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

IPT News
March 28, 2017

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Al-Arian is a computer scientist.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

UTT Throwback Thursday: Bush Redo?

Understanding the Threat, by John Guandolo, February 2, 2017:

On September 11, 2001, and in the weeks following that tragic day, President George W. Bush demonstrated compassion, empathy and love for his fellow Americans, while also showing the world strength and resolve.

On September 20, 2001, President Bush addressed the nation and told us “The terrorists practice a fringe form of Islamic extremism that has been rejected by Muslim scholars and the vast majority of Muslim clerics; a fringe movement that perverts the peaceful teachings of Islam.”

Actually ISIS and Al Qaeda have never misquoted sharia (Islamic law) in furtherance of their actions, and there is only one “version” of Islam – the one that commands jihad until the world is under Islamic rule.

As the weeks after 9/11 rolled on, the Bush administration, like the Clinton administration before it, relied more and more on Muslim advisors inside the U.S. government to tell it about the “terrorist” threat and how to deal with it.  Karl Rove and Grover Norquist brought jihadis (“terrorists”) like Abdurahman Alamoudi (Al Qaeda), Sami al Arian (Hamas/MB), Suhail Khan (Muslim Brotherhood) and others into the Bush camp.  They believed working with “moderate Muslims” was the path to success.

Al Qaeda financier Abdurahman Alamoudi (far left), George Bush (center), Karl Rove (far right)

Al Qaeda financier Abdurahman Alamoudi (far left), George Bush (center), Karl Rove (far right)

As a matter of fact on 9/11/2001, suit-wearing jihadis from prominent U.S. Islamic organizations were scheduled to meet with President Bush at the White House to get him to fulfill his promise to shut down legal proceedings using classified evidence unavailable to defendants (read: “terrorists”) – a proposal driven by Hamas/Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Sami al Arian.

George and Laura Bush with terrorist leader (PIJ) Sami al Arian (center with glasses)

George and Laura Bush with terrorist leader (PIJ) Sami al Arian (center with glasses)

Following this course led to the U.S. losing wars in Afghanistan and Iraq despite the fact our military crushed our enemies on those battlefields, and to disastrous domestic counter-terrorism strategies.  This course failed because we relied on sharia adherent jihadis wearing suits to tell U.S. National Security professionals and elected officials how to fight the war.

This course continued and accelerated under the Obama administration and today there is no training program inside the U.S. government teaching federal agents in the FBI, DHS, the military or anywhere else about the enemy’s threat doctrine – sharia – nor about the Muslim Brotherhood’s jihadi network here and how it operates inside our system.  We are strategically blind to this threat.

While President Trump is taking great strides to turn around years of poor foreign and domestic policy related to the jihadi threats to the United States, the greatest hurdles to be overcome include:

(1) Establishment Republicans who still view Islam as a “religion of peace” and defend Islamic leaders in the U.S. despite the evidence on the table most of them are jihadis, and (2) an absence of deep knowledge of the enemy’s doctrine (sharia) and how they operationalize it inside the new administration.

Last week’s UTT article discussed item #2.  Item #1 is the focus of today’s discussion.

This week President Bush’s daughter Jenna proudly republished her father’s 9/17/2001 speech from inside the Islamic Center of Washington, D.C. in which he proclaimed “Islam is peace.”  Really?

President Bush at the IC of Washington. Jihadi Khalid Saffuri (l), Hamas leader Nihad Awad (r)

President Bush at the IC of Washington. Jihadi Khalid Saffuri (l), Hamas leader Nihad Awad (r)

Karen Hughes, one of President Bush’s closest advisors who is the former Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs, sits on the board of the jihadi-defender organization Institute for Global Engagement (IGE).

Karl Rove, the architect for much of President Bush’s plans after 9/11, has never admitted any of his policy recommendations were failures with regards to the Islamic threat nor did he change his positions despite the fact we lost the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.  Yet today, Rove retains significant status in the Republican party.

Arguably two of the most venerated U.S. Senators – John McCain and Lindsey Graham – have already demonstrated on numerous occasions they are free of any clue about the Islamic threat America faces, cannot determine friend from foe, and publicly chastised President Trump for freezing immigration from nations hostile to the United States.

This is all pertinent because some of the key positions inside the new administration are being filled by former Bush administration personnel, including the new Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Tom Bossert.

U.S. strategies aimed at “Global War on Terrorism” failed under the Bush administration when the U.S. government wrote constitutions in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2005 creating Islamic Republics under sharia, thus achieving Al Qaeda’s regional objectives for them.

This is the price of having no deep understanding of the enemy, their strategies, nor their modus operandi.

As President Trump continues to push his agenda forward to secure the United States, the primary point of friction will come – at a critical time – from establishment Republicans.  The same people who helped propel our enemies into the halls of power under the Bush administration and who were mostly silent under the Obama administration – save a few heroes like Bachmann, Gohmert, and others – will continue along the road of blissful ignorance or direct hostility towards any aggressive actions to actually defeat the Islamic Movement.

Why is this important to average Americans?  Because it’s your safety.  It’s your future.

As UTT continues to state, this war will be won or lost at the local level.  Even if President Trump does everything he promised and acts flawlessly as our Commander in Chief, local and state police must carry the burden to identify and uproot the enemy from their communities.

Currently, they are not prepared to do it because they have not been trained to do it.  By and large, they cannot identify the threat and, therefore, cannot deal effectively with it.

This is UTT’s mission, and we are working with state and local officials to prepare them for the coming battle.  It is what we do.

This mission will have a much greater chance of success if those at the federal level also had a deep knowledge of this threat.

The Inside Story of How John Kerry Secretly Lobbied to Get CAIR Removed From UAE’s Terrorist Organization List

cairhamas2by Steven Emerson
IPT News
January 19, 2017

On Nov. 16, 2014, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) took the unusual step of designating the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), and the Muslim American Society (MAS) – as terrorist organizations.

They were among 83 groups named for their connections to the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood.

This outraged CAIR officials, who immediately began efforts to get their organization removed from the list. They found a powerful ally in Secretary of State John Kerry, who authorized State Department officials to meet regularly with UAE officials to lobbying on behalf of CAIR and MAS .

CAIR already had a sympathetic ear in the Obama administration, including the State Department, that had openly embraced and legitimized the entire spectrum of radical Islamist groups falsely posing as religious or civil rights groups, which both CAIR and MAS had done.

At a daily State Department press briefing two days after UAE released its list, a spokesman said that State does not “consider CAIR or MAS to be terrorist groups” but that it was seeking more information from UAE about their decision. He added that “as part of our routine engagement with a broad spectrum of faith based organizations, a range of U.S. government officials have met with officials of CAIR and MAS. We at the State Department regularly meet with a wide range of faith based groups to hear their views even if some of their views expressed at times are controversial.”

In making that admission, the State Department official had effectively affirmed the Obama Administration policy of embracing radical Islamist group under the euphemism of calling them “faith based groups.”

The UAE had good reason to designate CAIR, as records obtained by the FBI indicate it was created as front group for a Hamas support network. While CAIR bills itself as “the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization,” the reality is quite different.

Before helping launch CAIR, Executive Director Nihad Awad worked as public relations director for the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), a Hamas propaganda arm in the United States. A 2001 Immigration and Naturalization Service memo documented IAP’s support for Hamas and found that the “facts strongly suggest” that IAP was “part of Hamas’ propaganda apparatus.”

IAP was part of the “Palestine Committee,” created by the Muslim Brotherhood to support Hamas politically and financially. CAIR was added to the Palestine Committee’s roster just after its 1994 creation.

In 2008, the FBI cut off official contact with CAIR, citing evidence from the Holy Land Foundation terror funding trial which documented the connections between CAIR and its founders to Hamas.

In a letter to U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl, the FBI explained, “until we [the FBI] 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.”

During a 2003 Senate hearing, U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer, D-NY, said that CAIR is known “to have ties to terrorism.” In 2009 correspondence with the FBI, he wrote that cutting off contact with the Islamist group “should be government-wide policy.”

CAIR and its representatives, meanwhile, often espouse radical ideology and propagate the jihadist narrative that the United States is waging a “war on Islam.” Awad repeated that message as recently as September when he denounced legislation allowing the families of 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia.

CAIR officials often side with Hamas and other Palestinian terrorists.

Read more

UTT Throwback Thursday: On 9/11 In Steps the Enemy to Tell Us How to Fight the Enemy

bush-with-alamoudiUnderstanding the Threat, by John Guandolo, Sept. 8, 2016:

Thanks to Karl Rove and Grover Norquist, American President George W. Bush was able to turn to his left and right after the jihadi attacks on the United States on September 11, 2001 and find any of a number of Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas and/or Al Qaeda leaders (suit-wearing jihadis) to tell him how to fight the war.

bush-with-al-arian

khan-and-norquistRepublican strategist Grover Norquist and Muslim Brother Suhail Khan (who was working in the White House on 9/11).  Khan is the son of Mahboob Khan, one of the most prolific Muslim Brotherhood leaders in North America in the 1960’s to 1980’s.  Suhail also served as an assistant to two consecutive Secretaries of the Treasury with a Secret Clearance and continues to pass himself off as a “conservative Republican.”

bush-with-nihad-awad-and-saffuriPresident Bush’s visit to the Islamic Center of Washington (DC) after 9/11.  On the right is Hamas Leader Nihad Awad (CAIR), and on the left is Khalid Saffuri (deputy to Al Qaeda operative Alamoudi)

bush-with-imam-muzammil-siddiqiImam Muzammil Siddiqi, a senior MB leader in the U.S. – who is currently the Chairman of the Muslim Brotherhood’s Fiqh Council of North America – at the memorial for 9/11 victims at the National Cathedral on 9/14/01

If you want to know how and why America lost the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq – despite President Bush’s strong stand after 9/11 and our military’s heroic efforts and great battlefield victories – it is because every time the President of the United States, the Secretary of State, military Generals and Admirals, leaders in our national security apparatus, and others turned for advice on how to proceed in the war or in any of our counterterrorism matters domestically, they were talking to the enemy.

And we still are.

“Ikhwan-101” – Georgetown Profs Team Up With Suspected MB Front

1326by Abha Shankar
IPT News
January 7, 2016

Two of Georgetown University’s top faculty in religion are partnering with a private Virginia think tank long suspected of serving as a front for the Muslim Brotherhood.

The think tank in question, the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), twice has been the subject of law enforcement investigations, once during the 1980s and again starting in 2003. Its senior leaders were listed among “members and leaders of the IKHWAN [Muslim Brotherhood]” in the United States in records obtained by the IPT from a closed FBI investigation through a Freedom of Information Act request.

Georgetown professors John Voll and Jonathan Brown each are listed as faculty members at the Fairfax Institute, an IIIT school. Voll and Brown also occupy senior faculty positions at Georgetown’s Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU).

The center received a $20 million gift from Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal in 2005.

The Fairfax Institute offers certificates in Imam and Muslim Community Leadership and in Islamic Thought. That may sound benign on its face, but the Institute’s parent, the IIIT, long has touted the “Islamization of Knowledge,” a program which makes Islam the key to solving society’s ills.

In implementation plans, IIIT co-founder Ismail al-Faruqi made it clear his institute’s outreach was not about teaching Westerners about Islam. Rather, its purpose is to infuse superior Islamic principles to add revelation to Western academic pursuits which are based solely on “reasoning.”

While the Muslim community in the undeveloped world “is in many respects backward,” Faruqi wrote in 1982, “…in the respect of possessing the truth, the ideological statement of it which is most conducive to religious, ethical, and material prosperity at the same time, the ummah is second to none. Because of Islam, the ummah alone possesses the vision required for the felicity of humankind, for history to be as Allah (SWT) has desired it to be.”

During a 2010 lecture, Voll described Faruqi, a Muslim Brotherhood luminary who was murdered in 1986, as “a good case of the modern intellectual who is a believer and provides a good example for thinking about what it means to be a ‘believing intellectual’ in the modern era.”

ACMCU founding director John Esposito was a student of Faruqi’s at Temple University.

IIIT, located about 22 miles from Washington, D.C. in Herndon, Va., also was investigated for possible terror financing. A 2003 search warrant affidavit alleged that the think tank was part of a network of up to 100 non-profit and for-profit organizations, inter-related through corporate officers and holding companies that facilitated terrorist funding. Financial records reviewed by law enforcement officials exhibited “a convoluted web of multiple transactions between related corporations and charities that made it virtually impossible for federal investigators to ascertain where the money … ultimately went.”

Some of the money that was clearly traceable included direct payments to a Florida think-tank which then was home to at least four members of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad‘s Shura Council, in effect, its governing board. One of those directors, Ramadan Shallah, has led the terrorist group since late 1995.

Sami Al-Arian, a former University of South Florida professor who created the World and Islam Studies Enterprise (WISE), self-identified as the PIJ board’s secretary. Al-Arian also ran a charity called the Islamic Committee for Palestine (ICP) which wasdescribed as “the active arm of the Islamic Jihad Movement Palestine” but was called ICP in America “for security reasons.” ICP rallies routinely featured PIJ spiritual leader Abdel Aziz Odeh and PIJ imagery.

IIIT President Taha Jaber Al-Alwani “spoke at ICP conferences with Al-Arian, Shallah, Sheik Odeh (spiritual leader and co-founder of PIJ) and Sheik Rahman (the ‘Blind Sheik’ convicted of conspiracy to blow up New York tunnels and the United Nations in New York in October 1995). Inasmuch as ICP conferences were, in essence, PIJ conferences, Alwani has long been a supporter of PIJ,” the 2003 affidavit said.

In a 1992 letter to Al-Arian, Al-Alwani referred to WISE as “a part of us and an extension of us.” Records also list Al-Alwani as chairman of the WISE board of trustees.

In a 2014 IIIT promotional video, Voll says the institute helps American academics "have a more global view of Islam."

In a 2014 IIIT promotional video, Voll says the institute helps American academics “have a more global view of Islam.”

A look at past statements by Voll and Brown shows their consistent pattern of embracing and defending Islamists, including Al-Arian, who was deported from the United States a year ago and is believed to be in Turkey.

A 2007 article Voll co-authored with Esposito described Al-Arian as “a proud and committed American and Palestinian professor and activist” and claimed that both Al-Arian and the American justice system has become “casualties of the erosion of civil liberties post-9/11.”

Brown, likewise, has played down the threat from radical Islamists, and has alleged rising Islamophobia to have led to wrongful convictions in a number of federally-prosecuted terrorism cases.

Muslims care about a lot of issues, Brown said last May at a conference organized by the Islamist groups Muslim American Society and the Islamic Circle of North America. That includes events in Kashmir, the Palestinian cause and more. “Or whether it’s here in America, whether it’s Muslims targeted for entrapment by the Justice Department or whether it’s Muslims who are convicted of crimes that they didn’t commit because the justice system is biased against them. Because racism and stereotypes against Muslims are allowed to influence the outcome of trials.” (8:15 in the video)

This, he claimed, has a chilling effect on free speech.

“It’s scary to get up and speak out about Palestine, it’s scary to get up and speak about how Muslims who are accused of terrorism might not be guilty and we need to give them the benefit of the doubt.” (8:40 in the video)

In a July 2011 interview with The Egyptian Gazette, Brown dismissed any danger from Islamists gaining power in the Egyptian elections following the overthrow of President Hosni Mubarak: “I do not think life in Egypt will dramatically change if the president or ruling party are self-proclaimed ‘Islamists.’ Egypt is already a very Islamic society: no-one drinks in the street, people dress conservatively, even the financial system has to justify its operations in terms of Islam.”

“The country is too important to write off and this is not 1979,” he added. “The ‘Islamic threat’ so often touted by Western pundits has been undermined by factors like AK Party rule in Turkey, and it will be less frightening when people see that Egypt is not much different from before.”

But once in power, the Brotherhood moved to amend the Constitution to entrench its hold on government, and violently suppressed public protests. Brown was right to distinguish Egypt from Iran in 1979, though. Egypt, unlike the Islamic Republic, still had an independent military which forced the Islamists from power after spontaneous street demonstrations attracted millions of people demanding change.

Voll and Brown already enjoy ample interaction with Islamists through their Georgetown faculty posts.

The ACMCU had to postpone a program on “Egypt and the Struggle for Democracy” in the fall of 2013, after it was revealed that the only Coptic Christian panelist invited was a member of Egypt’s Nazi Party.

At a 2012 IamY (Inspiring American Muslim Youth) convention, Brown claimed Muslims were falsely implicated in terrorist cases and blamed Islamophobia for this. As an example, he cited the case of a Staten Island man who was “tried for including the Hizballah channel in a cable package he’s offering.” The Staten Island man, who Brown claimed was “not even doing anything…just offering a cable channel,” in factpleaded guilty to providing support to the terrorist group Hizballah and was sentenced to 5½ years in prison.

Brown further asserted that al-Qaida operative Tarek Mehanna was convicted “because he simply put up on his website some al-Qaida videos with translations.” Mehanna was sentenced to 17½ years in prison in 2012 on terrorism-related charges that included travel to the Middle East to obtain military-type training at a terrorist camp to prepare for jihad against U.S. interests, including American and allied troops stationed in Iraq.

He also criticized the long prison sentences meted out to several senior officials tied to the Holy Land Foundation for funneling millions of dollars to the U.S.-designated terrorist group Hamas: “You have people now, people who ran the Holy Land Foundation charity organization in this country in prison for 60-80 years. Underground, for what? Feeding orphans?” In 2008 a federal jury found all defendants in the trialguilty on all counts of helping finance Hamas.

Brown’s boss at Georgetown University, John Esposito, testified as an expert witness for the defense.

In comments provided to the IPT, Jeffrey Bale, an expert on violent political and religious extremism at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS), California, expressed concern at “the affiliation of Professors Voll and Brown with a school linked to the IIIT, a well-known component of the Muslim Brotherhood network in the U.S.”

“Both students and other observers who recognize the essentially anti-democratic agendas of such Islamist groups should be concerned about this formal affiliation with the Fairfax Institute because it is another indicator of the pro-Islamist biases of these particular academics,” Bale said.

Despite its known radical ties, IIIT continues to operate ostensibly as a legitimate academic institution that seeks to “bridge the intellectual divide between the Islamic tradition and Western civilization” through various funding and outreach programs with mainstream American universities and colleges and government-funded institutions.

In 2005, in line with its funding of WISE at USF in the 1990s, the Virginia think tank offered to endow a chair in Islamic Studies at the University of Central Florida outside Orlando. IIIT also made a $1.5 million grant to George Mason University in 2008 to help expand its Islamic studies program.

IIIT tax records list similar grants, including $25,000 to Georgetown University in 2010; $597,000 to Nazareth College in Rochester, N.Y. between 2008-2012 as well as an additional $500,000 gift for Nazareth to fund the IIIT Chair of Interfaith Studies; $25,000 to Clarion University Foundation in 2009; $5,000 to Binghamton University(The State University of New York) in 2009; and $10,000 to the Eastern Mennonite University in 2010.

In addition, IIIT signed a memorandum of agreement with Shenandoah University in Winchester, Va., to promote academic exchanges that included hosting a program on Islam in collaboration with the radical Muslim Student Association and Student Life’s Intercultural Programs at Shenandoah University.

Not every university has taken IIIT’s money, however. In 2008, Temple University – where Faruqi once taught Esposito – refused $1.5 million in funding from IIIT for a chair in Islamic studies after concerns were raised about IIIT’s alleged ties to terrorist organizations.

In addition to Georgetown professors serving on the faculty of the Fairfax Institute, the IPT investigation found that the Institute recently offered a course taught by instructors from Georgetown University’s The Bridge Initiative titled, “Understanding Islamophobia in America.”

“Students will learn about the history of the term ‘Islamophobia’ and its earliest manifestations; its parallels with similar prejudices that have affected other groups through time; the primary mechanisms that drive Islamophobia in the United States; its emergence in both liberal and conservative discourse; its manifestations in mainstream and social media; and creative ways to counter it,” a course syllabus posted on the institute’s website reads.

It comes as little surprise that the Initiative’s project director is John Esposito.

Al-Arian Saves One Last Lie for the Road

IPT News
February 5, 2015

906Sami Al-Arian boarded a commercial flight late Wednesday night from Washington Dulles International Airport to Turkey, ending a 20-year con in which he posed as a mere academic and advocate for Palestinian nationalism. In reality, he was a board member in a terrorist organization who lied to his supporters about his true identity over and over again.

As early as 1994, he denied any connection with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) during an interview with Steven Emerson, now the Investigative Project on Terrorism’s executive director. It was a story he clung to until 2006, when he pleaded guilty to conspiring to provide goods and services to the terrorist group. But even then, he never acknowledged his leadership role or his commitment to violent jihad that was captured on video and documents seized by federal investigators.

True to form, he issued one last statement before his deportation – a condition of that 2006 guilty plea – in which he cast himself as a victim of political persecution who did nothing more than espouse unpopular views.

“Today,” he wrote, “freedom of expression has become a defining feature in the struggle to realize our humanity and liberty. The forces of intolerance, hegemony, and exclusionary politics tend to favor the stifling of free speech and the suppression of dissent. But nothing is more dangerous than when such suppression is perpetrated and sanctioned by government.”

That heartfelt farewell message failed to mention the PIJ, or his role as the secretary of its Majlis Shura, or board of directors. FBI intercepts show that he spent most of 1994 fighting with officials in Iran to keep the PIJ intact, in order for it to kill more people.

It’s no wonder U.S. District Judge James Moody, who presided over Al-Arian’s 2005 criminal trial, called him a “master manipulator” during a 2006 sentencing hearing.

“The evidence was clear in this case that you were a leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad. You were on the board of directors and an officer, the secretary. Directors control the action of an organization, even the PIJ; and you were an active leader.”

Still, social media lit up with expressions of outrage over his case and sadness over his departure from the United States.

Al-Arian’s supporters embrace and adhere to a narrative of victimization. It’s a festival of ignorance, driven by a stubborn refusal to acknowledge the words that came out of his own mouth or were written by his own hand.

He was a well-regarded computer science professor at the University of South Florida. But he also took over a mosque in Tampa and named it for Ezzedin al-Qassam, the founding martyr of violent Palestinian nationalism. He created a charity and think tank that included three other PIJ Shura members.

During a 1991 fundraiser in Cleveland, Al-Arian sits passively as the local imam, Fawaz Damra, introduces him as the head of “the active arm of the Islamic Jihad Movement in Palestine,” which is called the Islamic Committee for Palestine in the United States “for security reasons.”

Al-Arian later claimed, and supporters easily accepted, that he later took Damra aside to correct that representation. But in his remarks that day, Al-Arian hailed the Islamic Jihad as the spark which triggered the Palestinian uprising in the 1980s. It started, he said, when PIJ operatives escaped from an Israeli jail.

“God, praise and glory be to Him, commands us to fight and commands us to jihad, because there is honor in it and because there is victory for Islam and victory for right over tyranny.”

In that same appearance, he urged protests against the United States over the Persian Gulf crisis and urged “Let us damn America. Let us damn Israel. Let us damn their allies until death.”

Damra, later convicted of naturalization fraud and deported for concealing his own links to PIJ and other terror associations, took the microphone back, urging donations “[f]or Islamic Jihad, I say it frankly: for Islamic Jihad … And whoever wants to write a check, he can write it in the name of the Islamic Committee for Palestine, “ICP” for short.

At a rally in Chicago five months later, Al-Arian again praised the PIJ role in sparking the Palestinian Intifada, and made clear where he thought it should lead.

These statements cannot be reconciled against Al-Arian’s long and well-crafted image as a peaceful advocate for Palestinians. The only recourse for supporters, then, is to pretend they do not exist.

That’s how The Intercept‘s Glenn Greenwald and Maz Hussain could describe Al-Arianas the victim of a “decade-long campaign of government persecution in which Al-Arian was systematically denied his freedom and saw his personal and professional life effectively destroyed.” It’s how the Muslim Legal Fund for America could say he was the victim of government persecution solely for “First Amendment activities advocating for Palestinian human rights.”

It’s how the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) could justify honoring Al-Arian and his family with a “Promoting Justice” award in November.

One of the foundations for the “persecution” claim was the mix of acquittals and hung-jury counts in Al-Arian’s 2005 trial. His plea agreement is cast as a way to spare his family further anguish. But in it, Al-Arian admits that he “performed services for the PIJ in 1995 [when an executive order made such support illegal] and thereafter.”

In addition, a similar case involving Hamas-support by a Texas-based charity with a similar original outcome ended with sweeping convictions following a retrial.

The verdict does not make the documents and statements showing overt PIJ support disappear. A key document Al-Arian and his supporters would like to wish away is thePalestinian Islamic Jihad’s bylaws. While Hamas openly published its charter shortly after its foundation, Israeli officials did not know PIJ had a similar document until federal agents seized it from Al-Arian in 1995.

Among the “political constants” defined in the document: “The rejection of any peaceful solution for the Palestinian Cause, and the affirmation of the jihad solution and the martyrdom style as the only option for liberation.” Its goals are quite clear.

Fax communication intercepted by the FBI showed Al-Arian was a PIJ board member. He stood for this. Until he acknowledges this reality, there is no reason to believe his views have moderated.

He hadn’t changed in 1995, when he hand-wrote a letter to a Kuwaiti official invoking a double suicide bombing to “try to extend true support for the jihad effort in Palestine so that operations such as these can continue.”

“Preserving the spirit and flame of jihad against the enemy is a general Islamic responsibility and cannot be left to rest upon the shoulders of the few among our nation,” he wrote.

He claimed he never sent the letter, but investigators found a copy in his home seven months later.

Ramadan Abdullah Shallah, one of the Shura members whose stay in America wassponsored by Al-Arian, emerged as the PIJ secretary general in Damascus nine months after those words were written. Shallah holds the same position today.

When reporters called to ask Al-Arian about his associate’s new job, he lied and claimed to be as surprised as anyone and suggested it was someone else with a similar name.

The lies didn’t end with the guilty plea or Judge Moody’s scorn. While serving out the remainder of his sentence, Al-Arian refused to testify before a federal grand jury in Virginia that was investigating terror financing. His plea agreement, he insisted, was predicated upon a promise that he would never have to “cooperate” with the government.

It didn’t matter that he and his attorneys could not point to a single reference to such a pledge in the plea agreement, during the 2006 hearing in which the guilty plea was accepted, or during his sentencing. In both hearings, judges specifically asked whether he acted due to any additional promises. He said no.

Despite the absence of any proof and two appellate court rulings against Al-Arian on the matter, U.S. District Judge Leonie Brinkema refused to either grant a defense motion to dismiss the case or let it proceed to trial. After five years of judicial inactivity, prosecutors dropped the contempt charge last summer, clearing the way for this week’s deportation.

1127He returned to political activity, however, showing up at pro-Muslim Brotherhood events in December 2013 and again last week when he attended a forum for a visiting delegation including Brotherhood officials at the National Press Club.

Al-Arian reportedly is in Istanbul, Turkey. While he had no previous connection to the state, Turkey has become a key operating base for Hamas, a rival Palestinian terrorist group. Hamas operative Saleh Al-Arouri is suspected of plotting several terrorist attacks from his base there, and Hamas political chief Khaled Meshaal reportedly moved therein recent weeks from Qatar.