The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) announced in January that its Director of Chaplaincy Services conducted what it described as a “historic visit” to Oahu, Hawaii where he met with senior Chaplains and key leaders spanning seven military bases and including service members from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. According to the announcement:
(Oahu, Hawaii, Jan 22-25, 2014) The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)’s Director of Chaplaincy Services (ICSD) and Islamic Endorsing Agent Chaplain (LTC) Ret. Abdul Rasheed Muhammad conducted a historic visit to the island of Oahu.
The visit included several office calls with senior Chaplains and key leaders spanning seven bases and including Service Members from Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. His visit highlighted the importance of religious support to Service Members and overall resilience for Service Members and their families. The visit culminated with a traditional Friday sermon and community dinner held at the Chapel Annex at Schofield Barracks.
ISNA Chaplaincy Services Director Abdul-Rasheed Muhammad meeting with military chaplains and service members. The endorser also made a courtesy visit with the 8th Military Police Brigade’s Commander COL Mark Jackson the commanding officer of the only Muslim Chaplain in the Pacific Region CH (MAJ) Ibraheem Raheem. COL Jackson’s history as a visionary for risk reduction and health promotion was a common passion for CH (LTC) Ret. Muhammad who served in the US Army Public Health Command during the development of the ACE program for suicide prevention and awareness.
Highlights of the visit were:
1) Reaching out to women service members in the form of a town hall forum to address the unique needs of women in the faith
2) Establishing annual training opportunities for Distinctive Faith Group Leaders (DFGLs) addressing the issues of continuity
3) Building and maintaining relationships with senior Chaplains and key leaders to ensure the best possible support in terms of resources, opportunities for worship and information distribution to Muslim personnel”
In February, ISNA reported that two ISNA-endorsed chaplains were selected for active duty for the first time in 15 years.
In May 2013, the GMBDW reported that a United States Naval Academy professor was teaching on behalf of the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), a part of the US Muslim Brotherhood and where global Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi reportedly serves as a trustee. In October we reported that Ermin Sinanovic is now serving as the IIIT Research Director.
In 2010, we reported on the controversy involving ISNA leader Louay Safi when it was learned that the US Defense Department brought him to Fort Hood as an instructor and that he had been lecturing on Islam to US troops in Fort Hood who were about to deploy to Afghanistan. In February 2010, the activities and lectures of Dr. Safi on all military bases were suspended pending a criminal inquiry by the U.S. military. A shooting took place at Fort Hood near Killeen, Texas on November 5, 2009 in which a single gunman killed 13 people and over 30 people were injured in the worst shooting ever to take place on an American military base. The only suspect in the shooting is Nidal Malik Hasan, a 39-year-old U.S. Army major serving as a psychiatrist. The outcome of the criminal inquiry does not appear to have been reported.
The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) describes itself as “an independent, open and transparent membership organization that strives to be an exemplary and unifying Islamic organization in North America by contributing to the betterment of the Muslim community and society at large. ISNA emerged out of the early U.S. Muslim Brotherhood infrastructure and documents discovered in the course of the the terrorism trial of the Holy Land Foundation confirmed that the organization was part of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood. ISNA was named as a Holy Land unindicted co-conspirator as a result of what the US Justice Department called the organization’s ” intimate relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood, the Palestine Committee, and the defendants in this case.” In 2009, a US federal judge ruled “The Government has produced ample evidence to establish the associations of CAIR, ISNA and NAIT with HLF, the Islamic Association for Palestine (“IAP”), and with Hamas.” ISNA has had a long history of fundamentalism, anti-semitism, and support for terrorism.
Clearly considered to be “rehabilitated” by the Obama administration, ISNA has more recently issued robust condemnations of terrorism beginning with this 2008 ISNA statement that although denying culpability in the Holy Land terrorism financing case, for the first time condemned terrorism while identifying Hamas and Hezbollah by name. ISNA has also been engaged in an active program of interfaith cooperation that has included partnerships with Jewish organizations and visits to concentration camp sites in Europe. Yet despite these new efforts, ISNA continues maintain strong ties to both the US and Global Muslim Brotherhood and has failed to date to acknowledge any aspect of its actual origins or its history of fundamentalism, anti-semitism, and support for terrorism. For these reasons, the Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Watch concludes that ISNA remains, as it always has been, an integral part of the US Muslim Brotherhood.
For a detailed analysis of ISNA and its recent history, go here.