President Obama Meets With Muslim Public Affairs Council Prior To Middle East Trip

From the Global Muslim Daily Report
March 14, 2013

The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) has announced that the director of its Washington office met in an “intimate” meeting with President Obama to discuss issues pertaining to his upcoming trip to the Middle East, including Israel. According to the MPAC announcement:

March 11, 2013, MPAC along with other Muslim and Arab American leaders met with President Barack Obama to discuss issues that will pertain to his upcoming trip to the Middle East. Haris Tarin, the Director of MPAC’s Washington, DC, office, attended the intimate meeting with the President, as he prepares his agenda for this visit to Palestine, Jordan and Israel. The group discussed with the President and his senior advisers how his trip can be a catalyst for restarting the dialogue that will lead to the implementation of a comprehensive peace plan in the coming months. Ideas were also presented on how to engage the Palestinian people, especially the burgeoning youth population. Tarin and others shared with the President some of the important work being done by the Palestinian people in achieving their aspirations for an independent and viable Palestinian state. The group also made  recommendations on key messages and policy issues that must be considered by the Americans, Israelis, Palestinians and other people in the region to ensure a just and sustainable peace process. =‘This meeting is an important first step by the President and his administration in ensuring that reliable voices of Palestinians and other concerned group and people in the region are heard,’ Tarin said. We are heartened that the President is beginning his second term with a trip to the region, and we hope that we can build a constituency for peace-making here in the United States and ensure that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not a zero-sum issue in our domestic discourse.”

Other media reports indicate that Presidential meeting also included representatives of the Arab American Institute, the American Task Force on Palestine, the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee and the American Federation of Ramallah Palestine.

Full Article: http://globalmbreport.org/?p=8033

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS: This trend by the Obama administration to have face-to-face meetings with the groups  mentioned provides an air of legitimacy to them, their causes and goals.  This should be a major concern, considering past positions taken by said groups. Founded in 1988, MPAC has a history of defending supporters of terrorism and even co-sponsoring events advocating anti-Israel rhetoric and violence.  Far from being a supporter of law enforcement efforts to fight terrorism, MPAC has publicly labeled them a “war on Islam”.  It repeatedly dismisses investigations and convictions of U.S. terrorist fund-raisers as the “result of people who are against Islam and Muslims.”  The Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT), reports that MPAC has also held a past position of defending it’s representatives for praising Osama bin Laden.  The IPT site offers a  quick reference dossier on MPAC.

Other groups at the meeting were the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) and Arab American Institute (AAI).  Both are supporters of Hamas and Hezbollah and very anti-Israel.  Having MPAC, ADC an AAI advise President Obama on how to deal with issues in the Middle East shows a very dangerous trend in U.S. foreign policy initiatives.

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