Editor’s Note: This article first appeared in the May 2010 issue of Townhall Magazine.
The Muslim Brotherhood is leading the way for radical Muslims to infiltrate American society and government. Their goal is simple: control the United States and impose Shariah law.
In A.D. 622, Muhammad was forced to flee to Medina from his birthplace in Mecca, where the ruling tribe, the Quraysh, had come to see his preaching and proselytizing as a threat. While in Medina, he amassed a following of Bedouin warriors who swarmed to his banner to participate in the conquest and plunder of the smaller cities dotting the surrounding Arabian landscape.
In 630, Muhammad’s armies surrounded Mecca and forced its unconditional submission. All organized resistance on the Arabian Peninsula then collapsed, bringing it under Islamic military domination.
In their book "Muslim Mafia," coauthors David Gaubatz and Paul Sperry expose the Muslim Brotherhood as the worldwide, Saudi government-funded Islamist hand behind all Sunni terrorist groups and the world’s largest and most dangerous stateless organization. They reveal the Brotherhood’s plan for the eventual Islamic domination of the United States and strategy to follow the example of the prophet after "he fled to Medina."
WEAKNESS IN THE FACE OF A THREAT
While there are reasons to be encouraged by the administration’s Afghanistan offensive, many serious observers of America’s war with militant Islam see reasons for alarm. A case in point -- the Fort Hood Massacre. It was shocking enough to learn that the American domestic military establishment cannot even protect its own troops inside the United States. But what seemed even more shocking was the fact that the country’s most senior Army officer, Gen. George Casey, publicly stated that the attack caused him to be more worried about harm to the military’s diversity than the disgrace that failed to prevent such an appalling waste of lives.
Many fear our superpower status is rapidly ebbing away and, shockingly, at the behest of our own government. The reasons for alarm continue to multiply: the (thankfully now-abandoned) initiative to prosecute the CIA operatives whose "enhanced interrogation techniques" produced intelligence that thwarted numerous 9/11-style attacks; this administration’s prosecution of Navy Seals who allegedly punched a captured terrorist who killed and mutilated Americans in Fallujah, Iraq; the White House’s pledge to close the Guantanamo Bay prison facility and release more of the most senior terrorists back to their terror networks; the cancellation of our long-range missile defense installation contracts in the Czech Republic and Poland precisely when Iran is feverishly working on nuclear long-range missiles; the failure to issue the smallest encouragement to the Iranian freedom fighters who want to align with us in their efforts to put down the most dangerous Islamic regime on the planet; and its profligate spending that threatens to render America feckless, indebted to its enemies and unable to finance its own defense.
Given the escalating Islamic threat, it seems appropriate to ask: Why is this diminution of American power happening? Are there Islamic jihadists influencing our government? Who are the jihadists influencing? What have they accomplished? And what is their end game?
BUILDING THE BROTHERHOOD
In 1948, an influential Egyptian writer, Sayyid Qutb, set sail from Cairo to New York City. His trip was financed by powerful Egyptian friends who were also conspiring against the dissolute monarch, King Farouk, who was a puppet of the occupying British government and who had put out a warrant for the seditious writer’s arrest. Also in that year, five Arab armies were in the final stages of losing the war to prevent the establishment of the Jewish state within Islamic lands. As Lawrence Wright puts it in his book, "The Looming Tower: Al Qaeda and the Road to 9/11," "[This event] not only stunned the Arab world but the shame of that experience would shape the Arab intellectual experience more profoundly than any other in modern history."
Qutb’s writing espoused a new Islamic fundamentalist ideology and movement, which was reflected in an organization called the Muslim Brotherhood, of which Qutb was a member. Founded in 1928 by an equally influential Egyptian, Sheik Hassan al-Banna, the original goal of the Brotherhood was to convert Egypt into an Islamic state.
Al-Banna was a man of action. Just two decades after its founding, his organization counted hundreds of thousands of members across Egypt and throughout the Middle East. He and Qutb saw the movement as a kind of counter society, challenging every norm of Western secular politics and culture.
In 1949, while still in the United States and as his book, "Social Justice in Islam," was about to be published, Qutb learned that al-Banna had been assassinated. The event shocked him. The Egyptian government killed al-Banna and did so out of self-defense because the Brotherhood was beginning to embrace violence, blowing up movie theaters in Cairo and murdering British and Egyptian officials.
With al-Banna’s death, Qutb became the leading voice of the new Muslim fundamentalism. He wrote, "The white man in Europe or America is our number one enemy. … We are endowing our children with amazement and respect for the master who tramples our honor and enslaves us. Let us instead plant the seeds of hatred, disgust and revenge in the souls of these children. Let us teach them that the white man is the enemy of humanity and that they should destroy him at the first opportunity."
INSPIRING BIN LADEN
In August 1950, Qutb returned to Egypt fully radicalized and determined to violently overthrow the regime. By this time, the Brotherhood numbered 1 million members in a country of 18 million.
In January 1952, the Brothers fomented a riot in Cairo, and in September, the government was seized in a military junta, led by a young army colonel, Gamal Nasser. The military plotters coordinated the coup very closely with the Brothers, and in fact, one of the officers, Anwar Sadat, the man who succeeded Nasser, was himself a Brother.
While Nasser invited Qutb to be an advisor to his Revolutionary Command Council, the alliance was short-lived. Nasser’s dream was to found a Pan-Arab modern socialist state with Cairo as its capital. This had nothing to do with the dream of a new theocratic caliphate that Qutb and the Brothers had in mind.
In October 1954, while Nasser was speaking to a huge assembly and the country listened on the radio, a number of Brothers opened fire at him. Miraculously, Nasser escaped injury. The regime immediately captured and hung the conspirators, rounded up thousands of Brothers and placed thousands in concentration camps, including Qutb, who was given a life sentence.
Qutb, suffering torture in prison, became a hero for the new Islamic fundamentalists. Through family and friends, bits and pieces of Qutb’s Islamist manifesto, "Milestones," were smuggled out of his cell and ultimately published in 1962. It was this book that would profoundly influence a young Osama bin Laden.
Although Nasser pardoned and released him in 1964, Qutb went immediately back to plotting violent revolution, with the secret support of Saudi Arabia whose ruling monarchy feared Nasser’s brand of Pan-Arabism. Six months later, Qutb and 42 conspirators were arrested and put on trial. Qutb received his death sentence gratefully. "I performed jihad for 15 years until I earned this martyrdom," he declared.
Nassar knew that Qutb was more dangerous to him dead than alive. He dispatched Sadat to visit Qutb in prison and offered him another pardon if he would a write a request for clemency. Qutb refused and was hung after prayers in August 1966, His body was not surrendered to his family for fear his grave would become a shrine. As Wright puts it, "[Qutb’s] lonely genius would unsettle Islam, threaten regimes across the Muslim world and beckon to a generation of rootless Arabs who were looking for meaning and purpose in their lives and would find it in jihad."
Al-Banna and Qutb were the Marx and Lenin of the new Islamic fundamentalism that produced the Muslim Brothers, that inspired and produced unknown numbers of new leaders of even more violent splinter affiliates, including: Hamas; the Taliban; Ayman al Zawahiri’s al-Jihad, which conducted the assassination of Anwar Sadat; and bin Laden’s al Qaeda.
THE BROTHERHOOD COMES TO AMERICA
In the mid-20th century, the Brotherhood began its campaign to infiltrate and impact the direction of the United States.
During the 1960s, the Brotherhood began sending vast numbers of students to American universities.
In 1973, with massive Saudi funding, they formed the North American Islamic Trust (NAIT), an investment vehicle that enabled them to acquire 300 mosques and schools in the United States.
In 1987, Hamas, the Palestinian wing of the Brothers with the stated goal of destroying Israel, was founded and largely funded by American Muslims.
In 1990, the Brotherhood formed the American Muslim Council (AMC) with Abdurahman Alamoudi as its boss and the new capo di tutti of the entire syndicate.
Then in 1994, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) was founded.
In 1980, there were 481 officially recognized Mosques in the United States. Today, there are 1,209, with an estimated 80 percent of those funded and controlled by Saudi Arabia, where the official religion is virulently anti-Western Wahhabi Islam.
Sperry and Gaubatz’s "Muslim Mafia" exposes the Muslim Brotherhood’s activities in America using declassified FBI documents, FBI agent interviews, transcripts of telephone wire taps and thousands of internal documents smuggled out of CAIR headquarters by Gaubatz’s son, Chris Gaubatz, who posed as an American convert to Islam and was hired by CAIR. They demonstrate that the Brotherhood is now a worldwide central clearinghouse for virtually all Sunni terrorist groups, is operating inside U.S. mosques across the country and is in complete control of CAIR and its myriad subsidiaries.
And while the House of Saud attempts to portray itself as a loyal U.S. trading partner, the authors prove that it is actually financing and partnering with the Brotherhood, that it is actively undermining our national security, and that it controls CAIR and at least 46 other supposedly moderate Muslim front groups in the United States, along with countless other subsidiary shell companies. And for the first time, they expose the Brotherhood’s five-phase plan for dominating America:
• Phase I: Establish an elite Muslim Leadership and raise Islamicist consciousness in the community;
• Phase II: Create Islamic institutions that the leadership can control and form autonomous Muslim enclaves;
• Phase III: Infiltrate America’s political and social institutions forming a shadow state; escalate conversions; manipulate mass media to remove language offensive to Islam;
• Phase IV: Open hostile public confrontation over U.S. policies, riot, make militant demands for special rights and accommodations;
• Phase V: Wage final conflict and overthrow (jihad).
According to Sperry and Gaubatz, the consensus among counterterrorism officials is that the North American Brotherhood is already in Phase III.
Many of the imams at major mosques play a pivotal role in implementing the first two phases of the plan, acting as recruiters and organizers. In internal documents, they refer to the United States as their Dar al-Arqam, their safe house. FBI wiretaps of secret meetings reveal that the Brotherhood views America as a pushover.
I found the Muslim Community Association (MCA) of Santa Clara, Calif., a mosque near my home, mentioned in numerous sources as a major Brotherhood center with ties to al Qaeda. I was able to meet with the MCA outreach director, Dian Alyan, at the mosque on a Friday in order to also observe services.
After her lengthy description of how her Mosque was a force for good, I read her the following, culled from my sources (Robert Spencer, Gaubatz, Sperry and others), and asked for her reaction:
"Ali ‘the American’ Mohamed was a loyal member of the Muslim Brotherhood who emigrated from Egypt to spy for the Brotherhood in America. He infiltrated the U.S. Army as a sergeant and became a U.S. Special Forces trainer. He went on to the JFK Special Warfare Center and School (SWICK) where was able to steal classified military secrets. During leaves, he would travel to New Jersey to train al Qaeda operatives in weapons and warfare tactics.
"After his honorable discharge, he moved to Santa Clara where he set up a communications cell for al Qaeda while fronting as a computer engineer ... there he brought Ayman al-Zawahiri to California for fundraising tour, which netted the al Qaeda leader $500,000. A large chunk of it was raised at the Muslim Community Association, the home mosque of CAIR cofounder Omar Ahmad. Five years later, the FBI arrested Mohamed, who subsequently pleaded guilty to conspiracy in the 1998 U.S. embassy bombings in Africa."
As I neared the end of my reading, I saw Ms. Alyan’s face flush from her impeccable olive hue to a bright pink, which gave me a sickening feeling, as if I had kicked her in the stomach.
"Where did you get that, off the Internet?" she asked.
"No, from books and recently declassified FBI files," I said.
"May I have those? I’d like to show them to Mr. [Mohammed] Nadeem [president of MCA]."
I told her that I would send her clean copies without my notes scribbled on them.
"Muslim Mafia" contains many depictions of American imams openly espousing treason. For example, American Muslim cleric Zaid Shakir, was secretly recorded giving a lecture in the San Francisco area advising his audience of fellow Muslim Americans to follow the strategy of the prophet when he fled to Medina and accumulated power first before waging violent jihad. Shakir is a regular speaker at CAIR-sponsored events, where he has referred to the Brotherhood’s aforementioned plan to overthrow America by saying, "If we put a nationwide infrastructure in place and marshaled our resources, we’d take over this country in a very short time."
U.S. GOVERNMENT INFILTRATORS
The Brothers and their Islamist allies have been successfully gaining access to the highest levels of our government since the Clinton administration. Just a few who’ve been outed are:
Sami al-Arian: In Sperry’s 2005 book, "Infiltration," he writes that on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, Sami al-Arian awoke "extremely upbeat." Finally, all the work he had done in Florida in 2000 "getting out the Muslim vote" had paid off -- conservative activist and leading George W. Bush advocate Grover Norquist argued that it was al-Arian’s Muslim voters in Florida who had pushed Bush over the finish line. In a few hours, he and eight other Muslim leaders would meet with the president to discuss how Bush would live up to his campaign pledge to end the use of secret intelligence in the investigation of American Muslims -- the culmination of a four-year effort for this Muslim professor and the secret Brotherhood capo.
Ironically the 9/11 attacks preempted al-Arian’s audience with Bush. Today, he’s behind bars, convicted of fraudulently raising money and funneling it to Hamas and other terrorist organizations conducting suicide operations in Israel.
Abdurahman Alamoudi: In 1997, Norquist brokered a meeting with then-Texas Gov. Bush to develop a plan to bring in a previously untapped voting block, he called it the "Muslim Strategy." The meeting featured AMC boss and top Brotherhood member Alamoudi, top AMC lieutenant Khaled Suffuri, Karl Rove, Norquist and Talat Othman, a Saudi friend of Bush and fellow member of Harken Oil. The plan hinged on a Bush vow to limit the government’s use of secret information in the investigation of Muslims -- the same deal al-Arian sought to close four years later.
Alamoudi had long been the toast of the town in multiculturalist Washington. In 1993, he was commissioned to create the first Muslim chaplin corps for the Pentagon. In 1996, he organized the first Ramadan dinner for government officials and met with Clinton and Gore in the White House. That year, he was recorded at the Islamic Association of Palestine’s annual convention in Illinois saying, "I think if we are outside the country, we can say, ‘O Allah, destroy America.’ But once we are here, our mission in this country is to change it."
Today, Alamoudi is serving a 23-year prison sentence. Busted in 2003 for trying to smuggle $340,000 in sequentially numbered bills into the United States from Libya, prosecutors connected him to Hamas and Hezbollah, and he eventually pled guilty to plotting terrorist attacks on the United States with support from Libya.
Shiek Hamza Yusuf: The only Muslim in a group of religious leaders invited to the White House to pray with the president after 9/11, Yusuf is an American-born convert to Islam and cultivates his moderate image. But only two days prior to 9/11, he spoke to Muslims in Irvine, Calif., gathered in support of a cop-killing Muslim imam, "[T]his country [America] is facing a very terrible fate. The reason for this is that this country stands condemned. ... This country unfortunately has a great tribulation coming to it."
Omar Ahmad: Co-founder of CAIR and also an honored guest at the Bush White House, Ahmad was invited by the president to the National Cathedral to mourn the Americans lost on 9/11. In 1998, he was secretly recorded at an Islamic conference in Fremont, Calif., saying, "Islam isn’t in America to equal to any other faith but to become dominant. The Koran should be the highest authority in America and Islam the only accepted religion." Before founding CAIR, Ahmad was a leader at the Islamic Association of Palestine, which was an Islamist organization that raised money in America for Hamas but was shut down by the government in 2005.
The three largest American-based Brotherhood front groups have been blacklisted and/or shut down by the FBI. The FBI shut down Holy Land Foundation, the largest Islamic charity, for fraudulently raising money for Hamas and listed CAIR and the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) as unindicted co-conspirators.
Many American officials seem to be compromised by two interlocking phenomena. First, they cannot countenance a belief system that is cloaked in a religious conviction that includes our subjugation. Second, for good reason, they are driven by fear. In Northern Virginia, the Muslim Brotherhood has targeted U.S. Attorney Gordon Kromberg, issuing death threats to him and his family for his prosecution of their leaders, including CAIR executives.
Here are a few government players who have been used by Islamists:
Robert S. Mueller: FBI Director Robert Mueller, appointed by Bush and retained by Obama, has allowed his agency to be infiltrated and his agents brainwashed by CAIR/Brotherhood operatives. One of his responses to 9/11 was to sponsor "diversity and sensitivity workshops" conducted by CAIR executives. As Sperry and Gaubatz point out, these quickly turned into nothing less than "dangerous disinformation campaigns designed to desensitize agents from the threat of Islamic terrorism."
Documents obtained by Chris Gaubatz confirm that CAIR is enjoying, under the Obama administration, expanded "positive relations with the FBI." Assistant Director for Public Affairs John Miller, now invites highly suspect CAIR officials to FBI headquarters for regular "working lunches." Incredibly, it’s Miller’s policy to keep CAIR and other Muslim groups informed about FBI plans to raid Islamic targets in counterterrorism investigations.
Agents assert that these "outreach" policies have created discord at all levels of the FBI except within the top brass, which "continues to be clueless about the nature of the enemy."
Brian Humphrey: In 2006, then-Customs and Border Protection Executive Director Brian Humphrey assured CAIR that his agents do not single out Muslim airline passengers for special screening. Further, his agents must undergo a course in Muslim sensitivity. The course is put together by Margaret Nydell, an Arabic Studies professor at Georgetown University, which houses a large Saudi financed center on Islamic studies. One border agent described her course as "politically correct drivel."
Valerie Jarrett: A longtime Obama associate from Chicago and now a senior advisor to the president, Valerie Jarrett had the dubious distinction of being the first White House official to address a national convention of Brotherhood front group ISNA.
Eric Holder: Last December, in a piece for National Review titled "Shifty Shifting," Andrew McCarthy eviscerated Attorney General Eric Holder, describing him as a man who seems to be compromised not by Muslim intimidation but by the ideology of the extreme international Left of which he and Obama are members in good standing. Holder served as the No. 2 man in the Clinton Justice Department when, as McCarthy puts it, "nearly as many terrorists were pardoned as were prosecuted," and served during a time when the al Qaeda attacks on U.S. interests were occurring every year and escalating in intensity. It was Holder who obtained the pardon for Marc Rich, one of the FBI’s most wanted, a man who was indicted for millions of dollars in fraud and tax evasion and for cutting illegal deals with the regime in Iran.
Holder’s desire to close Guantanamo without a plan for what to do with the 200 prisoners detained there along with his desire to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammad and four other terrorists in a civilian court are indicative of a much larger malfeasance in this administration’s approach to our war with Islamic terrorists. In a House Judiciary Committee hearing last fall, he exhibited an abject ignorance of the fact that a civilian trial for the terrorists would be exactly what our Islamic enemies crave, a new weapon where they would gain intelligence and broadcast propaganda.
THE BROTHERS AS SEEN BY AN APOSTATE
I spoke with Nonie Darwish, author of "Now They Call Me Infidel" and "Cruel and Usual Punishment" and internationally recognized advocate for Muslim apostates. Now an American, she grew up a Muslim in Egypt, the daughter of an Egyptian general whose family was part of President Nasser’s inner circle.
I asked her to characterize the current state of the Brotherhood in Egypt and internationally. She explained that they are very popular throughout the entire world of Sunni Islam. In most countries -- Islamic and in the West -- they remain somewhat clandestine. But in Egypt, the Brothers operate openly. There are even avowed members serving in the Egyptian parliament. "The reason that they are so popular is because they are seen as carrying the flag of true Islam," she added.
"How can the Mubarak government allow the Brothers to be in the government, given that they were accomplices to the assassination of Sadat?" I asked.
"Because the Egyptian government is afraid of them," she said. "There are assassination attempts constantly, because the Brothers are always watching and evaluating if Mubarak is pure enough. Most Muslim leaders walk a fine line, keeping one foot in the West while they keep talking to their own people about jihad."
"And in the U.S., how would you describe the Brothers today?" I asked.
Ms. Darwish explained that we are beginning to resemble Egypt, not just in the sense that Brothers are operating openly, working to reverse the Patriot Act and always trying to gain more protection for their jihadist syndicate but because, as she puts it, "our leaders now have invited them to join the government."
She cited as an example Dalia Mogahed, also an Egyptian by birth, the chief advisor to Obama on Islamic affairs and the first veiled Muslim to work in the White House. "I can tell that she is very sympathetic to the Brothers."
"How can you tell?" I asked.
"See if you can find any statement she has ever made condemning the acts of terrorist organizations such as Hamas or al Qaeda. You won’t find one."