The Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID) organized two “Training of Trainers” (ToT) workshops in Morocco and Tunisia during November 2009. The first workshop was held in Casablanca in cooperation with the Citizenship Forum of Morocco on November 13-15, 2009. The second one was held in cooperation with the Arab Institute for Human Rights in Tunis on November 20-22, 2009. Ten Moroccan and six Tunisian activists prominent in the field of citizenship and human rights education, participated in these two workshops that deal primarily with the intersection of Islam and Democracy as presented in a training manual developed by eight renowned Arab scholars, thinkers, and civil society activists, with the support of CSID and Street Law, titled “Islam and Democracy – Toward Effective Citizenship”. This training manual contains numerous practical exercises and drills, and has already been used in the training of over 4500 people in several Arab countries from Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Egypt, Jordan, Yemen, and Bahrain.
CSID was founded in 1998 largely by the efforts of Georgetown University academic Dr. Esposito who during the 1990’s served in the State Department as a “foreign affairs analyst” and who has at least a dozen past or present affiliations with global Muslim Brotherhood/Hamas organizations. Many members of the early CSID board were associated with the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), the American Muslim Council, and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC). For example, past CSID board members included Jamal Barzinji and Taha Al-Alwani, both associated with IIIT and both important leaders in the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood who helped to establish many of the most important U.S. Brotherhood organizations. Antony Sullivan, the current CSID Vice-Chair, has many ties to U.S. Brotherhood groups including the Association of Muslim Social Scientists (AMSS), the United Association for Studies and Research (USAR), and the Circle of Tradition and Progress (COTP), a group whose other founding members included Youssef Qaradawi, the most important leader of the global Muslim Brotherhood.
From its inception, CSID has argued that the U.S. government should support Islamist movements in foreign countries and has received financial support from the U.S. State Department, the National Endowment for Democracy and the United States Institute of Peace.