A Maryland newspaper has carried a report on Imam Yahya Hendi, a Georgetown University Imam tied to the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood, who is described as the first full-time Muslim chaplain of Georgetown University, and possibly the first to hold that position in the United States. In the report, Dr Hendi, while ostensibly praising the U.S, subtly places blames on Americans for problems facing the Muslim community:
America Hendi said, has valued personal freedom and diversity since its inception. Whether these values will be upheld and maintained, or taken for granted in the wake of political and social uncertainty, remains a choice for Americans to make, Hendi said. “I don’t want America to become like another Mid-Eastern country,” Hendi said. Local Muslims, despite their fears of being rejected as aliens and strangers or negatively stereotyped after the Sept. 11 attacks, should reach out to people in the community, Hendi said. On the other hand, he said, people unfamiliar with Islam have to break through clouds of ignorance and fear, and reach out to their Muslim neighbors. Many Muslims are local doctors, teachers and business owners, Hendi said, committed to the betterment of their community.
The report also provides a short profile of Dr. Hendi, omitting his relationship to the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood:
Hendi is also the Imam of the Islamic Society of Frederick and the Muslim chaplain at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda….The chaplaincy he created, with the guidance of his Catholic and Jewish colleagues, has become a model for other universities such as Trinity College and Princeton University….Born in Nablus, in the West Bank of Palestine, Hendi moved to the United States more than 20 years ago, after he finished his undergraduate studies in Jordan. He has returned four times to the town where he was born. When he is there, he can never wait to return to his home in Frederick. “I love what I have become,” Hendi said. Hendi earned master’s and doctorate degrees in comparative religion. He speaks fluent Arabic, Hebrew and English, and he is trying to find common ground among followers of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, among other faiths. Hendi has met with and been an adviser to Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush. He has traveled the world giving talks about social and political justice, gender issues and interreligious matters.
Not mentioned in the profile is that Dr. Hendi is a long-time member of the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA), the theological arm of the Islamic Society of North America (FCNA), itself a Brotherhood organization as well as the community relations and development coordinator for the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), another U.S. Brotherhood group.