The government has rested it’s case in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing trial after six weeks of testimony and over 700 pieces of evidence According to the prosecution, the Richardson Texas-based Holy Land Foundation and seven organizers sent at least $12 million Palestinian group Hamas, designated by the U.S. as a terrorist organization in 1995. As previous posts have reported, a number of the documents introduced in the trial point to a previously unknown and covert leadership structure for the U.S. Brotherhood that also included many well-known U.S. Islamic organizations. According to one news report, the defense plans to call Frank Anderson, the former head of the CIA’s Near East Division who “will testify that [Holy Land’s] activities in providing humanitarian support in Palestine, contrary to government allegations, did not constitute reward for terrorism or recruitment for Hamas.”
There are a number of individuals formerly associated with the CIA that have worked to establish relationships with the Muslim Brotherhood. Former CIA agent Milt Bearden, who played a leading role in the war against the Soviets in Afghanistan, and Graham Fuller, a former Vice-chair of the National Intelligence Council at the CIA, are members of the Advisory Board of the Conflicts Forum headed by former MI6 agent Alistair Crooke, described in a media report as secretly one of Britain’s leading intermediaries with militant groups. The report describes a March 2005 meeting in Beirut attended by Crooke that included the Muslim Brotherhood as well as Musa Abu Marzuq, deputy leader of Hamas, and two of his senior colleagues, leaders of Lebanon’s Hezbollah and representatives of Pakistan’s Jamaat-e-Islami party. The report states that Crooke is part of an effort to establish a dialogue with radical Islamists through the Conflicts Forum, described by Crooke as an “action tank, not a think-tank”.
Henry “Hank” Crumpton”, another former CIA agent that was active in Afghanistan, recently retired as the State Department Counterterrorism Coordinator During his tenure, Mr. Crumpton attended a conference co-sponsored by the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), the International Center for Religion and Diplomacy (ICRD) and the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA). A previous post has noted that these groups are part of a larger effort by the U.S Muslim Brotherhood to developed formal partnerships with the U.S Government. Also during his tenure, Mr. Crumpton praised a two-day conference held last November in Belgium that brought together leaders of U.S. Muslim Brotherhood organizations with Belgian Muslims including members of the European Brotherhood.