The Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America website (AMJA) states that it is a non-profit organization,
“. . . established in response to the growing need of an Islamic jurisprudence specific to Muslims in the West. Its main goal is to uphold authentic standards using high academic standards, moderate approach and a rejection of extremism.”
The AMJA issues fatwas and “declarations” which are the “decisions and recommendations” intended to advise Muslims living in the West. AMJA also hosts the annual Imams training conference. (Yasir Qadhi, Memphis Islamic Center Imam, spoke at the 2012 AMJA Imams Conference in Los Angeles comparing Jewish and Islamic requirements for animal slaughter. )
The Muslim Observer notes that the list of AMJA scholars “stretches from Al-Azhar University to Virginia’s Open University, and back across the ocean to the professors at Saudi universities.” (plenty of fundamentalist sharia law to go around).
Here are some examples of AMJA fatwas posted at the website:
“To have shared religious services or the like would be crossing the lines. Also, we do not need to sanction their religion to show friendliness,…”
“It is important to understand that for a religious minority, the notions of “All religions are equal” or “Religions are different paths leading to the same end” are dangerous and their acceptance is a commitment of communal suicide. That is because there is always enormous pressure to assimilate into the mainstream.”
“AMJA asserts that dealing with non-Muslims who desire to live in peace with Muslims is based on justice and kindness. This covers many forms of dealings such as responding to their invitations, inviting them to Muslims homes, allowing them to enter mosques in order to introduce Islam to them and make it closer to their hearts, exchanging gifts with them in other than their religious celebrations….
AMJA asserts that participating in non-Muslim religious celebrations or congratulating them for these occasions is prohibited, as this implies endorsement for rituals and doctrines that are not part of the Islamic creed.”
“Tenth: There is no problem in making alliances with moderate secular trends in the stage of pursuance of establishing the Islamic State, on condition that the subject of alliance is legal, and that it must not comprise any bindings that would harm the message of the religion, or that would tie the hands of the people who are involved in the Da`wa works and prevent them from spreading the truth and from marching towards the objective of establishing the Islamic State.”
Tennessee Imam and AMJA say halal products may not be necessary
“12. Kindness and justice are the basis for dealing with both Muslims and non-Muslims, and among them, the People of the Book have a special place. Examples of this can be found in Shari`ah—that their slaughtered meat is permissible for us and that their women are permissible for Muslim men to marry—two privileges other religions do not share.”
(note – “People of the book” refers to Jews. This recommendation is AMJA’s ruling confirmed by Yasir Qadhi in his 2012 AMJA presentation that Muslims may purchase kosher meat and other kosher marked products. So it seems that demands for halal food are made in pursuance of political objectives.)
Do not become “pleased with a legal system that does not come from allah” – the 22 page AMJA paper issued in Arabic has been translated into English and is consistent with the more abbreviated declaration from the AMJA 5th annual convention. With regard to working as a police officer, the longer paper recognizes that this can be helpful to the Muslim community in some ways but cautions that they could potentially be “required to enforce laws contrary to the sharia…”
Perhaps Remziya Suleyman, head of the Muslim American Center for Outreach (ACO) who recently criticized police and prosecutorial action against the Kurdish Pride Gang, whose brother recently graduated from the Police Academy, and who has been briefed by Tennessee imams on sharia, will explain to us what sharia laws are contrary to ours.
 But admits that the reverse does not apply because kosher standards are stricter than halal.
Political shariah foot soldiers like Charles Haynes and Remziya Suleyman promote the “American Muslim” propaganda by claiming that Muslims in the US are somehow different from Muslims “over there”. They do not explain, however, whether “over there” includes other Western nations such as England and France.
Muslims “over there” like those in England and France have made it very clear that they want more not less shariah in their lives, they want shariah no-go zones and they want to ultimately have these countries ruled by shariah law, here and here.
We have yet to hear Ms. Suleyman or any of the other Islamists in Tennessee deny their desire to advance political shariah into the public square. Who knows, maybe a “Halal hamburger Day” could be the start of eliminating all pork products from school cafeterias and prisons.
This past June, Ms. Suleyman’s Muslim community elders were satisfied with the amended 20011 anti-terrorism bill but she told them that her political activism demanded she move forward, that it was not about religion anymore. She said she was adamant about continuing political opposition.
With this rallying cry, Ms. Suleyman works to radicalize the Islamists of her generation. Has Ms. Suleyman read the 1991 Muslim Brotherhood Memorandum? If she did, would she still be able to deny that she and her fellow Tennessee Islamists, are actually more like the “Muslims over there” than not?
The Islamic Center of Tennessee (ICT) models Muslim Brotherhood socialism
One of Nashville’s Muslim Brotherhood mainstays, Awadh Binhazim (featured in the “Losing Our Sons” documentary and Newsletters 11, 12, and 13), has honestly expressed Islam’s disdain for our First Amendment right to freedom of speech and Islam’s capital punishment for homosexuality.
A publicly recognized spokesman for the Islamice Center of Tennessee (ICT), Binhazim and Ms. Suleyman have served on speakers’ panels together. They both also share a working relationship with CAIR.
Binhazim served as the CAIR Austin chapter president when he lived in Texas. He’s now with the ICT, a mosque that is readying to emulate what the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt did to make “Islam the solution.” By providing social services “like health care and education to the 40% of Egyptians who live under the poverty line” (CNN, “The Muslim Brotherhood Comes to America”), the Muslim Brotherhood was able to translate their ideology into political reality.
The ICT will start its social services endeavors with health care and legal services. On Febrary 8, 2013, Mohammad Ali Syed of the Syed Law Firm offered the following:
“Free legal advice seminar” at the ICT: (“Helping the Muslim Community of Nashville and Middle Tennessee in legal and business matters. Immigration, litigation, insurance, real estate, contracts, business law and general practice. If you need an advocate/counselor for your legal matters, please call me. Please call with any questions or send an email.”)
On February 10, 2013, the ICT held a “Medical Clinic Proposal Presentation”:
“As you may already know we are conducting a study for the purpose of establishing a permanent medical clinic in the back of the ICT building. We have been in contact with Umma Clinic in California and they have sent us detailed presentation about how to set up such a clinic.
Medical, legal, Public relations, business management & financial planning, fundraising / grants, IT, architecture & interior design, and religious advice.”
This is the same political template that the Muslim Brotherhood has used in the mid-east.
The Muslim Brotherhood has come to power in Egypt, bringing with it imposition of fundamentalist shariah law including Islam’s blasphemy laws. The result for Coptic Christians under these laws has literally been deadly. While the mainstream media has failed to report the destruction of churches and religious persecution, these incidents have been documented and are being reported by alternative media. Morsi’s virulent Islamic doctrine driven anti-Semitism has also been exposed. (See Newsletter #60).
Attempting to counteract the harsh reality of a Muslim Brotherhood ruled Egypt and to “raise the morale of the Eygptian people”, the government launched its new social services campaign called “Mother Egypt – Your Children Matter” providing medical assistance and clean drinking water to towns and villages.
Free or low-cost social services for the every -day Egyptian has brought success in the polls for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt. If the ICT sticks with it long enough, the same might be true for the Muslim Brotherhood in Antioch and Davidson County.
 Recall that CAIR’s parent organization, the Islamic Association for Palestine a front organization for Hamas is the reason CAIR was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial.
 Coincidentally during the same time as the Holy Land Foundation terror financing trial was ongoing in Texas.
Working together since at least June 5, 2011
When Al Neuharth, founder of USA Today retired as Chairman of the Gannett Company, he took over the Gannett Foundation, sold the foundation’s Gannett stock back to the company, and returned its name. He used the $650 million stock sale proceeds to invest in the Freedom Forum.
Many of the so-called scholars and experts claimed by the Freedom Forum are blatant leftist journalists and media professionals. This may explain why the strands of their bias are threaded through both its off-shoots, the First Amendment Center and the Religious Freedom Education Project.
One might even argue that they have been bought and paid for by the left’s mega corporate dollars. The Freedom Forum’s Newseum recently hosted Obama’s “grass-roots” mega dollar corporate-based “Organizing for Action” (OfA) money-pitching meeting. “An OfA spokeswoman declined to comment on the group’s presentation at the Newseum, its fundraising or relationship with other deep-pocketed liberal groups.”
Support for the meeting was provided by a “White House-allied trade association called Business Forward, which is funded by major corporations including Microsoft, Walmart and PG&E…”
“Distributed action” was discussed by panelists representing a troika of Common Purpose Project, the self-described anti-conservative progressive Media Matters, and the Soros funded Center for American Progress.
Newseum + mega money + insider politics + anti-conservative progressive agenda ≠ unbiased media.
It may also explain why the Freedom Forum, the First Amendment Center and Religious Freedom Education Project walk in lockstep with the progressive socialists’ agenda. Certainly they are serious about President Obama’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships report recommendation to: “Utilize the expertise of faith-and community-based organizations to train education and media professionals on Islam and Muslim communities.”
But in their haste, the scholars and experts of the Freedom Forum failed to fully vet their Islamist partners.
The First Amendment Center and an unbiased free press – an oxymoron
Claiming that journalists, particularly those in the South, find reporting about Islam and Muslims “increasingly challenging”, Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) School of Journalism along with the First Amendment Center hosted a three-day conference in August 2011. It was funded by the McCormick Foundation and titled “Covering Islam in the Bible Belt”.
The conference promised to feature “veteran reporters and experts in Islamic history and culture.” One of the reporters that led a workshop titled “Crafting the Story” was Osama Siblani from Dearborn Michigan. He is the publisher of The Arab American News. In 2006 Siblani was a speaker at a pro-Hezbollah rally in Dearborn, Michigan sponsored by the Congress of Arab American Organizations. During his talk, Siblani asked all those in attendance to observe a moment of silence “for the martyrs.”
Butch Ward, managing director of the Poynter Institute led a workshop titled “Acknowledge Your Bias and Improve Your Coverage.” Subsequent to the conference, the Poynter Institute posted a free on-line course on Islam for journalists. This course was promoted as a way to help journalists “remain accurate and balanced in their coverage of the Muslim community in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, which changed the way Islam is viewed by the public.”
It is precisely because of 9/11 that the public has started to wake up, take notice and get educated about what Islamists and the Muslim Brotherhood are working to institute in the United States.
Some participating journalists took issue with the way in which the course minimized the act and meaning of 9/11. In “Jihad is Not Just Murder, Motive Matters”, Judith Miller writes ,“This is a course in political correctness for reporters assigned to cover Islam in America who have slept through the past decade.” She also notes that the course “barely mentions the proliferation of such ‘home-grown’ Islamist terrorism in its discussion of important trends and facts about Islam.”
Reporters Judson Berger and Iris Somberg revealed here and here that the groups behind the Poytner course are all funded by the notorious billionaire George Soros which may explain the course comments that accuse conservatives of bigotry. One of the Soros groups involved is the Center for American Progress which supports Islamists like the Muslim Brotherhood. Muslim Brotherhood supporter Egyptian President Morsi was recently quoted as saying that “we must nurse our children and grandchildren on hatred for Jews”.
Contradicting their own stated mission, the Poynter website only posts articles consistent with the narrative and agenda of the pro-Islamist U.S. press.
Media Bias: the Tennessean abets Islamists
Tennessean reporter Bob Smietana also led a workshop at the MTSU conference discussing all he discovered about individuals leading the anti-jihadist movement in the U.S. He told the Arab American News that he has nothing but “contempt” for them. Of course, Smietana is ignorant about Islamic political doctrine and its supremacist theocratic sharia law, which is what the anti-jihadists protest. Neither Smietana nor The Tennessean was willing to acknowledge or correct confirmed inaccuracies in his reporting.
Moreover, showing no regard for the danger of speaking out about Islamists, Bob Smietana published the identities of anti-jihadist activists who had to use pseudonyms for security purposes.
Tennessee writer and political analyst Rebecca Bynum addresses this and more about Bob Smietana’s bias in her article “Peculiar Bias: How the Tennessean Became a Fellow Traveler with CAIR and the Muslim Brotherhood”.
Feel free to contact Bob at his home and let him know how you feel about his credibility as the religion writer for The Tennessean:
Robert Smietana, 2712 Cash Court, Thompson Station, TN 37179 615-595-2365
The Islamist resource list for journalists and the Freedom Forum
The conference resource list for journalists just like the resource list compiled by the Freedom Forum, the Religious Freedom Education Project and the recent publication “What is the Truth About American Muslims” is threaded throughout with anti-American Islamists committed to the Muslim Brotherhood ideology of political sharia.
The Poynter website directs journalists to Muslim Brotherhood organizations such as CAIR, ISNA, ICNA and MPAC. Is Poynter ignorant about the 1991 Muslim Brotherhood memo on a global government takeover or about CAIR’s ties to Hamas? Obviously or else they sympathize with the Islamists. Either is inexcusable.
Experts on the resource lists include Zaid Shakir, Sherman Abdul Hakeem Jackson and Muqtedar Khan. Shakir and Jackson are both featured in this article about the 2010 Toronto Muslim convention. Shakir is quoted as telling his audience that Allah destroyed the Soviet Union because it invaded Afghanistan and the same thing could happen to the U.S.
It was reported that Sherman Jackson told his audience that “Muhammad redefined the society in which he lived, and today nothing less than the future of the Ummah (“community” or “nation” in Arabic) in Western cultures was at stake. Muhammad’s vision was not just for Arabia, but for all humanity, including, presumably, the modern Western world. To a cheering audience, he said that his primary commitment was to Allah, not to America. His speech was a call to battle. It had little to do with peaceful co-existence with the West, but was an exhortation for Islam to dominate the West.”
Both Jackson and Khan sit on the Muslim Brotherhood’s U.S. Council of Scholars. In 2009 the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT) formed this council. The IIIT is one of the 29 named organization “of our friends” in the 1991 Muslim Brotherhood Memorandum on the General Strategic Goals for North America. The IIIT was raided by federal authorities as part of a terror financing investigation.
Islamist agents who work for the demise of our civilization and our government are the allies of journalists such as Bob Smietana and Butch Ward, and organizations like the Freedom Forum and First Amendment Center. The very media that should be educating the American people about the dangers of political sharia to our way of life is busy currying favor with Islamists and propagating leftist propaganda.
The Freedom Forum. An unbiased forum for freedom? You tell me.
Nolensville Academy for Math and Science has once again notified the Metro Nashville School Board of its intent to submit a charter school application. Lead petitioner Ismail Fidan is going to try again for a charter school after having had four prior applications rejected including the Nashville Academy of Science & Technology.
The Nolensville Academy’s “Letter of Intent” states that the majority of the students it plans to serve come from “minority-immigrant groups living in and around the Nolensville area.”
It seems counter-intuitive to segregate “minority-immigrant” groups from the opportunity to integrate and assimilate in the more inclusive Metro Nashville school population. Responding to a 2008 civil rights office violation, the Metro Nashville school system was forced to desegregate foreign-language students and place them in the more inclusive general student population.
Chartering a public school to segregate “minority-immigrant” groups on its face also contradicts the push by Nashville’s socialist-progressives promoting an “equitable and inclusive” socialist utopia for the city.
Another cautionary note to the Metro Nashville school board regarding the Nolensville Academy application; consider the experience of the Minnesota charter school, the TiZa Academy, which was sued into bankruptcy by the ACLU for violating the Establishment clause of the Constitution. Contributing to the suit was TiZa making religious accommodations for the predominantly Muslim student population thereby effectively turning the school into an Islamic madrassa.
Would the Nolensville Academy be “Gulen-inspired”
A quick search of Mr. Fidan’s involvement and associations with other charter schools includes the overtly Gulen schools Coral Academy of Science in Nevada and the Fulton Science Academy which was recently informed by its county school board that the school’s charter would be revoked a full two years before it was due to expire.
Nolensville Academy board member Marieta Velikova, like other board members at other Gulen schools, is a member of the Turkish-American Chamber of Commerce and a board member of the Society for Universal Dialogue (SUD), aka the Knoxville Turkish Cultural Center. The SUD and the Iris Foundation (submitter of failed Knoxville Academy Gulen charter school) share the same address. Iris Foundation’s Board’s secretary (and proposed President of the failed Knoxville charter school), Suzan Mertyurek, is a board member of Gulen schools in other states.
Growing public awareness about the Gulen charter school network along with reports of the federal investigation of problems associated with these schools also contributed to the recent denial of a Gulen-connected charter school application by the Loudon County, Virginia school board.
Last year, Louisiana closed the Abramson Science & Technology (Gulen) charter school and the Texas legislature initiated an investigation into the charter school network since it has the highest number of Gulen schools in the country. In fact, it was the 2011 New York Times article on the Gulen network in Texas that both publicly exposed and confirmed information that independent researchers had been gathering for some time.
Other members of the Nolensville Academy board reflect the changes in Turkey as it moves away from secularism and works politically to improve relations with Muslim majority countries, most notably Syria and Iran. As Turkey revives its identify as a religiously Islamic country, it was reported that Sunni Islam religious classes are compulsory in the public schools. One would imagine that for Nolensville Academy’s Kurdish Muslim board members, Mohammed Kokoy, Ahmad Brifkani and Mwafaq Mohammed, the alliance with Gulen followers is acceptable and reflective of what is happening in their homeland.
Regardless, it may be that both the Gulenists and the Islamists care more about having a publicly paid for school that will unquestionably accommodate the demands of Muslim families, than about the political tensions between these two groups in Turkey.
Should public school choice align with religious doctrine?
This is an important question that the Metro School board would be wise to consider as well. Do the Nolensville Academy petitioners want this school because their doctrine says that “the Holy Qur’an declares that a believer should never prefer a non-Muslim over a Muslim.…the Blessed Prophet once remarked that ‘Whoever spends forty days with a people becomes like them.’”
Sorry, but public money can’t be used to address these concerns.
 these members’ involvement with the Kurdish Salahadeen Center can be documented; no information in this regard can be documented for board member Mohammed Ali.
As part of a nationwide push to hold “Muslim Capitol Day” events, CAIR’s ally in Tennessee, Remziya Suleyman, director and lobbyist for the Muslim American Center for Outreach (ACO) has planned the Tennessee event for March 12, 2013.
The recent Texas Muslim Capitol Day event featured a CAIR representative who told his audience that, “if we are practicing Muslims, we are above the law of the land.”
In 2011, Ms. Suleyman brought one of CAIR’s lead attorneys, Gadeir Abbas to the Tennessee capitol to speak against the material support anti-terrorism bill. Reflecting on that time, Ms. Suleyman stated this past June that, “I never knew the concept of sharia…I called imams across the state and I was like guys what is sharia? I gotta go talk to politicians…”
Once again I have to ask you Ms. Suleyman – are you ignorant of your own Islamic doctrine and its political laws or are you simply being deceitful?