The International Centre for the Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence (ICSR) has published a report that brands “Europe’s Counter-Jihad Movement” as a threat. The document, much like the studies of the so-called “Islamophobia Network” in America, treats valid concerns about Islamists as evidence of extremism.
The executive summary of the report says the “European Counter-Jihad Movement” is a “form of far-right extremism in its portrayal of Muslims as a threat to European culture, an ‘enemy within,’ and in its proposed, highly illiberal responses to this perceived responses to this perceived threat.”
Rather than focusing on specific groups or individuals, the entire anti-Islamist movement is portrayed as extreme. As evidence of its extremism, the report points to the alleged influence of Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller, two activists based in the U.S. Yet, neither of them advocate violence, extremism or broad-brush treatment of all Muslims.
One of the features of being a “far-right extremist” is being concerned about “the stealthy implementation of Islamic Sharia”—but that’s exactly the campaign described in the 1982 Muslim Brotherhood plan called "The Project," as well as the 1991 U.S. Muslim Brotherhood Explanatory Memorandum. In fact, Islamists describe their phased, incremental strategy as "gradualism."
The report warns of the “cultural nationalism” of the anti-Islamist movement, but it is the 1991 U.S. Muslim Brotherhood memo that describes its campaign as a “civilization jihad.” It’s an ideological and cultural clash and there’s nothing wrong with pointing that out.
Amazingly, page 56 of the study undercuts its own attack on the “European Counter-Jihad Movement” by referencing a study that found that “Muslim Brotherhood-linked groups in Europe and the United States have sought to take control of Western Islam in order to suit their own political goals, while also attempting to influence government policy in their host countries.”
It also says a feature of “far-right extremism” is concern about taqiyya, an Islamic doctrine of deception. The ICSR says that this is a Shiite doctrine but the “extremists” apply it to Sunnis. Yet, an authoritative Sunni book on Sharia law titled Reliance of the Traveler, explicitly states “it is permissible to lie if attaining the goal is permissible…and obligatory to lie if the goal is obligatory.”
The book was endorsed by Al-Azhar University, the highest Sunni school of learning, and the International Institute of Islamic Thought, a front for the Sunni U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. In 1993, the FBI wiretapped a secret Brotherhood/Hamas meeting in Philadelphia where Shukri Abu Baker, the Sunni head of the Holy Land Foundation, was recorded repeatedly stating that “war is deception.”
Omar Ahmad, a Sunni founder of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), was present and similarly endorsed deception. In a 2007 court filing in the case of convicted terrorist Sabri Bekhala, federal prosecutors state: “From its founding by Muslim Brotherhood leaders, CAIR conspired with other affiliates of the Muslim Brotherhood to support terrorists…the conspirators agreed to use deception to conceal from the American public their connections to terrorists.”
The study concludes, “Rejecting the existence of a non-extremist majority of Muslims comes from a bigoted, xenophobic and irrational position…”
The major players in the “counter-jihad movement” don’t dispute that the majority of Muslims in the West are moderate. And arguing that large numbers of Muslims, a majority in some areas of the world, have extremist beliefs is not “bigoted, xenophobic and irrational.” After all, the Islamists won the elections in Egypt. In addition, a 2010 Pew poll found that 84 percent of Egyptians support executing apostates. A 2008 poll found that one-third of British-Muslim university students believe in establishing a worldwide caliphate based on Sharia law. Pointing this out shouldn’t qualify you as an extremist.
On a broader level, this report contributes to the attempts of Islamists and their non-Muslim political allies to characterize any concern about “civilization jihad” as extremist and without foundation. In the U.S., two left-wing reports tried to tarnish anti-Islamists as “Islamophobes.” They dismissed criticisms of the Muslim Brotherhood legacy groups who now regularly use the reports to cast their opponents as bigots.
Abdur-Rahman Muhammad, a former Islamist imam, says he was at an International Institute of Islamic Thought meeting where they decided to begin using the term “Islamophobia” to “beat up their critics.” CAIR, labeled a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity by the U.S. government, uses the tactic constantly.
CAIR and its Islamist allies even use the “Islamophobia” card on devout Muslims. When one of their Muslim opponents, Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, was appointed to a government position, they attacked him as a “sock puppet for Islam haters and an enabler of Islamophobia.”
Tellingly, the CAIR spokesman making the accusation, Ibrahim Hooper, previously worked for the pro-Hamas Islamic Association for Palestine, a group identified as a front in the Brotherhood’s own files. In 1993, he said, “I wouldn’t want to create the impression that I wouldn’t like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future.”
Standing against Islamist groups with Muslim Brotherhood origins and believing the content of the Brotherhood’s own documents and speeches does not qualify you as an “Islamophobe.”
Ryan Mauro is ClarionProject.org's National Security Analyst and a fellow with the Clarion Fund. He is the founder of WorldThreats.com and is frequently interviewed on Fox News.
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