Al-Qaeda on Capitol Hill
When a report challenging our national security policy of ignoring Islamic supremacism through Islamic law, “Shariah: The Threat to America,” was released during a Capitol Hill press conference on Wednesday (disclosure: I was one of the co-authors of the report), among the chief critics were representatives from the Congressional Muslim Staffers Association (CMSA).
This group, which has been briefing both Democratic and Republican congressional leadership in recent months that there is nothing inherently violent in Islamic law, has a poor history of embracing Islamic radicals and even al Qaeda terrorists.
Immediately after 9/11, the CMSA began holding Friday afternoon prayer services on Capitol Hill. Who did they choose to lead them in their prayers? Al-Qaeda Sheikh Anwar al-Aulaqi, who is currently subject to a kill or capture order issued by President Obama. In fact, video of Aulaqi preaching to the CMSA was included in the 2002 documentary, “Muhammad: Legacy of a Prophet”. That video clip is available to view by the Investigative Project on Terrorism.
Identified in that clip listening to the al-Qaeda cleric are Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR); then-CAIR communications specialist Randall “Ismail” Royer, who is currently serving a 20-year federal prison sentence on terrorism charges; and sitting directly beside Royer is CMSA founder and former President Jameel Alim Johnson.
The invitation to an al-Qaeda cleric who already had been tied to two of the 9/11 hijackers (as reported in the 9/11 Commission Report) to lead CMSA prayers is not the only troubling aspect of Jameel Johnson’s congressional record. In December 2007, I reported on an Islamic conference on Capitol Hill that had been scheduled by Johnson as chief of staff from Rep. Gregory Meeks. The conference was cancelled at the last minute by the House of Representatives Sergeant-at-Arms when it was discovered that the conference scheduled by Johnson was to feature a long list of Islamic radicals, some of whom were known to be on the terror-watch list.
So when the CMSA leadership squeal to the media about anyone offering an alternative view to our failed foreign and domestic policy of submitting to Islamic radicalism, we only need look at the record of CMSA as an organization, and its leadership as individuals, giving radicals and terrorists, such as Anwar Al-Aulaqi, their voice on Capitol Hill.
But the infiltration of our highest government institutions is not limited to the CMSA. In 1991, the first Muslim cleric to deliver opening prayers for Congress was Siraj Wahhaj, who two years later was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing trial, and who also served as a character witness for the defense of terrorist leader Omar Abdel Rahman. Wahhaj has openly called for the destruction of American democracy to be replaced by an Islamic state governed by shariah.
Another regular fixture on Capitol Hill for more than a decade was Abdurahman Alamoudi, friend to Democrats and Republicans alike, and arguably the most prominent Islamic leader in America. As president of the American Muslim Council, he advised U.S. Presidents and was courted by a number of presidential candidates, established the Muslim chaplain program for the Department of Defense, worked with Republican activist Grover Norquist to establish the Islamic Institute lobbying organization, and served on the advisory board for CAIR.
Today, Abdurahman Alamoudi is no longer roaming the halls of Congress or having lunch at the White House. He was arrested in 2003 and is currently serving a 23-year prison sentence for his role in a plot to assassinate Saudi King Abdullah at the request of Libyan intelligence. In July 2005, the U.S. Treasury Department publicly admitted that Alamoudi, while he was the most influential Islamic leader in Washington D.C., was also the top al-Qaeda fundraiser in the US. Treasury officials stated that Alamoudi’s arrest was “a severe blow to al-Qaeda”.
This is precisely the kind of infiltration and willful blindness to the threat to America posed by Muslim Brotherhood front organizations we cited in our report issued this week. Continuing to ignore this threat, as urged by the Congressional Muslim Staffers Association and the Council on American-Islamic Relations, will only lead us further into submission to the advocates of a global Islamic state and the imposition of shariah.