Last week, a number of leaders in Southern California met with the new Assistant Director in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Steven M. Martinez in Los Angeles. Organized by the FBI, the two and a half hour meeting consisted of a forum with a number of community leaders in Los Angeles. Different groups represented included MPAC, the Omar Foundation, the Council of Pakistani American Affairs (COPA), the Muslim Lawyers Association, and many others. During his time addressing an audience of over 60 leaders, Mr. Martinez explored the reach and responsibilities of the FBI. He emphasized the importance of remaining true to the letter of law while keeping America safe from harm. Martinez outlined the different types of crimes the FBI investigates and encouraged community members to reach out to the FBI with concerns and case leads — especially as they relate to possible hate crimes. A subject he said, the FBI takes very seriously. On the subject of counter-terrorism, Mr. Martinez affirmed that “Muslims are no more and no less responsible than any other citizens for keeping our communities safe.” Among the several questions Muslim leaders asked Mr. Martinez, was the concern over the FBI’s disengagement from the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the important role CAIR plays in the Muslim Community. Audience members also requested the resumption of the Multi Cultural Advisory Committee (MCAC) meetings. Formed in May 2004, the MCAC mission “endeavors to create an environment to facilitate dialogue and enhance the relationship between the FBI and the Community which is based on mutual respect, understanding, and the protection of Constitutional rights and civil liberties.”
MPAC was established initially in 1986 as the Political Action Committee of the Islamic Center of Southern California whose key leaders likely had their origins in the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. Since that time, MPAC has functioned as the political lobbying arm of the U.S. Brotherhood. MPAC has opposed virtually every count-terror initiative undertaken or proposed by the U.S. government. At times this opposition was said to be on civil-rights grounds but, just as often, MPAC claimed that U.S. counter-terror efforts were aimed at the U.S. Muslim community itself. MPAC has consistently supported and facilitated terrorism by supporting terrorist organizations and, more broadly, constructing an elaborate ideology defending the use of violence by Islamists and Islamist organizations. More than any other U.S. Muslim Brotherhood organization, MPAC has developed extensive relationships with the U.S. government which have included numerous meetings with the Department of Justice and the FBI. A previous post reported that MPAC recently participated in a White House meeting with President Obama and cabinet officials to announce the President’s nomination to the Supreme Court.