Newsletter #12 – Tennessee Imam Goes to Texas and Gets Booted

TCPJ Newsletter #12 – May 18, 2012

Awadh Binhazim cont’d

It was documented last year that Binhazim’s organization, Olive Tree Education, promoted online writings by Anwar Al Awlaki, who was a top propagandist and recruiter for al-Qaeda.  An American born radical imam living in Yemen, Awlaki consistently urged Muslims world-wide to commit jihad against Americans and the West.  The U.S. government considered him a grave enough threat to U.S. security that he  was on the “kill or capture” list. He was killed in a drone strike in 2011.

Other jihadists in the U.S. such as the Fort Hood shooter Nidal Hassan, were discovered to have communicated directly with Awlaki, and Carlos Bledsoe the Little Rock Army recruiting station shooter is reported to have had Awlaki’s literature in his possession.

So it is no small matter that Awadh Binhazim was promoting Awlaki.

Binhazim also chose to partner with Imam Abdulhakim Mohamed, another Yemeni cleric who served as the Imam at the Islamic Center of Nashville (ICN) from 1999 until 2007. Mohamed was also the Imam at the ICN when Carlos Bledsoe changed his name to of all things – Abdulhakim Muhammed presumably because of his relationship with the imam.

Imam Abdulhakim Mohamed came to Nashville from the radical Brooklyn Al Farooq mosque where he served from 1996 until coming to Nashville in 1999.  The Brooklyn mosque had a documented history of raising money for terrorists and is the same mosque attended by the “blind sheik” who was convicted in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.

After Nashville, Imam Mohamed turned up in Texas for a very short stint as the imam at the Masjid Al-Hedayah in Ft. Worth, Texas.  Sometime shortly before arriving there he and Awadh Binhazim rejoined their efforts and launched “Muslimnama” (  Imam Mohamed’s controversial and troubled past caught up with him last year in Texas.

It seems the Board of the Al-Hedayah Islamic School became concerned about the Imam’s past connections, his current partners in Muslimnama and his actions since arriving in Texas.  A blog written by someone inside the Al-Hedayah school has raised questions about Imam Mohamed and his association with Awadh Binhazim who both have a “controversial past”, directing anyone to look at both the ICN and the Al Farooq mosque.

They further question whether the Imam and his committee are seeking a “hostile takeover of Al-Hedayah” almost reminiscent of the Bridgeview Mosque story (see,,0,3486861.story).   The blog piece also discloses that last year he “disappeared to Yemen for over 4 months” and has delivered khutbas (sermons or talks) that “have many times upset the community? Has he not attacked jews and christians and constantly berating women as though they are second class citizens?”