A Taliban Christmas

Alleged Taliban financier uses holiday season to do Islamic outreach to Christians.

Joe Kaufman, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is Chairman of the Joe Kaufman Security Initiative (www.kaufmansecurity.org) and the 2014, 2016 and 2018 Republican Nominee for U.S. House of Representatives (Florida-CD23).

For many, Christmas is a time for gathering with family and friends in celebration of the birth of their Lord and Savior. For Izhar Khan, the imam of Masjid Jamaat Al-Mumineen (MJAM), in Margate, Florida, Christmas is a time to bring Islam to Christians. For Khan, and fundamentalist Muslims like him, taking part in Christmas is forbidden, so attempting to get Christians to renounce their religion is his version of spreading holiday cheer. However, given the imam’s alleged history of financing an overseas terrorist organization in an effort to kill US troops, potential converts are well advised to steer clear of Khan’s overtures.

The event, which took place December 29th, was titled, ‘FAMILY ENLIGHTENMENT NIGHT.’ The flyer for it – deceptively dressed up in red and green – read: “TOPIC: CHRISTMAS, AN OPPORTUNITY TO GIVE DAWA TO CHRISTIANS.” It followed Khan’s October 27th event, titled, ‘THE HAUNTED HISTORY OF HALLOWEEN.’ The real scare for both holidays was Khan, himself.

In May 2011, Khan was arrested and spent the next 20 months in a Miami federal detention center for his alleged participation in a plot to ship $50 thousand to the Pakistani Taliban for the specific goal of murdering American troops overseas. As stated by the US Justice Department, “Izhar is a Pakistani Taliban sympathizer who worked with [his father Hafiz] and others to collect and deliver money for the Pakistani Taliban… Izhar… provided and attempted to provide material support and resources… knowing and intending that they be used in preparation for and in carrying out… a conspiracy to murder, kidnap, and maim persons in a foreign country.”

The venue for the anti-Christmas event was the conference room at the Hampton Inn Ft. Lauderdale-West, in Pembroke Pines, Florida. The sponsor for the event was the Ar-Rayyan Qur'an Academy, an Islamic children’s school, where Khan serves as a teacher.

The other teacher at Ar-Rayyan is Saudi Arabian Ahmed Fathy. Fathy’s Facebook page contains much anti-Semitic and terror-related material. Fathy’s group ‘cover photo’ is of him and 25 others posing, with many flashing the Muslim Brotherhood Rabaa hand sign. In July 2014, Fathy posted a picture of a boy being gifted a rifle by his smiling mother for graduating from a Hamas kids’ camp. Days later, Fathy posted a video accusing Jews of having a sinister control over world banks and media. Fathy is also a fan of Tareq Al-Suwaidan, a Kuwaiti writer and lecturer, who was been banned from the US after threatening to destroy the Jewish people.

On January 20th, Ar-Rayyan will be holding its ‘2nd Annual Dinner,’ at the Mehfil Restaurant in Sunrise, Florida. Speaking, along with Izhar Khan, will be Shafayat Mohamed, the founder and current imam of Darul Uloom in Pembroke Pines. Darul Uloom has been a past haven for al-Qaeda operatives, including convicted ‘Dirty Bomber’ Jose Padilla, who was a student at the mosque, and now-deceased al-Qaeda commander, Adnan el-Shukrijumah, who was a prayer leader there. Mohamed, himself, was thrown off a number of county boards for his fiery rhetoric against homosexuals, including blaming gay sex for the 2004 Indonesian tsunami.

In January 2019, Khan and Mohamed were both speakers at Ar-Rayyan’s first annual dinner event, as well. Emceeing the 2019 dinner was Islamist activist and Adjunct Professor at Broward College, Syed Ammar Ahmed. In February 2010, following a debate Ahmed participated in at a school, he wrote on Facebook, “I hate white people” and joked that he – a college professor who was the emcee of a dinner for a kids’ educational facility – “should have threatened to blow up the school.”

So here you have an imam, Izhar Khan, who the FBI says helped to finance the Taliban; his colleague, Ahmed Fathy, who posts pro-terror and anti-Semitic material onto social media; another imam, Shafayat Mohamed, who founded an al-Qaeda-linked mosque and who was thrown off of county boards for his discourse against homosexuals; and an adjunct professor, Ammar Ahmed, who joked about threatening to blow up a school.

If you are a Christian and you are questioning your religious beliefs, are these the types of individuals you want to use as spiritual guides to help you find the correct path? Or are these your enemies out to destroy the holiday season and your soul along with it?

Any reasonable person would suggest that the answer is the latter, that they are enemies seeking destruction. If you chose otherwise, you may find yourself losing more than just Christmas.

Beila Rabinowitz, Director of Militant Islam Monitor, contributed to this report.

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