A mobile digital billboard drove through the parking lot of the Islamic Center of Middlesex, New Jersey. The rented truck with Pennsylvania plates was displaying images from the 2008 Mumbai jihad attack that killed 166 people. The Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) held a press conference in response, at which Selaedin Maksut, CAIR’s New Jersey executive director, said:
This is an attempt to intimidate the Muslim community. This is a coordinated effort to cause disruptance [sic], and maybe cast shame or blame on the Muslim community for an incident that happened long ago, in another country and has nothing to do with the people who are residing in this state. We are calling on elected officials in these cities and towns, and in the county, to condemn this incident.
While it is understandable that the Islamic center would not like images of the absolutely horrific Mumbai attacks brought to their front door, whoever decided to have CAIR speak in response was ill-advised.
That is because CAIR is essentially the American branch of Hamas.
CAIR’s Hamas connections come from sources including the Treasury Department, the Department of Justice, the FBI, and a federal judge who wrote in his 2009 decision that the government had produced ample evidence of CAIR’s association with Hamas. (Source: legal decision of Jorge Solis, see top of pg. 15, Politico.)
Although this has been largely forgotten, forgiven, or covered up lately, one can go back eleven years and see that CAIR’s Hamas connections were reported in the mainstream media.
The CBS affiliate in Oklahoma ran a segment with the then-head of the FBI testifying before Congress on camera, saying that the FBI was distancing itself from CAIR due to concerns about the Islamic group’s national leadership. That would be CAIR’s Hamas connections.
The Dallas Morning News ran a piece with the headline “FBI: CAIR is a front group,” which was based on the open court testimony of FBI Special Agent Lara Burns, who was in charge of analyzing the transcript of a summit meeting of Hamas leaders held in this country. Agent Burns testified that the idea of CAIR was conceived at this meeting. The current executive director of CAIR, Nihad Awad, spoke at that meeting, saying that one of the group’s goals should be justifying the actions of Hamas.
For those who might shrug at this, considering the fact that CAIR operates legally in the United States, there is also CAIR’s public conduct.
During a recent CAIR Zoom conference call, Nihad Awad refers to Israel as the occupation, and CAIR’s deputy executive director Edward Ahmed Mitchell refers to Hamas not as a terrorist group, as it is regarded at the State Department, but simply as a foreign organization.
And here is CAIR giving open-throated support to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, another deadly terrorist organization.
Then again, how can CAIR be as bad as all that if local newscasters let it on TV?
CAIR representatives are frequently on TV. CAIR’s appearances on TV generally do nothing more than promote the organization, bring harm to other people, and to bring some unknown advantage to the TV stations that include them in a broadcast.
The two TV stations that carried CAIR’s New Jersey press conference were WABC and News12. Both stations have a record regarding CAIR.
WABC is losing its way when it comes to CAIR.
- WABC ran a completely unnecessary story about a whiny Muslim who claimed he was having trouble sleeping when he touched some bacon.
- The same reporter who filed this story also ran with the La Guardia High School protest. CeFaan Kim interviewed a La Guardia High student who claimed an instructor called her “a terrorist.” And, then, as so often happens with CAIR, one of its spokespeople suddenly appears, already talking in full stride. Where did he come from? Was he just walking by? Did CAIR call CeeFan Kim to come to the protest? Does the school know that CAIR is interacting with its students this way? Do the parents know? One thing we do know is that CeeFan Kim knows that stories featuring CAIR are desirable, maybe even profitable.
- WABC ran the Wheatley School hoax. When a very imaginative young woman used her graduation speech to talk about “the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians,” she went on to claim she was booed and heckled. WABC accepted this as established fact and put CAIR on TV even though there was no evidence to support her claims. People who attended the ceremony say that absolutely nothing happened to her that day. Why didn’t WABC interview anyone in the audience that day? Because that was not in CAIR’s script.
- WABC also ran the Tamar Herman story. As has been discussed here before, CAIR uses other people’s misfortunes to promote itself on TV. In this case, an elementary school teacher sought police protection after becoming the target of a rumor on social media. Rather than cooperate with either the school or police investigations, CAIR got on TV four times to call for the teacher’s termination. Tamar Herman is now suing CAIR for defamation. Don’t expect WABC to cover that story, because doing so would require them to reflect on their role in it.
Good on WABC for including Dr. Atif Nazir on the news.
But without balanced coverage at some point, the public is not going to know who he is. He is not just some wild-eyed fellow. He is a team leader for the Islamic Circle of North America. Like CAIR, this is another front group: ICNA is the American branch of the deadly terrorist group Jamaat-e-Islami.
ICNA has openly identified itself as a JI organization on a number of occasions. Since ICNA’s founding in 1968, its leaders have included Ashrafuzzaman Khan, who during the 1971 Liberation War in Bangladesh served as commander-in-chief of a JI militia group. In 2013, Bangladesh’s International War Crimes Tribunal found Khan guilty of abducting and murdering 18 Bangladeshi intellectuals. Khan was sentenced to death in absentia for his role in the genocide. https://www.nationalreview.com/2018/01/pakistani-terror-groups-charitable-guises-us-funds/
The other station that covered CAIR’s reaction to the mobile digital billboard story was News12.
Unfortunately, News12 also ran the bulldozer story. Although CAIR has no business telling anyone how to run an Indian Independence parade, CAIR made a big deal out of a bulldozer, claiming that its appearance was threatening to Muslims.
But if the station had just done a little research, it would have found that the bulldozer has become a symbol of righteous resistance against violent Muslims who have rioted and murdered people over perceived insults to Islam. Some Indian authorities have bulldozed the homes of jihad terrorists.
Whether summary justice is a good thing or not is beside the point. The TV station took CAIR’s narrative and ran with it, never thinking of telling the other side of the story.
TV stations around the country refuse not just to learn about Islam, but also about the various Muslims groups that operate in this country.
“NJ Muslim community outraged over apparent harassment incident,” WABC, November 30, 2022:
PISCATAWAY, New Jersey (WABC) — Members of a Muslim community in New Jersey are speaking out after an incident they say was intended to harass and intimidate them.
It happened Saturday at the Muslim Center of Middlesex County in Piscataway….
The truck, equipped with a digital billboard showing images from the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks, circled around the lot twice, stopping several times before finally leaving….
Members of the community say the incident was clearly intended to harass them.
“By targeting a Muslim center and deliberately circling its premises repeatedly, the perpetrators expect New Jersey’s Muslim community to answer to, or even feel shame for, an event that occurred entirely independent of them,” said Selaedin Maksut, executive director of the NJ chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), in a statement.
“Anti-Muslim intimidation tactics like these are unacceptable,” Maksut continued. “They mirror the tactics used against American Muslims in the aftermath of the 9/11 terror attacks and could lead to an uptick in anti-Muslim incidents as we’ve seen over the past two decades.”
The Mumbai attacks, which took place in Mumbai, India over the course of four days in 2008 and killed 175 people, were carried out by an Islamist terrorist organization based in Pakistan….
CAIR and the Islamic Circle of North America’s Council for Social Justice are calling on local law enforcement and the FBI to investigate and local leaders to publicly condemn the incident.