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Most Muslim extremists first radicalize their youth via sermon and brainwashing. One group, however, is skipping those steps and is taking the youngest of children right to the paramilitary route. But this group is not in Afghanistan or Iraq. No, it’s in Philadelphia, the so-called ‘City of Brotherly Love.’
The United Muslim Movement (UMM) was incorporated in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in June 1994, with the goal of creating a central mosque in the city along with an organization that would be able to “respond to the social, economical, political, educational, and religious needs facing our [UMM’s] communities.” Less than four months later, in October 1994, its first mosque, the United Muslim Masjid, was opened.
The owner of the mosque property and the face behind UMM is music and real estate magnate Kenneth Gamble, a.k.a. Luqman Abdul Haqq.
In the mid-1970s, following a nervous breakdown over personal and professional troubles, Gamble began to turn to the Islamic religion, getting involved with such groups as the Nation of Islam (NOI). At the time, NOI was moving towards the leadership of Louis Farrakhan, a combative personality most known for his anti-white and anti-Jewish statements.
Today, Gamble is a member of the Board of Directors (Majlis ash-Shura) of the Muslim Alliance in North America (MANA), a Muslim Brotherhood-related group headed by Siraj Wahhaj, an “unindicted co-conspirator” of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. Gamble has been involved with MANA’s leadership since the group was initially established as a national organization in April 2001, at the UMM mosque.
UMM has interests beyond the building of mosques. One of them deals with children’s activities – violence-based children’s activities.
Jawala Scouts or the Jawala Scout Youth Leadership Program, an Islamic paramilitary boys group, was incorporated in Philadelphia in August 2005. It was founded a short time before that.
The children joining Jawala Scouts are as young as seven years of age. This is disconcerting, when considering some of the activities of the group, which include hand-to-hand combat, firearms training and survival tactics. Photographs from the group’s official website show the kids dressed in military fatigues, hiking through the woods, and engaged in wrestling.
What makes things worse are the type of individuals linked to Jawala Scouts. One is Carlin Saafir, the Legal Officer and 1st Lieutenant of the scouts. Saafir is also the President of UMM, a member of the UMM Masjid’s Board of Directors (General Council), and the Joint Community Outreach Chair of the Philadelphia office of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), an entity affiliated with the terrorist organization Hamas.
The Registrant, Administrator and Technical Contact of Jawala’s site is Curtis De Veaux. In February 2005, De Veaux was suspended without pay from his job as a Philadelphia firefighter for refusing to shave his beard – deemed a security hazard – arguing that it was part of his being a devout Muslim.
The e-mail contact associated with the Jawala site, firstname.lastname@example.org, appears to be that of Kenneth Gamble. That would make sense, as the group registered its corporation using the same physical address as UMM, 800 S. 15th Street.
Another organization associated with Jawala Scouts is the Sankore’ Institute of Islamic-African Studies International (SIIASI), an anti-Western preservation society for rare African Muslim manuscripts. According to the Pittsburgh City Paper, SIIASI “started” the scout program.
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