The chairman of the board of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) has charged that the naming of CAIR as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing case was politically motivated. In a statement posted on the Muslim News website, Parvez Ahmed begins by criticizing the practice of naming unindicted co-conspirators which he labels as “controversial”, “dubious”, and “McCarthyite”, citing a recent article on the subject in the Federal Courts Law Review. Ahmed then makes the following statement charging that the action was an attempt to “smear” the organization:
Given the growing fear of Islam and Muslims among the American public (one-in-four admit to being prejudiced against Muslims), it has become easy to smear Islamic organizations. Without legal recourse to challenge such smears, the constitutional rights of American Muslims suffer through guilt by association and guilt by mere accusation. This chills the First Amendment rights of American Muslims. It is our duty as Americans to demand that the due process rights of all citizens be preserved and protected. At a time when most experts are recommending the strengthening of American Muslim institutions to serve as bridges of understanding between America and the Muslim world, smearing these same institutions undermines the very cause that ought to unite us as Americans. Liberty and justice for all cannot be a mere slogan. In order to reclaim our global leadership, America needs to work with its Muslim citizens to prevent the downward spiral of misunderstanding and hostility that threatens to engulf our world.
This is not the first time CAIR has claimed that prosecutor’s actions are politically motivated but while Mr. Ahmed never attempts to identify the motivation behind this alleged smear attempt, CAIR has frequently asserted the existence of a “war on Islam” and individuals associated with CAIR have laid the blame for such a war on “Zionists.” CAIR has never attempted to refute the growing body of evidence connecting the leaders of the organization to the Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas infrastructure in the U.S.