In a statement carried on it’s website, the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) has denied ever supporting any terrorist organization as well as being part of the Muslim Brotherhood. According to the statement:
In the past year, the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives have been seeking to better understand the threat of radicalization and the way in which extremist groups undermine American security. As a part of this effort the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, Subcommittee on Terrorism, Non-proliferation, and Trade have held hearings that have included testimony about the American Muslim community and their organizations, including the Islamic Society of North America. Credible and factual testimony has been provided by some respected individuals, but false, prejudicial and misleading assertions have been made by others whose malicious bias against Muslim Americans and their organizations is well-known. Knowingly ISNA is not now and has never been involved in any covert or illegal activity and has never supported any terrorist organization. ISNA is not part of the Muslim Brotherhood, a fact which we have asserted in a legal motion to remove our false designation as an un-indicted co-conspirator in documents produced by the U.S. Government in its prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation. This label has been used to discredit ISNA and to create fear of the organization and its members.
These statements by ISNA are not consistent with the public record. Investigative research shows that ISNA has a long record of support for Hamas and Islamic JIhad, both designated by the U.S. as terrorist organizations. Such support has included but not limited to:
- Ideological and financial support to Islamic Jihad by Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA) Chairman Taha J. Alwani. FCNA is a subsdiary of ISNA.
- Ideological and financial support for the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) and its successor organizations, believed by the U.S. government and civil courts to be engaged in fundraising for Hamas
- Support for the Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP), part of the Hamas support infrastructure in the U.S.
- Organizational ties to the ties to the Quranic Literacy Institute (QLI), a Chicago area institution which was found responsible by a Federal court in the death of an American civilian in Israel and to be engaged in raising funds and money laundering for Hamas.
The same investigative research shows that ISNA was created by leaders of the Muslim Student Association (MSA), itself an outgrowth of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. Much of the ISNA leadership comes from backgrounds associated either with the Egyptian Brotherhood, Saudi Arabian religious organizations, or the Jamaat -e- Islami (JEI), the large Pakistani Islamic political party founded in 1941 by Islamic ideologue Maulana Abul Ala Maududi. Although it does not disclose the source of its funding, ISNA is known to have received substantial funds from Saudi Arabia and the organizations maintains ties to the major Saudi “Wahhabist” organizations such as the Muslim World League and the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY), major components of the global Muslim Brotherhood in addition to global Muslim Brotherhood organizations in the U.K. and Germany. ISNA frequently acts in concert with other U.S. Brotherhood organizations and has recently been named in government documents as part of the U.S. Brotherhood.
The ISNA statement goes on to cite it’s interfaith work and U.S. government relations to:
…affirm ISNA’s commitment to freedom, to eradicate prejudice and to create a society where Muslims can peacefully live and prosper alongside other Americans from all walks of life and diverse traditions & faith. To that end ISNA condemns all acts of terrorism and remains committed to countering escalating religious extremism and promoting inter-religious understanding and collaboration.
Despite these claims, ISNA has an additional long history of association with religious fundamentalism as well as anti-Semitism. This history includes but is not limited to:
- Rejection of other Islamic practices
- Extreme social views
- Statements of Islamic supremacy
- Supporting Islamic rule
- Enforcing ideological uniformity and control of mosques
- Anti-Semitic statements
- Ties to anti-Semitic organizations
- Sponsorship of anti-Semitic speakers
Experience with global Muslim Brotherhood organizations and leaders strongly suggests that interfaith activities and government relations do not preclude support for fundamentalism, anti-Semitism, and terrorism.