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Sanders, Castro Are Speaking With These Extremists in Houston

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Featured speakers and participants at the 2019 convention of the extremist organization Islamic Society of North America include (L to R) Islamist radical Linda Sarsour, Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Julian Castro and CAIR's executive director Nihad Awad (Photos: Sarsour/John Moore/Getty Images; Sanders and Castro/Justin Sullivan/Getty Images; Awad/Reuters)
Featured speakers and participants at the 2019 convention of the extremist organization Islamic Society of North America include (L to R) Islamist radical Linda Sarsour, Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Julian Castro and CAIR’s executive director Nihad Awad (Photos: Sarsour/John Moore/Getty Images; Sanders and Castro/Justin Sullivan/Getty Images; Awad/Reuters)

Clarion recently reported that Democratic presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Julian Castro will be speak at this weekend’s convention of a radical Islamist group with ties to the Muslim Brotherhood.

Sanders and Castro will participate in a “presidential forum” at the convention of Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) in Houston beginning August 31, 2019.

Read more about the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) below

Headlining the convention is comedian and Daily Show host, Trevor Noah, as well as Democratic presidential candidates, Bernie Sanders and Julian Castro.

As the 56th annual convention draws near, the list of featured extremist participants is starting to take shape. These radicals include:

 

Nihad Awad

Nihad Awad (Photo: Reuters)
Nihad Awad (Photo: Reuters)

Nihad Awad is the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).  CAIR grew out of the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), a group founded in 1981 by Hamas member Mousa Abu Marzook.  FBI wiretaps in 1993 reveal that CAIR was established to deceptively push the Islamist agenda in America.

In 2007, the U.S. government labeled CAIR an unindicted co-conspirator in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation for financing Hamas. In November 2014, CAIR was designated as a terrorist organization by the United Arab Emirates, along with a host of other Muslim Brotherhood entities.

Before working for CAIR, Awad was the public relations director for IAP.  IAP was responsible for publishing a pamphlet titled, “America’s Greatest Enemy: The Jew! And an Unholy Alliance!”

During a speech at a university in 1994, Awad said he was “in support of the Hamas movement more than the PLO.”  In a 1998 interview with The Georgetown Voice, Awad accused Jews of controlling U.S. foreign policy.

 

Hatem Bazian

Hatem Bazian (Photo: YouTube)
Hatem Bazian (Photo: YouTube)

Hatem Bazian is the chairman of American Muslims for Palestine and founder of Students for Justice in Palestine.

He is also a professor at the University of California-Berkeley’s Department of Near Eastern and Ethnic Studies and a founder and board member of Zaytuna College.

Bazian was recorded in 2004 praising the “intifada in Iraq,” which targeted U.S. soldiers, and the “intifada in Palestine” and urging Muslim-Americans to begin an “intifada in this country that change[s] fundamentally the political dynamics in here.” At least five AMP officials previously served with the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood’s pro-Hamas Palestine Committee.

Bazian taught students that the Islamists’ opponents and critics of Islam generally are puppets of a war-seeking, Zionist conspiracy to victimize Muslims that has succeeded in seizing the United States’ major institutions. This conspiracy theory—essentially a modernized version of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion—is used to silence adversaries through demonization.

In November 2017, Bazian was criticized for retweeting blatantly anti-Semitic photos mocking Jews as entitled people who “kill, rape, smuggle organs & steal the land of Palestinians.”  Another photo placed a yarmulke on top of North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un’s head with a caption of “NOW MY NUKES ARE LEGAL.

 

Zahra Billoo

Zahra Billoo
Zahra Billoo (Photo: Facebook)

Zahra Billoo is the executive director of the Northern California chapter of CAIR.

Billoo has praised the terrorist group Hezbollah, tweeting “AH [All Hail] for Hezbollah having the courage to do what the Arab governments won’t” and likened the anti-Semitic terrorist group Hamas to a victim of rape implying her support of Hamas rockets being fired into the civilian population of Israel.

She questioned whether fallen U.S. soldiers should be honored on Memorial Day, sparking outrage from other Muslims. She attributed criticism of her comment to sexism, racism, and anti-Muslim bigotry. She doubled-down and characterized U.S. soldiers as war criminals committing genocide.  She also equated Israel with ISIS.

A tweet of hers from 2009 received a lot of attention as she casually mentions that she is listening to the sermon of the noted anti-Semitic hate preacher Louis Farrakhan while at the gym. Farrakhan regularly calls Jews “Satanic” and claims they “control everything and mostly everybody.”

Last year, the interfaith organization People Acting in Community Together (PACT) rescinded an award honoring her.  In a series of tweets, Billoo blamed the loss of the award on her “vocal support of Palestinian human rights” and claimed there was pressure to rescind the award from Jewish members of the organization who opposed her criticism of Israel.

 

Mehdi Hasan

Mehdi Hasan (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/CC 2.0)
Mehdi Hasan (Photo: Wikimedia Commons/CC 2.0)

Mehdi Hasan is a longtime presenter for the Qatar state-owned media outlet Al Jazeera.  “When he speaks, he’s no less a government spokesman than Kellyanne Conway or Sarah Sanders,” explained David Reaboi of the Security Studies Group.

Al Jazeera is known for its parroting of the Qatari regime’s views, advocating for the Muslim Brotherhood and long history of spreading anti-Semitism, anti-Americanism and support for terrorist groups. This includes glorifying  Osama bin Laden and other terrorist leaders.  Recently, Al Jazeera’s Arabic language viral video channel, AJ+ Arabic, came under fire for producing an anti-Semitic Holocaust-denial video.

Hasan, who routinely lectures others on anti-Semitism, spends an extensive amount of time defending Rep. Ilhan Omar following her spewing of multiple anti-Semitic statements.

Hasan has on numerous occasions’ vilified Jewish self-determination and believes that criticizing “New York values” is somehow synonymous with being anti-Jewish.  Hasan, who supports the anti-Semitic and terror-tied BDS Movement, has been unwilling to acknowledge Israel’s right to exist.

In the past, Hasan has given lectures where he makes disparaging remarks towards homosexuality and compares non-Muslims and atheists to “cattle.”

 

Linda Sarsour

Linda Sarsour (Photo: Bennett Raglin / Getty Images for BET)
Linda Sarsour (Photo: Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for BET)

Activist and Woman’s March organizer Linda Sarsour has a very sordid history with regards to anti-Semitism.

Sarsour associates with the organization Al-Awda and its co-founder (an open and unapologetic Hezbollah supporter) Abbas Hamideh. Sarsour and Hamideh playfully joked around with each other about the Jewish connections to Israel. She attended numerous rallies sponsored by Al-Awda; promoted and solicited donations for their events; spoke at their rallies. She has distanced herself a bit from Al-Awda, though she has never denounced the organization.

Sarsour also called for people to show solidarity with Muhammad Allan, a member of the terrorist group, Islamic Jihad. Allan has a history of recruiting suicide bombers. She supports the discriminatory and terror-tied BDS Movement and claimed “nothing is creepier” than Zionism.

Sarsour said despite what the “Jewish Media” might tell you, Farrakhan is not an existential threat to Jews. Days after Sarsour sat on an anti-Semitism panel to downplay Louis Farrakhan’s Jew hatred, she went to help raise money for Islamic Relief, an organization with ties to Hamas.

 

Abdul El-Sayed

Abdul El-Sayed campaigning for the Democratic nomination for the governorship of Michigan (Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
Abdul El-Sayed  (Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

Abdul El-Sayed, a former Michigan gubernatorial candidate has several problematic associations.  Clarion Project was the first to bring attention to El-Sayed’s embrace the Islamic House of Wisdom — a radical, pro-Iran, mosque in Dearborn Heights. The Islamic House of Wisdom is one of three Iran-linked mosques in Michigan.

During campaign for governor, the Islamist Money in Politics initiative found that El-Sayed earned the support of Islamist donors connected to various groups identified by the U.S. government as Muslim Brotherhood entities.

The list includes donors affiliated with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR)Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)North American Islamic Trust (NAIT)Muslim American Society (MAS)Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) and Esam Omeish, whose support for radical groups has made him known internationally.

 

Hassan Shibly

Hassan Shibly (YouTube)
Hassan Shibly (YouTube)

Hassan Shibly is CAIR-Tampa’s executive director. Shibly is currently acting as a pro-bono attorney and advocate for Hoda Muthana, a New Jersey-born woman who proclaimed her adherence to ISIS in writing and is now seeking to return to the US.

In 2004, Shibly was detained at the Canadian border after he and his associates attended an Islamist conference in Toronto. He then sued the Department of Homeland Security and his case was dismissed.

The U.S. government said his group was questioned because of “credible intelligence that conferences similar to the one from which these individuals were leaving were being used by terrorist organizations to fundraise and to hide the travel of terrorists themselves.”

Shibly has said that Hezbollah is “absolutely not a terrorist organization,” but is actually a “resistance group” and “any war against them is illegitimate.”

Shibly has repeatedly posted videos on Facebook that portray U.S. soldiers as abusers of innocent Muslims; accused Israel of carrying out a holocaust, compared Hamas’ terror tunnels to the Underground Railroad and claimed “Israel & it’s supporters are enemies of God and humanity!”

In 2010, Shibly refused to describe Hezbollah and Hamas as terrorist organizations to Clarion Project national security analyst Ryan Mauro. He also posted a clip of Norman Finkelstein praising Hezbollah on his Facebook page.

In the interview with Mauro, Shibly provided articles alleging that the British were framing Iraqis for terrorist attacks and that Israeli agents had advance knowledge of the 9-11 attacks.

 

Muzammil Siddiqi

Muzammil Siddiqi (YouTube)
Muzammil Siddiqi (YouTube)

Muzammil Siddiqi is the chairman of ISNA’s Fiqh Council of North America, the body that issues the authoritative religious rulings for the group.

He is also on the executive board of the International Assembly of the Council of Ulama’ in Mecca, Saudi Arabia and the Supreme Council of Mosques in Mecca. In other words, he’s part of the Saudi Wahhabist establishment.

Given that background, it is unsurprising that he preached that Muslims should implement sharia (Islamic law) in the U.S. using the Brotherhood doctrine of “gradualism.” He taught that participation in the democratic process was a means to this end.

 

Omar Suleiman

Omar Suleiman (Photo: Twitter)
Omar Suleiman (Photo: Twitter)

Omar Suleiman, a member of the ICNA Sharia Council, is the founder and president of the Irving, Texas-based Yaqeen Institute for Islamic Research. Suleiman, who’s views recently came under scrutiny after he was invited to provide the invocation prayer in the U.S. House of Representatives, has a long history of siding with Hamas, praising terrorists, and pushing anti-Semitic tropes about how Israel controls U.S. foreign policy, calling Israel the 51st state of America.

Additionally, Suleiman has a history of homophobic and sexist remarks.

 

Siraj Wahhaj

Siraj Wahhaj (Photo: Clarion Project/Video grab)

Imam Siraj Wahhaj is a radical preacher who served as a character witness for the “Blind Sheikh,” Omar Abdel-Rahman, who was found guilty of masterminding terrorist plots against the United States, including his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.

 

Wahhaj In 1992, Wahhaj gave a sermon in which he advocated for armed jihad in streets for the benefit of Islam. After the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, gave a sermon asking the question, “Who are the real terrorists?” He named three entities: The U.S. government, big business and the media.

Wahhaj has also preached that Muslims should not associate with non-Muslims claiming, “Woe to the Muslims who pick kafirs [non-Muslims] for friends.” Wahhaj has also described homosexuality as “a disease.”

 

Who is the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)?

ISNA was identified as an “entity” of the Muslim Brotherhood by the Justice Department during the trial of the Holy Land Foundation, a Brotherhood front that was shut down for financing Hamas.

ISNA was labeled as an “unindicted co-conspirator” during that trial, partially because the Holy Land Foundation “operated from within ISNA.”

While claiming to oppose extremism, ISNA has a long history of booking speakers that promote anti-Semitism and using inflammatory extremist rhetoric.

By speaking at the event, Noah, Sanders and Castro are helping ISNA appear as moderate leaders of the Muslim-American community, giving them a facade of legitimacy as they say one thing and do another.

 

RELATED STORIES

Dem Candidates Sanders, Castro to Speak at Radical Islamist Convention

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Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)

 

 

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Ryan Mauro and Alex VanNess

Ryan Mauro is the director of the Clarion Intelligence Network and Shillman Fellow for Clarion Project.Alex VanNess is a research analyst for the Clarion Intelligence Network.