IPT EXCLUSIVE: DHS Hires CAIR to Train French Officials

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by Steven Emerson
IPT News
December 14, 2016

The Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) facilitated a training session last week for a French police delegation, in conjunction with the State Department and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)’s Community Engagement Office in Tampa, the Investigative Project on Terrorism has confirmed with DHS officials and other agencies.

This session stands in contrast with the FBI’s 2009 policy not to engage with CAIR outside of criminal investigations due to questions about the Hamas ties of its top executives. An FBI official wrote that “until we can resolve whether there continues to be a connection between CAIR or its executives and HAMAS, the FBI does not view CAIR as an appropriate liaison partner.” That FBI policy toward CAIR remains in effect, and was publicly reaffirmed in 2013.

CAIR-Florida issued a press release Dec. 8 giving details of the event, and posted numerous photos of the French delegation on its Facebook page. The training session was devoted to showing the French officials “how to effectively challenge violent extremist individuals of all backgrounds and prevent hate crimes, while protecting civil rights and challenging profiling and discrimination,” the release said.

Several French counter-terror officials received this training, including a representative of France’s Ministry of the Interior and many police chiefs.

1915They presented Nezar Hamze, CAIR-Florida’s regional operations director, with a medallion bearing the French national colors and inscribed: “Public Safety Departmental Directorate at Bouches-du-Rhone / Discipline – Valor – Devotion.”

“We appreciated the opportunity to communicate how restricting liberty encourages hate crimes and violence and that preserving liberty and civil rights is key to preserving peace and security,” CAIR-Florida Executive Director Hassan Shibly said in the release.

This indicates that the thrust of this training was devoted to discouraging counter-terror activities within Muslim communities, which CAIR often has falsely represented as infringing upon the civil liberties of Muslims. CAIR officials repeatedly urge Muslim Americans not to cooperate with the FBI.

DHS and the State Department participated in this CAIR training of French officials despite the well-documented record of CAIR’s ties to terrorists. Internal Muslim Brotherhood records obtained by the FBI place CAIR and its founders at the core of a Brotherhood-created Hamas support network in the United States known as the Palestine Committee.

CAIR’s Powerful Ties

CAIR officials enjoyed close relations with the Obama administration despite the FBI’s evidence linking it to the Muslim Brotherhood and to Hamas. DHS/State Department coordination with CAIR is nothing new. The State Department sent CAIR officialsabroad to conduct foreign outreach.

The State Department hosted CAIR officials in October 2015 to discuss Syria and “the need … to challenge [alleged] aggressive Israeli actions targeting the Al Aqsa mosque compound, one of the holiest sites in Islam.”

Top CAIR officials repeatedly received White House invitations and participated in White House conference calls. DHS collaborates with CAIR on numerous non-public projects, and funnels anti-terrorism funds allocated by Congress.

CAIR received a sub-grant of $70, 324 from DHS in 2015, records show.

Hassan Shibly: Terrorist Apologist

Considering Shibly’s statements that Islamist ideology has nothing to do with terrorism and the rash of jihadist attacks that have rocked France since January 2015, his involvement in the training should be cause for alarm.

In an April 21, 2013 interview with OnIslam, Shibly said that, “American political scientists have made it very clear that those who commit acts of terrorism have nothing to do with religion and are often motivated by political, not religious, reasons. Actually, such attacks can never be justified and truly are nothing more than the result of having a twisted and sick mind.”

In a June 2014 blog post, Shibly argued that the purported “FBI entrapment program targeting the Muslim community” was an example of tyranny that strayed away from the “great ideals of liberty, equality and justice.”

In his view, the FBI manufactures terrorists through sting operations such as that against Sami Osmakac, convicted in 2014 on charges of attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction and possession of a fully automatic firearm.

“I’m concerned that the government’s own tactics turned him into a greater threat than he could have been on his own,” Shibly told the Tampa Tribune in a June 3, 2014 article. “There’s no need to enable a Hollywood-style plot … Would Osmakac have had the ideas and the means to do this crime but for the government informant?”

Shibly also is helping a family sue the FBI, alleging an agent unjustly shot and killed a friend of Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev after hours of questioning in his Orlando home in 2013.

Independent investigations, requested by CAIR, completed by the Justice Department and a Florida state attorney found that Ibragim Todashev, a “skilled mixed-martial arts fighter,” attacked the agent shortly after acknowledging involvement in a separate triple-murder case in Massachusetts. Todashev continued charging after being shot, prompting the agent to fire more.

Shibly rejected the findings, saying only Todashev could “contradict the government’s narrative,” but he was dead.

Kareem Shora: CAIR’s Ally at DHS

CAIR-Florida posted this image of Hassan Shibly and Kareem Shora at the French delegation program.

CAIR-Florida posted this image of Hassan Shibly and Kareem Shora at the French delegation program.

According to a source, Kareem Shora played a key role in organizing the French delegation’s CAIR training. Shora serves with the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) and a Community Liaison Council with the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

He has a long record of denying the nature and magnitude of the jihad threat. Last July, for example, Shora claimed that it was an “unfortunate reality” that Muslims were portrayed as “more vulnerable” to “potential recruitment to terrorist activities…including those represented by Daesh.” Instead of devising ways to counter this “unfortunate reality,” Shora said that the DHS was trying to “promote the notion” that Muslims were no more likely than anyone else to be recruited into terror organizations:

“It’s not because they’re Muslims. They represent nothing of Islam. Daesh represents nothing of Islam or a state for that matter, quote unquote. So I think our position, as U.S. government, is to advocate that point every opportunity we get. And from a Homeland Security perspective, in order to build a society that’s resilient to all threats, regardless of the nature of that threat, our job is to make sure that these communities don’t end up being categorized as being vulnerable, because they are in fact the ones most suffering as a result of those attacks.”

Shora helped leading Islamist figures attend DHS meetings, including Salam al-Marayati of the Muslim Public Affairs Council and, Ingrid Mattson of the Islamic Society of North America, records obtained by the IPT through the Freedom of Information Act show.

DHS could have turned to any number of organizations and people to work with the French delegation. Choosing an Islamist group whose ties to a terrorist group rendered it persona non grata with the FBI is either a sign of dangerous incompetence or institutional arrogance.

Senior Homeland Security Adviser Formerly CAIR Official

MEBY RYAN MAURO:

Senior Department of Homeland Security advisor Mohamed Elibiary used to be an official of the Council on American-Islamic Relations(CAIR), a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity and unindicted co-conspirator in the largest terrorism-financing trial in the country’s history.

Elibiary is a member of the Homeland Security Advisory Council and was promoted in September. He also served on the Department of Homeland Security’s Countering Violent Extremism Working Group and the Faith-based Security and Communications Advisory Committee.

Elibiary is also a long-time Texas Republican Party official and was a delegate for Senator John McCain in 2008.

On November 16, the Investigative Project on Terrorism tweeted a copy of the 2003 form 990 for CAIR’s Dallas-Fort Worth chapter. It lists Elibiary as a board member.

That same year, the Austin American-Statesman reported that Elibiary “works on political activities for the council’s Dallas-Fort Worth chapter.”

In 2007, the U.S. government labeled CAIR an unindicted co-conspirator in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation for financing Hamas. The Foundation was a key component of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network.

Federal prosecutors said that CAIR is also an “entity” of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, specifically its secret Palestine Committee that was established to support Hamas.

In 2007, federal prosecutors said in another court case, “From its founding by Muslim Brotherhood leaders, CAIR conspired with other affiliates of the Muslim Brotherhood to support terrorists … the conspirators agreed to use deception to conceal from the American public their connections to terrorists.”

Read more Clarion Project

 

Senior Homeland Security Advisor: America is “Islamic Country”

Elibiary tweetBy Ryan Mauro:

A senior advisor to the Department of Homeland Security, Mohamed Elibiary, says that America is “an Islamic country” and continues to argue that the Muslim Brotherhood is comparable to Christian evangelicals.

Elibiary is a member of the Homeland Security Advisory Council and was promoted in September. He also served on the Department of Homeland Security’s Countering Violent Extremism Working Group and the Faith-based Security and Communications Advisory Committee.

He is also a long-time Texas Republican Party official and was a delegate for Senator John McCain in 2008.

On October 31, Elibiary tweeted that he believes the U.S. “is an Islamic country.” You can see the screenshot below:

Mohamed Elibiary: America is Islamic Country

The tweet was part of a conversation about whether Islam and the U.S. are compatible. Elibiary argued that America has an “Islamically compliant constitution.”

He also reiterated his view that the Muslim Brotherhood is comparable to Christian evangelicals and that not all Islamists should be lumped in with jihadists and terrorists.

Read more at Clarion Project

 

WND found that Elibiary tweeted: “Ignorant #Islamophobes (redundant I know) protested my saying #MB like #Evangelicals. Usra like Bible study grp.”

The “MB,” or Muslim Brotherhood, seeks a worldwide Islamic caliphate ruled by Shariah, or Islamic law, and teaches followers to help establish an Islamic state wherever they live.

An usra is a small teaching group devised by Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna to indoctrinate his followers. Brotherhood leaders form weekly meetings to teach the Islamist group’s methods and ideology.

The Muslim Brotherhood’s Ikhwanweb website describes usra as the “smallest unit of MB structure which represents the practical area of MB spiritual education and Tarbiah (training).”

Usra groups, compared to Bible study groups by Elibiary, are limited to active Muslim Brotherhood members.

There are three types of Muslim Brotherhood membership:

  • General membership: Provided to all Muslims accepted by Muslim Brotherhood district administration.
  • Practical membership: Muslims accepted by the district administration who agree to maintain specific Muslim Brotherhood duties as outlined by Al-Banna .
  • Jihad membership: Active members approved by the Brotherhood’s general executive bureau.

Senior DHS Adviser Elibiary: Brotherhood Not a Threat in U.S.

Elibiary2By Ryan Mauro:

Controversial Department. of Homeland Security adviser Mohamed Elibiary recently said on Twitter that former Egyptian President Morsi, a Muslim Brotherhood leader, is “Egypt’s Mandela,” referring to the famous former President of South Africa that dismantled its racist apartheid system.

Morsi, who promised to be a president for all Egyptians, was ousted after over 30 million Egyptians demonstrated against him for unprecedented power grabshuman rights abuses (including appointing a former terrorist leader as governor of Luxor) and pushing through a sharia constitution for Egypt.

Elibiary, who is now a senior Homeland Security adviser, is a Muslim activist that led the now-defunct Freedom and Justice Foundation. He has spent years as a Texas Republican Party official and was a delegate for Senator McCain in 2008. The Obama Administration placed him on the Homeland Security Advisory Council and promoted him in September.

Elibiary also served on the Department of Homeland Security’s Countering Violent Extremism Working Group and the Faith-based Security and Communications Advisory Committee.

Elibiary was the subject of a damning 37-page report put together by the Clarion Project and other anti-Islamist organizations that included an extensive interview with him. Clarion has a summary of 15 disturbing facts from the report.

In an October 22 tweet, Elibiary praises Morsi as a hero on par with Nelson Mandela:

Until today, Elibiary remains adamant that the Muslim Brotherhood is still the most popular party in Egypt, even though the majority of Egyptians support banning the Brotherhood as a political party.

Read more at Clarion Project

Debating the Muslim Brotherhood in America Part V: US Policy

600x668xme-600x668.jpg.pagespeed.ic_.OLmPVV4k0TJuicy Ecumenism, by  (@RyanMauro)

The Center for Security Policy Occasional Paper Series

DEBATING THE MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD IN AMERICA

An Interview with DHS Advisor Mohamed Elibiary

Ryan Mauro,  The Clarion Project

Made possible through the Institute for Religion & Democracy

 Part V: US Policy

The core disagreement presented here is about whether Islamists are adversaries of the West or suitable allies. If one believes that Islamists and their ideology is not a problem, then one will be dismissive of any facts about the influence of the US Muslim Brotherhood. For this camp, the threat is from irreconcilable violent Islamists like al-Qaeda and the solution is from reconciliation with supposedly non-violent Islamists like the Muslim Brotherhood. This camp feels that the root cause of terrorism and Islamic extremism is not the Islamist ideology, but legitimate gripes against Western policy.

In our opinion, it is better to look to the public words of Islamists, like those shown in our documentaries, and the declaration of the 1991 US Muslim Brotherhood memo that its “work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within.”

Mauro: Why don’t you support the marginalization of the Muslim Brotherhood and its affiliated groups?

Elibiary: President Obama has certainly expressed publicly the importance of strategic engagement for our national interest in multiple speeches, and to a lesser extent, so has Senator McCain, whom I endorsed on FOX News early in the 2008 election as a Texas Republican state convention delegate. So this is an area where I think our government’s policy is ahead of where the national political discourse is in the conservative media.

Having served for more than a decade in various Republican Party of Texas positions, as well as with Dallas-based roots in the conservative movement going back two decades, I clearly see that Christian social conservatives as well as Jewish conservatives concerned about Israel’s future are simply fearful to the point of psychological paranoia on how to deal with the rising Islamic movements across the globe.

It’s my hope that interviews like this will help address concerns and help elevate our national political discourse around these topics to catch up with national realities.

The most important part of this section is Mr. Elibiary’s influence as a Republican Party official and member of the Secretary’s Homeland Security Advisory Council. This is why we felt it was important to publish a comprehensive dialogue with him. Elibiary states that he was a Texas Republican state convention delegate in 2008 and has served the Republican Party of Texas for over a decade in various capacities. The Dept. of Homeland Security Council that he serves on has made over 100 recommendations and, by his estimate, about 90% have been implemented or are being implemented.

Mauro: As a member of the DHS Secretary’s Homeland Security Advisory Council, what recommendations have you made?

Elibiary (cont’d): The Secretary’s Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) has approved over 100 official recommendations during the past four years and about 90% have either been already implemented or are in the process of implementation by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). As a member of the HSAC, I voted along with my colleagues to pass on all those recommendations to Secretary Napolitano for consideration. The Secretary then signs off on what she agrees with and orders its implementation.

Those recommendations cover many areas that DHS works in from counter-terrorism to cyber-security, from immigration enforcement by ICE to disaster resiliency by FEMA, from border enforcement by CBP to Infrastructure Protection by NPPD. An example of a direct recommendation the HSAC offered and the Secretary approved was the cancellation of the post-9/11 color-coded terrorism alert system we used to see everywhere and its replacement with a more effective National Terrorism Advisory System.

Elibiary’s influence is apparent in the Countering Violent Extremism training guidelines issued by the Dept. of Homeland Security. The Clarion Project published an analysis of those guidelines in May, pointing out how the guidelines warn against training related to the US Muslim Brotherhood and non-violent Islamist tactics. The guidelines were apparently crafted under the guidance of Elibiary, the President of the Islamic Society of North America, and other supporters of the US Muslim Brotherhood network.

To summarize, the Dept. of Homeland Security basically relied upon Islamist-friendly advisors to draft training guidelines and these guidelines inevitably ended up Islamist-friendly. Remarkably, the President of ISNA had a hand in developing standards that would leave counter-terrorism personnel ignorant of his own organization’s Brotherhood origins.

Elibiary (cont’d): The area that has earned me the most amount of anti-Islamist media criticism has been my role assisting DHS and the broader administration craft a framework and later a strategy for Countering Violent Extremism (CVE). I helped write parts of the initial HSAC-CVE document President Barack Hussein Obama was briefed on in the Oval Office, and some in the anti-Islamist media were upset with the approach we took.

Honestly speaking, these CVE recommendations have enjoyed mainstream professional support across the law enforcement and intelligence communities, not least because they enhance homeland security’s effectiveness in a constitutionally-compliant manner as I explained in my post-Boston marathon attack op-ed in the Washington Post. While there is still more work to do across the Homeland Security Enterprise to improve CVE coordination, like many practitioners in the field, I am happy with the progress achieved thus far.

Mauro: Do you have any concluding statements?

Elibiary (cont’d): Rising to become the youngest American to ever serve on a prestigious body like the Secretary’s Homeland Security Advisory Council is frankly a testament to the strength and resilience of our nation’s meritocracy. With too many luminaries and nationally prominent policymakers to list here, including Governor Mitt Romney himself, having served or continuing to serve on the Council; I’m naturally humbled at having been given the opportunity to serve and interact with some of our nation’s top national security officials the past few years.

Personally I hold no hatred towards any conservative, anti-Islamist or pro-Israel activists who’ve attacked me over the past few years as somehow a subversive threat to our country’s national security. I’ve generously given hundreds of media interviews, testified before Congress and met with many national security officials from both the Bush and Obama Administrations. So at this point I’m about as security and bi-partisan politically vetted as anyone can become.

I’ve often hoped that a day would come when an honest and frank conversation can begin between conservatives concerned about Islamism/Political Islam and Muslims concerned about anti-Muslim bigotry (i.e. Islamophobia). It is my sincere hope that this interview helps conservatives concerned about these issues reciprocate by opening the door for a civil dialog with mainstream American Muslims to move our country forward and close the door on the HLF related past.

Focusing on the behavioral indicators of ideologically-motivated violent extremism, as I have advocated, is an opportunity for the conservative movement to broaden its base, safeguard the US Constitution, advance effective national security policy and counter the scourge of bigotry. Now that it is clear to all those who have monitored the HLF-related investigations and trials, that the issue of the unindicted co-conspirators is now a CLOSED matter and there will NOT be an HLF 2.0 trial, perhaps now is the time for us, especially conservatives, to consider launching that long-delayed constructive public dialogue about where our nation goes from here in 2013.

The question readers must ask themselves is this: Is it appropriate for the DHS to have a pro-Muslim Brotherhood official who has close ties to identified US Muslim Brotherhood entities?

In this series, he stands by his opposition to the prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation, a US Muslim Brotherhood entity that was led by his long-time friend. Furthermore, he admits to having helped “safeguard” these US Muslim Brotherhood entities. During Elibiary’s tenture at DHS, the Department has issued training guidelines that protect these entities from scrutiny and eliminate education about the non-violent, legal tactics they use to promote their Islamist agenda. The counter-terrorism personnel instructed under these guidelines will often serve for decades.

On a broader level, this series isn’t just about Elibiary. It’s about the wisdom of embracing the Muslim Brotherhood as a “moderate” partner overseas or the US Muslim Brotherhood at home as expert advisors.

I want to thank Mr. Elibiary for the great deal of time and effort he put into this dialogue. In today’s news environment, it is a rarity to find such a truly substantive discussion of a contentious topic. Now, with both sides presented, it is up to the reader to decide the validity of our opposing views.

Part I: The Holy Land Foundation

Part II: Elibiary & the Muslim Brotherhood

Part III: Elibiary’s Relationship with American Islamists

Part IV: “Islamophobia”

Coptic Leaders Condemn Obama Adviser’s Anti-Coptic Tweets

by John Rossomando
IPT News
October 11, 2013

Homeland Security advisor supports convicted terrorist fundraiser

elibiarybakerBy Charles C. Johnson:

A senior advisor to the Department of Homeland Security is an old friend of  an activist who was convicted in 2008 of financing the terrorist organization Hamas.

In an interview with The Daily Caller, Mohamed Elibiary, a member of the Homeland Security Advisory Council, reiterated claims he made this summer that former Holy Land Foundation president and CEO Shukri Abu Baker is innocent and a victim of political persecution.

Elibiary, who in his position on the council has regular access to classified information, also said the United States insults Muslim dignity and compared the Muslim Brotherhood to American evangelicals.

Elibiary confirmed to journalist Ryan Mauro of the ClarionProject in August that he is a longtime friend of Baker. Mauro’s interview can be read at the Center for Security Policy.

Baker and four other officials of the closed Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development were convicted of using the charity to finance Hamas in 2008. It was the largest terrorism financing trial in U.S. history. Federal prosecutors described the Foundation, which was closed by the U.S. government in 2001, as an entity of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.

Elbiary first disclosed the relationship in a 2007 article in the Dallas Morning News. He met Baker as a teenager and was so moved by the terrorist funder’s explanation of alleged Israeli persecution of Palestinians that he says he began donating monthly to Baker’s foundation until it closed in 2001. The friendship continued, with Elibiary meeting with Baker for coffee the day before he was convicted.

Elibiary maintains that Baker is innocent, and in 2010 he wrote that the U.S. government was “using the law to force compliance with unjust foreign policies.” He reiterated his belief that the U.S. should not have prosecuted the Holy Land Foundation.

The Muslim activist has never disguised his support for Muslim Brotherhood extremism. In a 2006 letter to the Morning News, he defended the fanatically anti-American early Brotherhood leader and theorist Sayyid Qutb, stating, “I’d recommend everyone read Qutb, but read him with an eye to improving America not just to be jealous with malice in our hearts.”

Elibiary has been honored by the FBI’s Society of Former Special Agents. In September he was promoted to Senior Advisor at the Advisory Council, a title held only by select members. Other Council members include William Bratton, the revered former New York police commissioner and Los Angeles chief of police; former CIA Director Bill Webster; and L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca.

I’m honored to be reappointed to Secretary’s Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) and promoted to Sr. Fellow position @DHSgov#Service

— Mohamed Elibiary (@MohamedElibiary) September 12, 2013

 

“If you ever wondered why the Obama Administration believes that the Muslim Brotherhood is a moderate force for good and partners with known U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entities, this interview with Mr. Elibiary helps us find an answer,” Mauro said.

Read more at The Daily Caller