A political alliance of 75 organizations led by Islamist supporters has published a letter demanding the removal of “anti-Muslim” material from FBI training. This purported objective is incontestable, but the thinly concealed objective is to end instruction about the Muslim Brotherhood in America.
The letter refers to legitimately offensive instances of anti-Muslim content in FBI documents, specifically a 2005 memo that used the fake name of “Mohammed Raghead.” Derogatory language has no place in governmental instruction.
However, this legitimate example of inappropriate teaching is conflated with examples of appropriate teaching that makes Islamists uncomfortable. It is another application of the “Islamophobia” strategy that has been used by Islamists for decades.
The bloc tries to lump the use of the bigoted term “Mohammed Raghead” together with the important work of former FBI counterterrorism expert John Guandolo, who served in the counterterrorism division of the Washington Field Office.
Guandolo is an expert on the Muslim Brotherhood and developed a training curriculum on the topic in 2006 that was endorsed as “groundbreaking” by the FBI’s former executive assistant director Willie Hulon. You can read the Clarion Project’s interview with Guandolo here.
The letter states, “Echoing the ‘red under every bed’ hysteria of the McCarthy era, Guandolo believes that ‘hundreds’ of covert members of the Muslim Brotherhood are active in the United States…”
Simply acknowledging the existence of Muslim Brotherhood activities in the U.S. is branded as anti-Muslim, even though internal documents belonging to the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood are publicly available and show a large presence of the group in the U.S.
In the Holy Land Foundation trial, the Justice Department even identified several entities of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood and labeled them unindicted co-conspirators. One of these, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), belongs to the coalition protesting FBI education about the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.
Another coalition member is the Muslim Alliance in North America, led by radical cleric Siraj Wahhaj, whose mosque has been investigated by the New York Police Department. The group’s website features the preaching of Sheikh Yousef al-Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood and a supporter of Hamas.
Yet another coalition leader is the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC). It was founded by Muslim Brotherhood ideologues and has an extremist track record. One of the now-deceased leaders said that he came to the U.S. to spread the “Islamic Movement” inspired by the Muslim Brotherhood’s founder.
MPAC published a policy paper in 2010, which was referenced by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. The paper promotes the Brotherhood as a moderate alternative to Al-Qaeda, stating, “Conservative groups like the Muslim Brotherhood pose long-term strategic threats to violent extremists by siphoning Muslims away from violent radicalism into peaceful political activism.”
MPAC’s behavior has moderated in recent years and the group congratulated Egypt when President Morsi (from the Muslim Brotherhood party) was overthrown in 2013. However, MPAC has not condemned the Muslim Brotherhood or its foundational Islamist ideology.
The Muslim Legal Fund of America is another bloc involved in pressuring the FBI. The organization raised money for the Holy Land Foundation defendants. In that trial, Holy Land Foundation “charity” officials were found guilty of financing Hamas. The Foundation is a U.S. Muslim Brotherhood entity.
One of the organization’s board members is linked to the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood. A current member of the Board of Directors is Hatem Bazian, an Islamist radical who also is the chairman of American Muslims for Palestine, an organization that has Brotherhood links and is sympathetic to Hamas. Bazian is also a founder of the Islamist-led Zaytuna College.
Another Muslim Legal Fund of American associate is Rafeeq Jaber. He has been listed as the Midwest Coordinator for the organization. His resume includes founding CAIR and serving as president of the now-defunct Islamic Association for Palestine, a pro-Hamas group that was a front the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.
The Arab American Association of New York is another endorser of the letter. The group lists a Muslim Brotherhood entity in Qatar (specifically linked to Qaradawi) as one of its main supporters. It was investigated by the NYPD for links to terrorism. The group’s executive director regularly claims that Islamic terrorist plots are “manufactured” by the U.S. government.
This pro-Islamist lobby rallied together its political and interfaith allies for its cause. Examples include the CAIR-friendly American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Interfaith Center of New York and the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (which has had extremist leadership that legitimizes Hamas and Hezbollah).
It’s obvious what’s going on here. Pro-Islamist groups linked to the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood want to stop the FBI from training its agents about the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.
These groups also were furious when it was revealed that the National Security Agency and FBI were monitoring the emails of five Muslim-American activists with links to terrorism and extremism. One of those activists, Nihad Awad, is the founder and executive director of CAIR. The public record supports the U.S. government’s contention that this surveillance was justifiable.
This campaign treats this monitoring at as anti-Muslim, too. The letter states:
“The use of anti-Muslim trainers and materials is not only highly offensive, disparaging the faith of millions of Americans, but leads to biased policing that targets individuals and communities based on religion, not evidence of wrongdoing.”
That’s how these groups described the monitoring of the five activists’ emails. The common denominator in all of the coalition’s complaints is anger towards scrutiny of the coalition’s Islamist members.
The coalition has reason to hope for success. A eye-opening Clarion Project report shows how the Department of Homeland Security issued counter-terrorism training guidelines in 2011 that vividly fulfilled these groups’ pro-Islamist agenda.
The training recommendations, if followed, completely end instruction about the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. Education about non-violent Islamist tactics ceases. Muslim and non-Muslim opponents of the American Islamists are cast aside as improper sources.
As confirmed by the Justice Department and Brotherhood documents, the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood network played a significant part in the Holy Land Foundation, the largest terrorism-financing case in U.S. history.
Teaching about the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood is absolutely essential to understanding the presence of Islamic extremism in the United States and the challenges facing the U.S. today.
The Islamist extremists shouldn’t get to decide what the FBI teaches about them.
Ryan Mauro is the ClarionProject.org’s national security analyst, a fellow with the Clarion Project and an adjunct professor of homeland security. Mauro is frequently interviewed on Fox News.