On April 6th, from a location in Huntington Beach, California, the Chairman of the March for Justice Nidal Sakr tweeted the following against the state of Israel: “So called ‘israeli CANCER’ MUST BE OBLITERATED AND IT WILL BE.” This was not the first threat issued by Sakr against Israel, and it probably will not be the last, but given Sakr’s past relationship to the founders of al-Qaeda and present relationship to the leadership of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, any threat from him needs to be taken very seriously.
Nidal Mohamed Sakr was born in Providence, Rhode Island. He describes himself as “US born from Palestinian origin.” In a videotaped lecture Sakr gave, in October 2012, he claimed that his mother is Egyptian and enlisted in the Muslim Brotherhood (al-Ikhwan al-Muslimin) at an early age, carrying weapons and ammunition for the group. He stated, “Let me be very clear about this. I was born into Ikhwan, and my mother actually is from the first generation of Ikhwan.”
Around 1970, Sakr joined a Brotherhood terrorist cell in Jordan that was conducting paramilitary operations against Israel. According to Sakr, the individual who recruited him into the cell was Abdullah Azzam, the future mentor of Osama bin Laden and co-founder of al-Qaeda. Also according to Sakr, he personally knew bin Laden. He stated, “Osama bin Laden, himself, was a student of Abdullah Azzam at King Abdul Aziz University. I know him personally. I know his brothers. I know his family.”
In January 2011, when the Arab Spring erupted in Egypt against then-Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, Sakr and his wife, Sara Bokker, did not have to travel far to seek involvement. Since at least 2007, the two were located in Cairo – home to the Muslim Brotherhood headquarters – Sakr serving on the International Islamic Council for Dawah and Relief and Bokker employed at the Brotherhood-related Jana Dan International School. During the revolution, Sakr organized rallies for the Brotherhood and advised Brotherhood leadership.
Following the July 2013 coup against the government of newly elected Egyptian President and Brotherhood leader, Mohamed Morsi, by then-head of Egypt’s military and current Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, a target was placed on the Brotherhood, Sakr included. On Facebook, Sakr wrote that he “Was Fired At by Sisi n RABAA [Square in Cairo] for 12 Hours NON STOP…”
In March 2014, Sakr left Egypt to return to the US. Upon arrival, he was placed in handcuffs and detained. This event took place merely days before he was sentenced to death in Egypt for the murder of an Egyptian police officer. Regardless of any of this, Sakr has been allowed to stay in the US and operate with impunity. Since he has been here, he has issued a number of threats aimed at world leaders. This includes calling for President Trump to be killed, which is a federal crime.
On October 30, 2017, Sakr tweeted, “EXECUTE SOB TRAITOR Donald Trump.” The same day, he tweeted, “Donald Trump, You Are TOAST… I GUARANTEE IT.” In September, Sakr wrote on Facebook: “FACTS ARE FACTS. Patriotic Americans Will Keep After SOB Donald Trump Until We Nail His ass. YOU WATCH!!” And in February, he warned Trump, “U come to ISLAM Or ISLAM WILL COME TO YOU.”
Sakr has also leveled threats at the United States, herself, which he refers to as “evil America” and the “largest Global Terrorist.” This past December, he tweeted, “Down with America!!!” In November, he tweeted (in Arabic), “Jihad will topple all American dogs.” And in August, he wrote, “LET ME BE CLEAR. Like it or Not, America MUST/WILL PAY 4 War Crimes/Crimes Against Humanity/Support of Dictators/Terror Creation.”
The US is not the only nation Sakr has targeted. He too has leveled threats at Israel. Last month, he tweeted the following: “So called ‘israeli CANCER’ MUST BE OBLITERATED AND IT WILL BE. LONG LIVE ALL PALESTINE FROM RIVER TO SEA. INSHAALLAH COMING HOME SOON TO OUR BELOVED HOMELAND.” In August 2016, he wrote, “MAKE NO MISTAKE!! I’m Muslim Palestinian American who’ll never rest till ‘Israel’ is off the map.” And in July 2017, he called for an end to the Jews, themselves, tweeting, “We will never eliminate the Jews in the name of the Arabs; we will not take them down except in the name of Islam.”
Sakr regularly posts onto social media propaganda pieces from Hamas, including official Hamas communiques and praise for Hamas militants. He has posted photos of Hamas leaders and Hamas founder Ahmed Yassin. Hamas, unlike its Muslim Brotherhood parent, is found on the US State Department list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTO). On April 15th, Sakr tweeted a video lauding slain Hamas Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades member Mohammed Hajeila, who participated in a July 2014 terrorist attack that led to the deaths of five Israeli soldiers. In May 2017, Sakr wrote, “TODAY WE R ALL HAMAS.”
Given all the facts, it would be a huge miscalculation on the part of law enforcement to dismiss Sakr’s threats against Israel, Jews, America and President Trump as empty and deranged. His self-confessed involvement with international terrorist organizations/cells, their leaders and his alleged part in the murder of a policeman in Egypt reveal that he and his associates are a real and present danger to both United States citizens and people abroad. His threats against President Trump are enough reason for him to be arrested immediately.
Furthermore, a consideration should be made for Sakr to be extradited to Egypt, as the act of murder is a sufficiently serious-enough crime that an order of extradition is warranted.
Last month, Sakr tweeted about a New Jersey physics teacher, Ahmed Abdelbasit, who like Sakr, is a Muslim Brotherhood operative who organized rallies in Egypt against Hosni Mubarak during the Arab Spring and, like Sakr, has been sentenced to death in Egypt. However, unlike Sakr, Abdelbasit has been taken into custody by ICE; placed in an orange jumpsuit and held at a detention center “on administrative immigration violations”; and according to Abdelbasit’s attorney, classified by ICE as “deportable from the United States.”
Sakr deserves the same, if not more.
Beila Rabinowitz, Director of Militant Islam Monitor, contributed to this report.