Islam “Awareness” in Wyoming
The scheduled featured speaker is Prof. Muhammad Shakir, Co-Imam of the Islamic Center of Fort Collins, Colorado:
- The Islamic Center of Fort Collins (ICFC) was named in a 2010 New York Times article about Anwar al-Awlaki, the American Muslim convert who later became an Al-Qaeda leader in Yemen:
” … Meanwhile, at the Islamic Center of Fort Collins, the little mosque where volunteers took turns giving the Friday sermon, Mr. Awlaki discovered a knack for preaching. If he could boast of no deep scholarship, he knew the Koran and the sayings of the prophet, spoke fluent English and had a light touch.”
- The ICFC has hosted radical Islamists speakers including Imam Siraj Wahhaj and Mahdi Bray.
- It has been reported that the ICFC distributes publications by a several Islamist groups like the Al-Furqaan Foundation, the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY) and Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA).
The MSA at the University of Wyoming bylaws clearly spell out its affiliations with the national MSA as well as the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) and Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). The chapter has hosted a number of controversial Islamist speakers in the past.
COMMENT/ANALYSIS: This type of open house style function is typical among many of the MSA organizations across the country. We highlighted one last year in Maine, “Islamic Center features Islam and terrorism – Bangor Maine“. This year the Maine group’s featured speaker was Corey Saylor, from the Muslim Brotherhood front group CAIR.
As we reported in Muslim Students Assoc at LSU — connecting the dots on the Gulf Coast, several MSA members and leaders have been linked to jihadist and terror related activities.
The overall mission behind most of these awareness campaigns is to facilitate Da’wah, the proselytizing or preaching of Islam. It is one of the roles of MSA but reason behind the campaigns is seldom promoted that way.