The story of Ahmed Mohamed, the Dallas schoolboy made famous by the reaction to his arrest for bringing a homemade clock that resembled a suitcase bomb to school, has taken another curious turn. According to the Dallas Morning News, Ahmed and his family have accepted an invitation extended by the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development to visit Qatar. Their sister institution, the Qatar Foundation International (QFI) was founded by Sheikh bin Al Thani, who also created Al Jazeera. QFI has links to the Muslim Brotherhood (MB).
The trip is another leg on what is best described as a celebrity-like tour. On Monday, Ahmed’s newfound status took him to New York’s City Hall, where he received a proclamation from Public Advocate Letitia James. James referred to Ahmed as a role model and allowed him to sit in her council chamber chair. Ahmed was also given a tour of City Hall by Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, and was presented with framed commendation by city Comptroller Scott Stringer. “All students should engage w/ science and technology – Ahmed Mohamed is a role model for all NYers,” Stringer tweeted after the meeting.
Such enthusiasm for Ahmed’s scientific acumen is belied by some inconvenient realities. In a YouTube video entitled “Ahmed Mohamed Clock is a FRAUD,”
electrical expert Thomas Talbot makes the case that Ahmed’s timepiece is actually a commercial clock removed from its casing. “This child, uh, nothing against him personally, never built a clock,” Talbot insists, further adding he believes the device was “intentionally” built to look suspicious. A blog known as Art Voice, identifies the device as one sold in a 1986 Radio Shack catalogue, and cites two investigators who conclude that Ahmed “disassembled a manufactured clock and installed it in a large pencil box without its casing,” possibly to “provoke suspicion or to resemble a bomb.”
Adding further fuel to such speculation is the reality that Ahmed’s older sister, Eyman Mohamed, revealed she was suspended from middle school in the same district in 2009. “I got suspended from school for three days from this stupid same district, from this girl saying I wanted to blow up the school, something I had nothing to do with,” she insisted. “I got suspended and I didn’t do anything about it and so when I heard about Ahmed, I was so mad because it happened to me and I didn’t get to stand up, so I’m making sure he’s standing up because it’s not right. So I’m not jealous, I’m kinda like—it’s like he’s standing for me.”
District spokeswoman Lesley Weaver explained the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act prevented her from providing any details about Eyman’s suspension unless her parents signed that document. They have refused to do so, and thus the school is unable to release information.
Ahmed’s father, Mohamed Elhassan Mohamed, who insisted his son was “hurt and was tortured and arrested and mistreated in front of his friends inside of the school,” and who subsequently withdrew all of his children from their Irving Independent School District schools earlier this month, has led a politically active life. The former customs worker at Khartoum International Airport, who earned a philosophy degree from Cairo University in Khartoum before emigrating to the U.S., ran for president of Sudan twice. In 2012 he made headlines for participating as a “defense attorney” in Rev. Terry Jones’s mock trial of the Quran at his Gainesville church. Jones ultimately burned a copy of the book, precipitating riots in Afghanistan.
Such political activism may partially explain how effectively this family has managed Ahmed’s newfound celebrity status, to the point where a Dallas public relations firm wants to sign him. “The last few weeks have been truly life-changing for my son Ahmed and for our family,” his father explained – in a prepared statement announcing the trip to Qatar. Mohamed also has plans to take his family to Mecca. And when he gets back, his son intends to take President Barack Obama up on his White House invitation.
All of this has been driven by an American left that continues to insist Ahmed was singled out, not because his clock looked like a suitcase bomb (a side by side comparison can be seen here), but because the nation in general, and Texas in particular, is a seething cauldron of Islamophobia. Again, such accusations ignore inconvenient realities, beginning with the assertion by Irving, TX police spokesman James McLellan that Ahmed was uncooperative. ”We attempted to question the juvenile about what it was and he would simply only say it was a clock. He didn’t offer any explanation as to what it was for, why he created this device, why he brought it to school,” McLellan stated.
Furthermore, this was not Ahmed’s first experience with trouble in school. At Sam Houston Middle School Ahmed “racked up weeks of suspensions,” according to the Texas newspaper, which further noted that while “his discipline record is confidential and his father didn’t want to discuss it, the file was thick by some accounts.”
More to the point as the Daily Caller explains, Eagle Scouts, honor students and others, including kids as young as five, have had their lives upended, not by bigotry, but by “zero tolerance” policies. Policies that reached the height of stupidity when a second-grader was suspended from school for biting a Pop Tart into the _shape_ of a gun. Most of these students were white non-Muslim males. “But Obama never worried about the fate of those students,” the Caller reminds us.
And if one is still inclined to excoriate the MacArthur High School officials for erring on the side of caution, perhaps they should take the Obama administration to task as well: “If you see something, say something” is a trademarked slogan of the Department of Homeland Security, and DHS also urges Americans to report suspicious activity that includes the observation of “unusual items.”
Suspicious activity is a term that might be aptly applied to the Muslim Brotherhood-linked QFI. In 2012 QFI launched the Research Center for Islamic Legislation and Ethics. The Center’s director is Professor Tariq Ramadan, who is the grandson of the Muslim Brotherhood’s founder, Hassan al Banna. Ramadan was banned from coming to the United States until 2010 when the Obama administration granted him a visa to lecture at a school in New York. QFI has also instituted Sheikh Yusuf Al Qaradawi Scholarships, named after the notorious Egyptian cleric who twice turned down offers to be the MB’s highest-ranking official. Al Qaradawi has been documented endorsing the “abduction and killing of Americans in Iraq,” and the desire to end his life as a martyr by shooting “Allah’s enemies, the Jews.”
“Qaradawi has personally attended scores of foundation events, including conferences at which he served as a keynote speaker,” World Net Daily reveals.
QFI recently bestowed a $75,000 grant on the Arabic Immersion Magnet School in the Houston Independent School District to fund “Arabic language activities and Arab cultural events for students, teacher professional development, educational resources, promotion of the Arabic language, community outreach, and curriculum development to promote the educational mission of the Arabic Immersion Magnet School.” Ahmed has been offered a QFI tour of “Education City,” in Doha, Qatar’s capital city. The Dallas Morning _News _describes it as a “5-square-mile cluster of universities and think tanks.”
Upon Ahmed’s return, the family will retrieve the clock still sitting in the Irving police station and take it to the White House. “His main goal is to take it to the president,” said Ahmed’s uncle, Aldean Mohamed.
President Obama’s main goal will be to use the Texas teenager as his latest prop to indict the nation for crimes of racism and intolerance, much as he did with Cambridge Professor Henry Louis Gates, Florida’s Trayvon Martin and Ferguson’s Michael Brown. Once again the president will embrace the selective indignity that is his trademark.