“Ground Zero Mosque” imam; taqiyya
Petition opposing the mosque now has over 76,400 names
Dear Press For,
Andrew McCarthy, who headed up the prosecution in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, was a featured speaker at the recent ACT! for America 2010 National Conference and Legislative Briefing.
McCarthy, author of the excellent book The Grand Jihad, recently weighed in on the controversy surrounding the “Ground Zero Mosque” and its imam—notably, a book written by the imam that has a very different name for Arabic-speaking audiences than for English-speaking audiences. (See commentary below, highlights added.)
A common tactic of “taqiyya” (sharia-sanctioned deception) employed by Islamists is to say one thing to English-speaking audiences and something quite different to Arabic-speaking audiences.
Opposition to the mosque continues to grow—as do the number of people who have signed our petition. If you haven’t yet done so, please click here to add your name today!
NATIONAL REVIEW ONLINE www.nationalreview.com
Andrew C. McCarthy
July 24, 2010 4:00 A.M.
Rauf’s Dawa from the World Trade Center Rubble
Meet the Ground Zero Mosque imam’s Muslim Brotherhood friends.
Feisal Abdul Rauf is the imam behind the “Cordoba Initiative” that is spearheading plans to build a $100 million Islamic center at Ground Zero, the site where nearly 3,000 Americans were killed by jihadists on 9/11. He is also the author of a book called What’s Right with Islam Is What’s Right with America. But the book hasn’t always been called that. It was called quite something else for non-English-speaking audiences. In Malaysia, it was published as A Call to Prayer from the World Trade Center Rubble: Islamic Dawa in the Heart of America Post-9/11.
Now it emerges that a “special, non-commercial edition” of this book was later produced, with Feisal’s cooperation, by two American tentacles of the Muslim Brotherhood: the Islamic Society of North America and the International Institute of Islamic Thought. The book’s copyright page tells the tale:
Both ISNA and IIIT have been up to their necks in the promotion of Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood’s ruthless Palestinian branch, which is pledged by charter to the destruction of Israel. In fact, both ISNA and IIIT were cited by the Justice Department as unindicted co-conspirators in a crucial terrorism-financing case involving the channeling of tens of millions of dollars to Hamas through an outfit called the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development. For the last 15 years, Hamas has been a designated terrorist organization under U.S. law.
Dawa, whether done from the rubble of the World Trade Center or elsewhere, is the missionary work by which Islam is spread. As explained in my recent book, The Grand Jihad, dawa is proselytism, but not involving only spiritual elements — for Islam is not merely a religion, and spiritual elements are just a small part of its doctrine. In truth, Islam is a comprehensive political, social, and economic system with its own authoritarian legal framework, sharia, which aspires to govern all aspects of life.
This framework rejects core tenets of American constitutional republicanism: for example, individual liberty, freedom of conscience, freedom to govern ourselves irrespective of any theocratic code, equality of men and women, equality of Muslims and non-Muslims, and economic liberty, including the uses of private property (in Islam, owners hold property only as a custodians for the umma, the universal Muslim nation, and are beholden to the Islamic state regarding its use). Sharia prohibits the preaching of creeds other than Islam, the renunciation of Islam, any actions that divide the umma, and homosexuality. Its penalties are draconian, including savagely executed death sentences for apostates, homosexuals, and adulterers.
The purpose of dawa, like the purpose of jihad, is to implement, spread, and defend sharia. Scholar Robert Spencer incisively refers to dawa practices as “stealth jihad,” the advancement of the sharia agenda through means other than violence and agents other than terrorists. These include extortion, cultivation of sympathizers in the media and the universities, exploitation of our legal system and tradition of religious liberty, infiltration of our political system, and fundraising. This is why Yusuf Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood and the world’s most influential Islamic cleric, boldly promises that Islam will “conquer America” and “conquer Europe” through dawa.
In considering Imam Rauf and his Ground Zero project, Qaradawi and the Muslim Brotherhood are extremely important. Like most Muslims, Rauf regards Qaradawi as a guide, and referred to him in 2001 as “the most well-known legal authority in the whole Muslim world today.” And indeed he is: a prominent, Qatar-based scholar whose weekly Al Jazeera program on the subject of sharia is viewed by millions and whose cyber-venture, Islam Online, is accessed by millions more, including Muslims in the United States. Not surprisingly, his rabble-rousing was a prime cause of the deadly global rioting by Muslims when an obscure Danish newspaper published cartoon depictions of Mohammed.
Qaradawi regards the United States as the enemy of Islam. He has urged that Muslims “fight the American military if we can, and if we cannot, we should fight the U.S. economically and politically.” In 2004, he issued a fatwa (an edict based on sharia) calling for Muslims to kill Americans in Iraq. A leading champion of Hamas, he has issued similar approvals of suicide bombings in Israel. Moreover, as recounted in Matthew Levitt’s history of Hamas, Qaradawi has decreed that Muslims must donate money to “support Palestinians fighting occupation. . . . If we can’t carry out acts of jihad ourselves, we at least should support and prop up the mujahideen [i.e., Islamic raiders or warriors] financially and morally.”
Qaradawi’s support for Hamas is only natural. Since that organization’s 1987 founding, it has been the top Muslim Brotherhood priority to underwrite Hamas’s jihadist onslaught against the Jewish state. Toward that end, the Muslim Brotherhood mobilized the Islamist infrastructure in the United States.
The original building block of that infrastructure was the Muslim Students Association (MSA), established in the early Sixties to groom young Muslims in the Brotherhood’s ideology — promoting sharia, Islamic supremacism, and a worldwide caliphate. As Andrew Bostom elaborated in a New York Post op-ed on Friday, Imam Rauf, too, is steeped in this ideology.
In 1981, after two decades of churning out activists from its North American chapters (which now number over 600), the Brotherhood merged the MSA into ISNA. In its own words, ISNA was conceived as an umbrella organization “to advance the cause of Islam and service Muslims in North America so as to enable them to adopt Islam as a complete way of life.” That same year, the Brotherhood created IIIT as a Washington-area Islamic think tank dedicated to what it describes as “the Islamicization of knowledge.”
After Hamas was created, the top Brotherhood operative in the United States, Mousa Abu Marzook — who actually ran Hamas from his Virginia home for several years in the early Nineties — founded the Islamic Association for Palestine to boost Hamas’s support. One of his co-founders was Sami al-Arian, then a student and Muslim Brotherhood member, later a top U.S. operative of the terrorist organization Palestinian Islamic Jihad, which he helped guide from his perch as a professor at the University of South Florida. In 2006, al-Arian was convicted on terrorism charges.
Marzook and other Brotherhood figures established the Occupied Land Fund, eventually renamed the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), to be Hamas’s American fundraising arm. The HLF was headquartered in ISNA’s Indiana office. As the Justice Department explained in a memorandum submitted in the HLF case:
Ultimately, the HLF raised over $36 million for Hamas. At the height of the intifada, this was not about the social-welfare activities Hamas touts to camouflage its barbarism. As the journalist Stephen Schwartz of the Center for Islamic Pluralism has observed, “Ordinary Americans should be shocked and outraged to learn that Hamas was running its terror campaign from a sanctuary in the U.S.” In addition, prosecutors showed that ISNA was central to a 1993 meeting of top Brotherhood operatives, who were wiretapped “discussing using ISNA as an official cover for their activities.”
Meantime, in 1992, the IIIT contributed $50,000 to underwrite an al-Arian venture, the World & Islam Studies Enterprise (WISE), a front for Palestinian Islamic Jihad that ostensibly employed several members of the PIJ governing board. IIIT has been under federal investigation since 2002 — and after his terrorism conviction, al-Arian went into contempt of court rather than honor a grand-jury subpoena in the probe.
In 1991, the Muslim Brotherhood’s American leadership prepared an internal memorandum for the organization’s global leadership in Egypt. It was written principally by Mohamed Akram, a close associate of Sheikh Qaradawi. As Akram put it, the Brotherhood
The memorandum included a list described by Akram as “our organizations and the organizations of our friends,” working together to implement this sabotage strategy. Prominently included in that list were ISNA and IIIT.
The Ground Zero project to erect a monument to sharia overlooking the crater where the World Trade Center once stood, and where thousands were slaughtered, is not a test of America’s commitment to religious liberty. America already has thousands of mosques and Islamic centers, including scores in the New York area — though Islam does not allow non-Muslims even to enter its crown-jewel cities of Mecca and Medina, much less to build churches or synagogues.
The Ground Zero project is a test of America’s resolve to face down a civilizational jihad that aims, in the words of its leaders, to destroy us from within.
— Andrew C. McCarthy, a senior fellow at the National Review Institute, is the author, most recently, of The Grand Jihad: How Islam and the Left Sabotage America.
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Two UCLA economists say they have figured out why the Great Depression dragged on for almost 15 years, and they blame a suspect previously thought to be beyond reproach: President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
After scrutinizing Roosevelt's record for four years, Harold L. Cole and Lee E. Ohanian conclude in a new study that New Deal policies signed into law 71 years ago thwarted economic recovery for seven long years.
"Why the Great Depression lasted so long has always been a great mystery, and because we never really knew the reason, we have always worried whether we would have another 10- to 15-year economic slump," said Ohanian, vice chair of UCLA's Department of Economics. "We found that a relapse isn't likely unless lawmakers gum up a recovery with ill-conceived stimulus policies."
In an article in the August issue of the Journal of Political Economy, Ohanian and Cole blame specific anti-competition and pro-labor measures that Roosevelt promoted and signed into law June 16, 1933.
"President Roosevelt believed that excessive competition was responsible for the Depression by reducing prices and wages, and by extension reducing employment and demand for goods and services," said Cole, also a UCLA professor of economics. "So he came up with a recovery package that would be unimaginable today, allowing businesses in every industry to collude without the threat of antitrust prosecution and workers to demand salaries about 25 percent above where they ought to have been, given market forces. The economy was poised for a beautiful recovery, but that recovery was stalled by these misguided policies."
Using data collected in 1929 by the Conference Board and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Cole and Ohanian were able to establish average wages and prices across a range of industries just prior to the Depression. By adjusting for annual increases in productivity, they were able to use the 1929 benchmark to figure out what prices and wages would have been during every year of the Depression had Roosevelt's policies not gone into effect. They then compared those figures with actual prices and wages as reflected in the Conference Board data.
In the three years following the implementation of Roosevelt's policies, wages in 11 key industries averaged 25 percent higher than they otherwise would have done, the economists calculate. But unemployment was also 25 percent higher than it should have been, given gains in productivity.
Meanwhile, prices across 19 industries averaged 23 percent above where they should have been, given the state of the economy. With goods and services that much harder for consumers to afford, demand stalled and the gross national product floundered at 27 percent below where it otherwise might have been.
"High wages and high prices in an economic slump run contrary to everything we know about market forces in economic downturns," Ohanian said. "As we've seen in the past several years, salaries and prices fall when unemployment is high. By artificially inflating both, the New Deal policies short-circuited the market's self-correcting forces."
The policies were contained in the National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA), which exempted industries from antitrust prosecution if they agreed to enter into collective bargaining agreements that significantly raised wages. Because protection from antitrust prosecution all but ensured higher prices for goods and services, a wide range of industries took the bait, Cole and Ohanian found. By 1934 more than 500 industries, which accounted for nearly 80 percent of private, non-agricultural employment, had entered into the collective bargaining agreements called for under NIRA.
Cole and Ohanian calculate that NIRA and its aftermath account for 60 percent of the weak recovery. Without the policies, they contend that the Depression would have ended in 1936 instead of the year when they believe the slump actually ended: 1943.
Roosevelt's role in lifting the nation out of the Great Depression has been so revered that Time magazine readers cited it in 1999 when naming him the 20th century's second-most influential figure.
"This is exciting and valuable research," said Robert E. Lucas Jr., the 1995 Nobel Laureate in economics, and the John Dewey Distinguished Service Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago. "The prevention and cure of depressions is a central mission of macroeconomics, and if we can't understand what happened in the 1930s, how can we be sure it won't happen again?"
NIRA's role in prolonging the Depression has not been more closely scrutinized because the Supreme Court declared the act unconstitutional within two years of its passage.
"Historians have assumed that the policies didn't have an impact because they were too short-lived, but the proof is in the pudding," Ohanian said. "We show that they really did artificially inflate wages and prices."
Even after being deemed unconstitutional, Roosevelt's anti-competition policies persisted — albeit under a different guise, the scholars found. Ohanian and Cole painstakingly documented the extent to which the Roosevelt administration looked the other way as industries once protected by NIRA continued to engage in price-fixing practices for four more years.
The number of antitrust cases brought by the Department of Justice fell from an average of 12.5 cases per year during the 1920s to an average of 6.5 cases per year from 1935 to 1938, the scholars found. Collusion had become so widespread that one Department of Interior official complained of receiving identical bids from a protected industry (steel) on 257 different occasions between mid-1935 and mid-1936. The bids were not only identical but also 50 percent higher than foreign steel prices. Without competition, wholesale prices remained inflated, averaging 14 percent higher than they would have been without the troublesome practices, the UCLA economists calculate.
NIRA's labor provisions, meanwhile, were strengthened in the National Relations Act, signed into law in 1935. As union membership doubled, so did labor's bargaining power, rising from 14 million strike days in 1936 to about 28 million in 1937. By 1939 wages in protected industries remained 24 percent to 33 percent above where they should have been, based on 1929 figures, Cole and Ohanian calculate. Unemployment persisted. By 1939 the U.S. unemployment rate was 17.2 percent, down somewhat from its 1933 peak of 24.9 percent but still remarkably high. By comparison, in May 2003, the unemployment rate of 6.1 percent was the highest in nine years.
Recovery came only after the Department of Justice dramatically stepped enforcement of antitrust cases nearly four-fold and organized labor suffered a string of setbacks, the economists found.
"The fact that the Depression dragged on for years convinced generations of economists and policy-makers that capitalism could not be trusted to recover from depressions and that significant government intervention was required to achieve good outcomes," Cole said. "Ironically, our work shows that the recovery would have been very rapid had the government not intervened."