Until now, little has been written about the Knoxville Muslim community. Considering the Muslim Brotherhood ties and extremist associations of some Tennessee community leaders, no one should be surprised about what is being taught to Muslim students in the Knoxville Islamic school.
In 1984, Rafiq Mahdi helped establish the Annoor Mosque also known as the Muslim Community of Knoxville Community (MCK). It works in “close cooperation” with the Annoor Academy Islamic school, the UT Knoxville Muslim Students Assocation (MSA) and the Islamic Education Foundation of Knoxville. Services listed include the “Roots (Muslim Youth of Knoxville)” program, “Convert Connection” and “Friday Sermon.”
Mahdi, (formerly known as William Henderson), is a black American convert to Islam who first joined the racist and anti-Semitic Nation of Islam. Later he left the NOI and completed his Islamic training in Saudi Arabia at the University of Medina, the same school where Memphis Imam Yasir Qadhi (who calls Christians spiritually flithy), was trained.
Before becoming the “unofficial Imam of the MCK,” Mahdi led the Masjid Al-Iman in Florida, after his colleague Raed Awad, stepped down. This “small fundamentalist mosque,” gained national attention because it was the spiritual home of the “dirty bomber” Jose Padilla who had ties to al Qaeda and was convicted of planning a jihad attack in 2002.
Mahdi’s buddy Raed Awad, described as “an Islamic fundamentalist Palestinian” was also the registered agent in Florida for the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) during the time HLF was funneling money to Hamas, the military branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. Awad was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the HLF prosecution and identified as a member of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.
In 2002, Mahdi helped fundraise for the KindHearts Foundation which was shut down under suspicion of raising money for Hamas.
Mahdi “envisions an Islamic empire, a place where, if you don’t follow Muslim rules, you are free – to leave the country….[he says], Islam is Islam, and it has been since it was revealed 1400 and some odd years ago, and it is not the right of any individual to take it upon themselves to change it based on their own rationale or want or desire. We want to keep it in the truest form.”
He claims that most Muslims do not see Hamas as a terrorist organization, and he would like to hear Osama Bin Laden’s “side of the story” because he’s not convinced he was behind 9/11.
Mahdi back in Knoxville
Mahdi returned to Knoxville in 2005. In 2010 he became Director of Community Development at ICNA Relief USA, the charity arm of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) named by the Muslim Brotherhood as a likeminded “organization[s] of our friends” in the 1991 Muslim Brotherhood Explanatory Memorandum plan for North America. ICNA is also closely linked to a Pakistani Islamist group.
The Muslim Brotherhood “friends” were identified as groups that could help teach Muslims “that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands … so that … God’s religion [Islam] is made victorious over all other religions.”
ICNA has long held its annual conferences in conjunction with the Muslim American Society, also an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Mahdi and ICNA share the same vision of a U.S. governed by sharia law. Is that why ACO Director Remziya Suleyman asked him to help promote her organization? Or do they simply share a fundamentalist’s belief of how to live by sharia law?
In 1999 ICNA’s President welcomed attendees with this message: “We have a culture and civilization which once ruled the world and still has the viability to rule the world again.” Any denial by Mahdi of the ultimate goal is simply taqiyya (Islamically sanctioned lying).
Mahdi and ICNA – made for each other
ICNA’s pursuit of establishing Islam as the “sole basis of global society and governance” was published in its 2010 Member’s Hand Book which also sanctioned deceit while proselytizing their way to this goal.
In 2012 ICNA got serious about its dawa (proselytizing) with a $3 million dollar campaign to promote sharia law in America including “Got Questions?, Get Answers” billboards in 20 cities, radio spots, college campus sharia seminars and a 25 city “education tour” to help Americans better understand sharia law and feel better about its encroachment into the public domain.
Did ICNA representatives tell their audiences that it’s now scrubbed website feature “Great Leaders of the last 100 Years” included Iran’s Ayatollah Khomeini and Sayyid Qutb the Muslim Brotherhood leader whose writings were the inspiration for al Qaeda?
Maybe they handed out copies of ICNA’s magazine which featured Muslim Brotherhood extremist leader Sheik Al-Qaradawi (banned from entry into the U.S. since 1999) who said democracy is permitted only when it complies with Shariah law.
Just like Annoor Academy’s textbook, ICNA promotes hatred of Jews and Christians: The curricula for ICNA’s women’s organization also promotes jihad, Sharia rule and warns of the “dangers of secular Western thoughts and ideas.”
In addition to ICNA Relief which Mahdi heads, ICNA has a youth division called Young Muslims and a multimedia division called Sound Vision that helps ICNA pursue its goals through dawa in U.S. public schools: “Reaching the youth has not always been an area explored by those in the Dawa field. Our representatives visit public schools sharing knowledge of Islam as an attempt to correct the misrepresentations often found in secular reading materials.”
A TN American Muslim Advisory Council member, claimed that ICNA is one of the those organizations “that help American Muslims stay true to their religious values while being uniquely American.”
Naeem Baig, ICNA’s President serves in a leadership role with Religions for Peace USA (RFPUSA). TN ACO Director Remziya Suleyman is also a RFPUSA representative. Speaks volumes about this organization doesn’t it?
Mahdi Influences Tennessee’s young Muslims
Mahdi speaks at the UT Knoxville Muslim Students Association events and has the opportunity to influence even younger students when speaking at the Knoxville ROOTS programs (more on this later), and the Nashville-based Muslim Youth Network of TN (MYNT) retreats. In keeping with its Muslim Brotherhood themed training, MYNT had Dawud Walid from CAIR at their 2013 summer retreat.
It seems that Knoxville’s Islamic school Annoor Academy has followed Mahdi’s lead by choosing to use Yahiya Emerick’s textbook “What Islam Is All About.” Like Mahdi, Emerick also fantasizes about “How to Make America an Islamic Nation.” One of his books has been adopted into the curriculum of Al-Azhar University in Egypt, the preeminent teaching center of sharia law and the institution that authenticated the English translation of “The Reliance of the Traveller, The Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law.”
Emerick’s textbook, following the dictates of the Quaran, warns students about getting too friendly with non-Muslims and denigrates Jews and Christians and their religions and beliefs. More than anything, Emerick offers Islam as a civilization alternative without warning students about the loss of individual freedom and liberties (especially for women), under sharia law.
These are the same ideas that Rafiq Mahdi brings to the Muslims of Knoxville who proudly proclaim him their “unofficial imam.”
Rabbi Mark Schiftan, senior rabbi at The Temple in Nashville is preparing to take his congregants on a bus ride to the Islamic Center of Murfreesboro (ICM) on Sunday, October 27, 2013. He has dubbed this ride “A Sacred Journey of Understanding.” He claims to ride in support of First Amendment freedoms of worship and assembly.
Well Rabbi, we hate to burst your bubble, but you are no Freedom Rider. The bus riders of the late 50’s and early 60’s went armed with facts and the truth about what was happening to blacks in America. Your intended destination, the ICM does not stand for freedom and liberty as the West understands these concepts. In fact, as we have recently disclosed here and here, leadership at the mosque, pre – and post – construction, are aligned with those whose end goal is sharia for all. The Muslim Brotherhood uses the catchy phrase “civilization jihad” to describe their vision.
Imam Bahloul at the ICM is a graduate of Al Azhar University in Egypt with a degree in Da’awah (prosletyzing for Islam). His thesis was the establishment of a Da’awah curriculum aimed at secularists, atheists, Christians, Jews, and Muslims. Al Azhar is credited with starting the Islamist movement with training from Islamic radicals. It is closely tied to the Muslim Brotherhood and stands for the propagation of Islam and sharia as a complete way of life. Muslim Brotherhood spiritual leader who has been banned from the U.S. and the U.K., Yousef Al-Qaradawi, famously declared that:
“Conquest through Da’wa [proselytizing], that is what we hope for. We will conquer Europe, we will conquer America! Not through sword but through Da’wa.”
Walking in lock-step with Ikhwan (Muslim Brotherhood) leadership, Imam Bahloul is hosting Muslim Brotherhood leader Jamal Badawi on November 3rd.
Rabbi Schiftan, given your support for the Islamist movement in Tennessee, we thought you might like to phone Badawi in advance of his trip here and arrange to have a private visit over coffee. Badawi’s phone number was included in the Muslim Brotherhood’s phone directory that was introduced during the federal terrorism financing prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation:
Hamed Ghazali’s number is there as well so feel free to include him. After all, you are all Family of Abraham.
So Rabbi, as you prepare for your trip, take some facts along with your moral elitism. At least the facts have some basis in reality.
American Center for Outreach (ACO) Director Remziya Suleyman brings the Muslim Brotherhood message directly to the youth she trains. Suleyman provides youth education about political activism and advancing the objectives of political sharia, ie, the Muslim Brotherhood plan.
“Muslim Brotherhood” is as much about an ideological plan for the U.S. as it is about individual relationships and the organizations that have come together to work toward these goals.
On Saturday, April 6, 2013, Suleyman spoke at the birthplace of the U.S, Muslim Brotherhood’s Muslim Students Association (MSA) at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She was part of the Spring Camp 2013. The MSA is a Muslim Brotherhood off-shoot for colleges and universities across the country that have become the training ground for Suleyman’s stealth jihad generation.
Muslim Youth Network of TN
Closer to home Suleyman is bringing the message of political sharia to Tennessee’s Muslim youth. Organized in 2012 and based in Nashville, the Muslim Youth Network of TN (MYNT), is a mosque/college collaboration to provide programming, mentorship and training to the younger members of the TN ummah and partners to feed the university MSAs.
MYNT board members identified as of this writing are Fardin Mohammadi who is the current president of the Vanderbilt MSA, Drost Kokoye who until recently was the Multicultural Organizer for the TN Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC) and is an American Muslim Advisory Council (AMAC) Board member, and Kasar Abdullah, an ACO board member and sister to Suleyman’s administrative assistant, Jihan Abdullah.
A stated goal of MYNT is to help develop future Islamic leaders. Two recent MYNT events reveal just what kind of leadership advisor- Suleyman is trying to mold.
The day started with Hannah Cornfield, ACO’s “Policy Fellow” and daughter of TN ACLU’s director, teaching about the civic process.
On June 27, MYNT’s “Muslim Advocacy Day” played out in Nashville’s city offices. There was a private tour of Mayor Dean’s offices, a presentation by a city council member, and a mock debate in the council chambers – all designed to feed the narrative that youth must become politically empowered.
Dawud Walid – Islamic militant and CAIR extremist
Dawud Walid has been the Executive Director at the Michigan CAIR chapter since 2005 so he was there when CAIR was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial in 2007. CAIR’s unindicted co-conspirator status resulted because its parent organization, the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), was proven to be a front organization for Hamas. In 2009 a federal judge confirmed the “ample” evidentiary link between Hamas and CAIR. CAIR is also under suspicion of an international money laundering scheme.
Omar Ahmed, IAP Public Relations Director Nihad Awad, IAP President
Walid serves as an imam at Masjid Wali Muhammad, a Detroit-area mosque whose roots were in the black separatist Nation of Islam.
Walid is also a member of the North American Imams Federation (NAIF) whose director, Omar Shahin, was one of the six imams that staged an airport controversy in Minnesota and was a fundraiser for two Hamas-related charities, Kindhearts and the Holy Land Foundation. These charities have been shut down by the U.S. government.
Walid has been recorded telling Muslim youth the following:
Consistent with CAIR’s anti-FBI messaging, Walid lectures to students that he believes that FBI agents are waiting to set them up through informants, suggesting that they should feel threatened by law enforcement: “you have agent provocateurs and people who are acting as informants that are trying to further their careers, to get out of trouble, to get arrests, try to set people up, and guess the No.1 group of people who are targeted by these FBI agent provocateurs? Does anyone have a guess? Muslims.”
He casually tells students about al-Shabaab and almost questions whether it should be designated as a terrorist entity. Al Shabaab is the group that is responsible for the recent terrorist attacks on non-Muslims in a mall in Nairobi, Kenya.
If it’s a Muslim being arrested it can only be entrapment or wrongful targeting by law enforcement:
For example, as reported by IPT:
In 2009 he publicly defended the “Liberty City Seven” (see p.12), and characterized it as entrapment of Muslims. Five of the seven were eventually convicted of agreeing to provide material support to Al-Qaeda
In 2010 speeches, he “accused FBI ‘agent provocateurs’ of taking advantage of ‘emotional people,’ ‘getting them excited,’ ‘giving them plots,’ and then ‘after they push the people,’ saying ‘gotcha’”. These remarks followed the arrest of the Oregon Christmas-tree lighting bomb plot and the Maryland recruiting center bomb plot.
Without supporting facts, he challenged the DOJ report that showed no FBI wrongdoing in the attempted arrest and eventual shooting of Luqman Abdullah
More on Walid and the September 2010 FBI raids and the “Bronx Four” here
Walid jumped on the hate crime bandwagon regarding the 2012 bludgeoning death of the San Diego Iraqi mother, which turned out to be death by domestic violence.
Walid is an anti-Semite who demonizes Jews as the source of Black Muslims’ problems:
Walid’s May 2012 sermon at the Islamic Organization of North America mosque asked, “Who are those who incurred the wrath of Allah? They are the Jews, they are the Jews”
In his 2012 speech at the Islamic Center of Detroit he confirmed that those who earned Allah’s wrath are the Jews and those who go astray are the Christians which is the Al-Fatihah prayed by Muslims multiple times a day.
He has also been recorded: “One of the greatest social ills facing America today is Islamophobia and anti-Muslim bigotry. And if you trace the organizations and the main advocates and activists in Islamophobia in America, you will see that all those organizations are pro-Israeli occupation organizations and activists.” And,
“So this is why you see the Islamophobia network trying to gin up negative information about Muslims and Islam. This is a direct connection to the occupation of Palestine. It is a direct connection. And [it is] because the strongest Israeli lobby in the world is in America, because America is the sole patron of Israel.”
Parroting other CAIR leaders, Walid says Hamas deserves to participate in all peace talks because it “represents the elected government of the Palestinian people during a fair election.”
Dawud Walid’s visit was the second time Remziya Suleyman brought a CAIR representative to Tennessee. Does it matter to her that federal prosecution established “ample evidence” tying CAIR to Hamas and to the Muslim Brotherhood?
Does it matter to Suleyman that the individuals and organizations with which she regularly interfaces are deeply committed, connected and rooted in the Muslim Brotherhood plan for our country to replace the U.S. Constitution with sharia law? Deception? Intentional ignorance? Either way suggests that public officials, citizen activists and even her own community should start questioning her judgment and motives.
This year the Jewish observance of Kol Nidre (day of atonement for Jews) fell on the 40th anniversary of the Yom Kippur war, an Egyptian-Syrian offensive launched against Israel on one of the Jewish people’s holiest days. Despite suffering heavy casualties, Israel prevailed, much to the increased humiliation of the Arab countries.
Curiously, a Nashville rabbi did not choose to speak to his congregation about this stunning historical moment in his ancestral homeland’s history.
Instead, in Nashville, The Temple congregation listened to Rabbi Schiftan speak (starting at 1:36), about 1st Amendment rights, his experiences with anti-semitism in the United States (was he referring to Christian or Islamic anti-semitism?), and a planned congregational visit to the Murfreesboro Mosque, titled “A Sacred Journey of Understanding: from Belle Meade to Murfreesboro”. (high drama as reported in The Tennessean here).
It ‘s a shame that Rabbi Schiftan didn’t mention the pro-Israel resolution passed by the Tennessee legislature last year. Or the pro-Israel rally held by Nashville’s Christian friends at the state capitol last year. (wonder if he attended?)
He could have thought to mention the very recent demonstration held in downtown Nashville by Coptic Christians protesting the killing taking place now of their Christian brethren in Egypt. That seems pretty relevant to the 1st Amendment issue.
Rabbi Schiftan says he is going to use his mosque visit to have “honest dialogue.”
Before he goes, he might want to review why there was a Yom Kippur war. More contemporarily, he might want to read about why the Coptic Christians and Christians across the Middle East are being slaughtered in 2013. Chances are, “Hamas” and “Muslim Brotherhood” will be part of the answer. We get that he believes it is only a problem “over there” and a problem he would like to pretend has no relevance or implications here. Sorry rabbi, but there is nothing honest about that position.
A truly honest review of documented facts will in fact, lead him right back to the mosque he is planning to visit, and the mosque’s relationship with CAIR – the Council on American Islamic Relations whose director, Nihad Awad made sure to be present at the mosque’s opening.
Rabbi Schiftan can start with some of the documentary trial evidence:
- CAIR was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial, the largest terror financing prosecution in U.S. history.
- CAIR was so named because of their connectedness to Hamas
- prior to co-founding CAIR, executive director, Nihad Awad was the President of the Isalmic Association for Palestine (IAP), an organization named by the Muslim Brotherhood in their 1991 Strategic Plan for North America, as one of their organizations
- documentary evidence supports that the Islamic Association for Palestine was the Hamas propaganda arm in the U.S.
- Nihad Awad has stated unequivocally that he supports the Hamas movement (watch through very short video)
- in 2009 when CAIR tried to get its unindicted co-conspirator status removed, Judge Solis ruled that “ample evidence exists tying CAIR to Hamas”
For those going on the mosque trip, go with ALL the information. Be polite and respectful, but be knowledgeable. Let the Rabbi and media provide the propaganda.
“What is the Truth About American Muslims? Questions and Answers” is a recent publication of the Interfaith Alliance and the First Amendment Center’s Religious Freedom Education Project directed by Charles Haynes.
Haynes’ write-up about this publication exposes both the hypocrisy with which he champions First Amendment rights and his own ignorance about political Islam and its objectives to bring Sharia law to our country. Relying on a Soros financed Center for American Progress study to vilify anyone who questions the motives of devotees of political Islam, Haynes says:
“Enough is enough. It’s time for voices of reason to counter dangerous and often vicious propaganda with balanced and accurate information about American Muslims.”
Claims of balance and accuracy can only be credible if all the information is provided. Read the information omitted by the authors of “What is the Truth About American Muslims” at Political Islam, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and then judge for yourself.
Groups endorsing “What is the Truth” publication
This short analysis of 1991 Muslim Brotherhood Memorandum provides a good summary of the Muslim Brotherhood’s goals for the United States. Groups listed in “What is the Truth” include some that aggressively and proactively work to advance these Muslim Brotherhood’s goals:
Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)
Islamic Networks Group (ING)
Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)
United Methodist Church (UMC)
ISNA is listed in the Muslim Brotherhood’s 1991 Memorandum among its 29 “like-minded organizations of our friends”. Newsletter #41 explains ING’s commitment to Muslim Brotherhood objectives. Charles Haynes is an ING Board member so ING’s support of his work should come as no surprise.
What should concern the Freedom Forum though is that Haynes, one of their First Amendment experts and director of their Newseum and Religious Freedom Education Project has teamed up with Islamists committed to advancing the Muslim Brotherhood’s U.S. agenda.
MPAC likewise cannot dodge its Muslim Brotherhood lineage.
“The United Methodist Church and the Muslim Brotherhood” is explained in Newsletter #55.
Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA)
“What is the Truth” quotes the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA) to answer question 11 “Have American Muslim leaders spoken out against extremist violence?”
Originally named the “ISNA Fiqh Committee” and listed among the Muslim Brotherhood’s 29 “like-minded organizations of our friends” FCNA members have included Abdurrahman Alamoudi, Taha Jaber Al-Alawani, Sheikh Muhammad al-Hanooti, Muzammil Siddiqui and Jamal Badawi. Any number of FCNA members have been arrested, deported and named as unindicted co-conspirators in connection with terrorist activities. All are connected in some manner to the Muslim Brotherhood.
Jamal Badawi founded the Muslim Brotherhood’s Muslim American Society. He issued a fatwa detailing the conditions under which a husband may beat his wife and was an individually named unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial.
Taha Jaber Al-Alawani, President of the International Institute of Islamic Thought – IIIT was named in the Muslim Brotherhood memo. Al-Alawani was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the terrorism prosecution against Palestinian Islamic Jihad founder, Sami al-Arian. In his role as President of both IIIT and FCNA, Al-Alawani validated the English translation of the “Reliance of the Traveller: A Classic Manual of Sacred Islamic Law”, stating:
“…this translation is a valuable and important work, whether as a textbook for teaching Islamic
jurisprudence to English-speakers, or as a legal reference for use by scholars, educated laymen, and students in this language.”
Provisions in the “Reliance of the Traveller” include:
“the Objectives of Jihad” o9.8 – the caliph wars against Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians if they don’t accept the invitation to Islam or they can pay the non-Muslim poll tax (jizya)
“Giving Zakat to Deserving Recipients” h8.17 (zakat is Islamic charity)- those fighting for Allah who are not employed by the military, ie, “volunteers for jihad” and
h8.24 – zakat cannot be given to a non-Muslim
“Dealing with a rebellious wife” m10.12(4)(c) – a husband may hit his wife to either correct her behavior or to save the family but he may not hit her in such a way as to injure her
“Child Care and Custody” m13.3 – it is unlawful to send Muslim children to Christian schools but not unlawful to sent them to public schools as long as religion isn’t mentioned in a way “that threatens the students’ belief in Islam”
Suggested resources cited by the “What is the Truth” publication
“What is the Truth” names several organizations and suggests that their educational publications and presentations can be used by faith communities, schools, colleges and community groups to learn more about American Muslims. The named resource groups include:
Unity Production Foundation – see Newlsetter, Part
ING – see above
The Islam Project – pushes UPF materials
Institute for Social Policy & Understanding (ISPU) – ISPU scholars listed on their website many of whom are involved with Muslim Brotherhood organizations include:
-Arsalan Iftikhar – Newsletter #54 details Iftikhar’s personal involvement with Muslim Brotherhood groups
-Muqtedar Khan – named to International Institute on Islamic Thought (IIIT) council of scholars to supervise IIIT’s academic programs; member of Association of Muslim Social Scientists (AMSS) – both organizations named in the 1991 Muslim Brotherhood plan for North America
-Sherman Jackson aka Abdul Hakeem Jackson – former Board member of FCNA, trustee of North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) and Muslim Students Association (MSA), named to IIIT Council of Scholars – all Muslim Brotherhood organizations.
“Muslim Brotherhood” is as much about an ideological plan for the U.S. as it is about individual relationships and the organizations that have come together to work toward these ideological objectives.
Without question Charles Haynes and the Freedom Forum First Amendment Center are doing all they can to help the Muslim Brotherhood in our country achieve its goals – goals that include the negation of the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment. The question is why? Is it the money that the Islamists bring? Is Charles Haynes that blinded by politically correct leftist propaganda? Is it his commitment to the communitarian objectives? Does he really detest our country that much?
While the answer should be “ABSOLUTELY NOT”, exactly the opposite is happening at Tennessee’s state-funded universities. One of the most aggressive Tennessee schools in this regard is Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) although other schools such as the University of Tennessee in Knoxville (UT Knoxville) and the University of Memphis also have distinctive Muslim Brotherhood credentials.
At MTSU for example, “Registered student organizations” qualify for university funded student activity fee money. The MSA at MTSU states on its website that it is both a “registered student organization” and is affiliated with the National Muslim Students Association of the U.S. and Canada. https://web.archive.org/web/20110615082039/http://frank.mtsu.edu/~msa/msa.htm
The core of the Muslim Brotherhood’s ideology is spread at the college level through the Brotherhood’s very first U.S. creation – the Muslim Students Association (MSA). The MSA is an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood whose credo states: “Allah is our objective; the Prophet is our Leader; the Quran is our law; Jihad is our way; dying in the path of Allah is our highest hope.” The MSA “pledge of allegiance” videotaped at a recent regional conference concludes with “I will fight against oppression. And I will die to establish Islam.”
MSA at UT Knoxville
UT Knoxville MSA’s website comes the closest to acknowledging the origin of the organization:
“The first Muslim Student Association was founded on the campus of the University of Illinois, Ann, Urbana-Champaign in 1963. From the minds of a few students came an association that has spread to myriad universities across North America. The MSA of UT has been blessed with a colorful fifteen year history…”
UT Knoxville’s MSA “colorful” history includes the experience of Mustafa Saied who told the Chicago Tribune in 2004 that in 1994 during his junior year at UT Knoxville, he was recruited by the Muslim Brotherhood. “After Saied attended numerous prayer sessions, a fellow Muslim student took him to a quiet corner of a campus cafeteria and asked him to join….Saied says he left the group after several years because he disliked its anti-American sentiments and its support for violence in the Middle East.”
The Muslim Brotherhood’s U.S. Muslim Students Association – just another student organization?
The archives of the Muslim Brotherhood in North American were discovered during a 2004 FBI raid of a leading U.S. Muslim Brotherhood member’s Virginia home. Among the documents was the 1991 MB “Explanatory Memorandum” that was introduced by federal prosecutors during the Holy Land Foundation trial, the biggest terrorism financing case in the U.S. It is important to remember that during the trial the defense stipulated to the Muslim Brotherhood’s U.S. plan.
The 1991 Memorandum clearly shows the Brotherhood’s overarching goal of converting the U.S. into an Islamic state and laid out a detailed plan for the “civilization jihad from within.” The memo also listed 29 organizations working in the U.S. to further this goal; the MSA was second on the list because the MSA is an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood working in furtherance of the plan to offer Islam as a “civilization alternative.”
The MSA created in 1963 at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign campus is an Islamist organization with an Islamist agenda. Investigative journalist Patrick Poole notes the following:
“Toward that end, the organization has published an MSA Starter’s Guide: A Guide on How to Run a Successful MSA, which states:
‘It should be the long-term goal of every MSA to Islamicize the politics of their respective university … the politicization of the MSA means to make the MSA more of a force on internal campus politics. The MSA needs to be a more ‘In-your-face’ association … For example, the student body must be convinced that there is such a thing as a Muslim-bloc.” The Guide further advises: “Aim to rise within the ranks of the Union [student government] and to get on selected executive committees … I cannot stress this enough, the Union has vast powers that Muslims need to control.’
The Islamization of Tennessee’s university politics a.k.a. the “red –green alliance” and the example of MTSU
Looking at the MSA’s activity on various Tennessee campuses, it looks like they take the MSA Starter Guide seriously and have overlaid a contemporary element. The MSA’s reach has been extended by shrewdly embedding their objectives in the leftist jargon of “human rights” and “minority rights”. This strategy is better known as the “red-green alliance”.
In this manner, using the often subversive and less than honest discourse of the liberalized left, they have convinced the Latino community to join forces despite having to carefully veil their otherwise conservative and dogmatic doctrine.
The MTSU MSA faculty advisor is Saleh Sbenaty who joined MTSU in 1993. Available records show that he has been the MSA advisor since at least 2007. He has been discussed at length in Newsletter #50, who left Syria for the U.S. at the same time that the Muslim Brotherhood was expelled from his country. It was noted by Sbenaty’s daughter that he has not returned to Syria in 30 years for fear of being jailed there.
As far back as 2004, the MTSU MSA welcomed Awadh Binhazim, the Muslim chaplain at Vanderbilt who confirmed Islam’s capital punishment for homosexuality. Binhazim’s many affiliations including having been a CAIR chapter president in Texas, have been detailed in Newsletters #11 & 12.
Much more recently, the MTSU MSA along with the MSA Latino student organization FUTURO, have sponsored a program featuring Arsalan Iftikhar and AMAC member, Kasar Abdulla:
Invite-Only Event · By Anya Alicia Cardoso and MTSU MSA
6:00pm until 8:00pm
|MTSU Student Union Building Room 220|
|This event is a discussion forum featuring Arsalan Iftikhar and Kasar Abdulla. The topic will be about Islam and common misconceptions or stereotypes revolving around Muslims. After a short presentation the floor will be open the audience to ask any questions they might have.This event is sponsored by FUTURO and the Muslim Student Association of MTSU. There will be free food and lots of great discussion! Please join us and invite your student or faculty friends. This is meant to be more intimate–students and faculty only so that more questions can be answered, however, if you have a religious leader that would like to come and participate in the discussion, please invite them! Thank you!|
An open-to-the-public event featuring Arsalan Iftikhar followed on Tuesday, November 13, 2012.
Given that the event was co-sponsored by a Muslim Brotherhood organization, it is no surprise that the co-presenters each have deep involvement with Muslim Brotherhood groups. AMAC member Kasar Abudlla’s involvement with Muslim Brotherhood groups has been covered in Newsletters # 4 & 5.
Arsalan Iftikhar is another MSA “graduate” who later served as CAIR’s National Legal Director, a position and affiliation he omits from his resume and seems to go to great lengths to disown. However, a picture is worth 1,000 words especially when speaking at the 2006 Muslim Brotherhood ISNA convention:
Iftikhar was also the CAIR lawyer involved with the “flying imam” case against U.S. Airways. Attached is his letter to U.S. Airways along with CAIR’s internal memo detailing the proposed propaganda and lawfare campaign.
This is the same CAIR whose connection to Hamas is well documented, was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial, and whose co-founder, Omar Ahmad stated during a 1998 speech:
“If you choose to live here [in the U.S.] … you have a responsibility to deliver the message of Islam.” “Islam isn’t in America,” he continued, “to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran, the Muslim book of scripture, should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth.”
The same CAIR whose co-founder, convert to Islam, Ibrahim Hooper in 1993 expressed his desire that the U.S. be an Islamic government.
This sentiment, expressed and manifested in many ways, represents the core of the Muslim Brotherhood ideology and the end goal of all of the Brotherhood’s groups including the MSA.
As stated in January 2005 by a former UCLA MSA leader, “The only justification … that Muslims have to live in this country is da’wa…. [I]f we are not doing something to invite people to Islam, Muslims and non-Muslims, then we are missing the point what Islamic Movement is about…. The end goal of everything I was talking about is the establishment of, the reestablishment of, Islamic form of government.”
No different in objective than the da’wa discussed in Newsletter #41 being offered up by other Muslim Brotherhood associated and inspired organizations active in Tennessee including the American Center for Outreach (ACO) and the AMAC.
In 2009 a federal judge confirmed the existence of ample evidence tying groups like CAIR and ISNA to Hamas, a fact the MTSU’s students and faculty do not let get in their way. One can speculate that the reason it does not give them pause is because they are aligned to the anti-Israel, anything but America and the West, pro-Hamas and Hezbollah agenda.
How much background on Arsalan Iftikhar and the MSA for that matter was provided to the FUTURO organizer? How about program attendees? Isn’t a university supposed to be about higher education?
Someone might even want to clue Governor Haslam in about what his AMAC is helping out with on Tennessee campuses. After all, he demonstrates over and over again, that on this issue he is either clueless or willingly blind.
See the many pieces written about MSA activities around the country
A contemporary theme being advanced by Muslim-centric groups across the country is “Muslims as Americans” – as if anyone ever denied that there are Americans that follow the religion and politics of Islam. In Tennessee, the “made in America” stamp is being carried by the TN American Muslim Advisory Council (AMAC) and its lobbying arm organization, The American Center for Outreach (ACO).
No matter the label, even the “American Muslim” one cannot conceal the fact that Islam is Islam is Islam, no matter where, it is followed. We are told by Islamic scholars considered authoritative by the Muslim world, that Islam is a complete way of life and that the Koran is unchangeable because it is the word of Allah.
Nor can the “American Muslim” label conceal the fact that the ideology and the goals of that ideology are the same no matter where it is followed. And nowhere has the plan for insinuating this ideology and its goals been more carefully detailed than in the 1991 Muslim Brotherhood “An Explanatory Memorandum On the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America”. The Muslim Brotherhood is one of the leading proponents of global Shariah law and represents the quintessential expression of “political Shariah”.
To really appreciate the significance of this particular document, it should be noted that during the Holy Land Foundation trial, the Muslim Brotherhood Memorandum was stipulated to by the legal defense for the Holy Land Foundation. This means that the defense agreed with the federal prosecutors that the document was and still is what it says it is – the Muslim Brotherhood’s plan for North America and to quote the memo “present[s] Islam as a civilization alternative”.
Research to date indicates that Muslim-centric groups have not repudiated this plan. Nor does research show that any of the U.S. Muslim-centric groups, including for example the Muslim Student Association, CAIR or ISNA address the fact that they are a Muslim Brotherhood organization, or that in 2009 a federal judge confirmed the “ample” evidentiary link between groups like CAIR, ISNA and Hamas.
(An interesting side note – The Jerusalem Fund chaired by Dr. Subhi Ali (Samar’s father), has published the Hamas charter on its website.)
ING is not AMAC’s only connection to Muslim Brotherhood affiliates. In March, 2011, Remziya Suleyman, stood with CAIR on the steps of the Tennessee Legislative Plaza, to oppose the 2011 anti-terrorism bill. She is the organizer of the Muslim Rapid Response Team which evolved into the AMAC, which in turn, organized the American Center for Outreach for whom Ms. Suleyman lobbies.
CAIR’s spokesman Ibrahim Hooper stated in 2003 that if Muslims ever became a majority in the United States, they would likely seek to replace the U.S. Constitution with Islamic law, which they deem superior to man-made law. And CAIR’s co-founder Omar Ahmad was quoted in 1998 stataing that “Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran … should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth.” CAIR seems to be showing up more and more in Tennessee, most recently at the opening of the mosque in Murfreesboro.
Bill Gibbons, Commissioner of Safety and Homeland Security, recently stated that “[w]here is a terrorist more apt to be found? Not these days on an airplane, more likely on the interstate.” In the context of the article, he was referring to the TSA participating in drunk driving arrests over the Labor Day weekend.
So while Commissioner Gibbons is driving up and down the Tennessee highways, he can learn about how some of the Muslim Brotherhood is operationalized in Tennessee:
Muslim Students’ Association (MSA)
One of the first organizations established in 1963 by the Muslim Brotherhood was the Muslim Student Association (MSA), which now has approximately 600 chapters across the U.S. and Canada. In Tennessee, MSA has chapters at Vanderbilt, MTSU, U of Tenn Knoxville, TN Tech Cookville, U of Memphis, Tenn State U, Rhodes College, East TN U, Nash State Community College and TN Tech Nashville. The MSA has been officially absorbed by ISNA – the Islamic Society of North America, a named unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land trial.
The MSA “pledge of allegiance” which was videotaped at a recent regional conference concludes with “I will fight against oppression. And I will die to establish Islam.”
Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) – unindicted co-conspirator in HLF trial
-shares a P.O. Box address with the Islamic Center of Nashville (ICN)
-shares a street address with the Muslim Students Association of Memphis in a property owned by NAIT
-shares a street address with the Islamic Association of Greater Memphis
North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) –unindicted co-conspirator in HLF trial
-reported to hold the deeds to over 25% of the mosques and Islamic centers in the U.S.
-the warranty deed for the Masjid As-Salam mosque, home for the Muslim Society of Memphis, identifies NAIT as the owner. This is the mosque where Carlos Bledsoe reported he first converted to Islam
-the deed to the Al-Noor Mosque which also houses the MSA in Memphis identifies NAIT as the owner
-deeds to at least 10 other properties including some adjacent to the Muslim Society of Memphis property, identify NAIT as the owner
-deed holder to Islamic Center of Murfreesboro tied to NAIT
Pleasant View School, Memphis
Two years ago, Pleasant View School announced on their website that Dr. Hamed Ghazali had been hired as “the new consultant for PVS Islamic Studies, Quaran & Arabic. Dr. Ghazali has a Ph.D in Education from Kansas State University. He is currently the Director of the Houston Quran Academy, Chairman of MAS [Muslim American Society] Council of Islamic Schools (MASCIS) and a professor at the Islamic American University. He is also working as a superintendent/consultant for several Islamic schools in the USA. Dr. Ghazali is a Hafiz and served as an Imam as well as chaplain for more than 20 years in Kansas and Missouri.”
The Muslim American Society (MAS) and the MAS Council of Islamic Schools are recognized as Muslim Brotherhood affiliates. One of the founders of the MAS was Ahmed Elkadi, the self-identified leader of the Muslim Brotherhood in the U.S. from 1984-1994. In 2004 the Secretary-General of the MAS acknowledged that MAS was founded by members of the Muslim Brotherhood. Additionally, MAS’ own archived website details its associations with the Muslim Students Association, ISNA and NAIT – all named organizations in the 1991 Memorandum.
Family of Abraham and interfaith dialogue events
-November 2011, ICN held Family of Abraham event with ISNA, featuring ISNA’s National Director Sayiid Sayeed (who has also served on CAIR’s advisory board and as National President of the Muslim Students Association)
-Islamic Networks Group event and training of AMAC (see Newsletters #40 & 41)
Since Commissioner Gibbons considered it important for Tennessee’s law enforcement officers and safety personnel to hear AMAC’s stories, isn’t it just as relevant that Commissioner Gibbons ensure that they learn about the Muslim Brotherhood in Tennessee?
Gotta wonder if Governor Haslam even knows.Does the Governor and Commissioner Gibbons even understand the players and process they have legitimated in Tennessee?
Maybe not if the AMAC hasn’t told either one of them.