In what could prove to be a watershed moment in the fight against radical Islam, five prominent members of Congress wrote letters on June 13 to the Inspector Generals of the Departments of State, Justice, Defense, Homeland Security and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence requesting investigations into the influence of Muslim Brotherhood-tied groups and individuals.
The letters were signed by Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), Rep. Tom Rooney (R-FL) and Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-GA) of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence; Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) of the House Armed Services Committee and Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), the Vice Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security.
The letters refer to a 10-part, freely-available online course created by the Center for Security Policy titled, "Muslim Brotherhood in America." Each letter mentions incidents where the respective departments worked with entities or individuals tied to the Muslim Brotherhood.
A secret document by the American branch of the Muslim Brotherhood from 1991 states that its "work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying Western civilization from within." The Brotherhood's documents also identify many of its fronts in the U.S., such as the Islamic Society of North America, the Islamic Circle of North America, the North American Islamic Trust, the Muslim Students Association, the International Institute of Islamic Thought and the Islamic Association for Palestine, from which the Council on American-Islamic Relations was birthed.
Overseas, the Muslim Brotherhood strategy of "civilization jihad" is referred to as "gradualism," a doctrine I discussed at length here. "Gradualism," often called "stealth jihad" in the West, refers to an incremental, phased approach towards advancing the Islamist cause that includes a cost-benefit analysis. Western observers often misinterpret the Muslim Brotherhood's restraint as proof that it is moderate. In reality, this judgment is an intelligence failure. Israeli officials say the Muslim Brotherhood leadership in Egypt ordered Hamas to fire rockets at Israel just this past weekend. Hamas' founding charter says it is a wing of the Brotherhood and the terrorist group changed its official name in December to reflect this.
There is a wealth of information showing why the investigations called for by the members of Congress is necessary. The impact of the Muslim Brotherhood-tied groups and other Islamists on the current and past administrations, both political parties and the law enforcement and intelligence communities is disturbing. Their agendas are aided by a media eager to defame their critics and businesses, officials and religious organizations embracing them in the name of interfaith relations.
The Center for Security Policy's course calls out several serving members of the current administration for having close ties to Muslim Brotherhood affiliates. These include :
- Huma Abedin, Deputy Chief of Staff to Secretary of State HillaryClinton and wife of former Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY). Several of her relatives have ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, especially her mother who belongs to the Muslim Sisterhood. Huma herself was an assistant editor of the Institute’s journal as far back as 1996 and as recently as 2008, which means she was there when it published her mother’s extremist book.
- Rashad Hussain, the current Special Envoy to the Organization of Islamic Cooperation. He previously was a Deputy Associate Council in the White House involved in national security policy and Muslim outreach.
- Dalia Mogahed, a close associate of John Esposito, one of the foremost defenders of the Muslim Brotherhood and its affiliates. She is in the White House's Office of Faith-Based Neighborhood Partnerships and is credited as the person who most influenced President Obama's 2009 speech in Cairo. She is a member of the Department of Homeland Security's Countering Violent Extremism Working Group.
- Mohamed Elibiary, who serves on the Homeland Security Advisory Committee and reportedly tried to leak documents to the press to paint Texas Governor Rick Perry as having an anti-Muslim bias. He is a member of the Department of Homeland Security's Countering Violent Extremism Working Group.
- Imam Mohamed Magid, President of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), who has close ties with administration officials and is a member of the Department of Homeland Security's Countering Violent Extremism Working Group.
These individuals represent the tip of the iceberg – there are many, many more in high influential places in the American government.
Moreover, these individuals and organizations are responsible for the administration's belief that the Muslim Brotherhood is genuinely moderate, non-violent and a force we can work with. This opinion was on full display when Director of National Intelligence James Clapper testified before Congress that the Muslim Brotherhood is "secular." He portrayed the Brotherhood in a positive light and continues to do so to this day. A National Security Council spokesperson did the same when asked about the White House's meetings with Brotherhood officials from Egypt. The director of the State Department's Special Coordinator of the Office of Middle East Transitions, William Taylor, is similarly positive towards the Brotherhood. His office even gave election training to Islamists in Egypt.
[ad] The five members of Congress who wrote these letters are going to be vilified, cast as "Islamophobes" buying into a wild conspiracy theory. The Islamists' allies in the media and government will repeat their talking points, ever so eager to pride themselves as the defenders of an attacked minority. I personally experienced this when I tried to speak out at a planning board hearing about a pro-Hamas imam in my area and a local reporter said I wanted to "make comments about Muslims" even though she had no way of knowing what my intention was because I wasn't permitted to speak and she never talked to me before writing her report.
These investigations must happen. The information in this article and in the "Muslim Brotherhood in America" course only comes from publicly-available information. What is happening behind closed doors in a comforting atmosphere of secrecy?
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.