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Home Front: WoT
4th person sentenced in plot to bomb US Muslim community
[IsraelTimes] Vincent Vetromile gets 7 years in jail, a month after his 3 accomplices in planned terror attack on New York community of Islamberg got 4-12 years.

The last of four young men who US authorities say planned to use homemade explosives against an upstate New York Moslem community has been sentenced to seven years in prison.

Twenty-year-old Vincent Vetromile appeared Tuesday in Monroe County Court. He had pleaded guilty in June to a weapons charge.

Vetromile, 20-year-old Brian Colaneri, 19-year-old Andrew Crysel and a 16-year-old were accused of planning an attack on Islamberg, a community of about 200 people in Delaware County.

Colaneri and Crysel were sentenced last month to four to 12 years in prison after pleading guilty to terrorism conspiracy. The youngest defendant, who’s now 17, was sentenced to seven years.

Investigators said the Rochester-area residents had access to 23 rifles and shotguns and three homemade explosives when they were arrested in January.

It was a lunchroom comment by one of the students during school that launched the investigation.

"He looks like the next school shooter, doesn’t he?" the student allegedly said while showing students a picture of another boy on his phone, according to Phelan.

A student who heard the comment "did what we teach kids to do and told somebody," the chief said.

School security and Greece police interviewed both students and others and eventually uncovered their plot. The timing of the attack was unknown.

The rural community in Delaware County is operated by The Moslems of America, an American Moslem organization based in the US, which runs 21 others in North America. It was settled by followers of Pak holy man Sheikh Mubarik Gilani.
...more formally Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani, who served as the imam of the Yasin Masjid in Brooklyn before becoming too important for such petty considerations...
The mostly African-American settlers first came to the area in the 1980s to escape crime and crowding in New York City.
...Moslems of America (MOA), also known in English as Muslims of the Americas when they are talking about their Canadian and Caribbean ventures, and formally as The Muslims of America, Inc. (TMOA). The estimated 3,000 member group is one of the American front groups of Jamaat ul-Fuqra or Jamaat al-Fuqra, the other being Quranic Open University. Jamaat ul-Fuqra absorbed the Black Muslim street gang known as Dar al-Islam (DAR), was listed as a terror organization by the State Department in 1999, and is banned in Pakistan. The Wikipedia page is quite interesting...
Police and analysts have dismissed accusations that the 60-acre community is a terrorist training ground, but the claims have persisted for decades.
Islamberg: 2019-01-23 3 charged with planned explosive attack on NY Muslim community
Islamberg: 2017-07-09 Clarion: Jihadi Cult Associate Arrested in NY With Firearms Stockpile
Islamberg: 2016-03-31 Do Radicalized Islamic Communities Exist in the U.S.?
Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani: 2019-01-23 3 charged with planned explosive attack on NY Muslim community
Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani: 2014-02-19 FBI Docs: Alleged Terrorist Training Compound Discovered in Rural Texas
Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani: 2010-03-15 More Crazy Talk from ‘Muslims of the Americas'

-Lurid Crime Tales-
The Bombshell In The Mueller Report Is Russia's Social Media Campaign
[The Federalist] It’s over. The Mueller Report is upon us and it says what Attorney General William Barr said it would say. Nobody in the Trump campaign‐in fact, no American citizen at all‐colluded or conspired with the Russian government to impact the 2016 election. This is obviously good news for the country and a vindication for the president who has protested his innocence quite vociferously from the beginning.

But the findings of the report were not unalloyed good news. In one area, in particular, Mueller found deeply troubling activities from the Russians. The section on Russia’s informational campaign using social media to influence the election is damning and shocking. Much of the information it presents was already known, but seen summarized by Mueller, what they achieved was astounding.

Conducted by the Internet Research Agency (IRA), a Russian government-backed social media troll farm, the extent and reach of the operations is astounding. Collectively, the report says, "The IRA’s social media accounts reached 10s of millions of US persons." It also controlled Facebook groups such as "United Muslims of America," that had 300,000 followers when it was shut down in 2017.

In total the report says that at least 29 million and perhaps as many as 126 million people were reached by the propaganda campaigns. The danger of this is not merely that the propaganda might help determine the outcome of viewers’ voting decisions. What is far worse is that, on that scale, the Russians can make fringe, divisive positions and rhetoric appear to Americans to be, if not mainstream, at least vastly more prominent than they really are.

Even the news media was not immune to these efforts. The report outlines that on multiple occasions "U.S. media outlets also quoted tweets from IRA-controlled accounts and attributed them to the reactions of real U.S. persons." It is very possible, if not likely that the real target of the IRA was not to sway an election, but rather to sow discord and distrust among Americans. And it looks like the news media was an unwitting accomplice.

Home Front: WoT
3 charged with planned explosive attack on NY Muslim community
[IsraelTimes] Three men are charged with plotting to attack an upstate New York Moslem community with explosives.

WHEC reports that three Rochester-area men are accused of plotting to attack Islamberg,
...that would be the Moslems of America (MOA), also known in English as Muslims of the Americas when they are talking about their Canadian and Caribbean ventures, and formally as The Muslims of America, Inc. (TMOA). The estimated 3,000 member group, mainly African-Americans, boasts 22 communities across the U.S., and is one of the American front groups of Jamaat ul-Fuqra or Jamaat al-Fuqra, the other being Quranic Open University. Jamaat ul-Fuqra was listed as a terror organization by the State Department in 1999 and is banned in Pakistan. The Wikipedia page is quite interesting...
a rural Moslem enclave west of the Catskills.

Police in the Rochester suburb of Greece this weekend locked away
Keep yer hands where we can see 'em, if yez please!
20-year-old Brian Colaneri, 18-year-old Andrew Crysel and 19-year-old Vincent Vetromile. Each was charged with weapons possession and conspiracy.

Court papers say they had multiple, cylinder-shaped bombs and mason jars wrapped in duct tape.

Followers of a Pak holy man
...that would be Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani, who served as the imam of the Yasin Masjid in Brooklyn before becoming too important for such petty considerations...
settled Islamberg in the 1980s to flee crime in New York City.
...and to have a series of miniature, paramilitary caliphates in which to train themselves and their children for jhad at home and abroad.

The Daily Mail has photos of the miscreants, who do not look like the brightest bulbs in the box, adding:
Police have recovered 23 firearms and three improvised explosive devices so far.

Home Front: WoT
Islamic terror training in Colorado predates 911 (Loose ends)
[VladTepesBlog] Colorado news report on Fuqra: Terror in the Rocky Mountains.
...Fuqra, or Muslims of America (MOA), also known in English as Muslims of the Americas when they are talking about their Canadian and Caribbean ventures, and formally as The Muslims of America, Inc. (TMOA). The estimated 3,000 member group, mainly African-Americans, claimed 22 communities following the teachings of Pakistani Sufi cleric Mubarik Ali Shah Gilani across the U.S. in 2016, and is one of the American front groups of Jamaat ul-Fuqra or Jamaat al-Fuqra, the other being Quranic Open University. Jamaat ul-Fuqra was listed as a terror organization by the State Department in 1999 and is banned in Pakistan. They've been active in the U.S. for over thirty years. The Wikipedia page is quite interesting...

Home Front: WoT
Clarion: Jihadi Cult Associate Arrested in NY With Firearms Stockpile
From July 3rd, but still of interest, I think. Muslims of America have appeared regularly in our pages since 2005.
[Breitbart] A long-time associate of a U.S.-based Islamist terrorist organization, Moslems of America (MOA),
... also known in English as Muslims of the Americas when they are talking about their Canadian and Caribbean ventures, and formally as The Muslims of America, Inc. (TMOA). The estimated 3,000 member group, mainly African-Americans, boasted 22 communities across the U.S. last year, and is one of the American front groups of Jamaat ul-Fuqra or Jamaat al-Fuqra, the other being Quranic Open University. Jamaat ul-Fuqra was listed as a terror organization by the State Department in 1999 and is banned in Pakistan. The Wikipedia page is quite interesting...
has been tossed in the slammer
Drop the heater, Studs, or you're hist'try!
in Johnson City, NY. Authorities discovered that he had a large cache of weapons inside a storage locker. A source inside MOA says the weapons were intended for the group’s "Islamberg" headquarters in Hancock, NY.

The suspect, 64-year old Ramadan Abdullah, was previously arrested in 1977 when he and another man tried to rob a candy store in Brooklyn and someone was murdered in the process. When police searched his home, they found enough material to build 50 bombs. In the end, the charges against Abdullah were strangely reduced (see below).

On May 31, Abdullah was arrested after trying to steal four boxes of ammunition from a local Gander Mountain store.
"I just can't help m'self, y'r honor. The doc said I'm a kleptomaniac."
When police questioned him about the purpose of the ammo, his answers made them suspicious, and they obtained a search warrant for a storage locker he was renting in the town of Union.

During that search, police found a large assortment of weaponry including:

  • 8 assault weapons

  • 4 loaded handguns

  • 1 loaded shotgun

  • 2 rifles

  • 64 high-capacity ammunition feeding devices

  • flak jackets

  • 1,000s of rounds of ammunition, including .50-caliber armor-piercing rounds
Searches of other residences linked to Abdullah turned up another loaded handgun, more high-capacity ammunition feeding devices and ammunition, including .38-caliber rounds.

New York State Police Major Jim Barnes would not say whether Abdullah was connected to terrorist groups or any organizations, but confirmed that police believe Abdullah had made trips overseas.
Oh? Was Pakistan or Afghanistan one of his destinations, or perhaps somewhere even more interesting?
"There’s no indications there was a plan in place to commit an act of violence. However,
death is not the end. There remains the litigation over the estate...
it begs the question, what was he doing with all this and what were his intentions down the road?" said New York State Police Maj. Jim Barnes.
It does, indeed.
Abdullah is currently being held in the Broome County Jail without bail.

Home Front: WoT
A tranquil Muslim hamlet in the Catskills - until the attack plot
[Rooters] Just beyond the gated entrance to the tiny Catskills community of Holy Islamberg, population 200, cows graze and ducks glide on a tranquil pond. Modest houses of wood and cinder block sit along the hamlet's single thoroughfare, a rutted dirt road without traffic signs.

Islamberg sits about 150 miles northwest of New York City, but the small enclave of Muslim families living on shared land feels a world away from city life, which is what its founders intended 30 years ago, when they established the hamlet on 70 acres of pasture land and dense woods in upstate New York.

Last month, however, the community's serenity was disrupted by news that a Tennessee man had pleaded guilty to charges of plotting an attack on Islamberg and its residents.

Formed by a group of African-American Muslims from New York City, the community follows the teachings of Pakistani Sufi cleric Mubarik Ali Shah Gilani, who during the 1980s urged his American acolytes to leave metropolitan areas and establish rural communities centered on religious life.
Not exactly the peaceful family monastery/commune that sentence suggests. We've been following them for a decade. The FBI has for even longer, though the State Department, last I saw, has not declared the umbrella organization a foreign terror organization. Key names associated with the Islambergs (there are about twenty, as I recall) are Muslims of America and Jamaat ul Fuqra. They train actively for jihad, and regularly send off members to participate.
Today, Islamberg is one of about a dozen Muslim enclaves formed in accordance with the cleric's ideas. It also serves as home to Muslims of America, a Gilani-founded organization.

"We're living the American dream," said Faruq Baqi, 39, who moved to Islamberg with his family as a child, and now works in telecommunications at a nearby hospital.

An array of far-right organizations see things very differently. Dozens of internet postings and a documentary film have characterized the community as a training camp for terrorists and its residents as Islamist warriors.
A google search of Islamberg "Mubarik Ali Shah Gilani", using the terms in this Reuters article, yields illuminating results, including a clearly sanitized Wikipedia entry for the gentle cleric, and a not yet sanitized linked entry for Jamaat ul -Fuqra. The bylined Reuters journalist, however, dismisses all concerns. One wonders why.
One blog on the Christian Action Network, for example, described the settlement as "America's first Islamic government," and warned that children are being raised to fight a holy war, that girls are denied an education and that rule breakers "are often tied to trees and whipped for disobeying."

Robert Doggart, a one-time congressional candidate from Tennessee, embraced that sort of overheated rhetoric as he plotted his attack on the Muslim enclave.

Home Front: WoT
Muslim, Christian groups clash in NY libel suit
Muslim and Christian groups are squaring off in a New York federal court in a defamation lawsuit over a book on terrorism.

Muslims of America Inc. says the Christian Action Network is telling deliberate and damaging lies by alleging that terrorist training is happening in the Muslim group's U.S. enclaves. The Christian group refuses to back down, challenging the Muslims to prove them wrong in an upstate New York court.

The Muslim group has a community outside Binghamton, N.Y., and others around the U.S. Its attorney Tahirah Amatul-Wadud (tuh-HEER'-ruh ah-mah-TOOL' wha-DOOD') says the group is seeking retractions and $18 million in damages. It also wants to halt publication of network founder Martin Mawyer's book "Twilight in America: the Untold Story of Terrorist Training Camps in America."

The Christian group's attorney Michael Grygiel says they'll "vigorously defend" their right to free speech.

Home Front: Culture Wars
An Islamic college in Berkeley?
The proposed Zaytuna College would be a first: a four-year, accredited, Islamic college in the United States. "Part of the process of indigenizing Islam in America is for the community to begin to develop its own leadership from inside the country, develop its own scholars," said Hatem Bazian, chair of the management board for Zaytuna College and a senior lecturer of Near Eastern studies at the University of California at Berkeley.

"There is a growing need in the Muslim community to provide a variety of trained specialists to fulfill a growing and diverse community infrastructure and institutional framework," Bazian said -- to work as imams, as chaplains, or within the growing network of Islamic non-profit organizations. Currently, Bazian said, American students who seek a high-level Islamic education must study in the Muslim world.

The proposed college would be built out of an existing institute with significant influence in the Islamic community. The Zaytuna Institute and Academy, an Islamic educational institute founded in 1996, is transitioning into Zaytuna College; the Berkeley-based institute already offers classes, but not for university credit. Those behind the transition from institute to college plan to seek accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges – a daunting and multi-year process, they realize.

“We know what is required. We know how difficult it is in terms of maintaining solvency and making sure that the management structure is strong. Those are things that WASC is looking for – making sure that the caliber of the education is at the level it should be, making sure that the organization is solvent and will continue to be around years from now," said Farid Senzai, a member of Zaytuna’s management board, director of research at the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding and an assistant professor of political science at Santa Clara University. “Many other colleges started out very small and we anticipate that we will start very small and slowly transition to a much bigger college over time,” said Senzai.

The planned Zaytuna College could start offering classes in either fall 2010 or 2011 (a final decision on a launch date has not yet been made). An estimated $2.5 to $4 million is needed to cover the costs of starting up -- a manageable amount, said Bazian, who also cited a need to raise another $10 to $20 million to start an endowment. The college would launch in rented space in Berkeley, although officials are identifying potential permanent locations in the Bay Area.

In terms of curriculum, the plan is to start with just two majors, in Arabic language and Islamic law and theology. All students would be required to take an intensive summer Arabic course, or otherwise demonstrate proficiency, prior to their freshman fall. Students would also take anywhere from 54 to 70 credits in general education.

“One thing that will be very unique about it is having a belief or being a person of faith is going to be celebrated,” said Senzai. “There’s nothing wrong with having a spiritual component in the educational process. So very much in line with many of the Jesuit schools that exist in the United States, we’re seen as the Muslim version of Georgetown University, for instance.” Bazian softened the analogy a bit. As for Georgetown -- "That's setting the target way too high. I will be satisfied with [being akin to] a functioning community college that's not running in the red!" Still, he continued, "The mission of the institution has a flag planted in the ethical values of Islam and its long, varied and diverse tradition that has been transmitted to us through generations."

The college would be open to interested individuals of all faiths (not only Muslims) and would be co-ed. Senzai is co-editor of the 2009 book, Educating the Muslims of America (Oxford University Press), which offers this description of the Zaytuna Institute’s mosque, or masjid: “The Zaytuna masjid does have a partition, but unlike partitions in most mosques it is also pleasing to the eye…. Because the masjid is used as a classroom space as well, there is a stage immediately in front of the end of the partition that enables both men and women to see the teacher equally, the partition dividing the room in half… The raison d’être for the partition in this structure seems to be so male students can focus during class on the sacred texts rather than the sisters while still allowing female students to interact with their male instructors.”

That description refers to the mosque (which doubles as classroom space) in the Zaytuna Institute, and not to the proposed college or its classrooms. When asked about this topic, Bazian said there would be no barriers separating the genders at Zaytuna College but that men and women typically would sit on opposite sides of a classroom because of cultural norms.

Bazian said he doesn't expect that the Islamic character of the college will present any obstacle in the accreditation process, pointing out that Zaytuna would follow in a long tradition of faith-based institutions. Attaining accreditation will be a challenge, but not for that reason, he said. "I'm confident that Zaytuna will be welcomed not only by WASC but also by other institutions that see the value of developing an American Muslim institution that is intended to develop a unique program to fit the needs of a growing Muslim population -- in conversation with other academic institutions both in California and around the country," he said.

"This is not to say that people of ill will, outside or in the general arena, will not take issue with this. I think this is part of the period that we are in, that Islam is under the microscope... and some individuals of ill will will find the opportunity to express their ill will, but we will not be distracted by some who desire to make a career out of criticism. We'd rather build."

Home Front: WoT
Muslim Groups Consider Breaking FBI Ties Over Irvine Case
Citing the highly publicized case involving an undercover informant who spied on an Irvine mosque, a coalition of U.S. Muslim organizations has announced it may suspend relations with the FBI.

"Muslim communities throughout the United States have made significant advances in promoting and contributing to a fair, free and pluralistic society," reads the statement from the American Muslim Taskforce on Civil Rights and Elections (AMT). "Through civil rights advocacy, civic and political engagement, and the promotion of dialogue with interfaith leaders and law enforcement agencies, Muslim Americans continue to be a positive and stabilizing force in keeping our nation safe and secure from acts of violence and foreign threats."

Muslim Americans are productive, law-abiding citizens who have naturally been allied with law enforcement, reads the AMT statement, but "recent incidents targeting American Muslims lead us to consider suspending ongoing outreach efforts with the FBI."

"In California, the FBI sent a convicted criminal to pose as an agent provocateur in several of that state's mosques. An FBI agent allegedly told one of the mosque attendees that the agency would make his life a 'living hell' if he did not become an informant."

The mosque attendee is 34-year-old Afghan native Ahmad Niazi, who was arrested at his Tustin home on Feb. 20 on five fraud and perjury counts. At his Feb. 24 bail hearing, Niazi was alleged to have talked in an unnamed informant's e-mails and recordings of initiating jihad, getting weapons, blowing up buildings, sending money overseas to the Afghan mujahedin and even calling Osama bin Laden "an angel." At the hearing, Irvine fitness instructor Craig Monteilh filed court documents identifying himself as the informant.

Monteilh had arrived at the Islamic Center of Irvine in 2006 and befriended members, including Niazi, who informed mosque leaders that Monteilh was talking about jihad or holy war. The leaders turned to the Anaheim office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), which contacted the FBI while the mosque got a restaining order against Monteilh. At CAIR's behest, an FBI official later came to the Irvine mosque to reassure members the government was not spying on them.

The coalition includes CAIR as a signatory of the statement that bemoans the FBI for suspending contact with CAIR earlier this year "pending the resolution of unspecified 'issues.'" A 15-year investigation by the FBI into Hamas fundraisers resulted in convictions in December at a trial where CAIR was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator. The bureau announced the following month it was severing its once-close ties with CAIR.

In response, the Islamic Shura Council of Southern California, an umbrella organization of many Muslim groups, suspended outreach to the FBI in February. The coalition statement called the FBI's shunning of CAIR and other Muslim groups and disseminations of false accusations "McCarthy-era tactics" that "are detrimental to a free society." The coalition also expressed fears that "counter-intelligence programs are quelling lawful dissent," and that the FBI's actions could "negatively impact U.S. interests" given President Obama's "initiative of dialogue with the Muslim world."

Statement signatories also include: Islamic Educational Center of Orange County; American Muslim Alliance; American Muslims for Palestine; Islamic Circle of North America; Muslim Alliance in North America; Muslim American Society-Freedom Foundation; Muslim Student Association-National; Muslim Ummah of North America; and United Muslims of America.

Fifth Column
Terrorist Camps in America
By Jamie Glazov

Frontpage Interview’s guest today is Ryan Mauro, the founder of WorldThreats.com. He is currently a national security researcher for the Christian Action Network and a researcher for the Reform Party of Syria. A frequent guest on radio and TV programs, he is the author of Death to America: The Unreported Battle of Iraq. He can be contacted at TDCAnalyst@aol.com.

FP: Ryan Mauro, welcome to Frontpage Interview.

Mauro: Thank you Jamie.

FP: We’re here today to discuss “Homegrown Jihad: Terrorist Camps Around U.S.,” the new documentary being released by the Christian Action Network. Tell us about it.

Mauro: This documentary is premiering at Washington D.C.’s Landmark Theater on February 11, at 7:30 PM. It is free to attend and I strongly encourage everyone in the area to come, and those out of the area to go to ChristianAction.org and order a copy. The Christian Action Network (CAN) is a non-profit organization and I personally will not see a penny from the sales. This documentary is simply too important; the threat too severe; and the public too unaware for me to not promote this is any way possible and call myself a patriotic American.

“Homegrown Jihad” documents the networks of Jamaat ul-Fuqra, a terrorist group run by a radical Muslim leader in Lahore, Pakistan named Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani, an individual who, as I said in my last interview, does us the favor of not hiding his true colors. While he casts himself as a peace-loving Muslim, his actions and the actions of his network are anything but. In the documentary, we show a secret videotape, one which Gilani strictly instructs his followers to keep hidden, where he personally engages in terrorist training, from killing guards to hijacking vehicles to setting off explosives. On this tape, he says that those seeking to “join one of the most advanced training courses in Islamic military warfare” can contact any of his “Muslims of America” compounds in the United States, almost all of which still operate today.

“Muslims of America” is a group set up by Gilani to act as a thinly-veiled front for Jamaat ul-Fuqra. There are at least 35 “Muslims of America” compounds in the U.S. alone, along with at least 3,000 members, many of which have criminal backgrounds. The websites of these compounds do not hide the fact that they are devoted to, and are led by, Sheikh Gilani. The compound at Red House, Virginia, even has a street named after him. With Gilani saying things like “We are fighting to destroy the enemy. We are dealing with evil at its roots and its roots are in America”, “Jews are an example of human Satans,” and “Act like you are a friend, then kill him”, we need to question the motives and beliefs of those who live in and are educated in his communities and take action to stop them from acting upon these beliefs.

Members of this group continue to be arrested and convicted for involvement in terrorism and all sorts of criminal activity. Members are also required to make a pledge: “I shall always hear and obey, and whenever given the command, I shall readily fight for Allah’s sake.” They continue to recruit members, build and expand compounds, and operate in isolation, away from the eyes of the public.

Perhaps the most riveting part of the documentary is when CAN travels to several of these compounds in an attempt to get members of the group to view the terrorist training videotape and get a reaction. Before joining CAN, I personally visited the 70-acre large headquarters in Hancock, New York. Although the residents were friendly, almost immediately after greeting the man who I spoke to, he said with a disarming smile, “Are you Jewish? It’s clear that the anti-Semitism and overall beliefs of Sheikh Gilani are present at these compounds.

FP: What sort of terrorism has Jamaat ul-Fuqra been involved in?

Mauro: Members of the group have carried out at least 17 firebombings and 10 assassinations, including stabbing a moderate Muslim cleric to death, bombing a power station, killing police officers, and attacks on Hindus. In 1991, five members were involved in a plot to bomb a Hindu temple and an Indian-owned cinema near Toronto; in 1993, one member was involved in the World Trade Center bombing; and five were involved in the massive “Day of Terror” plot aimed at bombing various buildings in New York in 1993.

There have also been various suspected links between Jamaat ul-Fuqra members and terrorist plots since then. It was reported that the Beltway Snipers of 2002 took shelter in one of Gilani’s compounds in Georgia, and it was also reported that the Pakistani government thought that Shiekh Gilani may have funded a plot in 2006 to hijack airliners leaving Great Britain on the way to the U.S. so they could be blown up in mid-air using funds supposedly raised to help earthquake victims in Kashmir.

Let us not also forget that Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was kidnapped on the way to meeting with Sheikh Gilani in Pakistan. Although the government has not charged Gilani with involvement in the murder, Gilani’s website says that Pearl was part of an assassination team sent to kill him, and Gilani maintains that Pearl is still alive, despite the fact that his beheading was videotaped. That’s just one of the various conspiracy theories Gilani espouses, from 9/11 and Pearl Harbor conspiracy theories, to New World Order and Illuminati forces aimed at destroying him and controlling the world, to secret Zionist control of the government media.
Rest at link

Fifth Column
Muslim groups fast for jailed Al-Arian
A coalition of Muslim groups is calling for a worldwide fast in support of Sami Al-Arian, a former college professor convicted of raising funds for a terrorist group who remains in jail on contempt charges for refusing to testify before a Virginia grand jury investigating other financiers of terrorism.

The American Muslim Taskforce for Civil Rights and Elections on Monday asked Muslims to fast every Monday, Wednesday and Friday along with Al-Arian, who has been on a hunger strike since Jan. 21. Task force spokesman Agha Saeed says the response has been "compassionate, caring, supportive and concern about Professor Al-Arian's health."

The former University of South Florida computer-science professor was arrested in 2003 and pleaded guilty last year to assisting the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group. He was sentenced to time served and given an additional 18 months for refusing to testify against the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT) and its role with the terrorist group.

The task force calls the additional sentence "a form of harassment," and along with Amnesty International, is demanding his release. The task force is made up of larger Muslim groups, including the American Muslim Alliance, Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Islamic Circle of North America and United Muslims of America. "The Muslim coalition is urging local communities to host information sessions at houses of worship and on college campuses to educate the public about Dr. Al-Arian's case," the task force said in a statement.

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, a counterterrorism analyst and author of "My Year Inside Radical Islam," says prosecutors want Al-Arian's testimony to demonstrate the financial links between IIIT and his group and how the Palestinian Islamic Jihad was financed. Mr. Gartenstein-Ross called the support through fasting "simply puzzling."

"I think on the one hand, there is a perception that Muslim civil rights are threatened, and there is a desire to support someone who might be a victim of an overzealous system, but it's important to take a look at the record and not blindly support something," Mr. Gartenstein-Ross said.

In sentencing Al-Arian last year, U.S. District Judge James Moody called him a "master manipulator" who "looked your neighbors in the eyes and said you had nothing to do with the Palestinian Islamic Jihad."

"This trial exposed that as a lie. ... The evidence was clear in this case that you were a leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad," Judge Moody said. "Your only connection to widows and orphans is that you create them, even among the Palestinians; and you create them, not by sending your children to blow themselves out of existence. No. You exhort others to send their children."

In a letter to Attorney General Alberto Gonzales earlier this month, Amnesty International asked for an investigation into Al-Arian's treatment in prison, calling it "unacceptably harsh and punitive" and that he is being abused by guards "based, at least in part, on his political background."

Fifth Column
Private road named for Muslim is focus of Christian group's bid
RED HOUSE -- If you want to know the history of the Muslims of America community in Charlotte County, just flip through the 2-inch-thick file at the county administrator's office.

A county employee started collecting various articles and filings years ago in response to the many inquiries about the Muslim enclave in western Charlotte County. It is a compilation of a relationship that one professor noted shortly after the community's establishment was bound to have conflict because of the "culture shock" on the part of the local residents and the Muslims.

The community -- or compound, as a federal prosecutor called it -- was established in the mid-1990s on 44 acres in this rural county of about 12,400 people. Most of the homes there are trailers, and about 20 families were estimated to live there several years ago.

Early on, county officials pushed community residents to correct zoning violations, local residents complained about its effect on property values and the Muslims complained they were victims of discrimination.
They always do, even with zoning laws.

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