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A Troubling Influence, Con't By: Frank J. Gaffney Jr.
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, December 09, 2003


(Click Here to go back to the first part of "A Troubling Influence.")

The Tulbah Controversy

By 2002, the White House job of coordinating Muslim outreach had apparently fallen to Ali Tulbah, a Muslim-American Norquist protégé who formerly headed the Washington office of the Young Republicans. Tulbah’s official position was that of an Associate Director in the White House Office of Cabinet Affairs. In that capacity, he was responsible for liaison with three of the most sensitive federal agencies in the War on Terror: the Departments of State, Defense and Justice.67

An American Muslim Council press release issued on January 17, 2003, explicitly thanked Tulbah for getting representatives of the AMC – and other Islamist organizations, such as CAIR – into the White House to meet with senior Administration officials. As was true of many other such meetings, the Islamist groups used the occasion to mau-mau their interlocutors about perceived government insensitivity to Muslim concerns and to demand that they be afforded opportunities to promote corrective action. 

 

The AMC’s January 2003 press release exemplified one further use to which the Islamists’ sympathizers usually put such official meetings: They were exploited to validate otherwise debatable claims to be leaders of America’s Muslim and Arab populations – as noted above, a key objective of Wahhabis bent on domination of the faithful.

 

A few days after receiving this press release, I referred to it in the course of a debate at this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference. My main point was that the wartime task of striking the right balance between privacy rights on the one hand and national security on the other was made more complicated by the presence in our country of Islamist organizations adept at exploiting our civil liberties and institutions. In particular, I warned that some such groups – notably Alamoudi’s American Muslim Council and CAIR – were conducting a worrisome political influence operation against the Bush Administration. 

 

Noting that the two groups had specifically thanked Ali Tulbah for affording them their most recent access to the White House, I observed that his perspective on these matters might have been influenced by an unsettling connection: His father had served as treasurer of a large Wahhabi complex in Texas, the Islamic Society of Greater Houston, which is made up of 29 mosques and related schools.68 Perhaps, I surmised, Tulbah was accustomed to being in the company of pro-Islamists at home.

 

The following Wednesday, Norquist arrived in my office brandishing an open letter citing my remarks at CPAC as evidence of “racism and bigotry” that have “no place in the conservative movement.”69 I responded with a lengthy letter of my own,70 describing my concerns about the role Norquist and his Islamic Institute had been playing in enabling and facilitating Islamist political influence activities aimed at the Bush Administration and other Republicans. I urged him to cease and desist, lest he do real damage, not only to the President and the Party, but to the nation’s security.

 

In the days and months that followed, Grover Norquist followed a strategy more typical of the hard-Left than of a fellow conservative. He made repeated ad hominem attacks on Fox TV and elsewhere against me and anyone else (including noted experts like Daniel Pipes and Steve Emerson) who dared to warn about the dangers of Islamism. More often than not, he portrayed such warnings as bigoted, racist denunciations of all Muslims. 

 

This charge is made all the more untenable since I assiduously underscore in every discussion of the Islamist threat the distinction between the intolerant, jihadist, Islamo-fascism they promote and the views of peaceable, law-abiding Muslims. My Center and I espouse making common cause with tolerant Muslims against the Islamists who brand them as “apostates” and threaten them as every bit as much as they do us “infidels.”

           

The Wahhabi Footprint in America

 

My beef has never been a personal one with Grover Norquist, as should be obvious from the data assembled in this article which comes from many sources, all of them reputable and unchallenged on the facts. Rather, my concern is with a far larger, Islamist enterprise in this country that has achieved, particularly over the past ten years, considerable success in creating the makings of a Saudi-funded Fifth Column in America. This point has been recognized by a number of the most thoughtful and influential conservative commentators of our day, including Cal Thomas, Mona Charen, Michelle Malkin, Kenneth Timmerman; David Frum and David Keene.71

           

In addition to their penetration of the military chaplain corps and the military ranks, the Wahhabi-connected clergy has been able to penetrate the penal system. Federal and state prisons have been the focus of intensive recruitment by the Islamists. Abdurahman Alamoudi’s American Muslim Council spun off an organization called the National Islamic Prison Foundation precisely for the purpose of ministering to incarcerated Muslims and expanding their ranks. As mentioned above, its president, Mahdi Bray, has been among those who have in the past been included in Bush Administration outreach efforts engineered by Khaled Saffuri and Grover Norquist.

           

While estimates vary widely, it seems safe to say that, over the years, large numbers of felons particularly among the black and Hispanic prison populations have been converted to Wahhabi Islam by these imams. At the very least, this has permitted the identification of individuals who, upon their release from prison, could become foot-soldiers for anti-American jihad.  It would appear, for example, that alleged dirty-bomber Jose Padilla may have been recruited in such a manner.72 

 

On another front, the radical Muslim Students Association has established a vast presence on American college and university campuses. According to the group’s website, there are today hundreds of MSA chapters in the United States.73 A number of the pro-Islamist leaders Norquist and Saffuri have helped gain access to the Bush Administration cut their political eye-teeth as prominent figures in the MSA. As with other enterprises tied to Wahhabi Islam, the Muslim Students Association is in the business of recruiting and indoctrinating its target audience – young Americans – to join a radical and violent sect. While the most visible activities sponsored by MSA chapters are anti-Bush, anti-war and anti-Israel (e.g., divestment) campaigns, and the suppression of opposing views on campus, there is reason to believe that – on the margins – the organization is encouraging more active involvement in jihad. Not surprisingly, a number of MSA figures have ended up arrested on terrorist related charges or high-profile targets in the War on Terror, including Wael Jelaidan, the co-founder of al-Qaeda.

 

The Islamists’ attempt to dominate the Muslim faith and community is even more evident in the nation’s mosques. By some estimates, as many as 70 percent of them are now controlled by Wahhabis, thanks to Saudi-associated organizations holding their mortgages. This is done through the Islamic Society of North America, a spin-off of the Muslim Students Association, and its financial arm, the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT).  Yet, as we have seen, ISNA’s then-head, Muzammil Siddiqi, was the one of the Islamists most prominently featured in the Bush Administration’s post-9/11 Muslim outreach efforts.

 

Not surprisingly, along with the financing comes control over many, if not all, aspects of the mosque. For example, Saudi/Wahhabi authorities are able to influence the selection of imams, their training, the Korans and other materials they disseminate, their sermons and curricula for madrassas (mosque schools).

 

No Longer Welcome?

 

Until recently, ISNA representatives were among the pro-Islamists included in many of the Bush Administration meetings organized or facilitated by Norquist and Saffuri. When some of these self-styled “Muslim community groups” were finally excluded from the White House iftar dinner last month (presumably due to the pall cast by the aforementioned arrests of some of their associates), ISNA joined CAIR, the Muslim Public Affairs Council, the Muslim Students Association and several other Wahhabi-backed groups in denouncing such events as devoid of substance, ones in which Muslims were said to be nothing more than props shamelessly used by the Bush Administration.74 

 

While the exclusion at last of such groups from meetings with the President is heartening, Yahya Basha, the AMC’s president, and Saffuri, who now serves as the chairman of the Islamic Institute, were still included as attendees at this year’s Iftar dinner.75 The FBI, moreover, has yet to take similar corrective action; its Director and supervisory agents continue to meet with representatives of the AMC, CAIR and ISNA, even though associates of each have been the object of law enforcement action.76  As noted above, the Bureau also uses such groups to provide “sensitivity” instruction at its agent training facility at Quantico, Virginia. In addition, it has been relying on these sorts of pro-Islamist organizations for “community outreach,” as well – much to the dismay of several case agents, field operatives and U.S. Attorneys’ offices.

 

Granting pro-Islamists access to senior U.S. officials and government-sponsored activities has one other down-side:  Just as they use this sort of access to demonstrate to other Muslims their power and influence, the Islamists’ sympathizers exploit their relationships with federal agencies as protection. For example, when a hearing was held to consider whether alleged terrorist operative Sami al-Arian was a flight risk if granted bail, multiple witnesses from the above-mentioned groups pointed to the work they were doing for the FBI, the U.S. military chaplain corps, the White House, in the prison system, etc., to establish their bona fides. Fortunately, notwithstanding such representations, al-Arian remains in custody after being denied bail.77

 

Norquist’s Continuing Role and the Problem It Presents

 

In this larger context Grover Norquist’s highly publicized assault on Attorney General John Ashcroft78 and the USA PATRIOT Act is extremely troubling. The Act’s very effectiveness has certainly made it the target of Norquist’s Islamist allies, some of whom – as we have seen – are in jail today or under active investigation thanks to its provisions. Grover Norquist’s willingness to associate with, and front for, groups like the National Coalition to Protect Political Freedom in a joint effort to weaken and if possible repeal the PATRIOT Act, has made him the darling not only of the pro-Islamists but of the radical Left, with whom they make common cause.  He was, for example, the featured speaker (one of only two with conservative coloration) at a day-long NCPPF event held outside Washington last month.79 

 

In a scathing report of the proceedings,80 National Review’s Byron York described how Norquist joined actor Alec Baldwin and Democratic uber-agitator Ralph Neas.81 According to York, when Neas indulged in a pointed, and factually incorrect, attack on the PATRIOT Act – charging that it authorizes activities not subject to constitutionally necessary judicial oversight – Norquist associated himself completely by saying simply, “Ditto.”  The immoderate moderator, Alec Baldwin, reportedly then turned to the crowd and enthused, “Can’t you feel the love?”

 

Grover Norquist’s efforts to legitimate and open important doors for pro-Islamist organizations in this country must be brought to an immediate halt. They have already created political vulnerabilities for this President and his Administration. But for the influence exerted by Norquist and his friends, President Bush might long ago have reached out to peaceable, tolerant, pro-American Muslims. In particular, the past 26 months could have been spent building up Muslim spokesmen and groups who share this President’s vision of a world in which democracy, liberty and freedom of religion prosper – and who could help cultivate those values in Muslim lands and communities overseas.

 

Instead, the President has been put in the position of repeatedly embracing individuals and organizations who are part of the problem. They have capitalized on their preferred treatment to exclude non-Islamist Muslims from meetings with the Bush team, to secure government contracts and favors, to raise funds and to dominate other Muslim- and Arab-Americans. We have thus been denied allies and strengthened our foes in what the President calls “the Battle of Ideas.” 

 

Grover Norquist has been confronted many times over his activities in behalf of the radical Islamic front in this country. He has responded by denouncing his critics as racists and ducking the issue. Even now and despite all the foregoing evidence to the contrary, Norquist insists that he has not helped or in any other way facilitated the Islamists political influence operations. Indeed, he denies that there is such a subset of the Muslim population. And, to this day, he demeans any who challenge him on that score as “racists and bigots.” It is evident that Grover Norquist will not voluntarily do the right thing by the President, the movement or the country, which would mean terminating his ties to a network that has shown itself to be dangerous, and by ceasing to work on behalf of the radical Islamic front. Because he will not do this himself, conservatives must act to see that he is politically isolated so that the damage he can do is minimized.

 

(Click Here to go back to the first part of "A Troubling Influence.")

___________

 

Frank J. Gaffney Jr. formerly held senior positions in the Reagan Defense Department.  Since 1988, he has been the President of the Center for Security Policy in Washington. Since 9/11, Gaffney has been one of the most prominent and consistent defenders of the President’s War on Terror – at home and abroad.


ENDNOTES:

 

1  Franklin Foer, "Fevered Pitch; Grover Norquist's strange alliance with radical Islam," The New Republic, 12 November 2001; and J. Michael Waller, "D.C. Islamist Agent Carried Libyan Cash," Insight Magazine, 10 November  2003.

2  According to the U.S. Government’s “Affidavit in Support of Criminal Complaint,” USA v. Abdurahman Alamoudi, Brett Gentrup, a Special Agent with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), acknowledged reviewing “the transcript of a video tape of Alamoudi speaking at a rally in Lafayette Park, Washington, D.C. on October 28, 2000.”  It was during this rally that Alamoudi proclaimed: “...we are all supporters of Hamas! Allah Akbar. I wish to add here I am also a supporter of Hezbollah.”  According to this same affidavit, Alamoudi also said in 1996 during the Annual Convention of the Islamic Association of Palestine that,“If we are outside this country we can say, ‘Oh, Allah destroy America.’  But once we are here, our mission in this country is to change it.” (See, http://news.findlaw.com/hdocs/docs/terrorism/usalamoudi93003cmp.pdf).

3  Testimony of Dr. J. Michael Waller, Annenberg Professor of International Communication at the Institute of World Politics, before the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Terrorism Subcommittee on October 14, 2003.   (http://judiciary.senate.gov/testimony.cfm?id=960&wit_id=2719).

 

4  ibid.

 

5  “Interview with Dr. Bilal Philips, a Jamaican-born Canadian, by Mahmud Khalil in Dubai,” Global News Wire ( FBIS/NTIS, U.S. Dept of Commerce).  The original source was the London-based Arabic publication Al-Majallah, a Saudi-owned weekly.  For additional details, see Waller testimony, op.cit.

6  “Pilgrims from U.S. Military leave for Saudi Arabia,” Saudi Arabian Information Resource,  March 1, 2001, http://www.saudinf.com/main/y2187.htm.

7  According to an article entitled “Army Chaplain in Detention Sought to Teach About Islam,” published in the September 24, 2003 editions of the New York Times, “In 1993... the Saudi Air Force and the Saudi royal family paid for [Yee] and other Americans to make the pilgrimage to Mecca that is known as the hajj, a trip that every Muslim is required to make at least once.”

8  Glenn Simpson, “Suspect Lessons: A Muslim School Used by Military Has Troubling Ties,” Wall Street Journal, December 3, 2003.

9  The New York Sun reported on October 20, 2003, that Saffuri distanced himself and the Islamic Institute from Alamoudi on the margins of the Arab American Institute “Leadership Conference” in Dearborn last month (Ira Stoll, “Anger over Israel Erupts at Arab American Parley”): “[When] asked about a $10,000 donation from Mr. Alamoudi to the Institute, Mr. Saffuri said, ‘We gave the money back about two yeas ago.’”

10  Janus-Merritt’s December 17, 2001 lobbying disclosure form can be accessed at www.sopr.senate.gov.  The February 17, 2001 edition of National Journal described Janus-Merritt as a “government relations firm David Safavian founded with Grover Norquist, who is head of Americans for Tax Reform.

11  “Affidavit in support of Criminal Complaint,” op.cit.

12  IRS Form 990s filed by foundations supporting charitable organizations can be found on www.guidestar.com.

13  These sentiments are, for example, evident in materials produced by the Saudi Arabian government’s Islamic Affairs Department (IAD), some of which appear on the official website of its embassy in the United States.  A newly released special report by the respected Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) http://www.memri.org/bin/opener_latest.cgi?ID=SR2303 notes that, “Officials of the Saudi government working at the IAD in Washington, D.C. and its worldwide offices have been mentioned in media reports in 2002 and 2003 for suspected connections with terrorist activities.  During the past week, it was reported that the FBI has subpoenaed records and documents of Saudi government bank accounts in the U.S., including accounts from the IAD.” 

     The MEMRI report goes on to make the following points:

The IAD explains the concepts of Jihad and martyrdom in Islam.  Excerpts from the Qur'an and Hadiths are provided as evidence to foster these concepts in the contemporary Muslim world.  “The Muslims are Required to Raise the Banner of Jihad in Order to Make the Word of Allah Supreme in this World.” 

The IAD explains that any system opposed to Islam must be fought by Jihad:  “The Muslims are required to raise the banner of Jihad in order to make the Word of Allah supreme in this world, to remove all forms of injustice and oppression, and to defend the Muslims.  If Muslims do not take up the sword, the evil tyrants of this earth will be able to continue oppressing the weak and [the] helpless....”

14 Douglas Farah, “Terror Probe Points to VA. Muslims; Local Network Provided Millions in Financing, Agency Charges,” Washington Post, 18 October 2003, A6.

15  Note that according to Stoll, op.cit.: “Mr. Saffuri said that, while he had worked for Mr. Alamoudi at the American Muslim Council for a year-and-a-half before starting the Islamic Free Market Institute, he was ‘hardly in touch with him’ recently.” [Emphasis added.]

          

16  According to the American Task Force for Bosnia, Inc.’s 1997 filing with the Internal Revenue Service (Form 990), Khaled Saffuri was the organization’s executive director.  For more on the Saudis’ Islamist operations in Bosnia, see David Kaplan, “The Saudi Connection: How Billions in Oil Money Spawned a Global Terror Network,” U.S. News and World Report, December 15, 2003 (http://www.usnews.com/usnews/issue/031215/usnews/15terror.htm)

17  The Center for Security Policy obtained an affidavit from a former staffer for U.S. Representative Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) in December 2001.  It described a conversation she had had with Khaled Saffuri in the Congressman’s offices in which he acknowledged “sponsor[ing] the child of a suicide bomber.”  Redacted excerpts of the affidavit appeared in Insight Magazine (http://www.insightmag.com/main.cfm?include=detail&storyid=246199).  Shortly thereafter, Rep. Rohrabacher appeared at the Wednesday Group meeting to provide a personal endorsement for Saffuri.

18  According to the affidavit mentioned in Footnote 15, Saffuri vehemently criticized President Bush for his action on the Holy Land Foundation, as well – an organization to which Saffuri said he had also contributed.

19  Frank Gaffney Jr., “A Time to Choose,” Washington Times, 2 October 2001, p. A14.

20  According to the Center for the Study of Islam & Democracy, Alkebsi “developed AMC’s Legislative Agenda, and AMC’s policy position on the Faith-based Initiative.” See, http://www.islam-democracy.org/alkebsi_bio.asp.

21  Franklin Foer, "Fevered Pitch; Grover Norquist's strange alliance with radical Islam," The New Republic, 12 November 2001.

22  Catherine Edwards, “Arab Americans Rise in Influence,” Insight Magazine, 19 February 2001.

23  Shawn Zeller, “Tough Sell,” National Journal, 14 December 2002.

24  Saffuri’s relationship with al-Arian continued long after the campaign ended.  My staff and I were witnesses when, on July 17, 2002, al-Arian spent two-and-one-half hours in the Americans for Tax Reform/Islamic Institute suite.  Al-Arian had evidently dropped by after participating in a National Press Club press conference with Abdurahman Alamoudi in which several Islamist groups announced that they were suing the President, Secretary of State Powell, Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and others.                                      

    As it happened, on my way to the men’s room that afternoon, I observed al-Arian standing in the elevator after leaving Norquist’s offices.  Moments later, I ran into Saffuri, who had seen al-Arian out then proceeded to the bathroom.  As we stood at adjacent urinals, I asked him whether that was Sami al-Arian I had just seen getting onto the elevator.  He responded by choking.  Not having gotten an intelligible answer, I asked again.  He then lied, saying, “I don’t think so.”  When subsequently queried about the al-Arian visit by a reporter, he acknowledged that it had occurred, then offered a different falsehood – claiming that the professor had merely stopped by to drop off some literature, an action that generally does not take two-and-a-half hours to perform. 

25  Federal Grand Jury Indictment, USA v. Sami al-Arian (http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/flm/pr/022003indict.pdf), February 20, 2000.

26  On October 23, 2000, the American Muslim Political Coordinating Council Political Action Committee (AMPCC-PAC) issued a press release announcing its “endorsement of George W. Bush for president, citing his outreach to the Muslim community and his stand on the issue of secret evidence.”  It noted that the endorsement was made by the AMPCC-PAC chair, Dr. Agha Saeed, whose pro-Islamist sympathies are discussed below.

27 “Healing the Nation: The Arab American Experience After September 11,” The Arab American Institute, http://www.aaiusa.org/PDF/healing_the_nation.pdf.

 

28 Grace Agostin, "Sept. 11 hurt aliens' rights," USF's The Oracle Newspaper, 9 September 2002, http://www.academicfreespeech.com/fea_oracle_0909.html.

 

29 http://www.musalman.com/newstrack/biodata.html

 

30 Susan Sachs and John Kifner, “A Nation Challenged: Bin Laden's Lieutenant; Egyptian Raised Terror Funds in U.S. in 1990's,” New York Times, 23 October 2001.

 

31 ibid.

 

32 Lynette Clemetson and Keith Naughton, “‘Big Dude’ Gets Profiled,” Newsweek, July 16, 2001, p. 24.

 

33 J. Michael Waller, “Alamoudi and Those Bags of Libyan Cash,” Insight, October 23-November 10, 2003, p. 32.

 

34 Franklin Foer, “Fevered Pitch; Grover Norquist's strange alliance with radical Islam,” the New Republic, 12 November 2001.

 

35 Nihad Awad speaking to a symposium at Barry University on the topic of “The Road to Peace: The Challenge of the Middle East” on March 22, 1994, as quoted in Stephen F. Hayes, “Uncle Sam's Makeover; The State Department's answer to Osama bin Laden is to ‘Redefine America,’” Weekly Standard,  June 3, 2002.

 

36 The New York Daily News reported only weeks after the September 11th attacks that “...CAIR is very specific about how the public should respond to the attacks on America: Send money. It recommends contributing to three organizations -- the Red Cross, the Holy Land Foundation and the Global Relief Foundation.” (Zev Chafets, “Beware the wolves among us,” Daily News, September 28, 2001.

 

37 Alan Cooperman, "Crisis in Middle East Spurs U.S. Fundraisers; Pleas Include Help For Hospitals," Washington Post, April 6, 2002.

 

38 See CAIR press release of July 30, 2003 entitled “CAIR Joins First Legal Challenge to Patriot Act.”

 

39 Hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Terrorism, Technology and Homeland Security, "Terrorism Two Years After the 9/11 Attacks," 10 September 2003.

 

40 CAIR-Texas, Articles of Incorporation, September 15, 1998 obtained from the office of the Texas Secretary of State.  See also, “Senior Leader of Hamas and Texas Computer Company Indicted for Conspiracy to Violate U.S. Ban on Financial Dealings with Terrorists,”  U.S. Department of Justice, December 18, 2002, http://www.usdoj.gov/opa/pr/2002/December/02_crm_734.htm.

 

41 Bill Morlin, “Egyptian with UI Ties Held in Probe,” Spokesman Review, March 14, 2003.

 

42 “Former head of Islamic charity accused of terror links pleads guilty to bank, visa fraud,” Associated Press, September 10, 2003.

 

43 “Former head of Islamic charity sentenced in fraud case,” Associated Press, November 13,  2003.

 

44 See, Karen Branch-Brioso, “Area Man Found Path with Islam; He is Charged with Conspiring to Fight with Muslims Abroad,” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, June 29, 2003; Edward Jay Epstein, “U.S. at Junction of War, Faith,” San Francisco Chronicle, December 6, 2002; and “Jihad Suspect on Trial,” Washington Times, May 29, 2003.

 

45 “Indictment Expands ‘VA Jihad’ Charges,” Washington Post, September 26, 2003.

 

46 Hanna Rosin and John Mintz, “Muslim Leaders Struggle With Mixed Messages,” Washington Post, October 2, 2001.

 

47 ibid.

 

48 ibid.

 

49 Jonathan Kaufman, “Islamerican: Meet Hamza Yusuf, ‘Rock Star’ of a Leader Among U.S. Muslims,” The Wall Street Journal, February 15, 2002.

 

50 “Buy Shaykh Hamza Yusuf Tapes -- and Help BIF!,” see: http://web.archive.org/web/19990502183338/www.benev  olence.org/hamza.html.   

 

51 “Guest CV: Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi,” IslamOnline.net, http://www.islamonline.net/livedialogue/english/Guestcv.asp?hGuestID=uY6w39.

 

52 “Guest CV: Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi,” IslamOnline.net, http://www.islamonline.net/livedialogue/english/Guestcv.asp?hGuestID=uY6w39. 

 

53 Charles Krauthammer, “The Silent Imams,” Washington Post, November 23, 2001.

 

54 Mary Rourke, “A Stronger Voice for Muslims ;Several American Muslim leaders in California are at the forefront of an emerging political movement,” Los Angeles Times, October 29, 2001.

 

55 John Berlau, “Moran Can't Keep His Tongue Tied,” Insight Magazine, April 28, 2003.

 

56 “AMA Honors Community Leaders,” Pakistan Link, April 5, 2002, www.pakistanlink.com.

 

57 According to the affidavit in support of the criminal complaint, USA v. Abdurahman Alamoudi, Special Agent Brett Gentrup of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has stated that “beyond 2000... Alamoudi remained in a leadership capacity with AMC,” even after his public statements of support for Hamas and Hezbollah obliged him to lower his profile at the AMC.

 

58 Judith Miller, “U.S. Contends Muslim Charity is Tied to Hamas,” New York Times, August 25, 2000 p. A21.

 

59 Segment entitled, “Should FBI Director Robert Mueller deliver the keynote address to the American Muslim Council tomorrow?” Hardball with Chris Matthews, MSNBC, June 27, 2002.

 

60 “Guest CV: Mahdi Bray,” IslamOnline.net, http://www.islamonline.net/livedialogue/english/Guestcv.asp?hGuestID=jD6a1X. 

 

61 “MAS Freedom Near to Reaching Goal of 1,000 Trained Activists,” Freedom Foundation Press Room, October 16, 2003, http://masnet.org/pressroom_release.asp?id=560.

 

62 See, http://www.ncppf.org/NCPPFstaffandboardpage.html.

 

63 “Muslim Radio a Workout for 1st Amendment,” Washington Post, December 4, 2001.

 

64 USA v. Sami Al-Arian, Transcript of Bond Hearing, Tampa, Florida, March 25, 2003.

 

65 op.cit.

 

66 MAS Press Release posted on International ANSWER’s website, May 13, 2003, http://www.iacenter.org/mas_2003.htm.

 

67 Ali Tulbah left the White House Office of Cabinet Affairs last Spring to assume new duties in liberated Iraq.  Currently, he is responsible for coordinating international cooperation in the reconstruction of that country.

 

 

68 “Banking on Faith; Created in Former Downtown Bank, New Mosque Serves as Worship and Learning Center,” Houston Chronicle, December 28, 2002.

 

71 See, http://www.townhall.com/columnists/calthomas/ct20030225.shtml ;  http://www.townhall.com/columnists/monacharen/mc20030218.shtml; http://www.jewishworldreview.com/michelle/malkin102203.asp; Kenneth Timmerman, Preachers of Hate: Islam and the War on America (Crown Forum, October 2003); David Keene, "Muslim extremists denounce their critics as 'racists,' 'bigots,'" The Hill, 19 February 2003; David Frum, "The strange case of Sami Al-Arian," National Review Online, 21 February 2003. 

 

72 Waller testimony, op.cit.

 

74 Julia Duin, "Muslims scold Bush over outreach," Washington Times, October 29, 2003.

 

75 Jim Lobe, "Muslims snub Bush's Ramadan invitation," Inter Press Service, 29 October 2003.

 

76 Not surprisingly, others in the Bureau have followed Director Mueller’s lead.  For example, the FBI's Civil Rights Division chief, Tom Reynolds, attended the AMC’s 3rd Leadership/Imam Conference in June 2003. According to an AMC press release at the time, Reynolds reportedly “choked back tears while talking about the internment of the Japanese-Americans during World War II.  He promised that it would never happen again. He stressed the need for cooperation from the Muslim community in fighting terrorism.”

 

77 USA v. Sami Al-Arian, Transcript of Bond Hearing, op.cit.

 

78 For example, in July 2002, a front-page article in the New York Times (Neil Lewis, “Traces of Terror: The Attorney General; Ashcroft’s Terrorism Policies Dismay Some Conservatives,” New York Times, July 24,2002) quoted Norquist prominently in a hit-piece on the Attorney General.  Although Norquist is not generally regarded as a religious conservative, he nonetheless characterized their views in a way that was unfriendly, to say the least:

            Many religious conservatives who were most instrumental in pressing President Bush to appoint John Ashcroft as attorney general now say they have become deeply troubled by his actions as the leading public figure in the law enforcement drive against terrorism....More significantly, they say privately that he seems to be overstating the evidence of terrorist threats.

            Most striking, however, is how some conservatives who were Mr. Ashcroft's biggest promoters for his cabinet appointment after he lost his re-election to the Senate in 2000 have lost enthusiasm. They cite his anti-terrorist positions as enhancing the kind of government power that they instinctively oppose.

            “His religious base is now quite troubled by what he's done,” said Grover Norquist, a conservative strategist and president of Americans for Tax Reform.  Mr. Norquist, who holds regular lunches with a cross-section of conservative leaders and is influential with White House and Congressional Republicans, said, “If there hadn't been this big-government problem, Ashcroft would have been talked about as the Bush successor.  Instead, the talk is that ‘[it is] too bad we pushed for him.’”

                After this article appeared, leading religious conservatives, including notably Paul Weyrich, disputed Norquist’s assertion that the Attorney General had lost their confidence.  While some of them – like other conservatives – do have concerns about the PATRIOT Act, the rift described in the Times article appears to have been more a reflection of Norquist’s “spin” than real.

79 See, http://www.grassroots-america.org/brochure.pdf to view the Grassroots America brochure announcing the event, giving Norquist top billing among the speakers and asking that registration fees be sent to the National Coalition to Protect Political Freedoms.

 

80 Byron York, “Norquist and Keene Join Baldwin and Neas,” National Review Online http://www.nationalreview.com/york/york200310201247.asp.

 

81 Promotional material circulated by the conference organizers included the following, illuminating quote: 

Ralph Neas says of Grover, “[He] and I agree on very little. However, we both believe that the Bill of Rights is endangered by the excesses of the USA PATRIOT Act and other Department of Justice initiatives post 9/11. We will seize this opportunity and demonstrate that people from across the ideological spectrum agree that the rights of innocent people are at risk from unnecessary and unwarranted invasions of privacy and loss of basic constitutional rights.” 


Frank J. Gaffney, Jr. is the founder, president, and CEO of The Center for Security Policy. During the Reagan administration, Gaffney was the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security, the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear Forces and Arms Control Policy, and a Professional Staff Member on the Senate Armed Services Committee, chaired by Senator John Tower (R-Texas). He is a columnist for The Washington Times, Jewish World Review, and Townhall.com and has also contributed to The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New Republic, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Christian Science Monitor, The Los Angeles Times, and Newsday.


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