The assertion ought to be infamous. But this is, after all, Islam we are talking about — meaning, we are not talking about it.
You won’t read it in the American media, nor will you hear it from our bipartisan Beltway profiles in courage. Both the Obama Left and the Republican establishment are deeply invested in the fantasy that Erdogan, like Islam itself, is our moderate ally — ironic, given that Erdogan himself is profoundly offended at the very suggestion that there is such a thing as “moderate Islam.” Yup, what you have been told is the plinth on which American Middle East policy rests, which is, according to Erdogan, not only a house-of-cards but:
… an insult to our religion. There is no moderate or immoderate Islam. Islam is Islam, and that’s it.
The prime minister is an excitable sort. Waxing metaphoric about his aggressive, ascendant ideology, he has also observed:
The mosques are our barracks, the minarets our bayonets, the cupolas our helmets, and the faithful our soldiers.
But he is inspired to new heights of fury by the admonition that Muslims living in Europe and North America should assimilate into Western societies. He first called that suggestion a “crime against humanity” in 2008, speaking to a throng of Turkish immigrants in Cologne. It was the obligation of Muslims, he elaborated, to cling to the tenets and culture of Islam. Yes, Muslims in places like Germany must integrate, in the sense of becoming politically active, of pressuring Western societies to give Islam a wide berth. But Muslims should never assimilate – they should use that wide berth to establish Islam’s authority.
Two years later, given an opportunity to recant during a joint press conference with Chancellor Angela Merkel, Erdogan doubled down:
Assimilation … [is] the permutation of the values of humans. … [It puts] pressure on individuals to leave aside their customs and traditions, and such a behavior happens to be a crime against humanity.
The message could not have been clearer: Muslims are in the West to change the West, not to be changed by it.
These sentiments of one of the world’s most influential Islamic leaders — one about whom Obama has said: “We find ourselves in frequent agreement upon a wide range of issues” — came to mind this week when Walid Shoebat dropped a new bombshell in the controversy over Huma Abedin’s ties to Islamic supremacism.
Ms. Abedin, of course, is Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s deputy chief of staff. When concerns about her Muslim Brotherhood connections were first raised by five conservative House members, there was great gnashing of teeth from both Democrats and the Brotherhood’s growing squad of Republican cheerleaders. Soon, however, it was demonstrated beyond cavil that Abedin herself, like other members of her family, has a disturbingly close association with Abdullah Omar Naseef – a wealthy Saudi financier of al-Qaeda and Brotherhood eminence. At that point, most of the craven GOP emirate stuck its head back in the sand with hopes that the issue would just go away, while the Left reverted to its knee-jerk “McCarthyism” shrieks — along with the demeaning characterization of Abedin, who is actually a top policy adviser, as a flunky who merely helps Madame Secretary decide which “handbag” goes best with that day’s outfit.
Ms. Abedin’s Naseef connection centers on an entity the al-Qaeda backer established and recruited Abedin’s parents to run: the Institute of Muslim Minority Affairs. Since its founding in the late seventies, the IMMA’s main purpose has been to publish the Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs. Naseef remained closely involved in the JMMA for decades after its founding in the late 1970s — he was removed from the masthead in 2003, right around the time he was named as a defendant in the civil suit brought by victims of the 9/11 atrocities.
Abedin was assistant editor of the journal for a dozen years — from the time she started interning at the Clinton White House in 1996 until right before she joined the State Department in 2009. During seven of those years, she overlapped with Naseef, who was then on JMMA‘s advisory board.
Walid Shoebat’s latest report grapples with a central question that has been overlooked: Why “Muslim Minority Affairs”? What is the obsession with it? Why have Naseef and the Abedin family been immersed in this issue for so long? Indeed, Naseef not only established JMMA: he served for many years as secretary-general of the Muslim World League, a critical leadership post in the Brotherhood’s Saudi-funded effort to spread Islamic supremacist ideology globally. Quite apart from the terror-funding end of that enterprise, Naseef lavishly underwrote efforts to indoctrinate young Muslims at educational institutions.
Shoebat is a former jihadist who renounced Islamic supremacism and became a Christian nearly twenty years ago. He conducts exhaustive research in an effort to expose the ideology that fuels both terrorism and the broader threat to the West. The latter is what the Muslim Brotherhood calls its “grand jihad” or “civilization jihad” — “eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within,” as the Brotherhood’s American operatives put it in a 1991 internal memorandum.
In the course of researching the Abedin family’s ties to the Saudi Kingdom and the Brotherhood, Shoebat came across a document he has fittingly described as a “manifesto.” It is a book commissioned by King Abdullah’s predecessor, eponymously titled The Efforts of the Servant of the Two Holy Places, King Fahd bin Abdul Aziz, to Support the Muslim Minorities. (The king of Saudi Arabia is deemed custodian of Mecca and Medina, Islam’s “two holy places.”) The book explains that “Muslim Minority Affairs” is not merely an entity; it is shorthand for a long-term, high-priority policy to spread Islam until, finally, it comes to dominate the non-Islamic nations of the world.
[The book] spoke of recruiting Muslims that live in non-Muslim lands and transforming them as a collective unit. It spoke of already established centers, educational programs, mosques and organizations in the United States like [the Islamic Society of North America] and [the Muslim Students Association], all geared towards hindering any Western plan for Muslim assimilation in a non-Muslim host nation. It mentioned “The Muslim Society of North America (ISNA) and the Muslim Students Association (MSA), established in the United States in 1962” (p. 65), as key agents to protect Muslims from assimilation.
It named the mosques and centers in major United States cities established to carry out the mission. Five decades of efforts were spent with billions to ensure that Muslims will be an unassimilated group which then can infuence the non-Muslim host nation and other nations, regardless of how small the numbers of Muslims, by shifting the demographic scale due to their population growth in favor of this Saudi agenda.
It explained how a gradual change would ensue by [Muslims'] becoming a major revolutionary powerhouse that will tilt the host nation in favor of Muslims due to their increase as a population …
In short, the plan echoed the Brotherhood’s 1991 memorandum.
[It was designed] to transform a nation from within, where a Minority population can act as a fifth column, incubating in the host nation with the intent of gradually implementing the Wahhabist plans. …
Wahhabism is the fundamentalist Islam that is not merely the religion but the law and comprehensive social system of Saudi Arabia.
The building blocks of this plan included 29 scholarly works — including Muslim Minorities in the West, written by Huma Abedin’s father Dr. Zyed Abedin (whose name Shoebat transliterates as Sayed Zaynul Abedin). This explains why Ms. Abedin’s parents were entrusted with the pivotal task of overseeing JMMA, supported by the House of Saud and supervised by Naseef and the World Assembly of Muslim Youth — a lavishly bankrolled ideological and jihadist enterprise established by the Kingdom and the Brotherhood in 1972, with the global mission of – as a WAMY pamphlet puts it – “ … arm[ing] the Muslim youth with full confidence in the supremacy of the Islamic system over other systems.”
Under the supervision of current editor Dr. Saleha Mahmood Abedin (Huma’s mother and JMMA‘s editor since her husband’s death in 1993), JMMA abets the Muslim Minority Affairs mission to this day. In fact, the current edition features essays that champion what Andrew Bostom describes as:
The global hegemonic aspirations of major 20th Century Muslim Brotherhood jihadist ideologues … the more expansive application of Sharia within Muslim minority communities residing in the West, with the goal of replacing these non-Muslim governing systems …
As Shoebat summarizes:
“The Muslim Minority Affairs” program — according to the manifesto — can arrange “Muslim Minority activism” to advance the goal through the building of mosques, schools and Islamic centers where minorities exist (pp. 8-13, 17) in order to “establish a global Sharia in our modern times.” (p. 9-10) The measure also aims to “prevent the ‘hurdle’ Muslims encounter from ‘assimilation and melting’ in non-Muslim societies”. (p. 24)
The program surmounts this hurdle in two ways. One is the sharia jurisprudence (or fiqh) of Muslim Minority Affairs. This jurisprudence incorporates the concept of muruna, which permits Muslims living in non-Muslim lands to deviate from the dictates of classical sharia as long as, in so doing, they are advancing the ultimate mission of implementing and advancing sharia. Thus, for example, Muslims in the West might align with influential non-Muslims, which Islamic doctrine ordinarily forbids, if so doing helps them persuade governments and institutions to accommodate sharia strictures rather than pressure Muslims to assimilate.
The other method of staving off assimilation is the construction of an Islamist infrastructure in the West. This enables Muslims to create enclaves — in the physical community, on campus, and in major social institutions, including government — in which sharia is honored as basic law and Muslims are given safe haven to refrain from pressures to assimilate.
In the United States, the foundation of this infrastructure is the Muslim Students Association, which has hundreds of chapters on campuses across the United States and Canada.
Interestingly, in the late mid-to-late-nineties, while she was an intern at the Clinton White House and an assistant editor at JMMA, Ms. Abedin was a member of the executive board of the MSA at George Washington University, heading its “Social Committee.” That MSA chapter has an intriguing history. In 2001, its spiritual guide was … Anwar al-Awlaki, the al-Qaeda operative who was then ministering to some of the eventual 9/11 suicide-hijackers. Awlaki himself had led the MSA chapter at Colorado State University in the early nineties. As Patrick Poole has demonstrated, Awlaki is far from the only jihadist to hone his supremacist ideology in the MSA’s friendly confines. In the eighties, Wael Jalaidan ran the MSA at the University of Arizona. He would soon go on to help Osama bin Laden found al-Qaeda; he also partnered with the Abedins’ patron, Abdullah Omar Naseef, to establish the Rabita Trust — formally designated as a terrorist organization under U.S. law due to its funding of al-Qaeda.
The MSA gave birth to the Islamic Society of North America. The two organizations consider themselves as one, and ISNA is now the largest, most consequential Islamist organization in the United States — a go-to consultant for the Obama administration, despite its having been a key cog in the Brotherhood’s Hamas financing network, as the Justice Department proved in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism prosecution. ISNA’s business side is the North American Islamic Trust, another Holy Land Foundation co-conspirator and the vehicle by which the Saudis and the Brotherhood buy real estate and establish hundreds of mosques and Islamic centers throughout the U.S. These groups are fortified by the International Institute of Islamic Thought, a Brotherhood think-tank whose express mission is the “Islamization of knowledge” — developing an epistemological framework by which Muslims can fit current events and world history into an Islamic supremacist narrative. The infrastructure’s public face is organizations like the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), which combine public relations spin with sharia policy activism.
This is not a random proliferation of fraternities, the sort of cultural solidarity exhibition routinely seen throughout the American melting pot. The Saudi-constructed, Brotherhood-conducted Islamist infrastructure in the West is on a mission — the “Muslim Minority Affairs” mission. It seeks to grow an unassimilated, aggressive population of Islamic supremacists, who will gradually but dramatically alter the character of the West. Its goal is incrementally to infiltrate sharia principles in our law, our institutions, and our public policy. That means the mission takes direct aim at our liberties, particularly free expression, which enables examination and negative criticism of Islamist ideology. It takes aim at our alliance with Israel, because Jews are regarded as enemies and all of “Palestine” as Islamic territory. And it takes aim at our economic system, because sharia regards capitalism as a bane of human existence — there is a reason why the Brotherhood’s American operatives make common cause with the Left on everything from socialized medicine to finance regulation to gun control to surveillance law.
The media and the Obama Left will continue ridiculing the notion of Brotherhood influence on our government and attacking the five conservative House members who have raised concerns. The Republican establishment will lay cravenly low and pray that the controversy blows over — except for the stray useful idiot who calculates that there’s good press to be had in parroting the Democrats’ “McCarthyism” canard. Nevertheless, to perceive no correlation between the Islamists’ fervid anti-assimilation program and the United States government’s stunning accommodation of the Brotherhood and its agenda is to be wilfully blind.