The Daily Caller has reported on comments by Department of Homeland Security (DHS) advisor Mohamed Elibiary about the US “Countering Violent Extremism” program. According to the report, Mr. Elibiary advocated a reduced role for the FBI and its prosecution efforts while praising DHS for working with Islamic groups:
The White House’s ‘Countering Violent Extremism’ program ‘did not produce the results a lot of us were hopeful … [and]kind of collapsed towards the end of last year,’ complained Mohamed Elibiary, a Texas-based advocate who was appointed to the Homeland Security Advisory Council.
‘I don’t know where it is today … [but]it presents us with the opportunity to look at the question of [whether]it is right to house it within the FBI,’ he said at an May 28 event in D.C. staged by the Muslim Public Affairs Council.
The controversial CVE program was boosted in 2011, when President Barack Obama directed the FBI to work with Muslim political and community groups to suppress jihadi attacks, which are dubbed as non-Islamic ‘violent extremism.’
But, said Elibiary, ‘we spun our wheels for the last two years [and]we never got the national CVE policy across all 56 [FBI field] offices.’
Instead, said panelists, the FBI has continued its traditional policy of investigating jihadis for subsequent trial and convictions.
In contrast, the Department of Homeland Security, Elibiary said, has done much good by trying to work with Islamic groups.
The CVE program has been slammed by critics for giving too large an intermediary role to small Islamic political groups such as MPAC, which portray themselves as representatives of American Muslims. The groups try to foster the growth of distinct Islamic communities.
The CVE training has also been criticized for obscuring the many orthodox Islamic strictures that spur Muslims’ violence against non-Muslims.”
Mohamed Elibiary was one of four individuals identified by the Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Watch tied to the US Muslim Brotherhood and who served as part of the DHS “Countering Violent Extremism Working Group.” Mr. Elibiary is a co-founder of the Freedom and Justice Foundation (FJF), an organization whose Advisory Council is comprised of many members associated with the Islamic Association of North Texas which operates the Dallas Central Mosque (DCM). Both organizations are known to be associated with the US Muslim Brotherhood and the Hamas infrastructure in the US including the now defunct Holy Land Foundation (HLF). The most prominent of these Advisory Council members is Dr. Yusuf Kavakci, recently a board member at large of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), who has served as Imam of the DCM that was described in a 1999 article in a Counterterrorism Journal as:
… considered to be one of the most active centers of Hamas activity in the United States and hosts the leadership and members of both the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP) and the Holy Land Foundation (HLF). Both organizations are the primary conduits for Hamas activity and fundraising in the United States. (See Note 2)
A former FBI analyst has also written that the two of the Elashi brothers, later convicted of terrorism financing as leaders of the HLF, had personal ties to the DCM, one serving as a board member and the other active in an affiliated Islamic School. After the arrests of the Elashi’s, the DCM hosted fundraising events for their legal defense. In 2008, Mr. Elibiary harshly criticized the Hamas terrorism financing convictions of the Holy Land Foundation defendants calling them “a policy of denying our civil liberties”:
The U.S. government won a resounding court victory last Monday, convicting all the Palestinian HLF defendants on all “material support” charges leveled against them. Yet in the grand scheme of things, our government’s policy of denying our civil liberties and privacy at home while pursuing a cold war “containment” policy that often turns into a hot war for “regime change” has left thousands of Americans dead, tens of thousands maimed, trillions of taxpayer dollars squandered and our homeland more vulnerable than ever. A myopic view might wish to celebrate the HLF verdict, but the big picture clearly shows a continuing loss for America.
A 2005 report by the Center For Religious Freedom (CRF) found numerous examples of Saudi ideological material at the DCM (aka Richardson Mosque.)
An earlier post had reported that the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) had relied upon Saudi-funded Georgetown University professor John Esposito for advice on law enforcement counterterrorism training.
Another post discussed the role in US counterterrorism policy of Dr. Quintan Wiktorowicz, a little known US government official and former college professor who was the center of controversy in it was reported that his efforts were behind an invitation to an official of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), a part of the US Muslim Brotherhood, to meet young British Muslims in connection with a strategy to help them to reject terrorism. That post discussed Dr. Wiktorowicz ‘s background and his apparent belief that “non-violent” Islamists could play a useful role in the fight against Al Qaeda and related groups.