The Obama Administration reportedly held a special workshop this week to help leaders of controversial Muslim groups acquire “direct access” to taxpayer funding for their activities.
The event’s main organizer, the Coordinating Council of Muslim Organizations (CCMO) has long-established ties to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, which fostered many Islamist terror groups. Some of CCMO’s member groups were unindicted co-conspirators in the successfully prosecuted terrorist funding trial against the Holy Land Foundation (HLF). Event organizers said they would dedicate themselves to “cutting through red tape” to provide “direct access” to U.S. taxpayer funding for these terrorist funding-related groups.
An email announcement was sent out August 27 by the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), a group long associated with Muslim Brotherhood and an unindicted co-conspirator in the HLF trial. (The ISNA email is available here from the Big Peace website.)
The ISNA email said:
“The Workshop: So what exactly is this workshop, you may ask. Leaders from Muslim organizations around the nation, particularly social service organizations, are invited to a workshop with representatives from the DOA, Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, Health and Human Services, the White House, Department of Education, the Department of Homeland Security, and more. Twenty-five to thirty Muslim leaders representing 20 Muslim organizations are expected to attend the workshop.
“According to a representative of CCMO, this workshop is designed to clarify how Muslim nonprofits, mosques, Islamic centers, and social service organizations can strengthen their communities through more direct access to opportunities provided to social service agencies at the federal level. ‘It will hopefully help cut through some of the red tape and shine light on the many opportunities for funding, government assistance, and resources that we just don’t know about at the local level,’ said Elsanousi.”
The Obama Administration has not disclosed which CCMO groups attended the “direct access” to taxpayer funding workshop. The Department of Agriculture (DOA) referenced in the email as a sponsoring group did not respond to requests for information on the event.
Christine Brim on the website Big Peace has provided in-depth research into the CCMO and member groups. As Brim notes in her piece, the CCMO website has been scrubbed of a great deal of information on its Muslim Brotherhood ties, yet the Wayback Machine offers prior versions of the group’s website (2004-2008) that include more information on the groups ties to Muslim Brotherhood.
One such member list found on the CCMO’s 2007 website reads like a who’s who of Muslim Brotherhood organizations.
Brim compiles background information on several unindicted co-conspirator groups (information from the Investigative Project on Terrorism) listed among the CCMO member organizations and terror-funding linked organizations advertising on the CCMO website:
• The Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism finance trial, and the source of Friday’s email promoting this CCMO/Department of Agriculture Event.
• The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) , shunned by the FBI, several of its leaders indicted or convicted for terrorism, a possible violator of the Foreign Agents Registration Act, sued for fraud by Muslim, Hispanic and African-American families, named as an unindicted co-conspirator (CAIR fundraiser advertised at the CCMO site) in HLF trial.
• The International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT), the “think tank” of the Muslim Brotherhood according to The Grand Jihad author and former prosecutor Andrew McCarthy. One of the current and longest-serving officers of CCMO is Imam Johari Abdul-Malik, founder of the educational arm of IIIT, the Fairfax Institute and the director of outreach for the Dar-ul Hijrah “Terror” Mosque.
• The Muslim Public Affairs Committee (MPAC), exposed in IPT report for their defense of terrorists and terrorist financers. MPAC advertised here at the CCMO site for an event co-sponsored by Islamic Free Market Institute, the latter described in Paul Sperry’s book Infiltration)
• The Dar al Hijrah Mosque (known as the “Terror Mosque” in Northern Virginia for its links to imprisoned, indicted or wanted terrorists as vividly described by Frank Gaffney), advertised here at the CCMO site.
• The Muslim American Society “Freedom Foundation” (MASFF) run by three-time felon Mahdi Bray (MASFF fundraiser advertised at the CCMO site). The Muslim American Society was originally founded as the U.S. branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. MAS leader Mahdi Bray was elected on September 7, 2003 to the Executive Committee by over 40 CCMO member organizations.
The justice presiding over the HLF trial, U.S. District Judge Jorge A. Solis, was so concerned about the significance of the ongoing threat to America and that so many unindicted co-conspirators remained to be prosecuted, he ordered the documents submitted as evidence be put on the uscourts.gov web site.
For a broad offering of documents submitted in this trial, see the court documentation here or more clearly categorized here by the NEFA Foundation.
When a party is designated as an unindicted co-conspirator in a trial it essentially means that the government could have indicted and prosecuted that party with the same evidence they are using to prosecute the conspirators actually indicted.
The sheer volume of Muslim groups listed as part of the terrorist funding schemes deterred simultaneous prosecutions so they were compiled in an unindicted co-conspirator list.
Two of the groups, ISNA and the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT), unsuccessfully petitioned to have their names removed from the HLF unindicted co-conspirator list. The prosecution blocked the groups’ removal through a filing in federal court in Dallas stating: “During last year’s trial, numerous exhibits were entered into evidence establishing both ISNA’s and NAIT’s intimate relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood, the Palestine Committee, and the defendants in this case,” the prosecutors wrote. “They were intimately connected with the HLF and its assigned task of providing financial support to HAMAS…. That ISNA and NAIT appeared in these documents and share a common history with these defendants is a reflection of the evidence, not any attempt to ‘disparage’ or ‘vilify.’”
Politico’s Josh Gerstein this week reported ISNA and NAIT are again attempting to have their names removed from the HLF list. In a highly controversial move, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals has sealed all of the filings and moved the proceedings behind closed doors.