State Department Funds Exchange Program With Islamic Society Of North AmericaBy
The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), an important part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, has announced that the U.S. State Department has sponsored a citizen exchange project between the United States and the Middle East. According to the announcement:
Through a US State Department grant the Islamic Society of North America and the National Peace Foundation have co-sponsored a citizen exchange project between the United States and the Middle East. This program brings young professionals from the Middle East, specifically from Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, to the United States. The goal of this project is to explore Islam, the functions of Islamic institutions in the United States, and the activities of interfaith work. In return American professionals from the three Abrahamic faiths; Christianity, Judaism and Islam, will visit these countries in the Middle East to explore Islam and interfaith work as it is done in the respective countries. This program will run through 2009, with several upcoming exchanges in progress. …Applications are currently being accepted for those participants from Jordan and Saudi Arabia who are interested in the citizen exchange to take place in July of 2008. The announcement for this exchange is below. Please be sure to share this information with any interested parties you may know in these countries.
Numerous prior posts have discussed the role of the State Department in supporting exchange programs involving U.S. Muslim Brotherhood organizations. Most of these have involved the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT).
In November 2007, the State Department sponsored a to a two-day conference in Belgium called ‘Muslim Communities Participating in Society: A Belgian-U.S. Dialogue.” The goal of the conference was described as “to bring Belgian and American Muslims together to break stereotypes and foster networking opportunities.” According to their website , the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) “played a major part in facilitating the planning of the conference from the US side. Also attending were the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), and the Muslim Students Association of the US and Canada (MSA), all part of the U.S. Brotherhood. Also in attendance was the vice- president of the Forum of European Muslim Youth and Student Organizations (FEMYSO), an organ of the Federation of Islamic Organizations in Europe (FIOE), the European Muslim Brotherhood umbrella group.