Laura rebuked for 'anti-Muslim tirade'
Controversial Islamic group demands apology from radio counselor
Posted: November 20, 2003 By Art Moore WorldNetDaily.com
A controversial Islamic lobby group is demanding an apology from radio counselor Dr. Laura Schlessinger for an alleged "anti-Muslim tirade" on her program this week.
Schlessinger, whose coast-to-coast show is heard by 12 million listeners, "crossed the line from legitimate commentary on terrorism to Islamophobic bigotry," charges the Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR.
Dr. Laura Schlessinger
The comments, on Monday's program, came in response to a mother who asked whether her 16-year-old daughter should take part in a Catholic high school class's field trip to a local mosque. The visit was part of a "moral themes" class that aimed to help students learn how "Muslims are treated" in the United States.
Schlessinger, a WND columnist, replied to the mother:
"This is a class on morals. What is the point of going to a mosque? ... You're joking of course. How many Americans have tortured and murdered Muslims. I think you ought to stand up against this class and this teacher. This is despicable. You tell him you are willing to go to the mosque only if it is one that has done its best to rout out terrorists in its midst. Instead of complaining.
"I am horrified that you would let her go. I am so sick and tired of all the Arab-American groups whining and complaining about some kind of treatment. What culture and what religion were all the murderers of 9-11? They murdered us. That's the culture you want your daughter to learn about?"
Schlessinger's producer, Keven Bellows, told WorldNetDaily the radio host is formulating a response but cannot comment at the moment.
In a statement, CAIR said last year it asked
Schlessinger to clarify her claim there is a "Muslim plan" to take over the
Muslim scholars to preach
New Islamic sensitivity training program required
of federal agents, new recruits
accused of 'siege' on American Muslims
Islamic-rights group's report asserts Justice targets citizens based on religion
Posted: July 15, 2003 By Art Moore WorldNetDaily.com
A report by a leading Islamic lobby group accuses the U.S. Justice Department of targeting Arabs and Muslims amid a rise in "Islamophobic" rhetoric, violence, discrimination and harassment in the United States. The Washington, D.C.-based Council on American-Islamic Relations said "the Department of Justice has continued to take actions in the name of combating terrorism, when in fact they have targeted broadly Arabs and Muslims in this country."
The report released today, titled "Guilt by Association," commended the Bush administration for reaching out to Muslims in the days after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, but the report said "since that initial period of support a number of government policies have singled out Muslim individuals and organizations."
That charge is unfounded, Justice Department spokesman Jorge Martinez told WorldNetDaily.
"We have never used race or religion as a criterion, and to say that is irresponsible by people who don't understand, or who don't have access to the intelligence criteria we use," he said.
Martinez emphasized that "in the days after Sept. 11, it became clear to the U.S. government that we had to radically improve our border control and security."
"The bottom line is we are doing everything we can within the boundaries of the Constitution to protect the American people," he said.
Mohamed Nimer, CAIR's research director, contended a government approach of "guilt by association" has "created a sense of siege in the American Muslim community."
"Along with an increase in the number of bias-related incidents and experiences, we have also witnessed the negative results produced by government policies that target ordinary Americans based on religion, ethnicity or national origin," he said.
Martinez insisted the opposite is true.
He argued the DOJ has opened 500 cases of alleged incidents of "backlash crimes" and has made 13 federal prosecutions, with a 100 percent conviction rate, against people who harmed individuals who appeared to be Middle Eastern or Muslim.
That includes, he pointed out, threats against James Zogby of the Arab American Institute, which led to a conviction.
"To throw out charges of such a serious nature without substantiating facts is irresponsible," he said.
CAIR cited among its examples the Sept. 11 probe in 2002 that required special registration for students and visitors from Muslim-majority countries and the cases brought against three U.S.-based Muslim charities.
Martinez, noting visitors from 162 countries were required to register, said the department's actions were based not on race or religion but on intelligence data.
"All these measures are based on intelligence-based criteria that tells us about the terrorist threat to the national security of this country," he said.
Last month, a federal appeals court ruled the Treasury Department had "ample" evidence to shut down Texas-based Holy Land Foundation, which is accused of funding the Hamas terrorist organization.
CAIR itself has been linked to Hamas. The group is a spin-off of the Islamic Association For Palestine, or IAF, identified as a "front group" for Hamas, according to two former heads of the FBI's counterterrorism section. Former chief Oliver Revell has called the IAF "a front organization for Hamas that engages in propaganda for Islamic militants."
The probe against the Holy Land Foundation actually began before Sept. 11, 2001.
In March 1996, then-U.S. Rep. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., called for a federal investigation into allegations of Holy Land's financial ties with Hamas. At that time, Schumer, now a U.S. senator, also sponsored legislation to outlaw domestic fund raising for foreign terrorist organizations.
In December, a three-judge panel of the 7th U.S. Court of Appeals ruled the Treasury Department had appropriately moved against Illinois-based Global Relief Foundation. The Syrian-born director of another Illinois-based charity that has been shut down, Benevolence International Foundation, pleaded guilty in February to racketeering charges but did not admit any connection to Osama bin Laden or al-Qaida.
On the increase?
CAIR said it has seen a 15 percent rise in reports of discrimination over the past year, counting 602 incidents turned in to its office. It began documenting anti-Muslim incidents following the 1995 attack on the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City.
In Florida last year, for example, CAIR said, a man rammed his truck into the Islamic Center of Tallahassee and in Massachusetts, a school bus belonging to the Islamic Academy of Peace was torched.
The Muslim group said when compared to the year preceding Sept. 11, this year's reports show a 64 percent increase.
Martinez said, on the contrary, he sees an improving situation, based on reported "backlash" incidents.
"I think you saw a spike in these types of cases post-Sept. 11, but that spike has gone down dramatically," he said. "It doesn't mean it won't happen again, but I can assure you, the Department of Justice is 100-percent committed to seeking to investigation and prosecute any forms of discrimination."
Some of those incidents in 2002, CAIR said, were of "police profiling" of Muslims who were questioned going about their daily activities, such as walking on public roads. Along with religious and ethnic profiling, the group said, workplace discrimination was one of the largest categories of complaints.
"The fallout from September 11 continues to impact Muslim daily life, whether at schools, in the workplace or in general public encounters," CAIR said in a summary of its report. "Mistreatment at the hand of federal government personnel continues to be reported in substantial numbers. FBI agents and other local law enforcement authorities have sometimes responded to hearsay reports, and conducted questionable raids and interrogations."
CAIR said today's report outlines "the increase in Islamophobic rhetoric by evangelical leaders such as Franklin Graham, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson."
Earlier this year, a local CAIR leader used the report of a mob attack in Yorba Linda, Calif., to tie such rhetoric to violence but did not explain how the connection was made.
In the Feb. 22 incident, 20 young assailants with knives and baseball bats brutally beat an 18-year-old Arab man as they shouted obscenities and religious epithets.
"We believe this recent increase in attacks on American Muslims is a direct result of the barrage of pro-war and anti-Islam rhetoric coming from right-wing and evangelical leaders," said Hussam Ayloush, director of CAIR's Los Angeles chapter
voice indicted in jihad plot
Ex-CAIR rep with group tied to al-Qaida, attorney
also serves as lawyer for Hamas
charged in 'holy-war' plot
Accused of conspiring to train on U.S. soil for battle overseas
Posted: June 27, 2003 WorldNetDaily.com
Nine Americans were among 11 men charged today
with conspiring to train on U.S. soil for a "violent jihad" overseas.
According to an indictment issued by the federal government, the men belong
to the Islamic militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba, or "Army of the Righteous,"
which seeks to drive India out of the disputed Kashmir province, Fox News
candidates for 2004
Islamic group on nationwide tour to urge political participation
Posted: May 20, 2003 WorldNetDaily.com
A leading Islamic lobby group is on a nationwide
tour to introduce Muslims to American politics. Building an influential
voting bloc for the 2004 elections and eventually seeing Muslim candidates
on ballots for everything from city council to congressional seats are two
aims of the Virginia-based Muslim American Society, the St. Paul Pioneer
Muslim Quran be USA's top authority?
Paper stands by story citing 'mainstream' leader pushing for Islamic America
Posted: May 1, 2003 By Art Moore 2003 WorldNetDaily.com
A former newspaper reporter says she stands by
her story claiming the chairman of a leading Muslim lobby group declared
the Quran should be America's highest authority. In a press release
accusing WorldNetDaily of "demonizing Muslims," the Washington, D.C.-based
Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, denied its chairman of the
board, Omar Ahmad, made the statement and said it is seeking a retraction
from the newspaper that published the story July 4, 1998.
official censured for 'Islamophobia'
Party official's offending e-mail thanked God Muslims not majority
Posted: April 30, 2003 By Art Moore 2003 WorldNetDaily.com
Under pressure from a controversial Muslim lobby group, a Canadian party official has been censured for his angry defense of Rev. Franklin Graham's Christian relief work in Iraq. When Stephen Leach fired off an e-mail to the Council on American-Islamic Relations' Canadian affiliate for its excoriation of Graham's plans for Iraq, he thought he was acting as a private citizen.
However, the Muslim group apparently discovered Leach's affiliation through an Internet search and turned the e-mail into a public campaign. Leach is vice president of the Progressive Conservative party's Oshawa, Ontario, riding, or district.
In his e-mail to CAIR, he called the group's recent demand Graham be barred from working in Iraq a "hate crime."
Leach wrote: "North America was not founded on Muslim principles, else, we wouldn't be the strong continent we are today. We would be a [backwoods] civilization, like many Muslim nations found in the Middle East today."
In response to concerns about his e-mail, Leach said, "This is my opinion, this is no opinion based on anybody else but my own."
But CAIR Canada issued a news release calling on party leaders to repudiate the remarks. After some negotiation, Progressive Conservative leader Joe Clark agreed last week to denounce Leach's comments, the Ottawa Citizen newspaper reported.
CAIR Canada said when it "contacted leader Joe Clark for a statement regarding the party's position on Islamophobia, his office refused to intervene, characterizing the issue as a private conflict between individuals."
Nevertheless, Clark eventually helped draft a joint statement with CAIR Canada's spokesman, Riad Saloojee, which said the remarks "were completely unacceptable and inappropriate."
A CAIR news release said Sheema Khan, chair of CAIR Canada, concluded a conversation with party officials saying she was satisfied the Progressive Conservative Party would continue to be an ally of CAIR "in the defense of the principles of multiculturalism and inclusiveness."
Last month, CAIR's U.S. spokesman, Ibrahim Hooper, criticized Graham and other evangelical Christians for using humanitarian concerns as a "cover" for their "true motive" – to convert Muslims to Christianity.
"They go after them when they're most vulnerable and hope they can get them to leave their faith," he told Beliefnet. "It's a very despicable practice."
The Muslim leader, who has said he wants the U.S. eventually to become a Muslim nation, said, "Franklin Graham obviously thinks it is a war against Islam."
"This is a guy who gave the invocation at President Bush's inauguration and believes Islam is a wicked faith," Hooper said. "And he's going to go into Iraq in the wake of an invading army and convert people to Christianity? Nothing good is coming of that."
Leach's e-mail to CAIR Canada said:
"Your organization has publically (sic) endorsed a HATE CRIME against Christians as Billy Grahams son is working to assist helping out refugees from Iraq. "If this was the other way around, no one would doubt a HATE CRIME had been purpetrated (sic).
"I am shocked and dismayed by the belief structure being upheld by Muslims in North America where everyone has the freedom of speech and religion.
"North American was NOT founded on Muslim principles, else, we wouldn't be the strong continent we are today. We would be a bag woods (sic) civilization like many Muslim nations found in the Middle East today.
"I demand a public apology by your President to Mr. Graham immediately and would recommend you work WITH Christians and Jews, and not against them as your faith would have it.
"Yeah, we are the infidel (sic), but in North America, thank God you are a minority religion and not one which the vast majority of North Americans adhere to.
"Truely (sic) disgusting!! Hell, even I fly the Red, White & Blue and I'm not even an American. I'm Canadian. :) God Bless America, God Bless the Allies, God Bless the soon to be [free] Iraqi's (sic), their freedom paid for in blood of those nations which actually give a damn about them."
A party spokesman said it is now up to Leach's local party leader to decide whether further disciplinary action against him is required.
The CAIR Canada chair Khan apparently was satisfied with the outcome, stating in the joint release, "I am confident these internal [party] matters are being addressed with the seriousness they deserve."
Leach told the Ottawa Citizen he did not think it was fair to drag his party into the controversy, but insisted members of the Conservatives and the government share his opinions.
"Because of the role they play right now, they don't say such things publicly," he said.
Leach also refused to apologize for his remarks, vowing to "never back down."
"I was just upset that these people can condemn an organization like Franklin Graham's," he said. "That is fear-mongering, hate in itself."
A group calling itself Anti-CAIR has set up a website "exposing the truth about the Council on American-Islamic Relations," which it calls "just one of many anti-American terrorist-sponsoring organizations hiding behind the religion of Islam in the United States today."
Responding to CAIR's criticism of the Pentagon for inviting Graham to speak at a Good Friday service, Anti-CAIR issued a news release stating, "While ACAIR supports the rights of members of the Islamic faith to oppose the appearance of Rev. Graham, we do not understand the involvement of CAIR in the dispute."
ACAIR charged: "CAIR is an Islamic fundamentalist organization dedicated to the overthrow of the United States Constitution and the installation of an Islamic theocracy in America. CAIR is not qualified to speak on behalf of mainstream Muslims in America."
Anti-CAIR also has defended Middle East scholar Daniel Pipes, whose nomination by President Bush to the board of the U.S. Institute of Peace has generated a CAIR campaign.
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