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The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) has issued a press release indicating that its executive director has attended the funeral of Michael Brown, the teenager who was shot to death by police in Ferguson, Missouri. According to the statement:

Nihad Awad

Nihad Awad

August 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ – Nihad Awad, national executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization, is attending today’s funeral for Michael Brown, the unarmed African-American teenager who was shot to death by police in Ferguson, Mo.

‘I believe it is important for all Americans to show their support for racial equality and social justice and to be part of the national dialogue on these important issues,’ said Awad.

Last week, CAIR joined the NAACP and other civil rights groups in calling for a special prosecutor to investigate the shooting.

CAIR representatives also took part in a national American Muslim call-in discussion of the Michael Brown and joined almost 100 national civil rights groups, coordinated by The Leadership Conference and Civil and Human Rights, in calling for federal action to prevent discriminatory profiling.

Nihad Awad was cited last week in an IslamOnline article urging Americans to “value every precious life:”

Nihad Awad, national executive director for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, agreed, and said what’s happening in Ferguson is symptomatic of long-standing historical injustices that black people have suffered in America for decades.

“Our nation has been trying to heal for years, but there is a deep social history that has to be fixed by restructuring our perception of culture and showing respect to one another,” he said. “We have to value every precious life.”

Given his historical association with Hamas, Mr. Awad’s seeming attempts to reinvent himself as a spiritual leader strike us as disingenuous and hypocritical to say the least and his publicized attendance at the funeral in rather poor taste.

The GMBDW reported last week on what appears to be the growing effort by the US Muslim Brotherhood to gain increased legitimacy by associating itself with broader civil rights issues in the US.

For a profile of CAIR, go here.

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The US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO), a new umbrella group for the US Muslim Brotherhood, has issued a condemnation of the murder of the American journalist James Foley by what the statement calls the “so-called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.” According to the statement:

1435382(WASHINGTON DC 08/20/2014) — The US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO), a coalition of several leading national and local Muslim organizations, condemns the murder of American journalist James Foley at the hands of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

We offer our deepest condolences to James’ family and pray they will find comfort and solace during this difficult time. The USCMO roundly condemns this group and rejects its ideology and actions. The terror organization, which is also known by the acronym ISIS, does not speak or act on behalf of the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims. In fact, they have killed so many Muslims indiscriminately. Their actions are reprehensible, inhumane and completely contravene all aspects and tenets of Islam. ‘We are heartbroken by the brutal death of Mr. Foley,’ said Oussama Jammal, USCMO secretary general. ‘It states in the Qur’an that the taking of one life is the equivalent of killing of all humankind and the saving of one life is equivalent to the saving of all humankind. Islam abhors and rejects the murder, mayhem and terror being spread by this group of criminal individuals.’ The USCMO also warns the public to avoid spreading Islamophobia by using the actions of ISIS to characterize and demonize all Muslims, globally and here in the United States. We agree with the words of James’ mother, Diane, who told the media that, ‘Jim’s death can bring our country together in a stronger way in the values that Jim held dear. He never wanted us to hate or be bitter.’”

The GMBDW notes that the ISIS murder and the organization itself have been widely condemned by the US Muslim Brotherhood.

The GMBDW reported in March on the formation of the USCMO, now comprised of seven US Muslim organizations and a secretary-general almost almost all tied tied to the US Muslim Brotherhood. As we noted in 2010, one of the common tactics of the US Muslim Brotherhood is to construct coalitions of its own front organizations as well as inter-related groups and individuals, giving the appearance that the Brotherhood has more broad-based support than it actually enjoys. The new US Council of Muslim Organizations is just the latest in a long series of such “umbrella groups” formed by the US Muslim Brotherhood.

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August 14, 2014 Egyptian media is reporting on the formation of a Egyptian opposition group based in Turkey. According to an Al-Ahram online report,  the spokewoman for the Egyptian Revolutionary Council (ERC) claims that “Muslim Brothers comprise less than 20 per cent“ of the group’s members:

Only days before the one-year anniversary of the break-up of the Rabaa and Nahda sit-ins, a new opposition group has announced its formation from its base in Turkey.

The Egyptian Revolutionary Council (ERC) held its first press conference on Friday in Istanbul. The group claims it is ‘resisting the 3 July military coup’ and battling for the ‘bread, freedom, social justice and dignity’ that was the rallying cry of the 25 January Revolution.

Speaking in the Turkish capital, the ERC said it is ‘an entity for Egyptian forces and individuals abroad … who maintain the principles of the 25 January Revolution, are faithful to constitutional legitimacy, seek a civil state and oppose all forms of corruption, tyranny and the military coup and its consequences.’

……

The ERC listed its goals as ‘uniting all revolutionary forces and youth, mobilising international support, realising the 25 January Revolution’s aims, dismantling corrupt institutions and establishing equal citizenship, justice, freedom and human dignity.’

The group called on foreign states to support the council against Egypt’s ‘military-backed government.’

The ERC appeared on the scene a week ahead of the first anniversary of the dispersal of Islamist protest camps in Rabaa Al-Adaweya and Al-Nahda Squares. Its avowed aims are almost identical to those of the National Coalition to Support Legitimacy (NCSL), the group of Brotherhood sympathisers that has been leading calls for Morsi to be reinstated as president.

‘The ERC is not a replacement for the NCSL,’ ERC spokesperson Maha Azzam told Qatari-based Al-Jazeera Mubasher. The NCSL operates in Egypt, while the ERC will address the international community. According to Azzam, Muslim Brothers comprise less than 20 per cent of the ERC’s members.

She said the group may take the lead in trying to refer members of the current regime to the International Criminal Court.

Read there rest here.

The GMBDW doubts, given the background of the ERC spokeswoman, that her definition of who or who is not tied to the Muslim Brotherhood can be trusted.

ERC spokeswoman Maha Azzam,  an associate fellow at the UK Chatham House, was part of a June 2006 panel event sponsored by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and titled “Engagement or Quarantine: How to Deal with the Islamist Advance.” The description of Ms. Azzam’s presentation says that she argued “as Islamism becomes more entrenched, it brings with it stronger barriers against violence.” Also participating in the Carnegie event were:

  • Najib Ghadbian, University of Arkansas, known to be an advocate for the Syrian Muslim Brotherhood
  • Mark Perry, Conflicts Forum, a group whose advisory board includes Azzam Tamimi, a UK Muslim Brotherhood leader and Hamas spokesman, and Ismail Patel, head of the UK pro-Hamas Friends of Al-Aqsa, 

Recent events have shown the ever increasing importance of Turkey as a key center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood.

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US media is reporting on the broad mix of extremist and hate group behind recent anti-Israel protests in Britain. The Breitabart.com report begins:

August 15, 2014  Recent anti-Israel protests have been attended by thousands across Europe. These protests come in opposition to attempts by Israeli forces to quell the rocket fire aimed at Israeli citizens by the Palestinian terror groups Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

In Britain, the protests in support of Hamas have been chiefly organized by a mixture of Sunni Islamist groups and groups aligned with the Socialist Workers Party. The attending protestors, though, seem to come from across the political and religious spectrums. European hatred for the small Jewish state, or Jews in general, apparently continues to transcend all ideological differences to the point where pro-Assad activists can march alongside Sunni Islamists, while neo-Nazis stand shoulder to shoulder with Marxists.

Parliamentarians such as Andy Slaughter MP and George Galloway MP walked next to Islamist activists such as Ismail Patel, a supporter of the late French Holocaust Denier Roger Garaudy. Patel advocates the killing of adulterous women and has previously stated: ‘Hamas is no terrorist organization…we salute Hamas for standing up to Israel.’ Marching between Andy Slaughter and Ismail Patel was Hafiz al-Karmi, an official from the Palestinian Forum of Britain, one of the UK’s leading pro-Hamas organizations.

Activists from the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, closely aligned with Britain’s Socialist Workers Party, seemed happy to march alongside James Thring and Lady Renouf, two neo-Nazi activists.  Thring, described as ‘an anti-Zionist activist who has been vocally supported by former the Ku Klux Klan Grand Wizard David Duke,’ has been featured in revisionist pro-Nazi documentaries and is aligned with the ‘New Right’ society, a British neo-Nazi organization.

Read the rest here.

As reporteearlier this month, most of the Islamic groups identified in the article as protest organizers are part of the UK Muslim Brotherhood.

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Recent statements by Youssef Qaradawi suggest that the 87-year-old leader of the Global Muslim Brotherhood is under great deal of stress no doubt related to pressure he and Qatar, his host nation, are facing from a variety of quarters.In a filmed  interview for the Turkish media before the recent Istanbul meeting of his International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) and reviewed by the GMBDW:

Youssef Qaradawi

Youssef Qaradawi

Qaradawi stressed that they are having this conference in Istanbul, the capital of the [Historic] Caliphate, and that new Turkey brings together religious and non-religious issues, the Arab and non-Arab, and the nation in Asia and Africa, adding that “the nation should be based on it”. Qaradawi blessed Erdogan for his election as the Turkish President; in order to justify Erdogan’s success, Qaradawi quotes a Quranic verse which speaks about the Prophet’s cooperation with Allah and states that “Angle Gabriel and the righteous of the believers and the angels, moreover, are [his] assistants. (Quran 66:4)

In what appears to be a battle of dueling caliphate claims, the GMBDW had reported in July that Qaradawi had ruled that a declaration of a Caliphate by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is “void under Shariah.” In addition to apparently declaring Turkey to be the capital of the Caliphate, an Egyptian news report of unknown reliability said recently:

  • Sources close to Qaradawi have said that he is considering relocating to Turkey due to the deteriorating relations between Qatar and the Gulf countries.
  • An agreement has been reached to form a new Islamic alliance of Arab and Islamic countries to be headed by Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan. The agreement was said to have been reached during meetings of the “International Muslim Brotherhood” held on the sideline of the Istanbul conference and where Erdogan and  Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood figure Amr Darrag were present.
  • Tunisian Muslim Brotherhood leader Rachid Ghannouchi will take over IUMS from Qaradawi.

The GMBDW cautions that as noted, this Egyptian report cannot be independently confirmed and appears to be contradicted in part by Qatari media reports that Qaradawi was re-elected as IUMS Chairman during an election held at the Istanbul conference.

At the end July, the Investigative Project translated other remarks by Qaradawi in which he defended the building of military tunnels by Hamas with the interesting interpretation that they were needed to protect Hamas from Israel:

Egyptian cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi, a prominent Muslim Brotherhood spiritual guide and popular Al-Jazeera program host, appeared on the network earlier this month to defend Hamas as “nothing but a group that is defending itself, defending its country, defending its brethren, defending its honor, defending its (Muslim) Ummah.” It is not, he added, a terrorist group. The Investigative Project on Terrorism translated Qaradawi’s remarks. He also said Hamas “did not fire at anyone. It’s only defending itself. Doesn’t Gaza have the right of self defense? People want Hamas exposed. [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin] Netanyahu said Hamas received building blocks and used it to build the tunnels. No, they built many things that they ought to, and built-among many things, the tunnels. They don’t want [Hamas] to have the tunnels to protect them; they want Hamas to remain exposed to their cannons, bombs and jets, from the land, and from the sea and from the air. They want it to be bombarded while exposed so they can kill whomever they want. Is this logical?”

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The GMBDW is proud to inaugurate a new Humor category with this report by journalist Ben Flanagan who explains how he was involuntarily locked in a room at the Finsbury Mosque by mosque officials. The report, complete with video of the incident, begins:

Finsbury Mosque

Finsbury Mosque

August 24, 2014  London’s Finsbury Park Mosque is still struggling to shake off its association with ‘hate preacher’ Abu Hamza – yet it does not seem to be doing itself many favors in the public-relations stakes.

Abu Hamza al-Masri’s sermons attracted the likes of 9/11 conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui and failed shoe bomber Richard Reid, earning the mosque the reputation as a ‘suicide factory’ and ‘Al-Qaeda camp in the heart of London.’

The dark days of Abu Hamza are long gone: Finsbury Park Mosque came under new management in 2005; its hook-handed former imam was this year convicted of 11 terrorism charges in the United States.

But as the mosque continues to rebuild its reputation, I can offer a few words of PR advice: Generally speaking, it’s best not to lock journalists in rooms against their will, no matter how much their questions may irk you.

Read the rest here.

Interestingly, as Mr. Flanagan reported, mosque officials appeared rather touchy when asked if the Finsbury Mosque had any links to the Muslim Brotherhood so it may be worth noting that yesterday the foreign relations official of the political arm of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood had this to say about the mosque:

Successive British governments have worked with the Muslim Brotherhood for decades, knowing that the Muslim Brotherhood ideology is reformist, moderate and tolerant. This is why Abu-Hamza’s mosque (in London) was handed over to the Muslim Brotherhood.

In April 2013, the GMBDW reported that a Saudi newspaper had published an article detailing how the Finsbury mosque was taken over by the U.K Muslim Brotherhood.

In July, the GMBDW was the first to report the HSBC Bank had closed several accounts tied to the Muslim Brotherhood including that of the Finsbury Mosque.

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US media is reporting that Hamas political leader Khaled Meshaal is the 2nd Hamas leader to confirm that Hamas members were behind the West Bank killing of three Israeli teenagers. According to an interview with Yahoo News, Meshaal claimed that the Hamas political leadership were unaware of the killings but justified them on the grounds that the three youths were “settlers”:

Khaled Meshaal

Khaled Meshaal

August 22, 2014 DOHA, Qatar ‘This is an opportunity for me to say we are against the killing of any civilians, any journalists,’ Meshaal said in the interview. But he then turned the accusation against Israel. ‘The question is who is killing the civilians,’ he said, asserting that more than 15 journalists have been killed during the Israeli assault on Gaza.

Meshaal acknowledged for the first time that Hamas members — but not the group’s political leadership — were behind the slaying of three Israeli settlers on the West Bank in June. But he defended the murders as a legitimate action against Israeli ‘illegal’ occupation.”

“We were not aware of this action taken by this group of Hamas members in advance,” he said. “But we understand people are frustrated under the occupation and the oppression, and they take all kinds of action.”

When asked directly whether Hamas members carried out the abduction of the Israeli teens, Meshaal said: “We learned about these confessions from the Israeli investigation … Hamas political leadership was not aware of all these details. We learned about it later on …

“Our view is that soldiers and settlers on the West Bank are aggressors, and they are illegally living in this occupied and stolen land. And the right to resist is the right of Palestinians.”

Read the rest here.

Mr. Meshaal’s statement is curious on a number of levels given that Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood are usually loathe to acknowledge any truth to Israeli governmental allegations against them and suggests to us Israeli evidence about the Hamas role in the killings was strong enough to force Hamas leaders to try and get ahead of the revelations about the killings.

Last week, the GMBDW was the first to report that  that Salah al-Aruri, a Hamas military leader residing in Turkey, had admitted that the Hamas military wing was responsible for the kidnapping, an event which sparked the recent round of the Gaza conflict. The admission was made at an Istanbul meeting of the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS), headed by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi, and attended by various Brotherhood luminaries as well the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister. An Israeli newspaper reported last June that an unidentified Israeli security official identified al-Arouri as the mastermind behind the kidnappings. False claims that the Israeli police had exculpated Hamas in connection with the crime were for a time a staple on websites linked to a or sympathetic to Hamas and/or the Muslim Brotherhood.

Israeli media reports also say that al-Aruri was also the mastermind behind what has been described as a Hamas coup attempt in the West Bank that was intended to end the rule of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and spark a third intifada.

For a profile of Saleh al-Arouri, go here. For a profile of Khaled Meshaal, go here.

For our report on the IUMS meeting, go here.

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Turkish media is reporting that Tunisian Muslim Brotherhood leader Rachid Ghannouchi has jumped on the emerging bandwagon of the Global Muslim Brotherhood in calling for the world to be ruled by “justice.” According to a report in Today’s Zaman:

Rachid Ghannouchi

Rachid Ghannouchi

August 21, 2014 The head of Tunisia’s largest opposition movement Ennahda, Rachid Ghannouchi, said late Wednesday that Muslim leaders should not compromise on justice, adding that the problems in the Islam world should be solved by peaceful solutions.

Speaking at the fourth conference of the International Union for Muslim Scholars (IUMS), a Qatar-based organization, held in Istanbul, Ghannouchi said there are systems that are devoid of justice and tyrannical authorities in the Islam world and stressed the need for unity.   Noting that Muslim leaders need to ensure justice, he said there has to be a balance between sects as well. ‘We need to protect the rights of aggrieved people whether they are Muslim or not,’ he said.

Underlining that there is violence in many Muslim countries, Ghannouchi said it is no use for Muslims to be divided or be in conflict. ‘As Muslims, we need to make an effort for peace to become widespread,’ he said.

Ghannouchi said there has to be a new understanding that prioritizes equality and morality in the world and added that one of the common points of all religions is that the world should be ruled with justice.

Read the rest here.

The GMBDW reported earlier this month that leading Global Muslim Brotherhood figure Tariq Ramadan had harshly criticized the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) for allegedly insufficient attention paid to concerns about “Justice.” We have also noted that other elements of the US Muslim Brotherhood have also been attempting to position themselves with newly-minted “social justice” concerns. The GMBDW also notes the irony of Mr. Ghannouchi’s desire for “peaceful solutions” while at the same time watching a Hamas military commander admit the organization’s responsibility for the kidnap and murder of three Israeli teenagers, an even which sparked the recent round of the Gaza conflict.

The GMBDW reported in July on a statement by Mr. Ghannouchi, widely described as a leading “moderate”, that appeared to adopt Hamas language to describe the conflict. In May 2013, the GMBDW reported that Mr. Ghannouchi had  called for young people to realize that “Jihad belongs in Palestine.” In 2011, Mr. Ghannouchi gave an interview in which he predicted the end of Israel, a viewpoint which is not surprising given that he has had a long history of ties to Palestinian extremism and calls for terrorism. In March 2014, the GMBDW reported on a dinner held in Washington DC to honor Mr. Ghannouchi that was attended by numerous US government officials.

For a profile on Rachid Ghannouchi, go here.

For a profile on the Ennahda Party and its ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, go here.

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US media is reporting that controversial US civil rights leader Rev. Al Sharpton will be the keynote speaker for the 20th annual Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) fundraising banquet, scheduled for September 27. According to a Breitbart.com report:

logoMSNBC host Rev. Al Sharpton has been scheduled to keynote the 20th annual Council on American-Islamic Relations fundraising banquet, scheduled for September 27th in the Washington, D.C., area. Sharpton has been in the news lately due to his involvement with the continuing protests in Ferguson, Missouri, over the death of Michael Brown, a black teenager who was shot and killed by a white police officer. The motives surrounding Brown’s death remain unclear, but some have already attributed it to racism.

Sharpton’s critics have described him as a ‘race-hustler,’ while his supporters have profiled him as a civil rights leader. Rev. Sharpton is President Barack Obama’s ‘go-to black leader,’ according to a 60 Minutes report. Their relationship is so close that ‘not only does Sharpton travel to see the president, the president travels to see him,’ the report said.”

Read the rest here.

The GMBDW reported earlier this week on a recent action alert by CAIR calling on imams to devote a portion of their sermons to racial equality and social justice. As noted in that post CAIR, an important party of the US Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas support infrastructure in the US, has always attempted to leverage its involvement in civil rights affairs to gain legitimacy for its work on behalf of the Brotherhood and Hamas which it calls the “Palestinian Cause.” We reported yesterday that the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) had followed CAIR’s lead not only calling for an investigation into the police killing of a young black man in Ferguson, Missouri but also demanding an end to what it calls “the arming of the police by the military.

As we noted in both posts,  an increasing emphasis on “social justice” appears to be a tactic of growing interest to the Global Muslim Brotherhood as a way to bolster their legitimacy a time of stress for the global movement. CAIR’s selection of Rev. Sharpton as this year’s keynote speaker further supports this analysis.

For a profile of CAIR, go here.

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Since we wrote our post “World Media Ignores Hamas Admission Of West Bank Kidnapping Responsibility; We Don’t Understand Why” four hours ago, global media is finally beginning to report the story of Saleh al-Arouri’s admission that the military wing of Hamas was responsible for the murder of three West Bank teenagers. While the GMBDW is pleased to see the coverage of the admission, which we were the first outside of Israel to report., there still is virtually no mention of Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi, who heads the International Union of Muslim Scholars (IUMS) which sponsored the conference where the admission is made. The GMBDW modestly offers our assistance to any media organization that needs help appreciating the full significance of the story.

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