Joe Kaufman, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center, is Chairman of the Joe Kaufman Security Initiative and the 2014, 2016 and 2018 Republican Nominee for U.S. House of Representatives (Florida-CD23).
On October 24th, the ICNA Council for Social Justice (ICNA CSJ), a division of the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA), held a virtual conference/fundraiser to discuss different forms of racism, what amounted to a one-sided rant against Jews, Hindus and Americans. The title of the event was ‘SIBLINGS OF HATE,’ and it featured leaders from the Hamas-linked American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), black power advocates, and individuals associated with ICNA. Given the terror and bigotry embodied by many of the participants, any hope that a nuanced and productive discussion about race and prejudice could be had was completely erased.
Representing ICNA at the over-four-hour affair were ICNA CSJ Executive Director Zahid Bukhari and former ICNA National President Naeem Baig. ICNA is the American arm of South Asia’s largest Islamist group, Jamaat-e-Islami (JI). JI, through its former militant wing al-Badr, was responsible for many of the massacres that took place during the 1971 genocide against the citizens of what is now known as Bangladesh. In fact, one of the death squad leaders of the genocide, Ashrafuz Zaman Khan, is currently affiliated with ICNA and has been for decades. Though still alive, Khan was sentenced to death, himself, in absentia, in November 2013.
ICNA has an overseas relief division called Helping Hands for Relief and Development (HHRD) that is a partner to JI group Al-Khidmat Foundation (AKF). The partnership was formalized in November 2000. In August 2006, while ICNA was a top donor to AKF, AKF hand delivered $100,000 to then-global Hamas leader Khaled Mashal at his Syrian residence. In December 2017, ICNA organized an event, in Timergara, Pakistan, featuring officials from AKF and Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF). Years earlier, FIF had been designated a front for Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), the terrorist group that was behind the November 2008 Mumbai Massacre in India.
Representing AMP, at last month’s virtual conference, were AMP Chairman Hatem Bazian, AMP Executive Director Osama Abu-Irshaid, and AMP West Coast Director and moderator for the conference, Shakeel Sayed. AMP is the byproduct of now-defunct groups that were formerly affiliated with the US Palestine Committee, a terrorist umbrella organization then-led by then-global Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzook, who was residing in the US at the time (Marzook was deported to Jordan, in May 1997). AMP celebrates violent intifadas (uprisings) against Israeli civilians, and Bazian, its Chairman, in April 2004, called for an intifada in the US.
Abu-Irshaid, this month, has written of his concern about the status of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan, as the group has been banned in the nation and has lost seats during the November 10th Jordanian election. As a result, Hamas, the Jordanian Brotherhood’s close relation, has been further squeezed, hence Abu-Irshaid’s concern. Abu-Irshaid has referred to Muslim leaders, who support UAE peace with Israel, as “dirt bags” and “traitors” and stated, this past January, “Palestinians, if they don’t take what they want willingly, they will take it forcefully… [W]e’re going to liberate our land… whether they like it or they don’t like it.”
Shakeel Sayed likes to promote terrorists on his social media. They include Palestinian Islamic Jihad member Maher al-Akhras and PFLP member and plane hijacker Leila Khaled. This past September, Sayed tweeted at UAE’s Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, “HELL is waiting 4 U.” In August, Sayed referred to Joe Biden as “frenemy.” In July, he tweeted, “Israel is a violent criminal state that shouldn’t even exist.” And in July 2014, in reaction to New York Times op-ed ‘To Save Gaza, Destroy Hamas’ by Amos Yadlin, Sayed tweeted, “Hey Amos – U r DEAD WRONG. I would ‘create Hamas’ in West Bank to Save Israel.”
During the conference, Sayed spoke of “hate that is rooted in faith traditions.” This echoed many of the speakers, who appallingly attempted to lump Zionism, which is the movement to re-establish and protect the Jewish homeland of Israel, and Hindutva, which is the preservation of the Hindu cultural and religious nature of India, with different forms of discrimination, such as what Uygher Muslims are experiencing in China. And he spoke of “extraordinary resistance… in Palestine, Kashmir, in India and in our own backyard in the USA” – a clear reference to Hamas and the Islamist groups operating in Kashmir, such as JI’s militant wing, Hizbul Mujahideen.
Besides Jews and Hindus, the other prominent target at the ICNA ‘hate’ conference, as the event moderator said, was the US. Conference speakers Khalid Griggs and Aisha Al-Adawiya wildly painted America as being a bastion of colonialism and white supremacy. Yet, both Griggs and Al-Adawiya embrace their own bigotry. They are both supporters of Kwame Ture, the anti-Semitic 60s ‘black power’ icon, who notoriously stated, “The only good Zionist is a dead Zionist” and that European-born Jews were not really Jews but “Cossacoids.” And both Griggs and Al-Adawiya have posted doctored photographs containing Adolf Hitler on their social media, Griggs glorifying the Nazi leader with a smiling image of him arm-and-arm with Olympian Jesse Owens.
At the end of the conference, Griggs was chosen to recognize 60s ‘black power’ icon and convicted cop killer, Jamil Al-Amin, with ICNA’s ‘Justice Award.’ Al-Amin, an ex-member of the Black Panther Party, made the infamous statement, “If America don’t come around, we’re gonna burn it down.” In March 2000, police entered al-Amin’s Atlanta, Georgia neighborhood looking to serve him with a warrant for his arrest. According to testimony, after being told to raise his hands, al-Amin opened fire on the officers, landing multiple shots. Deputy Aldranon English would later be pronounced dead. Al-Amin was given a life prison sentence for English’s murder.
The groups and speakers featured at ICNA’s ‘hate’ conference/fundraiser acted as though they were participating at this event to expose the bigotry of others. Instead, however, they managed to expose their own bigotry, in the process.
ICNA and AMP are organizations associated with and promoting terrorism in the Middle East and South Asia. This is precisely why they denounce Israel and India and scapegoat Jews and Hindus, putting a negative spin on support for the two sovereign peace-loving democracies, when it is their own co-religionists who have been the aggressors. They need to manufacture a storyline using a non-existent enemy to provide their Islamist groups cover and a false victimhood narrative to keep their followers enraged and unable to view them for the ideological frauds, which they are.
Beila Rabinowitz, Director of Militant Islam Monitor, contributed to this report.