The Clarion Project broke the story last year that two Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) officials were criticizing Memorial Day, resulting in FOX News coverage and expressions of outrage from Muslims who appreciate the sacrifices of U.S. soldiers. CAIR officials again criticized the holiday this year.
CAIR is a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity that was designated as a terrorist group by the United Arab Emirates in November. FBI wiretaps in 1993 reveal that CAIR was established to deceptively push the Islamist agenda. You can read more about CAIR's background here.
CAIR-San Francisco Executive Director Zahra Billoo tweeted extensively after several websites reported on the Clarion Project's report from last year. She defended her depictions of U.S. soldiers and compared the Israeli military to ISIS:
CAIR-St. Louis Executive Director Faizan Syed came to her defense, retweeting a message claiming that the U.S. army "often murders innocent women and children."
Others also supported Billoo:Howev
However, Billoo also received some pushback:
Last year, CAIR-San Francisco Executive Director Zahra Billoo expressed how she "struggles" with the question of whether to honor fallen U.S. soldiers. At the same time, she was more comfortable asking her followers to support an anti-American cleric in prison for murdering a police officer. She also re-tweeted a message claiming that "Americans have always had a taste for mass murder."
CAIR-Michigan Executive Director Dawud Walid suggested that U.S. soldiers who died in Iraq and Afghanistan should not be honored. He was quoted by Billoo as asking, "If one dies in an unjust war in which we illegally invaded and occupied a sovereign nation, should that person be honored?"
Billoo responded to the coverage of her anti-military sentiment with more messages denigrating U.S. soldiers and accusing her critics of sexism, racism and anti-Muslim bigotry.
This isn't the only time that CAIR officials have criticized patriotism and American troops:
- In March 2014, CAIR-Arizona board chairman Imraan Siddiqi and Billoo described the U.S. military as an "occupying" force that people should be "rescued" from serving in. Billoo accused the military of murdering thousands of Iraqis.
- In June 2014, CAIR-Florida Chief Executive Director Hassan Shibly added to his record of inflammatory rhetoric by claiming that nationalism is a conspiracy against Islam.
- In June 2014, Billoo condemned "U.S. military terrorism" and drew moral equivalence between U.S. drone strikes against terrorists in Pakistan and the Taliban's massacring of civilians.
- In July 2014, CAIR-Michigan Executive Director Dawud Walid acknowledged the Fourth of July holiday by denigrating the country's foundations and history and openly saying he is "not getting excited for Independence Day."
The U.S. military is full of honorable patriots who risk their lives for the sake of their country and people around the world, as pointed out by the Muslims offended by the CAIR officials' statements. Many Muslims recognize the absurdity of the anti-military propaganda, as evidenced by the over 6,000 Muslims who have served in overseas war deployments since 9/11, including at least 14 who gave their lives for the country.
It is deplorable and inaccurate to depict the U.S. military as a band of "murderers" on any day, but doing so on Memorial Day when Americans are supposed to honor our fallen servicemen is especially reprehensible.
CAIR should be embarrassed by its officials' anti-American propaganda. Any an organization that truly honors our military should sever its association with those who defame our troops.
Ryan Mauro is ClarionProject.org’s national security analyst, a fellow with Clarion Project and an adjunct professor of homeland security. Mauro is frequently interviewed on top-tier television and radio. Read more, contact or arrange a speaking engagement.