The Clarion Project, the Center for Security Policy and the Institute on Religion and Democracy have published a shocking interview with Mohamed Elibiary, a senior Department of Homeland Security adviser. The Daily Caller reported on it yesterday.
Elibiary is a member of the Secretary’s Homeland Security Advisory Committee and founder of Lone Star Intelligence LLC. He served on the DHS Countering Violent Extremism Working Group and the DHS Faith-based Security and Communications Advisory Committee.
On September 12, he announced that he had been reappointed to the Committee and promoted to Senior Fellow. He was also a delegate for Republican presidential nominee John McCain in 2008.
The complete 37-page annotated interview is available here. The report is full of interesting material, but here are 15 important points to focus on. If you feel that these facts are concerning, e-mail, mail and/or fax a copy of this article to the House Homeland Security Committee, the Senate Homeland Security Committee as well as your congressman whose job is to represent you.
1. Elibiary says he knows the Muslim Brotherhood in a “personal manner.”
In 2007, Elibiary wrote, “[O]ur government is playing a post-9/11 script it played in the 1960s against the Mafia, but this time against a social network it calls the ‘International Muslim Brotherhood.’ People like me know of the brotherhood group in a much more personal manner than the Average White Guy, who has no more insight than what’s available in the media.”
2. Elibiary praises the Muslim Brotherhood and says the U.S. should support it.
In his interview with me, Elibiary said, “MB in Egypt is a pragmatic, non-violent and generally pluralistic socio-political movement by Egyptian cultural standards. It is not accurate to paint MB-Egypt as dogmatic, violent or autocratic, much less more sensationalized terms like dictatorial, totalitarian or jihadist.”
He continued: “I believe that MB and its political arm, the Freedom and Justice Party, has by and large acted responsibly, if not always effectively, during the democratic transition period that Egypt is in the very early stages of.”
His Twitter photo has a pro-Muslim Brotherhood “R4BIA” logo that protests a violent crackdown on a Brotherhood protest in Egypt after the military toppled President Morsi by popular demand. He says it is a pro-freedom symbol that is “bigger than” the Brotherhood.
Elibiary says the U.S. should partner with the Muslim Brotherhood. In our interview, he said, “Our government needs to deepen our strategic engagement with MB.”
3. Elibiary compares the Muslim Brotherhood to Christian evangelicals.
In 2007, his organization made a presentation at a conference of the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America. It stated: “The Muslim Brotherhood of Egypt, Jordan, Tunis, etc. is a social movement for religious revival that seeks to Islamicize the society through cultural changing Dawah and that includes the political system, sound familiar? Yup you’re right they are the Muslim world’s version of the Evangelical Christian Coalition/Moral Majority movement.”
He told the Daily Caller “Islamism is a multi-century, transnational, intellectually grounded movement with influential philosophical works from multiple continents … It has many subcultures and currents of thought. Some are no different than conservatives who ground their values in a Judeo-Christian worldview and it has its violent extremist strains.”
4. Elibiary has associated with the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America and pro-Khomeini groups.
As mentioned above, Elibiary spoke at a joint conference of the Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA) and the North American Imams Federation.
AMJA is a hardline Islamist group whose fatwas call for the gradual establishment of sharia law in America using deception; marital rape; jihad against Israel and ban Muslims from joining the FBI or serving the US military in a combat capacity.
In our interview, Elibiary says he “spent a week with dozens of very senior Salafi scholars” from the group discussing Islamic jurisprudence.
He also speaks of when he brought a senior Salafi cleric “to give the first Friday Muslim congregational prayer literally inside the Texas State Capitol.” It is unclear if this Salafi cleric was from AMJA.
In 2004, Elibiary spoke at a pro-Khomeini conference. He said he did not know of the event’s extremist nature.
5. Elibiary says the U.S. should not oppose sharia law in Muslim countries.
In the same presentation, Elibiary’s group said, “We should remember that them [Islamists] ruling their countries with sharia law doesn’t mean them coming to our country and using our planes to destroy our buildings.”
“We must always resist the temptation to force one group such as Islamists to reform by adopting ‘liberalism’ for example. That would be denying them their self-determination to structure their societies according to their public will,” it also said.
6. Elibiary is a long-time friend of the former head of the Holy Land Foundation, a convicted Brotherhood/Hamas fundraiser.
In 2007, Elibiary wrote that he was 16 years old when he met Shukri Abu Baker and his life was changed when Abu Baker told him about the alleged persecution of Palestinians by Israel. Elibiary took the first $50 he ever deposited into a bank account and donated it to the Holy Land Foundation and donated monthly until it was shut down in 2001.
Abu Baker was the CEO of the Holy Land Foundation, a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity that was shut down for financing Hamas. He was convicted in the largest terrorism-financing trial in U.S. history. The FBI had wiretapped Abu Baker during a secret Brotherhood/Hamas meeting urging participants to engage in deception to further their Islamist goals.
The two were so close that they met for coffee the day before the verdict.
7. Elibiary depicts the Holy Land Foundation and U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network as a victim of political persecution by the U.S. government.
In 2010, Elibiary blasted the guilty verdict in the Holy Land Foundation trial in an editorial. He wrote, “Using the law to force compliance with unjust foreign policies by our government will simply trigger civil disobedience.”
“This global war on terror needs a new strategy, because we’re destroying ourselves more than al-Qaeda ever could,” he wrote in another editorial in reaction to the prosecution.
In our interview, Elibiary said he was “warning against the strategy being deployed against the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) and a broader Muslim Brotherhood network, in the eyes of the government, as if they were an organized criminal syndicate akin to the mafia. I viewed this strategy in 2007 as counterproductive to our national interest and instead called for an honest dialogue between the US and Islamists to find common ground and turn the page on the past.”
8. Elibiary says he helped “safeguard” U.S. Muslim Brotherhood groups from prosecution.
In our interview, Elibiary made three statements about his role in protecting American Islamists:
· “I helped my community pick up the pieces and safeguard its nonprofit organizations, in order to protect its liberties, after the HLF’s closure and eventual conviction.”
· “But the corollary to my position was that if the Muslim community leadership and the government can mutually reconcile and turn a new page, then the targeted national Muslim community organizations should be allowed to proceed anew.”
· “As has been reported in multiple conservative media outlets over the past few years, the long-desired HLF 2.0 trial for the unindicted co-conspirators is no longer going to happen.”
The statements substantiate reports by counter-terrorism expert Patrick Poole in 2011 that the Justice Department cancelled planned prosecutions of senior U.S. Muslim Brotherhood figures, including a founder of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
9. Elibiary likely helped craft Islamist-friendly counter-terrorism training guidelines.
In our interview, Elibiary said, “The area that has earned me the most amount of anti-Islamist media criticism has been my role assisting DHS and the broader administration craft a framework and later a strategy for Countering Violent Extremism (CVE).”
A Clarion Project analysis of the DHS Countering Violent Extremism training guidelines concluded that they prevent instruction about the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood and non-violent Islamist tactics. Elibiary served on the DHS Countering Violent Extremism Working Group.
10. Elibiary is accused of trying to leak confidential documents for political purposes.
Patrick Poole reported in 2011 that Elibiary tried to leak confidential documents to a media outlet in an attempt to damage the presidential campaign of Texas Governor Rick Perry. Elibiary reportedly had his access to the database containing the files revoked.
Elibiary says he was exonerated by the Secretary of the DHS. Poole says, “At no time was I or my source ever contacted by anyone at DHS. How could they have done an investigation with only one side being heard?”
11. Elibiary is hostile to anti-Islamist Muslims.
In our interview Elibiary said, “There are other Muslim advocates of reform who have instead publicly chosen to politically demonize, in conservative media outlets, mainstream Muslim community organizations as ‘Islamists.’ Labeling these or other Muslim community organizations as either ‘Muslim Brotherhood-associated’ or ‘Muslim Brotherhood-legacy’ in my opinion is counterproductive.”
Elibiary, though, used the term “Islamist” throughout the interview.
This same hostility was present in the DHS Countering Violent Extremism training guidelines. The new guidelines advise agencies that “trainers who are self-professed ‘Muslim reformers’ may further an interest group agenda instead of delivering generally accepted unbiased information.”
12. Elibiary said the West “routinely insults Muslim dignity.”
In 2004, Elibiary wrote, “Just because I listen to Osama bin Laden’s tapes and agree that the West routinely insults Muslim dignity, that doesn’t make me al-Qaeda. By listening I gain a better understanding of a philosophy I wish to counter.”
13. Elibiary says the U.S. government should not “touch” houses of worship.
On October 7, Elibiary tweeted, “US successfully prosecutes individuals 4 allkinds of criminal activity. That shd always b done w/o gov touching Churches, Mosques, etc.”
14. Elibiary repeats Brotherhood attacks on Coptic Christians.
The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood regularly blasts its Coptic Christian opponents as being anti-Muslim. So does Elibiary.
On September 14, he tweeted, “Good read by @mwhanna1 on need to reform #Coptic activism in #US including stop promoting #Islamophobia.”
The next day, he tweeted, “For >decade since 9/11 attack extremist American #Coptic activists have nurtured anti #Islam & anti #Muslim sentiments among AM RT wing,”
15. Elibiary praises Sayyid Qutb, a Brotherhood cleric whose preaching inspired Bin Laden and Islamists around the world.
In 2006, Elibiary wrote, “I’d recommend everyone read Qutb, but read him with an eye to improving America not just to be jealous with malice in our hearts.”