In Defense of the Constitution

News & Analysis 031/04

September 29, 2004

- Dr. Parvez Ahmed, Master Of Deception?

- Cat Stevens, Innocent Traveler Or Islamist Terrorism Supporter?

- Response To Reader E-mail

Dr. Parvez Ahmed, Master of Deception? 

     Dr. Parvez Ahmed, national board member of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), wrote an interesting “guest column” for the St. Petersburg Times on September 27, 2004.  The column, titled: “Accusations of terrorist support are wrong, divisive”, Dr. Ahmed makes some very interesting comments, which are simply not true and are not supported by the facts. 

      Dr. Ahmed writes in the first sentence of his column:

“Public debate, though often difficult, emotional and unavoidable, is a good thing for an
open democratic society. Yet, it should not absolve anyone of the responsibility to be
factual and accurate.”

So…Dr. Ahmed supports public debate, as long as it’s the truth?  Wonderful!  This is one item mentioned by CAIR that Anti-CAIR (ACAIR) supports 100%.  But…Dr. Ahmed also includes the caveat:

“People who make statements connecting CAIR to terrorism should understand the
legal consequences of their attempted slander and defamation. The First Amendment
does not protect defamation.”

As all Americans who are even peripherally familiar with the law know, making untrue statements can be libelous.  However, what if the charges are true, that CAIR does indeed support and defend Islamist terrorism?  What then?  Are we to remain silent in the face of a legal threat from CAIR officers?  Just exactly what was Dr. Ahmed’s purpose in making this statement?  Is this a veiled threat to anyone interested in investigating CAIR’s true agenda?

     Dr. Ahmed continues:

“CAIR has always taken a principled
position on terrorism.”

Really?  When did this miraculous event take place?  Where can we go on the CAIR web site to read about this new policy?  Is it just possible we missed CAIR’s press release?

    Let’s hear the words of Mr. Ibrahim Hooper, CAIR communications director:  (When asked about CAIR’s support of Islamist terror groups)

“CAIR does not support these groups publicly.”

     So…we have a national board member saying that CAIR is a peaceful group that condemns terrorism…and we have the communications director saying that CAIR does support terrorist groups, but not publicly…just who are we to believe?  Who is the liar?

Dr. Ahmed makes reference to two CAIR officers who are currently serving prison terms as examples of untrue charges being made against CAIR.  According to Dr. Ahmed:

“Randall Royer, a former employee of CAIR, was indicted on criminal acts violating the seldom-used
Neutrality Act of 1794, which makes it unlawful for Americans to take part in military enterprise
against any foreign state with which the United States is at peace.”

We previously reported on the activities of Mr. Royer…and his conviction.  As for exactly what Mr. Royer was convicted of, this is what the Department of Justice had to say:

“Royer, 31, pled guilty in January 2004 to a two-count criminal information charging him with aiding and
abetting the use and discharge of a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, and with aiding
and abetting the carrying of an explosive during the commission of a felony. In his plea agreement, Royer
admitted to aiding and abetting co-defendants Masoud Khan, Yong Ki Kwon, Muhammed Aatique and
Mahmoud Hasan in gaining entry to a terrorist training camp in Pakistan operated by Lashkar-e-Taiba,
where they trained in the use of various weapons. Royer also admitted to helping co-defendant Ibrahim
Ahmed Al-Hamdi gain entry to the Lashkar-e-Taiba camp, where Al-Hamdi received training in the use
of a rocket-propelled grenade in furtherance of a conspiracy to conduct military operations against India.”


     As for Mr. Royer being a “former” employee…well, Dr. Ahmed is, once again, playing fast and loose with the truth.  Mr. Royer was working for CAIR at the time of his crimes, and no wishful thinking is going to change this fact. 

     Once again, we have an apparent apologist for Islamist terrorism, an officer in the CAIR organization, attempting to spin a story to make CAIR look like something it isn’t: a key player in the Islamic community.

Cat Stevens, Innocent Traveler or Islamist Terrorism Supporter?

     An interesting thing happened to Yusuf Islam (formerly known as Cat Stevens, before his conversion to Islam) during his trip to the United States from England.  His plane was diverted, he was detained and questioned, and he was sent back home.  Why?  Well, to hear from the Council on American-Islamic Relations, it would appear to be a mistake. 

     But is it a mistake?  Columnist Debbie Schlussel has written an excellent commentary on Islam’s associations with terror groups and some of his comments regarding those who don’t toe the Islamist line.  We find it interesting that the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) would, once again, defend a person who writes hate-filled lines insulting Jews for an Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP) pamphlet.  But, considering the IAP’s support for CAIR, maybe this is just a little “payback”?

     CAIR’s website copies a story from Agence France Presse saying that Islam intends to initiate legal action against the United States to determine just why he was not allowed to enter.  Obviously, Mr. Islam doesn’t understand that he is not an American citizen and has no pre-determined right to enter or leave the United States at will…a right reserved exclusively to American citizens. 

     Mr. Islam’s final statement is telling:

"Never would I believe that such a thing could happen
in the land of the free - unfortunately, it did"

     Isn’t it interesting that Mr. Islam would acknowledge that the United States is the “land of the free”, yet find it odd that Americans would not care to have people in their country who are actively working to end that freedom? 

     No, Mr. Islam, we don’t need your kind in our country, we have enough problems with the terrorist supporters already present without having to import any more.

     Hope the door didn’t smack you in the rear on the way out.       

Response To Reader E-mail

     ACAIR recently received the following e-mail, which we’d like to share with our readers:  (note: this is the entire text)

 “It is people like you spreading the kind of vicious half truths about decent people
that will bring about the destruction of civil liberties in the
United States. Bigotry and
uniformed defamation of something you don't know and don't understand are
the signposts of an ignorant person.”

     To be honest, we usually respond with a general acknowledgement and move on when we receive this type of e-mail.  However, we were intrigued by this e-mail because it came from a university in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).  We answered the writer (who didn’t provide a name) that we’d be responding in this “News & Analysis” and would be sharing our answer with our readers. 

     A cursory look at the recent history of the UAE shows that it has a state religion, no universal suffrage and a spotty record regarding freedom of the press.  In addition, there is only one political party allowed and citizens are not encouraged to engage in meaningful political debate.  In other words, a typical, repressive, and backward Middle Eastern regime.     

     This being the truth about the UAE, we find it interesting that a citizen thereof would have the capability of reasoning out just what constitutes “vicious half truths” or just exactly what a “civil liberty” is.  Consider that fewer than 1000 books a year are translated from foreign languages into languages spoken in the Middle East (other than Hebrew), that women are second class citizens and most citizens wouldn’t know a voting ballot if they saw one, we question just who is the “bigot” and “uninformed” party in this case? 

     The writer is correct in one regard…ACAIR knows very little about Islam and we, quite honestly, have no desire to learn.  Our battle isn’t against Islam; our battle is against Islamist terror, of which we do have a wealth of knowledge.  No, we aren’t “experts” (nor do we pretend to be) but we do know an Islamist terrorist or supporter when we see one.

     As for civil liberties, you will not find any group that more strongly defends our Constitution from its many enemies than Anti-CAIR.

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Andrew Whitehead

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