Daniel Greenfield, a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the Freedom Center, is an investigative journalist and writer focusing on the radical Left and Islamic terrorism.
In Wisconsin, the dairy capital of the nation, Muslims and Nazis revisited their old alliance when Yousef Barasneh, the son of a Jordanian immigrant active in the Muslim community, joined the Neo-Nazi group, The Base (which shares the meaning of its name with Al Qaeda), and vandalized a synagogue.
The synagogue, Beth Israel Sinai Congregation in Racine, had the term, “Jude”, German for “Jew”, swastikas, the symbol of the Nazi Secret Service, and The Base white supremacist symbol, scrawled on it in September. Later that year, a Base leader ratted out Yousef as the perpetrator to the FBI.
When communicating with his Neo-Nazi pals, Yousef anglicized or polonized his Arabic first name to “Joseph” or “Josef”. Despite his Muslim convert mother’s Polish ancestry, Yousef might not have been confident of the welcome he would receive as “Yousef” from a white supremacist organization.
But when The Base called for vandalizing synagogues, the son of a Jordanian immigrant was eager.
“Imagine if across the country on local news, Everyone is reporting on new nazi presence,” he wrote in Nazi chat. “Our op will be a perfect f___ you to these kikes if we become terrorists.”
Yousef was overlaying the terrorism of his Islamic background on his new Nazi affiliation. Mass immigration advocates often claim that immigrants bring things to this country that we don’t have. Does America really have such a Nazi shortage that we need to import white supremacists from Jordan?
Later Yousef joined a Base session in Georgia where members trained with guns and sacrificed a goat.
It’s unclear if he took part in the ‘Blot’ goat sacrifice to pagan gods that white supremacists are reviving in order to banish Judeo-Christian values and revive the pagan beliefs championed by Nazi Germany.
Sacrificing a goat to the gods would have been frowned on by the Islamic Society of Milwaukee. But goat sacrifices are a regular part of Islam and Yousef would likely have had more experience sacrificing goats than his cosplaying Nazi pals who had to google Kristallnacht to find out what it involved.
And a Jordanian Muslim making blood sacrifices to Norse gods in a Neo-Nazi cult after vandalizing a synagogue is undeniably multicultural. It’s just not the multiculturalism anyone needs or wants.
According to media accounts, Yousef Omar is the son of Omar and Aliceann Basraneh. The Jordanian flag flies in the breeze outside Omar’s house in Oak Park and a photo in the Wisconsin Muslim Journal shows Omar and Aliceann in a gaudy hijab. An older photo shows Omar, Aliceann, and Yousef at the Dome of the Rock: the victory mosque that Muslims had erected on the holiest Jewish site in Jerusalem.
Omar’s Facebook likes included a campus branch of the anti-Semitic hate group Students for Justice in Palestine at Marquette U, and the Muslim Student Association at the University of Michigan.
Omar, a coach at Salam High School, has been quoted in the media on Muslim issues. Aliceann also used to work at the Salam school. The Salam school is run by the Islamic Society of Milwaukee. The ISM was established by the Muslim Students Association which was set up by the Muslim Brotherhood.
Othman Atta, the executive director of the Islamic Society of Milwaukee, regularly appeared at American Muslims for Palestine events. AMP has been described as another iteration of various Hamas front groups. Hamas is an arm of the Muslim Brotherhood making the terror group and ISM cousins.
At an AMP conference, the Islamic Society of Milwaukee boss had attacked efforts by the United States to crack down on terror fundraising. “When the PLO was designated as a terrorist group – political decision – Hamas, Hizballah and other groups, when they’re designated as terrorist groups, it is a political decision,” he had complained.
The Islamic Society of Milwaukee is not just a threat to Jews or Israel, but also to the United States.
Abdul Mawgoud Dardery, the foreign affairs chairman for the Muslim Brotherhood’s party, spoke at the Islamic Society of Milwaukee in 2014. His message was one of theocracy. “The issue of the separation of religion from politics is a church issue and it does not apply to Islam,” he told ISM members. “Democracy is the rule of people, [for] the people, by the people within the limit of what Allah allows.”
What might have put Yousef on a pathway from a Muslim community run by the Muslim Brotherhood to joining up with a Neo-Nazi organization? The Brotherhood was inspired by Nazi Germany.
Hassan Al-Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, had arranged to have Hitler’s Mein Kampf translated into Arabic. The Muslim Brotherhood would go on to distribute that and other anti-Semitic Nazi propaganda altered for their own agenda, and to attend the Nuremberg rallies of the Nazis.
Al-Banna had credited the Nazis with inspiring Brotherhood propaganda. The Brotherhood’s early structure, its tactics, and its rhetoric were closely copied from Nazi Germany. The Nazis used the Brotherhood to disrupt British rule in Egypt, while the Brotherhood used the Nazis to turn the ancient Koranic hatred and violence into a modern movement that now threatens the entire world.
The unanimity between the Brotherhood and the Nazis did not end with the fall of the Third Reich.
Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, the Brotherhood’s spiritual leader, had preached on Al Jazeera, “Throughout history, Allah has imposed upon the [Jews] people who would punish them for their corruption. The last punishment was carried out by Hitler. By means of all the things he did to them – even though they exaggerated this issue – he managed to put them in their place. This was divine punishment for them. Allah willing, the next time will be at the hand of the believers.” The “believers” are Muslims.
When Yousef joined up with The Base, after a lifetime in a Muslim Brotherhood community, he was revisiting an enduring alliance built around hating Jews. Was his vandalism of the Beth Israel Sinai Congregation grounded in the hatred he had picked up in his Muslim Brotherhood community?
Beyond Hamas, had the Islamic Society of Milwaukee exposed him to pro-Nazi messages?
After the vandalism of the Beth Israel Sinai Congregation, the assumption was that diversity and multiculturalism were the answers. But sometimes they are actually the source of the problem.
Diversity is not an innate good. And the arc of diversity does not necessarily lead to greater tolerance.
Sometimes diversity means the convergence of two bigotries. And the mutual understanding of multiculturalism can mean the commonality of hatreds that allied Nazi Germany and the Muslim Brotherhood, and got Yousef Omar Barasneh and The Base to vandalize a synagogue in Wisconsin.
The immigration system that brought the Barasneh clan from Amman to Wisconsin didn’t make this a more tolerant country, but a more hateful one, and one more likely to vandalize synagogues.
Does America really have such a shortage of Nazis that we needed to import more from Jordan?
The increased diversity didn’t lessen hatred or reduce Neo-Nazism, but gave it a shot in the arm. And it only made America a more dangerous place to be Jewish. Or to be anyone of any background at all.
Diversity is no substitute for goodness, morality, or values. And when diversity is substituted for them, synagogues are vandalized, Kosher markets are shot up in Jersey City, and Jews are punched in Brooklyn.