The International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), a part of the Muslim Brotherhood in the US, has announced that its Research Director Dr. Ermin Sinanovic has recently given a talk in Sarajevo, Bosnia. According to the announcement:
May 08, 2015, Dr. Ermin Sinanovic, IIIT’s Director of Research, gave a talk, ‘Study of Islam in Academic and Theological Circles in the United States,’ which was held in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Center for Advanced Studies in Sarajevo hosted the talk which was attended by the Center’s members and associates, as well as several professors from local universities – about twenty of them in total.
In his talk, Sinanovic gave a panoramic overview of the academic institutions where Islam is studied in the US. He also highlighted main approaches and methods in the study of Islam, based on different institutions’ orientations and affiliations. He divided these institutional approaches into several categories: traditional centers and departments of Near Eastern and Middle Eastern studies, departments of religion and religious studies, departments in humanities and social sciences, academic and professional associations, theological schools and colleges, and Muslim-based colleges and universities. Each institutional setup approaches the study of Islam in a characteristic fashion, based on their orientations and academic methods and biases. Toward the end of the lecture, Dr. Sinanovic highlighted the IIIT’s contributions in the field of Islamic studies in the United States – from endowing chairs in Islamic studies, to various research programs and grants.
This talk was a good opportunity to exchange views on the study of Islam in the US and compare it to the study of Islam in Bosnia and Europe in general. During the Q&A session, the participants also addressed media portrayals of Muslims in the US, and the efforts the American Muslims are exerting to correct the misrepresentation of Islam and Muslims.
The GMBDW has been reporting on Dr. Sinanovic since May 2013 when we first identified him in connection with his status as a United States Naval Academy professor, a status which is still confirmed by the Academy website. According to his IIIT bio, Ermin Sinanovic is:
…an Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, USA. He studied for an MA and a PhD in Political Science at the Maxwell School of Syracuse University. Prof. Sinanovic obtained two BAs (one in Qur’an and Sunnah Studies, the other in Political Science) and an MA (Islamic Civilization) from the International Islamic University Malaysia. His research interests include transnational Islamic revival, Southeast Asian politics, Islamic movements, Middle East politics, Islamic political thought, and Islam and politics in general. At the Naval Academy, Prof. Sinanovic teaches courses on Southeast Asian politics, Middle East politics, and Islam and politics. He speaks Bosnian, English, Arabic, and Malay. “
Dr. Sinanovic is also one of the founding members of the Bosniak Academy of Sciences and Arts, closely associated with Mustafa Ceric, the former Grand Mufti of Bosnia and an associate of Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi who according to one source, serves as an IIIT trustee. As noted when we first reported Dr. Sinanovic’s relationship with IIIT:
While there is no evidence to date suggesting any improper behavior on the part of Professor Sinanovic, the GMBDW wonders about the propriety of an instructor for the US military being so closely associated with an organization that is intimately tied to the Global Muslim Brotherhood and to its putative global leader Youssef Qaradawi, a virulent anti-Semite and the head of an organization declared a terrorist entity by the US government who has called for attacks on US troops and civilians in Iraq and for the collapse of the US itself. Teaching alongside Louay Safi, depending on the state of the criminal inquiry into his activities, may also be a serious issue.
The GMBDW continues to believe that an individual serving as both an official of a US Muslim Brotherhood organization as well as a US military instructor is a matter of ongoing concern.
For a profile of the International Institute of Islamic Thought, go here.