The Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) has called attention to the recommended list for the Islamic Circle of North America’s (ICNA) youth organization for boys, called “Young Muslims.” As the IPT report observes,
….the recommended reading list for ICNA’s youth organization for boys, called “Young Muslims,” shows the opposite. The book list includes numerous works by authors such as the Muslim Brotherhood founder Hasan Al-Banna, current spiritual leader Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, and Jamaat-e-Islami founder Abul ‘Ala Maududi. These works are not countered by books or essays which offer a more passive, peaceful message….. Qaradawi’s Priorities of the Islamic Movement in the Coming Phase, contained in its entirety on the Young Muslims website, includes a call for supporting violent Jihad movements around the world: “This is why the faqihs of Islam have agreed that it is a duty to defend every land invaded by infidels, stating that such jihad is imperative for Muslims in this land as an individual obligation and that all Muslims must support them with money, arms and men as required until all their land has been liberated from any aggressor who usurps it.” Qaradawi goes on to encourage participating in jihad movements in Kashmir, Somalia, the Philippines, Sudan, and declares that, “The Islamic Movement should consider itself at the beck and call of every Islamic cause, responding to every cry for help wherever that cry may come from.” Other books appearing on the website, like Maududi’s Towards Understanding Islam, reinforce the need for violence. In this book, Maududi considers jihad a part of worship: “Jihad is a part of this overall defense of Islam. Jihad means struggle to the utmost of one’s capacity. A man who exerts himself physically or mentally or spends his wealth in the way of Allah is indeed engaged in Jihad. But in the language of the Shari’ah [Islamic law] this word is used particularly for the war that is waged solely in the name of Allah and against those who perpetrate oppression as enemies of Islam. This supreme sacrifice of lives devolves on all Muslims… In all these cases Jihad is as much a primary duty of the Muslims concerned, as are the daily prayers or fasting. One who shirks it is a sinner. He is plainly a hypocrite who fails in the test of sincerity and all his ‘Ibadat and prayers are a sham a worthless hollow show of devotion.”
In addition to the works cited above, the ICNA youth reading list also contains works by US Muslim Brotherhood leader Jamal Badawi and Maurice Bucaille, the origin of what has come to be known as “Bucailleism”, a kind of Islamic creationism that sees in the Koran signs of future scientific breakthroughs.
The Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) is a less well-known part of the Muslim Brotherhood network in the U.S., generally thought to be closely tied to the Jamaat-e-Islami organization of Southeast Asia, itself known to be allied with the Muslim Brotherhood. ICNA is particularly close to the Muslim American Society and the two organizations have been holding joint annual conventions for many years. Previous posts have discussed ICNA ad campaigns intended to present Islam to the U.S. public.