Archive | May 2014

To Tweet Or Not To Tweet? An Islamist Question

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U.S. Muslim Brotherhood Likely Influenced Senate Defense Bill

The Panama City Florida connections suggests a significant U.S. Muslim Brotherhood leadership element still operating in that area.

A recent report in the Al-Monitor advised that Syrian opposition lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill  were “paying off”. The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) now, “authorizes the Secretary of Defense to provide equipment, training, supplies, and defense services to assist vetted members of the Syrian opposition.”

According to the article:

“This is a momentous occasion,” Syrian National Coalition (SNC) adviser Oubai Shahbandar told Al-Monitor. “This is the first stop in clearly defining the convergence of American national security interests with strengthening the Free Syrian Army [FSA], which is actively fighting al-Qaeda and actively fighting Iranian-backed international terrorist forces in Syria.”

The details of the aid were not clear at the time the article was written.

The lobbying efforts mentioned come from a variety of Syrian special interest groups with strong U.S. Muslim Brotherhood ties:

National Coalition of Syrian Revolution and Opposition Forces – This group includes the Syrian National Coalition as well as representatives of the  Muslim Brotherhood controlled, Syrian National Council including Syrian-American Louay Safi.  The U.S. lead representative is Najib Ghadbian. Ghadbian has been identified as having U.S. Muslim Brotherhood ties  through his membership with the Center for the Study of Islam & Democracy (CSID) in Washington, DC, and the Syrian American Council (see below).

Syrian Support Group (SSG) – The group is licensed by the U.S. Government to provide a range of aid and support to moderate opposition in Syria.  According to a report by  The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Watch (GMBDW), SSG Chairman Mazen Asbahi has numerous ties to U.S. Muslim Brotherhood groups – strong enough to cause him to resign from then-Senator Obama’s presidential campaign in 2008.  SSG Vice-Chairman Majd Abbar is reported by the Clarion Project to be associated with the Qatar Foundation, a group closely tied to the Muslim Brotherhood.

Syrian American Council (SAC) – One of the largest American based Syrian lobbying organizations. It’s president is Talal Sunbulli.  Sunbulli is listed as the Syrian coordinator in the international phone book of Muslim Brotherhood members seized by federal investigators during the Holy Land Foundation investigation.  SAC’s chairman, Hussam Ayloush, is the executive director of CAIR California.   SAC Board member Mohammed Nahas (Dr. Mohammad N. Al-Nahhas)  is a former board member of the Bay County Islamic Society (BCIS)**

Syrian Emergency Task Force (SETF)composed of  Syrian American professionals from across the United States.  SETF Director Mouaz Moustafa facilitated Sen. John McCain’s May 2013 trip to Syria.  The GMBDW reported that  of seven board members named, four are known to have a history of close ties to the US Muslim Brotherhood.    SETF Board member Dr. Hashem Mubarak served as a past president of the  Bay County Islamic Society (BCIS)**

** the Bay County Islamic Society (BCIS) was part of the US Muslim Brotherhood network established in Panama City, Florida by the late and former head of the US Muslim Brotherhood Ahmed Elkadi

In addition to the two doctors mentioned above, Panama City, Florida is home to Syrian-born Dr. Yahia Rahim (Y. Abdul-Raheem), identified as the economic head of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood from documents seized during the Holy Land Foundation investigation.  As previously reported by Cultural Jihad, Dr. Rahim  is currently listed as the NAIT contact for the Bay County Islamic Society and is a director of the the Panama City Advanced School Corporation.  The school’s head, Rashid Karaman (Qurman), was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial, attachment A, part III, no. 46.

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:   The Panama City Florida connections suggests a significant U.S. Muslim Brotherhood leadership element still operating in that area.  As reported here, Tampa’s OakTree Institute,  another Brotherhood affiliated group, also has a BCIS  member on it’s Board of Directors – Ahmed Abobaker Mohamed.  It would be a safe assumption that the above groups will have significant input with the vetting of Syrian opposition members receiving assistance under the NDAA.


 

Report raises concerns of Muslim Brotherhood’s links to Canadian groups

Muslim Brotherhood activities need to be probed in Canada, report says

From: CBC News, May 27, 2014

The Canadian government should consider investigating the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood, which has entrenched itself in North America and represents a greater systemic threat than al-Qaeda, according to a newly released report on the group.

“The aim of the group in North America is to weaken and destroy the free and open societies within Canada and the U.S.A. from within and replace them with the heavily politicized views of [founder] Hassan Banna, Sayyid Qutb and the Muslim Brotherhood,” according to the report, entitled The Muslim Brotherhood in North America (Canada/U.S.).

The report, written by Tom Quiggin, a court expert on terrorism and member of the Terrorism and Security Experts of Canada Network, raises concerns about the Brotherhood’s alleged ties to Canadian organizations, some which have either been accused of being terrorist organizations or alleged to have links to extremist groups.

Full Story: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/muslim-brotherhood-activities-need-to-be-probed-in-canada-report-says-1.2654636

Related: http://news.nationalpost.com/2014/05/27/muslim-brotherhood-has-a-significant-presence-in-canada-says-study-urging-probe-into-the-group/

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:  There does not appear to be an “official” website for the The Terrorism and Security Experts of Canada Network with the exception of a blog.  Reading the report is a bit awkward.  The 11 sections are posted on the blog page , in the right column.

All that aside, the information in the report comes from a variety of public sources.   Good information, but nothing really new.  With the increased scrutiny of the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.K., perhaps it will sway a few folks to be a bit more skeptical.  Unfortunately, past efforts/reports in the United States have yet to cause much of a ground swell and Canadians tend to be even more politically correct than their neighbors to the south. 

Recently the Canadian version of CAIR, National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM)/CAIR.CAN,   filed a defamation lawsuit against the prime minister for linking the group to terrorism during comments in Jan 2014.

Current estimates place the Canadian Muslim population at over 3% as of 2011.   The U.S. estimate is 0.6%.

 

Social Sharia: Twitter submits

In Hollywood Hotel Protest: Cue the Clueless we mentioned that Kindom Holdings had a significant stake in Twitter.   With that in mind, take note of the following news:

Twitter Agrees to Block ‘Blasphemous’ Tweets in Pakistan

From: New York Times
By: Robery Mackey, May 22,2014

At least five times this month, a Pakistani bureaucrat who works from a colonial-era barracks in Karachi, just down the street from the former home of his country’s secularist founder, Mohammed Ali Jinnah, asked Twitter to shield his compatriots from exposure to accounts, tweets or searches of the social network that he described as “blasphemous” or “unethical.”

All five of those requests were honored by the company, meaning that Twitter users in Pakistan can no longer see the content that so disturbed the bureaucrat, Abdul Batin of the Pakistan Telecommunications Authority: crude drawings of the Prophet Muhammad, photographs of burning Qurans, and messages from a handful of anti-Islam bloggers and an American porn star who now attends Duke University.

The blocking of these tweets in Pakistan — in line with the country-specific censorship policy Twitter unveiled in 2012 — is the first time the social network has agreed to withhold content there. A number of the accounts seemed to have been blocked in anticipation of the fourth annual “Everybody Draw Muhammad Day” on May 20.

This censorship comes as challenges to Pakistan’s draconian blasphemy law have become increasingly deadly, amid a flurry of arrests, killings and assassination attempts on secularists.

Full Story: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/22/world/asia/twitter-agrees-to-block-blasphemous-tweets-in-pakistan.html

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:  The impact of having a company that is Sharia compliant holding the purse strings is obvious.

Boston Bombing: Lone Wolf Theory Doubtful

 “These relatively sophisticated devices would have been difficult for the Tsarnaevs to fabricate successfully without training or assistance from others”
– U.S. Justice Department filing

 

FBI Feared Boston Bombers ‘Received Training’ And Aid From Terror Group, Docs Say

From: ABC News
By: James Gordon Meek, May 22, 2014

Prosecutors seeking a death penalty conviction of accused Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on Wednesday said the FBI at the time of his arrest last year believed he and his brother Tamerlan had been trained by a terrorist group because of the sophistication of their weapons and tradecraft.

The Chechen immigrants are alleged to have built the two pressure cooker improvised explosive devices that detonated Monday, April 15, 2013 near the race’s finish line, killing three Bostonians and wounding more than 260 other marathon spectators.

“These relatively sophisticated devices would have been difficult for the Tsarnaevs to fabricate successfully without training or assistance from others,” the U.S. Justice Department said in a filing that opposed defense lawyers’ efforts to have Dzhokar Tsarnaev’s hospital bed confessions tossed out of the case.

Could the Boston Bombers Have Been Stopped?

Counterterrorism sources have said that investigators have been unable to find any hard evidence of any training or assistance.

But ABC News reported last month that many senior current and former counterterrorism officials — including former Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis, Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul and former Joint IED Defeat Organization director Army Lt. Gen. Michael Barbero — remain skeptical that the Tsarnaevs built their bombs solely from instructions they found posted online.

Full Story: http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/fbi-feared-boston-bombers-received-training-aid-terror/story?id=23819429

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:  One aspect to all this that tends to get glossed over is the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) connection.   A 2014 House Homeland Security Committee report mentions that the FSB had contacted the FBI and CIA several times in  2011 with concerns the older Tsarnaev brother, Tamerlan, had become radicalized.  The Russians advised that Tamerlan had expressed a desire to travel to the Palestinian territories to participate in Jihad but decided not to go since he did not speak Arabic.  FSB had requested that they be notified if Tamerlan attempted to travel to Russia. 

In January 2012, unbeknown to the FBI,  Tamerlan did travel to Russia, spending time with family in Makhachkala, Dagestan – an area that borders Chechnya.  Several sources told congressional investigators that Tamerlan had met with an Islamist insurgent recruiter in Dagestan, U.S. Embassy investigators in Moscow state there is no evidence to support any meeting. 

Tamerlan’s family in Russia has reported ties to a group known as “Union of the Just” – a regional formation of  Hizb-ut-Tahrir (HuT), a Sunni Muslim organization that seeks a unitary Islamic state or caliphate.   Outlawed in Russia and several other countries, HuT operates in North America as Hizb-ut-Tahrir America (HAT).

In 2009, The Investigative Project on Terrorism reported:

Hizb ut-Tahrir has not been designated a terrorist group by the U.S. government and it insists it is only interested in instituting radical change by nonviolent means. But HT’s alumni include 9/ll mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the late Iraqi terrorist leader Abu Musab Zarqawi and would-be Hamas suicide bombers, and the group’s pro-jihadist rhetoric has led critics to label it a “conveyor belt for terrorists.”

The Russians obviously knew of the Tsarnaev family’s radical ties prompting the FSB request. 

Tamerlan returned to the U.S. in July 2012 and on April 15,2013, he and his brother Dzhokhar exploded 2 pressure cooker bombs that killed 3 and injured over 260 people during the Boston Marathon.

Some related links:

For Boston Marathon related articles on Cultural Jihad – CLICK HERE

 

 

 

 

 

The Islamaphobe label – trumping common sense

Bring  the label to a discussion or debate and your opponents tend to disengage, afraid to be charged with a “thought crime”.  It’s a tactic frequently used by those lacking  facts and/or logic to support their argument or cause.

A recent opinion article by Qasim Rashid on Time.com, “Debunking the Extremist Myth That Islam is Anti-Jewish” caught our eye.   The article is in response to  recent anti-Islamic bus ads in Washington D.C. by the American Freedom Defense Initiative.

It wasn’t the issue of the ads, Rashid’s book plug, or even the selected Qur’an versus he uses that stood out.  It was the second sentence that started with …

Islamophobes are fabricating the myth

While Mr. Rashid probably wanted the reader to focus on the primary topic of his article, he  failed in this case.   In fact, he  took away from whatever message he was hoping to deliver by using a label designed to silence all who dare disagree. 

Who exactly created – or should we say fabricated – the  term “Islamophobia” is subject to debate.

Some claim it was created  about 20 years ago by the International Institute for Islamic Thought (IIIT) as a  label designed to feed on western societies’ tendency to fear being stigmatized based on bigotry.  The other claim is that it was originally coined by Iranian fundamentalists in an effort to make Islam inviolate. 

The bottom line:  the word was created by Islamists as a weapon to be wielded in an attempt to silence critics. 

Civil right’s groups have used this tactic successfully with the term “racist”.  The gay/lesbian lobbies with “homophobia.”  Terms that work as trump cards in a society so preoccupied with being politically correct that common sense can be lost.  Bring  the label to a discussion or debate and your opponents tend to disengage, afraid to be charged with a “thought crime”.  It’s a tactic frequently used by those lacking  facts and/or logic to support their argument or cause.

Just as civil rights charlatans need to push claims of racism in order to gain capital for their agenda, Islamists need to spread the perception of Islamaphobia.  It allows the support base to rally around a collective victim hood.  As “victims” in western society, political clout can be gathered that opens doors leading to footholds at varying levels of policy making.  This was pointed out in Boston Bombings: CAIR’s predicted response and real agenda and Boston Bombing: cue smoke and mirrors.

Keep in mind that we are referring to a religious group – not a race or ethnic minority.  Current estimates indicate Muslims (followers of the Islamic religion) make up 0.6% of the U.S. population, yet Islamic special interest groups have managed to obtain significant input and influence in matters of  law enforcement and national security.  Homeland Security and the Department of Justice have re-written training/procedural materials so as not to offend followers of Islam.  Communities instruct police departments and service agencies on how to be sensitive of the special needs of Islamic followers.  There does not appear to be similar policies nationwide to address the special needs of Protestants, Catholics, Mormons, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists or Atheists.

In pushing the concept of victim hood, groups such as the Council on America-Islamic Relations (CAIR) would lead you to believe that Muslims in America are constantly persecuted by law enforcement and discriminated against with Islamophobia spreading  across the country.  CAIR has a special office dedicated to combating it and even publishes an annual report, that Cultural Jihad highlighted last year.

The FBI Hate Crime statistics for 2012 indicate that of the reported 1,340 victims of  anti-religious incidents, 11.6 percent were victims of an anti-Islamic bias.  In comparison, 62.4 percent were victims of an offender’s anti-Jewish bias and 6.4 percent were victims of an anti-Catholic bias.  A very important factor with these statistics:  CAIR is very aggressive in responding to and labeling crimes against Muslims and their property as “hate crimes”.  This tends to  skew numbers as anti-Islamic bias becomes over-reported while other reporting groups are traditionally under-reported.

Questionable crime statistics aside, what about the general atmosphere of of how Muslim’s are received and treated in America?

In 2010, CNN featured a report on 2 Muslims traveling 1300 miles across America, visiting 30 mosques in 30 days.  According to a highlight:

They discover a nation — not of intolerance — but one that embraces them

The only real hostility they apparently encountered was by other Muslims at a mosque in Mobile, AL.   One of the travelers even commented how he prejudged non-Muslims he encountered and had to put aside some preconceived notions he had.    Could it be possible that pushing a concept of islamaphobia actually encourages bigoted behavior by Muslims and the unfair stereotyping of non-Muslims?

For another perspective on islamaphobia in America, there is always this 2011 video commentary by Pat Condell:

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Back to Qasim Rashid‘s article in which he claims it is a myth that Islam is anti-Jewish.  A few passages from the Qur’an for reflection on this:

O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people. – Qur’an (5:51)

Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the Religion of Truth, from among the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. – Qur’an (9:29)

And the Jews say: Ezra is the son of Allah; and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah; these are the words of their mouths; they imitate the saying of those who disbelieved before; may Allah destroy them; how they are turned away! – Qur’an (9:30)

Apologists may claim these passages are taken out of context … it was during a time of war and does not apply to the Jews and Christians of today.

Modern historical facts paint a different picture:

– hardly a myth that Haj Amin al-Husseini was aligned with Hitler’s Nazi Germany.

– The Hamas charter identifies itself as part of the Muslim Brotherhood and calls for the destruction of Israel and killing Jews.  The funding and support of Hamas has been a main priority of most Islamic relief efforts (i.e. Holy Land Foundation, Helping Hand, etc. ).  Hamas sponsored children’s television has promoted anti-Jewish sentiments including “shoot the Jews”

– Saudi Arabia, an Islamic state and location of Mecca – the most sacred place and cradle of Islam – tends to discourage Jews from entering the country.  While the official Saudi position is that they do not ban Jews, there are a number of reports that Saudi authorities make it extremely difficult.  A 2012 U.S. Department of State publication advises that in Saudi death/injury judgements, Jews and Christians are only entitled to amounts 50% of what a Muslim would receive.  The report further states:

Textbooks for grades 10, 11, and 12 – slated for review and reform in 2013 – retained inflammatory and anti-Semitic material. For example, these textbooks stated that apostates from Islam should be killed if they do not repent within three days of being warned, and described Islamic minorities and Christians as heretics. Descriptions of Jews and Christians as apes and swine remained. These textbooks also stated that treachery is a permanent characteristic of non-Muslims, especially Jews, propagated conspiracy theories that international organizations such as Masons support Zionism, and presented historical forgeries, such as the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, as fact.

California bank cuts off money transfers to Somalia, other African countries

The World Bank estimates that immigrants will send home $436 billion this year.

Refugee Resettlement Watch

Editors note:  I’ve been away so hopefully will be able to catch up with the news in a bunch of short posts this morning.

“Somali pirate” greeted by Rep. Keith Ellison in forum to protect money transfer system to Africa. http://www.minnpost.com/community-sketchbook/2014/05/actor-barkhad-abdi-joins-ellison-protect-money-transfer-system-somali-c

The banks (and the feds) fear, of course, that the money being sent from Mom & Pop money transfer companies will end up in the hands of terrorists.

You have to sign up to get the full story at Foreign Policy, but here is how the story begins thanks to blogger Michele Kearney:

Rules designed to keep money out of the hands of terrorists could soon cut off support to millions of ordinary East Africans too. Last week, another financial institution — Merchants Bank of California — started closing accounts belonging to companies that collect money from African immigrants in the United States and send it…

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