The Huffington Post has included several known terrorist leaders and supporters in a slideshow titled "Muslim Leaders Condemn Terrorism."
The Huffington Post published an article August 25 about a demonstration in Norway by a group of Muslims who were protesting against the Islamic State and its supporters in Norway. At the end of the article is a slideshow titled "Muslim Leaders Condemn Terrorism" which features various high-profile Muslim leaders who have issued statements condemning terrorism. Most of the examples were statements condemning the 9/11 terrorist attacks in the U.S. that killed 3,000 people in the World Trade Center.
However, the Huffington Post's slideshow included terrorist supporters and financiers as well as leaders of the known terrorist group Hamas who are listed below.
Sheikh Yousuf al-Qaradawi, the spiritual guide of the Muslim Brotherhood. Qaradawi has been filmed openly calling on Muslims to perpetrate a second holocaust against Jews and expressing a desire to kill Jews personally, as documented in the video clip below.
In the picture selected for the slideshow Qaradawi is sitting next to Ismail Haniyeh, a senior leader of Hamas, a designated foreign terrorist group by the US, the EU, Canada and Japan.
Rashid Ghannoushi, leader of Tunisia's Ennahda party. Ennahda is an affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood. The Brotherhood is listed as a terrorist organization by Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and is under consideration to be listed as a terrorist organization by Great Britain.
Ghannoushi was quoted as having signed a letter condemning the 9/11 terrorist attacks alongside other 40 Muslim leaders (not all of whom were named).
However, the other leaders included alongside him can in no way be considered to be condemning terrorism, since many of them are or were the leaders of functioning terrorist groups, such as:
Mustafa Mashur, formerly the general guide of the Muslim Brotherhood, an organization listed in several countries as a terrorist organization.
Qazi Hussein Ahmed & Mutior Rahman Nizami (spelled Muti by The Huffington Post). Ahmed and Nizami were the leaders of Jamaat e-Islami in Pakistan and Bangladesh, respectively. Jamaat e-Islami was heavily implicated in horrific war crimes including — but not limited to — rape, murder, torture and mutilation of academics and ethnic Bengalis as well as Hindus. The crimes were committed in the 1971 war for the independence of Bangladesh.
Nizami is currently standing trial in Bangladesh for 16 counts of war crimes, including the murder of over 500 people and rape. Regardless of the problems with the court proceedings, which have been criticized by human rights organizations for being corrupt and unfair, Mutior Rahman Nizami's conduct during the war and the ongoing nature of the trial should have disqualified him from inclusion on a list of Muslim leaders who condemn terrorism. Other Jamaat e-Islami leaders have been sentenced to death for their crimes committed in the war, in which an estimated three million people were slaughtered by the Pakistani army.
Perhaps the most perplexing inclusion on The Huffington Post's list of Muslim leaders condemning terrorism was Shaykh Ahmed Yassin, the founder of Hamas, a group responsible for firing thousands of rockets into Israel on civilian targets and carrying out suicide bombings, abductions, etc.
Nihad Awad, founder and executive director of the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR), was also on The Huffington Post's list. CAIR is an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holyland Foundation trial, the largest terrorism financing trial in U.S. history.
On July 1, 2009, U.S. District Court Judge Jorge Solis upheld CAIR’s designation as an unindicted co-conspirator because of “ample evidence” linking CAIR to Hamas.
There are many Muslim leaders and activists that The Huffington Post could have listed who condemn terrorism. For example, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi has fought against Islamic terrorism in the Sinai peninsula and has outlawed the Muslim Brotherhood (as has Saudi Arabia and the UAE).
The former President of Indonesia Kyai Haji Abdurrahman Wahid has fought tirelessly for his vision of a "global triumph of a pluralistic and tolerant understanding of Islam, at peace with itself and the modern world." Until his death in 2009, he was the spiritual leader of a Nadhlatul Ulama, a Muslim organization with 40 million members. Wahid set up an innovative counter-extremism program with worldwide reach.
Maulana Wahiddudin Khan is a leading Islamic scholar, mystic and peace activist who has received multiple awards for his non-violent campaigns. Khan was described by Georgetown University as "Islam's spiritual ambassador to the world." He runs an organization called the Center for Peace and Spirituality which he founded in 2001 with the ultimate goal of creating world peace by influencing people one at a time. The Center for Peace and Spirituality has put forward its own solution to terrorism, which is based on pacifist philosophy.
Yet instead of choosing any of these individuals or others with a genuine commitment to eradicating Islamist terrorism, The Huffington Post instead selected known supporters of terror to praise as condemning terrorism.
At press time, the slideshow was still available on their website. We have reached out to The Huffington Post for comment.
UPDATE: 08/28/2014 – Clarion Project received a response from the Huffington Post. It read as follows:
This article was written by The Associated Press. For comment as to why they included that in the article, you'd have to ask them.
Clarion Project followed up by asking the following additional questions:
1) Is the slideshow Associated Press also, or is was it made by Huffington Post?
2) Huffington Post still made the decision to publish the slideshow on the website. How did Huffington Post decide to to publish it?
The Huffington Post have made no changes as a result of the correspondence, and the slideshow is still up on their website at press time.
If they respond to our further questions, we will publish their response here.