Tag Archive | Saudi Arabia

New University of Florida Islamic Center launch to feature Muslim Brotherhood supporter

With Professor Esposito’s appearance at the UF center’s launch, expect future funding/influence from Prince Talal as has been seen at Harvard and Georgetown.

UF Preparing To Launch Islamic Studies Center

From: The Gainesville SunBy Jeff Schweers, August 30, 2014

The University of Florida will soon have a Center for Global Islamic Studies.
 
The establishment of the center was recently approved by the university and will be announced to the UF Board of Trustees when it meets this week, said Terje Ostebo, assistant professor at the Center for African Studies and the Department of Religion.
 
“We are very excited about this,” Ostebo told The Sun via email. “There are very few similar programs in the Southeast, and virtually none in Florida. This center will contribute to putting UF on the map.”

 

the article further notes:

The official launch of the center will be Sept. 18-19, with a conference on “Global Islam and the Quest for Public Space,” he said.The conference will feature John Esposito, a religion professor at Georgetown University and founding director of the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding in the Walsh School of Foreign Service.
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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:  As noted by The Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Watch  (GMBDW), Professor Esposito has espoused views consistent with Muslim Brotherhood doctrine and has at least a dozen past or present affiliations with global Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas organizations.  A report by the Investigative Project on Terrorism notes that Esposito has frequently made statements defending Islamic terror groups and downplaying the threat of Islamist violence.

Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal is part of the Saudi Royal family and CEO of Kingdom Holding Company, an investment group that has significant interests in a number of media outlets as well as Twitter.   He has provided significant donations to U.S. Muslim Brotherhood groups such as Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) as well as towards U.S. colleges/universities to promote Islamic studies.   His monetary support ($20 million) to the Georgetown University Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (CCMU) founded by Esposito resulted in the center being renamed to the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding.

In 2008 it was reported that Prince Talal ” made numerous financial contributions to a pan-Islamic interfaith dialog organization that is closely tied to the global Muslim Brotherhood.”  In 2013, Prince Talal met with the Secretary-General of the Muslim World League (MWL) to discuss funding matters.  According to GMBDW:

The Muslim World League was established in 1962 as a means for the propagation of Saudi “Wahabbi” Islam. Muslim Brothers played an important role in its founding and the League has always been strongly associated with the Brotherhood. US government officials have testified that MWL has been linked to supporting Islamic terrorist organizations globally and the organization has a long history of anti-Semitism.

The Prince has a keen interest in U.S. colleges and universities.  With Professor Esposito’s appearance at the UF center’s launch, expect future funding/influence from Prince Talal as has been seen at Harvard and Georgetown.   In 2009, Yale selected Muna Abu Sulayman as a world fellow.  Suluayman is the daughter of Dr. Abdul Hamid Abu Sulayman, described by GMBDW as “one of the most important figures in the history of the global Muslim Brotherhood”.  She was also the founding Secretary General of the Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation.

The Muslim Brotherhood (MB) has a history of focusing on a presence on U.S. colleges/universities through various groups.  In 1963 the Muslim Student’s Association (MSA) was formed by Muslim Brotherhood members at the University of Illinois and can now be found on many college campuses.  In our report on Tampa’s Oaktree Institute we noted that MB groups in the U.S. work closely with youth and student organizations to educate and groom the next generation of cultural jihadis.

RELATED: Georgetown University’s Wahhabi Front – a 2008 article by Patrick Poole about the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding

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Saudi Arabia looking for U.S. to confront ISIS threat

Saudi Arabia does not engage and maintain relationships with the west as a friend but as a useful tool to protect their own self-interests.

Saudi king warns West will be jihadists’ next target

Jeddah (Saudi Arabia) (AFP) – King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia has warned that the West will be the next target of the jihadists sweeping through Syria and Iraq, unless there is “rapid” action.

“If we ignore them, I am sure they will reach Europe in a month and America in another month,” he said in remarks quoted on Saturday by Asharq al-Awsat daily and Saudi-backed Al-Arabiya television station.

“Terrorism knows no border and its danger could affect several countries outside the Middle East,” said the king who was speaking at a welcoming ceremony on Friday for new ambassadors, including a new envoy from Saudi ally the United States.

The Islamic State (IS) jihadist group has prompted widespread concern as it advances in both Syria and Iraq, killing hundreds of people, including in gruesome beheadings and mass executions.

Lack of action would be “unacceptable” in the face of the phenomenon, King Abdullah said.

“You see how they (jihadists) carry out beheadings and make children show the severed heads in the street,” he said, condemning the “cruelty” of such acts.

“It is no secret to you, what they have done and what they have yet to do. I ask you to transmit this message to your leaders: ‘Fight terrorism with force, reason and (necessary) speed’.”

President Barack Obama has yet to decide whether the United States should launch raids against positions held by the Islamic State jihadist group in Syria to follow US air strikes on IS activities in Iraq.

Full Article: http://news.yahoo.com/saudi-king-warns-west-jihadists-next-target-093701543.html

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:  King Abdullah’s warning should be heeded, but the message serves another purpose.  He wants to sway the west (read: the United States) to take military action against ISIS/IS (Islamic State) on behalf of his country.   Saudi Arabia does not engage and maintain relationships with the west as a friend but as a useful tool to protect their own self-interests.  As noted in this report,  ISIS/IS poses a very serious threat to the Saudi monarchy.  The irony being that elements within the Kingdom have been directly responsible for supporting jihadist groups – many that have joined ISIS/IS.   The Saudi’s and other oil rich Middle East nations need to get off their collective arses and use all the military hardware we have supplied over the years to engage the jihadi threat they are facing.

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.

Hollywood Hotel Protest: Cue the Clueless

… welcome to “islamaphobes” vs “homophobes”

Last week, celebrities were protesting and demonstrating across from the Beverley Hills Hotel over the implementation of Sharia law by the Sultan of Brunei.  The hotel is being targeted because it is owned by an investment group controlled by the Sultan.   Here are a few quotes reported by CNN:

“We’re just making people aware,” Jay Leno, who was among the demonstrators, told CNN. “It’s not a political issue. This is not something that’s debatable. … It’s people being stoned to death,” he said.

“We, the IWMF, can no longer hold an event at a venue whose owner stands for the violation of the very human rights we fight for,” Elisa Lees Munoz, executive director of the International Women’s Media Foundation, said in a statement.

“I won’t be visiting the Hotel Bel-Air or the Beverly Hills Hotel until this is resolved,” Ellen DeGeneres tweeted to her 28.8 million followers.

There have been no reported protests or boycotts at The Plaza, New York  or Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts.  Both of these come under Kingdom Holdings, an investment company run by His Royal Highness, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal of Saudi Arabia. According to the Saudi Arabia embassy website:

Saudi Arabia is an Islamic state, its judicial system is based on Islamic law (Shari’ah) for both criminal and civil cases.

As pointed out in the Washington Post, Saudi Arabia’s judicial system is well established,   providing an “in-place” example of what Brunei is implementing: 

Under the country’s interpretation of sharia law, a married man engaging in sodomy or any non-Muslim who commits sodomy with a Muslim can be stoned to death.

Saudi Arabia’s Kingdom Holdings also has interests in the following entertainment outlets:

20th Century
Fox

Disney
Sony Pictures
FX

All big names and responsible for many paychecks in the entertainment industry. 

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:  There have been some rumblings that this may be the big wake-up call for people in America to realize the threats Islamists and a sharia legal system pose to western society.  Doubtful.    The gay/lesbian community has significant influence in the entertainment industry.  It is apparently upset about a hotel in their backyard they just learned has ties to a homophobic culture … welcome to “islamaphobes” vs “homophobes”.  

Sharia law and hudud punishments have been in place in Saudi Arabia for a very long time and far from being  secret.  If celebrities were really outraged by “…  It’s people being stoned to death,”  the holdings of the Saudi Royal family would be the main focus.  

Maybe Jay Leno, Ellen DeGeneres and others will start a fund to help all the local hospitality workers being affected by their actions.  Also doubtful. 

Ms. DeGeneres’ tweet to 28.8 million followers? Kingdom Holdings owns a substantial portion of  Twitter.

An Inconvenient Moment: Sen McCain’s Town Hall Meeting

The supposition that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons hardly trumps sharing the bed with those responsible for the 3,000 lives lost on September 11, 2001.

During a recent town hall meeting, a woman claiming Syrian rebels killed her cousin confronts Sen. John McCain over his support of Syrian rebels and planned U.S. military bombing.

A key point she brings up is the proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran that has made Syria the battle ground.   Saudi Arabia is pushing very strongly for the U.S. to attack the Assad regime – similar to what they did resulting in the invasion of Iraq.

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COMMENT: The Saudi/Al Qaeda connection is well documented, but apparently not a U.S. concern.  The Obama administration and his political supporters (i.e. Sen. McCain) need to be challenged on this.  The supposition that the Assad regime has used chemical weapons hardly trumps sharing the bed with those responsible for the 3,000 lives lost on September 11, 2001.

Special Travel Benefit for Saudis a “Slap in the Face”

An agreement to accept Saudi Arabian applicants into the Global Entry trusted traveler program drew little notice when it was announced in January. Now, some officials question why the country merits such a benefit –  IPT News

From IPT News
March 20, 2013

Saudi Arabia, the nation which produced 15 of the 19 hijackers in the 9/11 attacks, is about to become one of a handful of countries whose travelers can bypass normal passport controls at major U.S. airports. Sources tell the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) that this will mark the first time that the Saudi government will have a direct role in vetting who is eligible for getting fast-tracked for entry into the United States.

An agreement to accept Saudi Arabian applicants into the Global Entry trusted traveler program drew little notice when it was announced in January. Now, some officials question why the country merits such a benefit – which is similar to a theme park “fast pass” to avoid long lines – when other allies like Germany and France are not yet included. A program for Israeli travelers was reached last May but has not been implemented.

Travelers approved for the program can skip the normal Customs and Border Protection (CBP) lines starting next year and enter the country after providing their passports and fingerprints at a kiosk. Only Canada, Mexico, South Korea and the Netherlands currently enjoy the benefit, although pilot programs could expand it to a handful of others.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced the agreement in January after meeting with Saudi Interior Minister Prince Mohammed bin Nayef. It “marks another major step forward in our partnership,” Napolitano said at the time. “By enhancing collaboration with the Government of Saudi Arabia, we reaffirm our commitment to more effectively secure our two countries against evolving threats while facilitating legitimate trade and travel.”

Details about how the plan will work with the Saudis have not been released. Nayef’s ministry, however, will be responsible for screening which applicants will be considered when the pilot program begins next year. It’s not known whether the Saudi ministry will share its raw intelligence about applicants with its American counterparts. What is known, based on information provided by a Homeland Security source, is that each individual who makes it into the program will have been vetted by both the CPB and by the Saudi Interior Ministry against various databases.

The Department of Homeland Security declined to make anyone available to answer questions about Saudi Arabia’s inclusion in the Global Entry program after repeated requests throughout last week, and after indicating someone would provide more details.

That is cause for concern, given lingering questions about possible Saudi support for some of the 9/11 hijackers and given the Ministry of Interior (MOI)’s inconsistent record on sharing its intelligence on suspected terrorists and terror financiers. Additionally, recent studies by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) identified significant problems in the way DHS components use computer systems and process intelligence for posting watch list lookouts and overseas screening of foreign nationals.

Once accepted into Global Entry, travelers can enjoy the faster border entry for five years.

A memo obtained by the Investigative Project on Terrorism said Saudi applicants “must meet the individual vetting criteria of both CBP and the MOI, and successfully complete vetting by each side against information available in various law enforcement, customs, immigration, criminal, intelligence, and terrorist databases.”

That doesn’t bring confidence to those who have investigated Saudi Arabian connections to the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Rep. Frank Wolf, R-Va., whose district lost more than 70 people during the attack on the Pentagon, called the pact a bad idea. He also stated that he had not previously heard about the deal.

“I think you have radical Wahhabism in certain elements in Saudi Arabia, and I think to be more lenient there than in other places would be a mistake,” Wolf said. “There were 15 [hijackers] from that country, and there is a lot taking place in that region.

“Some of the people who went back to Saudi Arabia through Guantanamo – we find that they are in battlefields in Afghanistan or some other place, so I don’t think it’s a good idea.”

Saudis have long been known for withholding information from their American counterparts. Wolf recalls that the Saudis obstructed former FBI Director Louis Freeh’s effort to investigate the 1996 Khobar Towers bombing by refusing to share information.

“I think there has been a history of not cooperating,” Wolf said.

The Saudis paved the way for 9/11 by funding the madrassas along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, which adds to Wolf’s concern.

Full Story: http://www.investigativeproject.org/3947/special-travel-benefit-for-saudis-a-slap-in.

Steve Emerson (IPT) on Fox News with Megyn Kelly Discussing the expose:
http://www.investigativeproject.org/3953/emerson-on-fox-news-with-megyn-kelly-discussing

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COMMENT/ANALYSIS:  Saudi Arabia’s role in producing, financing, and facilitating Islamic terror is well documented.  While the Saudi government claims to support anti-terror initiatives, radical elements based there pull many of the strings running the country, frequently hampering western efforts to combat terror. 

Allowing politics and special interests to trump sensible security concerns is extremely dangerous.  Permitting a system where the average air traveler is subject to often pointless security screening procedures while citizens from a country where 15 of the 19 terrorists responsible for the largest terrorist attack on our nation hailed from, is asinine and reckless.

The following 1982 movie clip was meant to be a comedic parody, but with this reported policy it is now a very somber glimpse of today’s “real world”:

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