Ground Zero Imam Obama’s Cairo Speechwriter?
A former PLO terrorist living in the U.S. says the Ground Zero mosque imam in February claimed parts of Obama’s speech delivered in Cairo last year came directly from the Arabic version of the imam’s book. And he offers backup of these claims in two separate interviews of the imam.
Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction.
Walid Shoebat is an admitted former Islamic terrorist once imprisoned by Israel in Jerusalem. Shoebat later came to the United States and was converted to Christianity. More information available in his bio here.
Shoebat told HUMAN EVENTS that in February, Ground Zero mosque imam Feisal Abdul Rauf appeared on Egyptian radio and Shoebat provided an English translation. Parts of the actual interview were conducted in English (and back up the story), and were translated into Arabic on-air. Audio here.
Imam Rauf made claims in this Egyptian interview that chapter six of the Arabic version of his book was used as the basis for President Obama’s Cairo speech. The Arabic version of Rauf’s book was published in Malaysia and entitled, “A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble: Islamic Da’wah from the Heart of America Post-9/11”
The English version of the book sports a different title: “A New Vision for Muslims and the West.”
From the interview transcript provided by Shoebat:
Abdul Rauf: In the book chapter six, I wrote about this blueprint as to what has to be done by the U.S. government, what has to be done by the Jewish community, what has to be done by the Christian community, what has to be done by the Muslim community, what has to be done by educators, what has to be done by the media.
For example, in my book in the Arabic version, page 293, what did I write? What are the things that the United States needs to do. If you examine this chapter you will find that Bush [Obama] speech in Cairo was all taken from this section [section six].
Interviewer: [correcting the Bush slip] Obama.
Rauf: This is an example of our work in a positive way.
Shoebat offered more evidence of Rauf’s claims about the Cairo speech, this time from an interview done by Hani Al-Waziri of Egypt on Febuary 7. Arabic-language version is available here.
In this print interview, Shoebat’s English translation says Rauf expanded on the story of his involvement with Obama’s Cairo speech, saying the Obama speechwriter “transferred entire parts” of his book into the speech.
From Shoebat’s translation:
Abdul Rauf: “The speech was wonderful and wise in his choice of words, the Prime Minister of Malaysia after the speech disclosed to me that it is now easy for any president of a Muslim country to establish good relations with America, and I am not going to hide from you that one of those who participated in writing the speech transferred entire parts of my book ‘A New Vision for Muslims and the West’ which he referred to U.S. interests being compatible with top interests of the Muslim world.”
Shoebat says Rauf never revealed the name of the collaborative speechwriter in the interview.
On his website, Shoebat offers additional translations of Rauf interviews from Arabic-language media, including this from Hadielislam.com.
Rauf responds to the question: What does it mean to separate religion from state in Islam?
Abdul Rauf: What is happening in the Muslim world after the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the establishment of the secular state, that the traditional relationship between state and religious institutions were subject to a separation, which resulted in a reaction that generated Islamic movements wanting to erect an Islamic state in the Islamic world.
For that, we collectively believe that the state that was erected by the prophet in Medina was the ideal model for an Islamic state. The challenge today in the Islamic world is how do we accomplish this in our current era.
The challenge I was referring to is this; how do we call for the principles and standards that the prophet (peace be upon him) used to build the Islamic state in Medina [Arabia]?
An Islamic state can be established in more than just in a single form or mold; it can be established through a kingdom or a democracy. The important issue is to establish the general fundamentals of [Islamic] Shariah that are required to govern. It is known that there are sets of standards that are accepted by [Muslim] scholars to organize the relationships between government and the governed.
Sharia law is the backwards, draconian system of radical Islamist law that denies fundamental human rights to women and all non-Muslims.
More translations of Arabic-language Rauf interviews at the link.