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).
It has been over a decade since the Holy Land Foundation (HLF) federal terrorism financing trials ended, but many remnants from the trials still linger. Two of the remnants, labeled as ‘unindicted co-conspirators’ during the trials – the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT) and its current Chairman Gaddor Saidi – continue to spread terror. NAIT continues to maintain its ownership of radical mosques, and Saidi uses his social media to promote such sinister entities as Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood and Adolf Hitler. What will it take to stop these enemies of America and the West from operating here with impunity?
NAIT was created in 1973 to hold and protect the assets of the Muslim Students Association (MSA), the first major Muslim Brotherhood organization established in the US. Today, NAIT continues to hold the assets of the MSA along with its affiliated Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). NAIT, the MSA and ISNA, which was also named an ‘unindicted co-conspirator’ during the HLF trials, all have their distinctive roles but are all part and parcel of the same organization. NAIT is, as well, the trustee (waqf) of hundreds of Muslim-oriented properties, including Islamic centers, mosques and children’s schools (madrassas).
As stated by counter-terrorism expert Steven Emerson, in his book Jihad Incorporated, “NAIT mosques rank among the most radical in the United States.” One of the NAIT-owned mosques, the Islamic Community of Tampa (ICT), a.k.a. Masjid Al-Qassam, was founded by convicted Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) leader, Sami al-Arian, as part of a Southwest Florida PIJ network. ICT is currently run by fellow convicted PIJ member Hatem Fariz. Among NAIT-owned mosque alumni are: 9/11 hijacker Hani Hanjour, Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, and Chattanooga, Tennessee military center shooter Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez.
It made sense that NAIT and ISNA were named ‘unindicted co-conspirators’ during the HLF trials, where all of the defendants were found guilty of financing Hamas. When HLF (originally named the Occupied Land Fund) was founded, in 1988, it used the same mailing address as ISNA: P.O. Box 38, Plainfield, Indiana 46168. Ads soliciting donations for HLF, using this address, were placed under printed communiques from Hamas. The address is still ISNA’s mailing address. And of course, NAIT, at the time, controlled the assets of ISNA.
NAIT’s longtime and current Chairman, Gaddoor Saidi, was too named an ‘unindicted co-conspirator’ for the HLF trials. Saidi regularly promotes Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood and their leadership on social media. One of his postings was of global Hamas leader Ismail Haniya discussing how proud he was of Algeria for rejecting calls for normalization with Israel. Saidi, himself, has been very public with his harsh denouncements of nations making peace with Israel. Saidi’s Hania posting, dated September 24th, was originally published by the Shehab News Agency, an affiliate of Hamas and a publication that Saidi likes to repost material from.
Saidi is a big fan of Muslim Brotherhood icons, like Brotherhood spiritual leader Yusuf al-Qaradawi, who is banned from entering the US, England and France for supporting such horrific acts as suicide bombings, and deceased Brotherhood writer and ideologue Sayyid Qutb, whose advocacy for violent and offensive jihad has inspired terrorist groups worldwide. Saidi also regularly posts images of deceased Brotherhood leader Mohamed Morsi, who died in prison after being removed from power by current Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.
Saidi has, as well, promoted Adolf Hitler on his social media. In February 2018, Saidi posted an image of Hitler along with a quote (in Arabic) attributed to the former German dictator about ways to “control people,” all under the heading, “Words of Great Men.” The graphic was taken from Makmalin, an Egyptian satellite channel based in Turkey that: calls for the “demise” of Israel; memorializes the birth and death of Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna; mourns the death of Morsi; and this past September 11th, remembered the 9/11 attacks by offensively posting photos of the World Trade Center in flames and people running from the destruction.
A section on the official website of NAIT, titled ‘Islamophobia and NAIT,’ is devoted to discussing the Holy Land Foundation trials. It is an attempt to fool people into believing that the US government falsely placed NAIT and other Muslim groups on the ‘unindicted co-conspirator’ list, throwing the designation off as being based on anti-Muslim hatred and “hearsay.” But as this author has demonstrated, the Justice Department rightfully made the designation, as NAIT continues to affiliate with radical mosques and its leadership actively supports terror.
NAIT, a Muslim extremist organization with ties to terrorism, has no place in Western society and should be banned from operating within the United States. All NAIT-related entities, including mosques and schools, need to be investigated and shut down immediately.
Beila Rabinowitz, Director of Militant Islam Monitor, contributed to this report.