Sunday, July 31, 2005

The Power Of CAIR

In re: Michael Graham's suspension from D. C. talk-radio station WMAL

CAIR's official website, however, provides some interesting information in their news release of Friday, July 29, 2005, excerpted below:
"The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) today applauded a Washington, D.C., radio station’s decision to suspend without pay a talk show host who stated repeatedly that 'Islam is a terrorist organization.' CAIR said WMAL-AM morning host Michael Graham should be fired for his Islamophobic remarks, for other statements made before and after the most recent controversy and for his refusal to apologize for those comments.

"When first contacted by CAIR, WMAL stood behind Graham, but changed its position after hundreds of people responded to the group’s action alerts bycontacting the station and its sponsors. In a statement, WMAL President and General Manager Chris Berry said that Graham would be suspended... 'We do not condone his position and believe his statements were irresponsible,' said Berry. (WMAL is owned by the Walt Disney Co.)....

"The Washington-based Islamic civil rights and advocacy group this week initiated a public campaign against WMAL and the station’s advertisers after receiving complaints from Muslim listeners who heard Graham..."

Yesterday, Michael Graham posted the following on his website:

"As a talk show host, author and columnist, I've repeatedly criticized the current state of Islam and called for its reform. As for the "controversial" statement that 'Sadly, as it is constituted today, Islam IS a terrorist organization, but the good news is that the major of Muslims--who don't support terror--can change that and take back their religion,' I first made that statement on the air last Thursday.

"Did I get suspended Thursday? No. Friday? No. Monday? No.

"It wasn't until CAIR launched its campaign against me in the mainstream media..."


On his website, Graham gives information as to how to support him and also states,
"Trust me: CAIR is not playing games. They are making threats and shaking down our advertisers and trying to intimidate everyone concerned. The worst part is that, in the past, it has almost always worked for CAIR. They've managed to scare a lot of people into silence.

"But not everyone."

Graham is correct that not everyone is scared into silence. Just look at the blogosphere! Whether or not CAIR's tactics will work in Graham's case remains to be seen. Could it be that, this time, citizens will check into exactly what kind of organization CAIR is? Or will Americans' short memories allow Graham's case to be forgotten?

At the end of the CAIR news release is a list of contacts, the first of which is Ibrahim Hooper. According to Daniel Pipes,

"Ibrahim Hooper...told the Minneapolis Star Tribune on April 4, 1993: 'I wouldn't want to create the impression that I wouldn't like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future.'


Mr. Pipes also has provided information about other individuals affililiated with CAIR:

"Randall Royer, CAIR's communications specialist and civil rights coordinator, was indicted on charges of conspiring to help Al-Qaeda and the Taliban to battle American troops in Afghanistan. He later pled guilty to lesser firearm-related charges and was sentenced to twenty years in prison.

"Ghassan Elashi, the founder of CAIR's Texas chapter, was convicted in July 2004 along with his four brothers of having illegally shipped computers from their Dallas-area business, InfoCom Corporation, to Libya and Syria, two designated state sponsors of terrorism. In April of 2005, Elashi and two brothers were also convicted of knowingly doing business with Mousa Abu Marzook, a senior Hamas leader and Specially Designated Terrorist. He continues to face charges that he provided more than $12.4 million to Hamas while he was running the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), America's largest Islamic charity.

"Bassem Khafagi, CAIR's community relations director, pleaded guilty in September 2003 to lying on his visa application and for passing bad checks for substantial amounts in early 2001, for which he was deported. Khafagi was also a founding member and president of the Islamic Assembly of North America (IANA), an organization under investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice for terrorism related activities.

"Rabih Haddad, a CAIR fundraiser, was arrested on terrorism-related charges and deported from the United States due to his subsequent work as executive director of the Global Relief Foundation, a charity he co-founded; in October 2002, GRF was designated by the U.S. Treasury Department for financing Al-Qaeda and other terrorist organizations. According to a CAIR complaint, Homam Albaroudi, a member of CAIR's Michigan chapter and also a founding member and executive director of the IANA also founded the Free Rabih Haddad Committee.

"Siraj Wahhaj, a CAIR advisory board member, was named in 1995 by U.S. Attorney Mary Jo White as a possible unindicted co-conspirator in connection with the plot to blow up New York City landmarks led by the blind sheikh, Omar Abdul Rahman.

"Ihsan Bagby, a future CAIR board member, stated in the late 1980s that Muslims' can never be full citizens of this country,' referring to the United States, 'because there is no way we can be fully committed to the institutions and ideologies of this country.'

"Omar Ahmad, CAIR's chairman, announced in July 1998 that 'Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran . . . should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on earth.'"

CAIR presents itself as a representative of mainstream Islam. Do those statements represent mainstream Islam? If so, we are in deep, deep trouble.

I urge interested readers to visit the above article written by Daniel Pipes. If you visit, have a look at the comments too.

Note (August 1, 2005, 8:22 A.M.): Andrew Whitehead of Anti-CAIR has today published a commentary in Front Page Magazine; the article also provides links to explore. As Mr. Whitehead is currently involved in a lawsuit brought against him by CAIR, he may have some insights which have not been published elsewhere.

17 Comments:

At 7/31/2005 10:49 AM, Blogger Jason_Pappas said...

Great follow-up. This is the place to draw a line in the sand and fight the good fight. Remember a few weeks back on my blog I talked about a French writer was saying he doesn’t think anyone will be critical of Islam in France after his trial and tribulations? We haven’t gotten to that stage but the taboo against open discussion – which includes those of us who are critics – has to be broken.

It’s interesting how this is happening, just as many well known writers are asking if there is anything such thing as moderate Islam today? I’ve seen quite a few articles doubting the existence of moderate Islam. Thanks for the jihadwatch link. I saw it a few days ago and posted it on several general internet boards which helped many on this issue. On Victor Davis Hansons’s website he has a piece: “Doublespeak Unveiled” about the so-called moderates.

This is the topic of the day; and WMAL is cowardly shutting down the debate on AM talk radio, of all places!

 
At 7/31/2005 10:59 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Jason,
Thanks for reminding me about that French writer.

Stifling freedom of speech is dangerous, beyond words. As you put it, "[T]he taboo against open discussion – which includes those of us who are critics – has to be broken." If Islam is to reform itself, it is essential that open discussion occur. We're seeing now that CAIR opposes such open discussion because, if that organization supported such discussion, CAIR would've used a different strategy in the Graham case. CAIR has revealed its true self, in my opinion. Exactly what I expected from a partially Saudi-funded organization.

Of course, those of us who have studied the history of Islam know only too well how resistant Islam has been to any type of open forum. Islamism is even worse in that regard, but Islam in general doesn't engage in rational discussion. Irshad Manji has pointed this out, I believe. And so have others, both Muslims and non-Muslims.

 
At 7/31/2005 6:50 PM, Blogger Esther said...

Great job, AOW!! CAIR is a scary group. Daniel Pipes has a whole section of his site dedicated to debunking the myth that CAIR is a moderate group. It always seems like everyone must know about CAIR from our travels along the blogway but one brief conversation with anyone in "real" life and you know it's not so. People need to resisit the shakedowns...they need to resist CAIR's influence.

 
At 7/31/2005 7:05 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Esther,
Well said! I especially like your conclusion: "People need to resisit the shakedowns...they need to resist CAIR's influence."

CAIR is one busy pr organization. Their influence on the public-school systems in the D.C. is unbelievable. The systems are resistant to Christian and Jewish influence, of course; but of late the Hindus have been outspoken.

 
At 7/31/2005 7:52 PM, Blogger Toni said...

That was an excellant point on "Moderate Islam". I have never believed that to be a correct catorization. With most religions when there are differences of belief those who differ splinter off into other new sects. But that hasn't occurred with Islam. I get so 'effing tired of the mislabel "Moderate Islam".

 
At 7/31/2005 10:42 PM, Blogger G_in_AL said...

Moderate (in terms of Islam) really translates into lazy. It is impossible to be a devout follower of the religion, and believe in peaceful evangelism. It is written in the Koran that it is to be spread by the sword.

I have no doubt there are Muslims that have no interest in killing anyone. They have no intention or desire to conquer, rule over, or convert other nations. However, the crux of the problem is discerning these from the ones that hide behind this persona until they have an opportunity to carry out what in their minds is a holy mission.

 
At 7/31/2005 11:51 PM, Blogger Shah Alexander said...

There are some dreadful groups to exploit any systems of the Free World. Street terrorists in Britain and the North Koreans Federation in Japan are such examples.

CAIR is no exception.

 
At 8/01/2005 12:12 AM, Blogger unaha-closp said...

g -
Moderate should also translate into wealthy since it should be impossible to live as a wealthy fundamentalist unless plundering something, unfortunately the plundering of oil is not that hard.

 
At 8/01/2005 3:36 AM, Blogger David Schantz said...

Great post. Tomorrow afternoon I'm going to ask Jerry Hughes (A friend of mine) if he has heard about Michael Graham while he is on the air at http://www.accentradionetwork.com/ (you might want to check out that site for some interesting programs)More people need to hear about this. Thanks for stopping by to answer my Question Of The Week, I post one every Sunday. I hope you'll stop by again.

God Bless America, God Save The Republic

 
At 8/01/2005 8:04 AM, Blogger G_in_AL said...

-unaha
Or unless your massive ammount of wealth is used to exploit weaknesses in the great Satan

 
At 8/01/2005 9:04 AM, Blogger John said...

Why do we even allow groups like this to exist?

 
At 8/01/2005 10:36 AM, Blogger Mustang said...

No Islamic reformation, no moderation. I think it's that simple.

 
At 8/01/2005 2:28 PM, Blogger David Schantz said...

Jerry Hughes (see my last comment to this post) is talking about Michael Graham on his program right now.

God Bless America, God Save The Republic.

 
At 8/01/2005 3:33 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

To all who have commented here:
I hate to issue a group reply, but shortly I've got to dash off to work.

I see that most of the commenters here are questioning the feasibility of "moderate Islam."

G said, "Moderate (in terms of Islam) really translates into lazy. It is impossible to be a devout follower of the religion, and believe in peaceful evangelism. It is written in the Koran that it is to be spread by the sword." Toni's comment was more blunt: "With most religions when there are differences of belief those who differ splinter off into other new sects. But that hasn't occurred with Islam. I get so 'effing tired of the mislabel 'Moderate Islam'."

How do verses such as those advocating militancy get reformed?

What bothers me is that some Muslims who have been viewed as moderates (Alamoudi, for example, who was hosted by both the Clinton and the Bush White House) turned out not to be moderate after all. Others who previously shown no interest in Islamism got ahold of the doctrine of jihadism and took action (the London bombers, for example).

Again as G pointed out, "[T]he crux of the problem is discerning these from the ones that hide behind this persona until they have an opportunity to carry out what in their minds is a holy mission." Do members of CAIR fall into that same category? While none of the indicted CAIR members have been jihadists, as far as I know, they certainly have shady connections with jihadists or with terrorism-affiliated organizations. Furthermore, some of CAIR's officers and former officers have spoken plainly as to the intentions they have.

I hope that organizations such as CAIR are under serious investigation. At least the Muslim World Council got busted last week--a positive development.

 
At 8/01/2005 8:36 PM, Blogger Cubed © said...

This blog is certainly fertile grounds for conversation!

Just a few brief responses:

CAIR is getting busier and busier. The upside of this is that this means that more and more people, including people in the blogosphere, radio talk show hosts, a few brave politicians, some people in the cybermedia, authors, etc. are beginning to "get it" and the word is spreading to more and more citizens, giving CAIR more and more fires to put out. As understanding of the true nature of Islam spreads, there won't be enough money in all of Saudi Arabia to fund all the efforts of CAIR to destroy the First Amendment. Before long, there will be far too many holes in the dam for them to plug up.

Toni,

You mentioned that when most religions have differences in belief, they split off from one another, but that this hasn't occurred with Islam.

Yet, that is Islam's only hope of surviving in any form. There probably are some Muslims who are sick and tired of living they way they do, and would like nothing better than to "compartmentalize" their beliefs, retaining only those that would permit them to live in peace with the Infidel, and rejecting the nasties.

Unfortunately, this kind of innovation--the selection by people of aspects of a religion to live by and form a new sect--is regarded by Islam as the most serious of all sins, and those who attempt to modify Islam in any way or leave it are said to be heretics and apostates, respectively, and subject to the death penalty under sharia.

The closest they have come is the split very early in Muslim history into Sunni and Shia Muslims, who hold fast to doctrinal principles that are so close to one another that they might as well not have bothered. Each thinks the other is heretical.

I think any split into sects just ain't gonna happen. There have been several historical opportunities for change, but all have been resisted.

g,

I'm sure there are quite a few Muslims who, as alluded to by Toni, would prefer to compartmentalize Islam and live in peace with the rest of the world.

Their greatest problem lies in the fact that so long as the mullahs are in charge, no change in Islam will occur, and even if these individual Muslims are the sweetest people on earth--and some of them may be--their children or grandchildren may be vulnerable to the obnoxious parts of Islam, and could find terrorism etc. an attractive calling.

So long as Islam exists in its present form, there will be no end to the conflict.

Jay777,

I sure understand the sentiments! But the Constitution aside, try to find comfort in the fact that saying something and doing something are not the same thing.

There is actually an upside to letting them continue with their toxic speech.

Remember the practice by miners of taking a caged canary into the mines with them? The birds were very sensitive to poisonous gases, and if the bird started to look sick, it gave the miners time to get out.

Allowing the enemy to spout off via organizations like CAIR serves that function. All the crap that CAIR continues to unload is like the canary in the mine--it lets the rest of us know what Islam is about in this country.

Let 'em talk--pretty soon, they'll spin enough rope to hang themselves with, sparing us the effort!

 
At 8/01/2005 9:23 PM, Blogger The MaryHunter said...

Excellent work, AOW, I've linked you and hope to spread the blogetty word via my post as well:

http://www.tmhbaconbits.net/2005/08/01/michael-graham-deserves-better/

The Wide Awakes could do much toward bringing even more attention to this issue as a unified community of bloggers. I see a lot of us have picked it up. I feel especially emboldened since I listen to WMAL every day... or did, before all of this crap.

 
At 8/01/2005 10:10 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Cubed,
Thanks for your excellent points.

I want to give the Islamists a bit of a hand in hanging themselves. That means getting the word out and exposing their tactics.

 

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home