen Malik was affiliated with and local Muslim groups in America:

“But after more than six months of research and tracking; over 1,200 law enforcement actions and more than 300 terrorists identified; and a commendation for our efforts; DHS shut down the investigation at the request of the Department of State and DHS’ own Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Division. They claimed that since the Islamist groups in question were not Specially Designated Terrorist Organizations (SDTOs) tracking individuals related to these groups was a violation of the travelers’ civil liberties. These were almost exclusively foreign nationals: When were they granted the civil rights and liberties of American citizens?

Worse still, the administration then went back and erased the dots we were diligently connecting. Even as DHS closed my investigation, I knew that data I was looking at could prove significant to future counterterror efforts and tried to prevent the information from being lost to law enforcement.”

It’s not surprising that DHS’s Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Division (CRCL) was responsible for shutting down the investigation.  CRCL is the nexus for the Muslim Brotherhood influence in our government.  In 2008, under the Bush administration, then-DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff drafted a memo for CRCL that called on government officials to strip all references of Islamic supremacism from their training.  This memo was drafted, in the words of Chertoff, based on “its discussions with a broad range of Muslim American community leaders and scholars.”  In 2011, based on the same recommendations of these Muslim Brotherhood “scholars,” DHS published its training and guidance manual on the Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) agenda.  The manual instructs the bureaucrats to use examples to “demonstrate that terrorists and violent extremists vary in ethnicity, race, gender, and religion.”

If ISIS is the new quarterback for Islamic terror, the Muslim Brotherhood is their all-star offensive linemen. In theory the United States should have a great defensive line capable of overwhelming ISIS’ strategy. But with our very own Department of Homeland Security playing ball for the Muslim Brotherhood, the fox appears to be guarding the henhouse.

Yet Again: Turkey, Israel Terror Attacks Committed By ‘Known Wolves’

PJ Media, by Patrick Poole, Oct. 14, 2015:

Multiple individuals suspected in the terror attacks over the past week in Turkey and Israel appear to be additional examples of the phenomenon I have termed “known wolf” terrorism. The attacks were committed in part by people already known to law enforcement and national security authorities as being dangers.

Saturday’s horrific suicide bombing of a Kurdish peace rally in Ankara killed more than one hundred people and injured more. According to Reuters, the suspects are thought to be members of a previously identified terror network – the “Adiyaman cell”:

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Monday Islamic State was the prime suspect. Officials in Ankara said they were focusing on the so-called “Adiyaman cell” — a group of Turks, some of whom had traveled to Syria, and who were thought also to have been behind a suicide bombing in July in the town of Suruc near the Syrian border, which killed 34 people.

The cell is also believed to have been involved in the bombing of a pro-Kurdish opposition rally in the southeastern city of Diyarbakir on the eve of Turkey’s last election in June.

Additional information indicates that one of the bombers in Saturday’s attack in Ankara — Yunus Emre Alogaz — was the brother of a bomber who struck in Suruc back in July and who had been identified by Turkish media as potentially planning an attack:

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Additionally, the suspect’s father had reported his son to police, but to no avail:

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What makes this “known wolf” situation all the more tragic is that the Turkish government has established policies that only allow for action against suicide bombers once they have struck, and presumably are already dead:

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Information regarding the recent wave of terror attacks in Israel also indicates that many of these so-called “lone wolf” Palestinian terrorists were also already known to Israeli authorities.

One terrorist who struck in Jerusalem yesterday by ramming his car into a bus stop and then attacking onlookers — killing one — had been interviewed by Israeli TV last year after two of his relatives had butchered five people in an attack on a synagogue. He praised their actions, Arutz Sheva reports:

The Bezeq telephone company responded to the car attack conducted in Jerusalem Tuesday by its employee Alaa Abu Jamal, claiming there were “no warning signs” of his lethal terrorist leanings — but an interview he gave just one year ago would seem to prove that wrong.

Well before he used his company car to murder Rabbi Yeshiyahu Krishevsky and wound another person — running into passersby with the car and then getting out with a butcher’s knife before being shot – Jamal appeared on Yedioth Aharonoth where he gave an interview about the Har Nof massacre last November.

Jamal was in fact the cousin of the two terrorists who conducted the brutal attack with hatchets, knives and guns in western Jerusalem, in which four Jews were murdered at prayer — with two of them reportedly beheaded — in addition to a Druze police officer who was also killed in a subsequent shoot out with the murderers.

Speaking to the news station in Arabic in an interview broadcast on Israeli TV, Jamal appeared in the black and white khefiyeh associated with arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat, and spoke about the attack.

“This act was because of the pressure of the Israeli occupation government against the Palestinian people and Jerusalem in general, and the ongoing harm to the Al-Aqsa Mosque. It’s a normal thing that can be expected from every man who has courage and a feeling of belonging to his people and to Islam. It’s a normal reaction to the treatment we receive.”

Asked if he thinks there will be more incidents, he said, “I don’t know, everyone is responsible for themselves. We were also surprised by the act.”

“But you’re happy?,” asked the interviewer, apparently noting Jamal’s wide smirk. The future terrorist immediately responded, “thank Allah, someone who dies as a martyr, that’s a great thing.”

The Jerusalem Post reports that more of the Palestinian terrorists who have struck this week, including Alaa Abu Jamal, were already known to the Shin Bet:

The deadly stabbing and shooting attack on board a Jerusalem bus was carried by two terrorists; The first was 23-year-old Baha Alian from Jabel Mukaber in east Jerusalem, who is affiliated with Fatah and has a history of extremist statements, according to the Shin Bet intelligence agency.

Alian was shot and killed in the attack.

A second terrorist involved in the bus attack, who has not been named, was described by the Shin Bet as a Hamas operative from Jabel Mukaber, who has served time in an Israeli prison in 2013 to 2014 due to Hamas-related activities. He is being questioned by security forces.

The deadly vehicular and axe attack on Malacei Yisrael Street in Jerusalem was carried out by Ala Abu Jamal, 33, a resident of Jabal Mukaber. He is the uncle of Adi and Asan Abu Jamal, who carried out the gun and axe attack on Jewish worshippers in the Har Nof synagogue in Jerusalem in November 2014.

After last year’s attack, he made radical statements, and made online pledges of support for ISIS, the Shin Bet said.

Additionally, the suspect who got in a a gunfight with police last week in a Paris suburb had already been tagged by French authorities as a radicalization threat:

french t

The “known wolf” phenomenon is something that I have repeatedly documented here at PJ Media over the past year:

Oct. 24, 2014: ‘Lone Wolf’ or ‘Known Wolf’: The Ongoing Counter-Terrorism Failure

Dec. 15, 2014: Sydney Hostage Taker Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome

Jan. 7, 2015: Paris Terror Attack Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome

Feb. 3, 2015: French Police Terror Attacker Yesterday Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome

Feb. 15, 2015: Copenhagen Killer Was yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

Feb. 26, 2015: Islamic State Beheader ‘Jihadi John’ Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

Apr. 22, 2015: Botched Attack on Paris Churches Another Case of “Known Wolf” Terrorism

May 4, 2015: Texas Attack Is Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

June 26, 2015: France’s Beheading Terrorist Was Well-Known By Authorities

July 16, 2015: Report: Chattanooga Jihadist Was Yet Another ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorist, Anonymous Feds Dispute

Aug. 22, 2015: European Train Attacker Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

Yet the persistent media narrative, fed by many Western governments, is that the escalating wave of terrorism is from unknown individuals striking randomly.

Until Western authorities are willing to acknowledge their failures in identifying and acting on these threats, it is likely that this “known wolf” terrorism phenomenon will only continue to grow.

***

“Rise of Jihadist Attacks and the Fallacy of the ‘Lone Wolf’ Terrorist” – with Patrick Poole

Also see:

VIDEO: Former Al-Qaeda Leader Says Obama-Aligned Muslim Brotherhood ‘Is One of the Most Dangerous Organizations’

PJ Media, by Patrick Poole, September 8, 2015:

I had the opportunity to escort a U.S. congressional delegation to Egypt last week — we were sponsored by the Cairo-based Center for North Africa and Near East Security Studies.

One of the common themes we heard from senior government officials and experts was the active role of the Muslim Brotherhood in the ongoing terror campaign targeting military, police, and government officials, as well as  in the sabotage of infrastructure. I reported here at PJ Media back in June on the Brotherhood’s escalating violence.

There have been a number of signs this past year indicating that the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has effectively dropped its non-violent mask, including:

Despite media reports that the group is “divided” over the use of violence, the group has unmistakably made its position clear.

One expert very familiar with the workings and ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood is the founder and former head of Egyptian Islamic Jihad, Sheikh Nabil Naeem. He lived with both Osama bin Laden and current al-Qaeda head Ayman al-Zawahiri, and witnessed the formation of al-Qaeda. In Afghanistan, he served as bin Laden’s personal bodyguard, and was Zawahiri’s long-time “right arm.”

On my last trip to Cairo, my colleague Steve Coughlin and I had the opportunity to interview Sheikh Nabil at his office for more than nine hours over two days.

During that interview we discussed a number of topics, including the trajectory of the global jihadist movement, the development of terrorist organizations in the Sinai, and his experience with EIJ and al-Qaeda until his arrest and eventual rejection of jihadist ideology.

ShNabilNaeem2

But at the end of our interview with Sheikh Nabil, he began explaining how the Muslim Brotherhood is “one of the most dangerous organizations.”

In response to that statement, I requested that we video record Sheikh Nabil’s response to our questions on this issue as well as his previous statements on the group, which we exclusively present in translation here.

Along the way, he explodes commonly held myths among the Washington, D.C., foreign policy community, including the claim that the Muslim Brotherhood has renounced violence and that there are no connections between the Brotherhood and terror groups in Sinai.

Q: Why do you believe the Muslim Brotherhood is one of the most dangerous organizations?

Nabil: First we accuse the Obama administration of supporting the Muslim Brotherhood to rule Egypt and supporting Morsi’s presidential campaign. Senator McCain also admitted his support to the Muslim Brotherhood and Morsi.

Accordingly, it is not expected from the Obama administration to neither acknowledge Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization nor acknowledge their ties to other terrorist organizations. That would mean the Obama admin and the Democrats acknowledge and support a terrorist group.

But we know that the Muslim Brotherhood is a terrorist organization and all their confessions are available at the prosecution office. And I can tell you how the prosecution process work because I have been through questioning for 35 years.

If any torture takes place it might happen in the police station, but never the prosecution and they are very careful in regards to the legal procedure. That is why any confessions at the prosecution are called the matter of all evidence.

I personally know ABM are improvised, as well as AQ too. What they use is Muslim Brotherhood money and they admitted this repeatedly.

Q: The Muslim Brotherhood present themselves in the United States as moderate Islam and the only alternative to al-Qaeda. Since you have witnessed the formation of al-Qaeda, do you believe this is true?

Nabil: First the Muslim Brotherhood presented themselves to Mubarak as the alternative to all the takfiri/terrorist groups in Egypt, but the truth is Muslim Brotherhood are the main sponsors of them alland that is the Muslim Brotherhood’s way in promoting themselves as the alternative.

Like they did with Luxor massacre, they sponsored and supported terrorist groups to attack tourism in Egypt. Back in the 1990s Abu Walid, a Muslim Brotherhood leader who used to live in Germany, traveled to Afghanistan and met with Refaie Taha and Ayman Al-Zawahiri to arrange with them what was later known as the Luxor massacre.

At the same time the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt condemned the attack to convince the audience of their moderation.

This is a simple tactic: in order for the Muslim Brotherhood to appear as moderate group, they need the terrorists to commit acts of terrorism so the people would see the difference.

However, knowing the Muslim Brotherhood means knowing they are devil’s allies.

Q: Back in the 1970s the Muslim Brotherhood renounced violence, but we still see other groups ideologically bound to them like Hamas still using violence. What do you believe?

Nabil: The Muslim Brotherhood are double-faced liars, they claim they renounced violence but I will cite a conversation between Ghassan bin Jiddo and Abdul Monem Abul Fotouh that will sum them up.

Ghassan said you (the Muslim Brotherhood) claim that you renounced violence and you said that you don’t topple regimes, although you used violence with Abdul Nasser in Egypt and when Hamas and Fatah had a disagreement, Hamas committed the Gabalya massacre and their mufti, Youssef Al-Astal, endorsed killing Fatah members and Hamas killed 700 of them in a single day.

It is their deeds versus their words, which would you believe?

The Muslim Brotherhood are terrorists and they killed too many people, even after June 30 and I myself witnessed the Al-Itehadia massacre when they killed 13 innocent citizens — one of them a child because he was carrying Sisi’s poster. They shot him in the back of his head.

Even Ibn Khaldoun Center that is sponsored by the U.S. released a report about the Rabia sit-in and documented about 44 cases of Muslim Brotherhood torturing innocent citizens, 33 of which died of torture.

Q: We are trying to declare the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization. What do you believe the Americans should know?

Nabil: I would advise the Americans to read books written by the Muslim Brotherhood about themselves. Dots on Letters by Ahmed Adel Kamal where he proudly documented the Muslim Brotherhood terror attacks calling them jihad. The other book is by Mahmoud Al-Sabbagh called The Truth About the Secret Organization where he listed all the facts about the Muslim Brotherhood militias and how they were used to attack the opposition.

For the present times, Americans should monitor the Muslim Brotherhood and what they do in Syria, Egypt, Libya and everywhere they are.

————————

I will be reporting more from Egypt later this week.

European Train Attacker Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

(from left to right) Anthony Sadler, from Pittsburg, California, Aleck Sharlatos from Roseburg, Oregon, and Chris Norman, a British man living in France thwarted the attacker while on the train. They are pictured with medals they received for bravery Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3206426/U-S-Marines-armed-gunman-onboard-high-speed-train-Amsterdam-Paris.html#ixzz3jahelC2M

(from left to right) Anthony Sadler, from Pittsburg, California, Aleck Sharlatos from Roseburg, Oregon, and Chris Norman, a British man living in France thwarted the attacker while on the train. They are pictured with medals they received for bravery
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3206426/U-S-Marines-armed-gunman-onboard-high-speed-train-Amsterdam-Paris.html#ixzz3jahelC2M

PJ Media, by Patrick Poole, August 22, 2015:

Quick action by unarmed off-duty U.S. servicemen on a high speed train from Amsterdam to Paris narrowly averted tragedy yesterday as they subdued a terrorist gunmen before he could begin his rampage. And according to multiple reports, the suspect in custody was known to multiple European intelligence agencies – yet another case of what I have termed “known wolf” terrorism.

Since last year, I’ve noted here at PJ Media that virtually all of the terrorist incidents in the West have been conducted by subjects who were already known to law enforcement and national security agencies, refuting the “lone wolf” narrative floated by authorities and the establishment media that such terrorist activity is random and unpredictable.

And such appears to be the case yet again in the case of what happened on the Thalys train.

CNN reports:

The suspected gunman, a Moroccan national, was on the radar screen of European counterterrorism agencies for his radical jihadist views, the European counterterrorism official said.

A second security source told CNN the gunman was known by French intelligence. The official said it appeared the gunman was sympathetic to ISIS, but a full determination on his specific loyalties had yet to be reached.

Another report from The Telegraph indicates that the gunman was known to multiple European intelligence agencies:

The gunman who tried to bring carnage to a high-speed train is believed to have been an Islamist extremist who traveled to Syria last year.

The 26-year-old of Moroccan origin, named in the Spanish press as Ayoub El Qahzzani, is understood to have been on the watch lists of three European intelligence services.

The gunman was taken into custody at Arras station and the French authorities have not released his name. But if he was Qahzzani, he appears to have left Morocco in 2013 and moved to Spain, where he lived for about a year.

And Reuters indicates that Qahzzani was no “lone wolf”:

According to Le Voix du Nord, citing security sources, the suspected Islamist militant was seen on a plane to Turkey from Germany in May, and was thought to have visited Syria.

The French newspaper said he may have had connections to a group involved in a suspected Islamist shooting in Belgium in January.

One terrorism expert makes an important point:

Neuman tweet

An editor at the Jerusalem Post also asks another relevant question:

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The case of yet another returned foreign fighter from Syria engaged in terrorism seems to refute the attempts by many counterterrorism researchers to say the threat is “exaggerated” and that terror returnees should be treated with a “hands-off” reintegration approach, most recently advocated by Charles Lister at Brookings Institution.

The “Known Wolf” terrorism phenomenon is something I have documented here at PJ Media going back to last year:

Oct. 24, 2014: ‘Lone Wolf’ or ‘Known Wolf’: The Ongoing Counter-Terrorism Failure

Dec. 15, 2014: Sydney Hostage Taker Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome

Jan. 7, 2015: Paris Terror Attack Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome

Feb. 3, 2015: French Police Terror Attacker Yesterday Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Syndrome

Feb. 15, 2015: Copenhagen Killer Was yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

Feb. 26, 2015: Islamic State Beheader ‘Jihadi John’ Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

Apr. 22, 2015: Botched Attack on Paris Churches Another Case of “Known Wolf” Terrorism

May 4, 2015:Texas Attack Is Yet Another Case of ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorism

June 26, 2015:France’s Beheading Terrorist Was Well-Known By Authorities

July 16, 2015:Report: Chattanooga Jihadist Was Yet Another ‘Known Wolf’ Terrorist, Anonymous Feds Dispute

This was also the subject of a Capitol Hill briefing I gave back in late January sponsored by the Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET):

So why is it despite these repeated instances of “Known Wolf” terrorism, that authorities have yet to even acknowledge the problem, let alone try to solve it?

***

Pulitzer Prize Winner David K. Shipler Hawks the “Protocols of the Elders of the Anti-Islam Movement” in The New Yorker

PJ Media, by Patrick Poole, May 13, 2015:

A document entered into court evidence by Justice Department prosecutors in the largest terrorism financing trial in American history, and later cited affirmatively by the federal judge in the case and cleared by the federal appeals court, would seem an unlikely target for a former journalist to try to spin a conspiratorial tale around, namely slandering others of hawking a racist/’Islamphobic’ “Protocols of the Elders of Islam.”

And yet that is what David K. Shipler, a former New York Times reporter and winner of the 1987 Pulitzer Prize, is now trying to do.

512R2aJ0iLLClearly upset that so-called “Islamophobes” have been successful using the document – again, discovered by the FBI, submitted into the evidence by federal prosecutors and approved as genuine by the federal court – to expose the Muslim Brotherhood roots of some of America’s largest Islamic organizations, Shipler wields his “Islamophobia” harpoon like Ahab at his “anti-Islam industry” Moby Dick.

He makes his dubious case in a new book out this week, entitled “Freedom of Speech: Mightier Than the Sword” (Alfred A. Knopf), which includes an entire chapter on the subject, and summarizes it in an article published on Tuesday in The New Yorker, “Pamela Geller and the Anti-Islam Movement.” The book received a very lukewarm review in the New York Times this past Sunday.

In the New Yorker article, Shipler claims:

Virtually all the alarm over the coming Islamic takeover and the spread of Sharia law can be traced back to an old document of questionable authority and relevance, “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America.” Dated May 22, 1991, it was found in 2004 by the F.B.I., buried in one of a large number of boxes uncovered during a search of a house in northern Virginia. (I reported on the discovery and the use of the document for my book “Freedom of Speech: Mightier than the Sword.”) It is cited on numerous Web sites, and in articles, videos, and training materials, which quote one another in circular arguments. Its illusion of importance was enhanced by federal prosecutors, who included it in a trove of documents introduced into evidence in the 2007 trial of the Holy Land Foundation, a charitable organization ultimately convicted of sending money to Hamas.

The memo, however, is far from probative. It was never subjected to an adversarial test of its authenticity or significance. Examined closely, it does not stand up as an authoritative prescription for action. Rather, it appears to have been written as a plea to the Muslim Brotherhood leadership for action, by an author we know little about, Mohamed Akram. He is listed elsewhere as a secretary in the Brotherhood, but he writes in the tone of an underling. Islam watchers do not quote his appeal that the recipients “not rush to throw these papers away due to your many occupations and worries. All that I’m asking of you is to read them and to comment on them.” These lines reveal the memo as a mere proposal, now twenty-four years old. No other copies have come to light.

Two features of the memo are highlighted by the Islam watchers: first, its assertion that “the Ikhwan [Muslim Brotherhood] must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within,” and, second, “a list of our organizations and the organizations of our friends.” [emphasis added]

What’s remarkable about Shipler’s treatment of the Explanatory Memorandum in his article and in his book is how much he is willing to quickly dismiss facts that completely undo his case, and pays no attention to the glaring contradictions he ends up wrapping himself trying to debunk the document. At major points he contradicts himself. He breezes over the mountain of evidence that he has to overcome, but that means he can’t plead ignorance of it. One is only left with the conclusion that he’s being intentionally mendacious.

I beg the reader’s indulgence, for I will quote lengthy passages and on occasions paste screenshots from the court documents themselves so you know I’m not engaged in anything dodgy. Tellingly, most of these quotes never appear in Shipler’s book, and if so, only selectively edited form.

So let’s start with the evidence.

The document he is trying to cast doubts on is known generally as the “Explanatory Memorandum,” but it’s actual title is, “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal of the Group in North America.” The document is dated May 22, 1991 and was entered into evidence as “Elbarasse Search – 3″ by federal prosecutors in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing trial in 2008.

Helpfully, the federal court overseeing the case in an unusual move posted the trial evidence on their own website. The Explanatory Memorandum and the FBI translation of the document can be found here.

At this point, we can turn to what the Justice Department said in federal court about the Explanatory Memorandum. In one court filing, available on the ACLU’s website, federal prosecutors state (p. 12):

The evidence introduced at trial, for example, established that ISNA and NAIT were among those organizations created by the U.S.-Muslim Brotherhood.8 Govt. Exh. 3-64 (seized from the home of HAMAS leader Ismail Elbarasse); Govt. Exh. 3-3 (Muslim Brotherhood document noting that ISNA was founded by the US-Muslim Brotherhood) ; Govt. Exh. 3-85 (1991 memorandum authored by U.S.-Muslim Brotherhood Shura Council member Mohamed Akram Adlouni, recognizing ISNA and NAIT as Muslim Brotherhood organizations.) Government’s Exhibit 3-85, entitled An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal of the Group, described the Brotherhood’s strategic goal as a kind of “grand Jihad”:

The Ikhwan must understand that their role in America 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…. [emphasis added]

So the Justice Department states that:

1) Two Islamic organizations – the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) and the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) – were created by the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood (based on other trial evidence as well as the Explanatory Memorandum);

2) The Explanatory Memorandum was authored by U.S. Muslim Brotherhood Shura Council member Mohamed Akram Adlouni;

3) That the memo describes the Brotherhood’s strategic goal as “a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying Western Civilization from within.”

Now please note that these claims were not made by “Pamela Geller and the Anti-Islam Movement” but the Justice Department in a federal court filing. He can tilt at all of the “anti-Islam” windmills he wants, but fundamentally he still has to explain away the court evidence.

And as stated earlier, much to the consternation of Shipler, the federal court agreed in a published opinion with the Justice Department’s analysis of the document when Judge Jorge Solis ruled on motions from three separate organizations named as unindicted co-conspirators in the trial – ISNA, NAIT, and the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) – asking to be removed from the Justice Department’s co-conspirator list. The judge’s ruling against removing the groups from the unindicted co-conspirator list was unsealed in 2010.

In that ruling, Judge Solis states (p. 15):

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.)

So Judge Solis found that:

1) The Explanatory Memorandum was authored by Mohamed Akram of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood Shura Council;

2) That the document describes the agenda of the Muslim Brotherhood’s “grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western Civilization from within”;

3) That the document lists the Muslim Brotherhood’s “organizations and the organizations of our friends,” including ISNA and NAIT.

At this point Shipler laughably believes he has room to maneuver. In the New Yorker article and in his book, he makes three general claims:

1) That the judge blindly accepted the Justice Department’s argument about the origins and importance of the memo and never allowed adversarial challenges to its provenance;

2) That the Explanatory Memorandum was admitted as hearsay, meaning that the groups named in the memo were never allowed to challenge in court;

3) That the judge failed to distinguish between the memo’s list of “our organizations” and “the organizations of our friends.”

Let’s take these in order.

1) Judge Solis accepted the Justice Department’s description of the Explanatory Memorandum unquestioningly and never allowed adversarial challenges.

In discussing the order by Judge Solis in response to the motions of the three Islamic organizations, Shipler states in his book (p. 190):

CAIR and two other groups moved to have themselves removed from the list of unindicted co-conspirators, but the effort backfired and gave Islam watchers more ammunition. Not only was their motion denied by Judge Jorge Solis, who presided over the retrial, conviction, and sentencing of the five Holy Land Foundation defendants (the first trial had ended in a hung jury). He also accepted the government’s assertions by citing the seized Elbarasse documents, including the Explanatory Memorandum, without testing their accuracy in an adversarial proceeding. He did not distinguish between the memo’s list of “our organizations” and “the organizations of our friends.” He ruled, “The Government had produced ample evidence to establish the associations of CAIR, ISNA [Islamic Society of North America], and NAIT [North American Islamic Trust] with HLF [Holy Land Foundation], the Islamic Association of Palestine (“IAP”), and with Hamas.” [emphasis added]

Remarkably, Shipler contradicts himself just a few pages later, quoting a defense attorney for the Holy Land Foundation defendants who said that the Elbarasse documents had, in fact, been challenged by the defense team (p. 198):

The defense team lodged vigorous objections to the introduction of this and the other documents from the Elbarasse search, and two attorneys on the defense team, Nancy Hollander and Marlo Cadeddu, scoffed at Guandolo’s statement. “There was no such stipulation by the defense,” said Cadeddu. “Nor would we ever have stipulated to any such thing. Any claims to the contrary are simply untrue.” Indeed, after the five Holy Land officials and fund-raisers were convicted, their lawyers argued specifically, in an unsuccessful appeal to the Fifth Circuit, that the trial judge had erred in admitting the documents, which the attorneys branded hearsay, irrelevant to the charge that the defendants had funneled money to Hamas. [emphasis added]

At this point, observant readers are no doubt confused. By Shipler’s own admission, the Elbarasse documents, including the Explanatory Memorandum, were subject to challenges on both the trial court and appellate levels. Both sides briefed the court, and judge and the appeals court panel ruled on the merits of their arguments. These are what as generally known as “adversarial proceedings,” much as Shipler claims never occurred. It’s not clear exactly then what Shipler was expecting. An entirely separate trial over the Explanatory Memorandum? With his own damning acknowledgement of these defense team challenges, we can only conclude that he’s being duplicitous, or really, really thick.

But that’s not all. During the trial one of the investigators in the Holy Land case, FBI Special Agent Lara Burns, twice mentioned the Explanatory Memorandum (trial transcript 09/28/2008 at p. 21, 10/07/2008 at p. 71).

Read more at PJ Media

Also see:

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