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MAS & ICNA Background

©Middle East Forum

January 2019

MAS-ICNA/ ICNA-MAS Conventions

Every year, two of the most prominent American Islamist organizations—the Islamic Circle of
North America (ICNA) and the Muslim American Society (MAS)—work together to organize
two massive conventions for American Muslims. The MAS-ICNA convention (spearheaded by
MAS and scheduled between Christmas and New Year’s Eve each year) and the ICNA-MAS
convention (spearheaded by ICNA and usually scheduled in April) represent perhaps the two
largest annual gatherings of Islamist figures in North America.

Each convention features speakers with histories of bigoted statements, multiple Islamist groups,
and funding and participation by hostile foreign governments such as Qatar and Turkey. For
instance, the 2016 MAS-ICNA conference featured Sümeyye Erdoğan Bayraktar (the daughter
of Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan), who used her address to defend her father's regime,
mischaracterizing Erdoğan’s crackdown on political opponents and journalists and denying that
democracy and press freedoms are under assault in Turkey.

Despite the extensive participation of such radical entities, MAS and ICNA fashion their annual
conferences as benign events that focus on culture, social justice, and spiritual revival. Often,
mainstream politicians and progressive activists—led to believe MAS and ICNA’s claims of
inclusivity and tolerance—speak at or otherwise endorse the events. Mainstream media coverage
of the events is subsequently laudatory, and the conferences are granted an ill-deserved veneer of

MEF fights the mainstream legitimation of groups like MAS and ICNA by publishing original
research with evidence of their extremist links. This report showcases such research, and
includes the histories of both groups, as well as profiles of 35 of the speakers who participated in
December’s MAS-ICNA convention and November’s MAS-Los Angeles’ convention. The
information compiled in this dossier demonstrates ICNA and MAS’ radical nature; American
government representatives should avoid and isolate both groups.

Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA)

ICNA was founded in 1971 by south-Asian Islamists, ostensibly as a “non-ethnic, non-sectarian”
grassroots organization with the aim of "the establishment of Islam in all spheres of life." As
early as 2000, ICNA identified itself as an American front for Jamaat-e-Islami (JI), a genocidal
South Asian Islamist movement. In 1971, Jamaat-e-Islami helped pro-Pakistani militias murder
thousands of Bangladeshi intellectuals and independence activists. One prominent JI war
criminal, Ashrafuzzaman Khan, reportedly served in New York as the ICNA's secretary-general,
vice-president, and a general ICNA board member as well. In 2013, a war crimes tribunal in
Bangladesh convicted Khan of serving as a death squad leader for a JI killing squad, which,

according to court documents, “committed the criminal act of murder of 18 intellectuals
including university professors, doctors, journalists constituting the offence of crimes against
humanity.” Khan was named by prosecutors as the “chief executor,” whose victims were
kidnapped and “taken to killing fields at the outskirts of the Dhaka city and were brutally killed.”

In 2013 and 2016, JI's own website reported that ICNA protested the convictions and sentences
handed down by the tribunal to senior JI leaders such as Khan. Still, also in 2013, ICNA New
York chapter quietly removed the names of executive board members, including Khan, from its
web page.

Along with its close links to Jamaat-e-Islami, ICNA has a history of promoting extremist
speakers and Islamist ideas. ICNA’s conferences are characterized by radical speakers, and its
indoctrination process and handbook drill home the notion that Islamic rule must be instituted
worldwide. ICNA recommended reading lists for members include the works of Syed Abul Ala
Maududi, JI’s founder and theological leader; and Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, the extremist spiritual
leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, who was recently sentenced in absentia to life in prison in
Egypt for “incitement to murder” and involvement with violence.

In 1998, ICNA claimed, in the wake of the U.S. embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, that
Bin Laden and the Taliban were being used by the U.S. government as "an easy escape goat [sic]
to divert attention from Lewensky Gate [sic] or to cover intelligence failures in tracking the real
culprits." Later, ICNA's website carried calls to support the "jihaad against the kuffaar [non-
believers] in Kashmir, Afghanistan, Palestine, Bosnia etc." Other posts have included support for
the Sudanese regime and claims that its campaign of genocide and mass-slavery are false
Western propaganda.

Despite its long history of extremism, in 2016 ICNA received $1.3 million of taxpayers' money
as part of a grant awarded by the Department of Homeland Security; and in April 2018, ICNA’s
“humanitarian” arm (ICNA Relief) received nearly $9 million through FEMA for Hurricane
Harvey clean-up. To top it all off, the New York City council listed ICNA and MAS under a list
of Muslim organizations granted $250,000 of taxpayer funding in October 2018, even though
ICNA secretary general Muhammad Rahman admitted that ICNA's portion of the grant money
would fund religious activities such as "Iftar in the Park" and outdoor prayer services.

Muslim American Society (MAS)

The Muslim American Society was founded in 1993 in Falls Church, Virginia, as an organization
claiming to work for a more “virtuous and just” America. But despite its sanitized appearance,
MAS has been described by federal prosecutors as “the overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in
America.” Indeed, MAS’s original websites also describe the organization’s development as an
outgrowth of organizations known to be founded by Muslim Brotherhood (MB) members and
identified as Brotherhood-sympathetic in internal MB memoranda. Three of its founders were
listed in a telephone book of American Muslim Brotherhood leaders, and a former member,
Mustafa Saied, admitted that MAS’s founding Brotherhood members voted to call themselves
MAS to conceal the Brotherhood connection.

From the beginning, MAS has both employed and excused apologists for terror. For example,
MAS’s former Executive Director, Mahdi Bray, give his dates as e.d. was caught on tape raising
a fist in agreement at a 2000 pro-Hamas, pro-Hizbollah event. Bray also traveled to Egypt in
2008 to attend a vigil in support of Brotherhood officials on trial. And, during Bray’s tenure as
MAS executive director, the organization issued a press release calling the 2003 arrest of Hamas
supporter and convicted terrorist financer Abdulrahman Alamoudi a “witch hunt.” MAS
dismissed not only Alamoudi’s case (despite his guilty plea), but also that of Sami Al-Arian—a
member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad's governing board—as trumped-up cases of anti-Muslim
bias by the government.

MAS’s connections with and support for Muslim Brotherhood entities resulted in its designation
as a terrorist organization by the United Arab Emirates in 2014. Yet, since then, MAS branches
in Charlotte and New York have received a total of nearly $100,000 from the U.S. Department of

Former MAS-INA and ICNA-MAS Staff and Speakers

Below are more than a dozen extremist speakers that have been featured in the past at MAS-
ICNA conferences. Each has long histories of bigoted statements and affiliation with Islamist
movements in the United States and abroad.

Abdul Rauf Khan

ICNA Staffer
Abdul Rauf Khan has been involved with ICNA since 1994. Today, he serves as the Assistant
Executive Director of ICNA’s humanitarian effort, ICNA Relief, and Secretary of both ICNA
Florida and ICNA Relief Florida. Though he recently removed many of the offending posts in an
effort to scrub his Facebook clean, Khan has long made his anti-Semitic, homophobic, Islamist
views clear. In the past, he has posted a video called “Why is it haram [forbidden] to actively be
gay?”, photographs of himself wearing a Muslim Brotherhood T-Shirt, a video glorifying a
member of Hezbollah as a “hero,” a link to a clip labeling comedian talk show host Bill Maher,
“Zionist Jew Bill Maher.”

Ahmed Taha
MAS Staffer
As a staff-person at MAS, Ahmed Taha served as the MAS-ICNA convention’s 2017 Program
Director. He is a strident anti-Semite and Muslim Brotherhood supporter. He has posted videos
from YouTube channels that claim to expose the "Rothschild Zionism Secret Regime in
America" and circulated articles claiming that Egyptian leader Abdel Fattah el-Sisi is a “Jew”
and Egypt is now “Israeli-occupied territory.”

Fahad Tasleem
Fahad Tasleem is a lead instructor at the Islamic Education and Research Academy (iERA), a
prominent British Salafi organization that the U.K. charity regulator recently censured for not
discouraging "terrorism and/or extremist views."

Tasleem also coordinates ICNA’s WhyIslam campaign. Visitors to WhyIslam website are
informed about the correct method of stoning under Sharia law: "the person was held fast in a
fixed position, and a stone or rock that it took two men to lift (i.e. was heavier than one man
could lift alone) was to be dropped to crush the head." On WhyIslam, homosexuality is
condemned as "evil" and polygamy is encouraged.

Hamza Andreas Tzortzis

Independent Islamic Speaker
A Greek-British convert to Islam, Hamza Tzortzis is a past speaker at MAS-ICNA/ ICNA-MAS
conferences. Tzortzis was once a trustee of Green Crescent, a British charity, whose head was
arrested on terrorism charges in Bangladesh when an arms cache was discovered at one of its

Along with Fahad Tasleem, Tzortzis is a leading official at the Islamic Education and Research
Academy, and has also been associated with Hizb-ut-Tahrir, an extreme global Islamist
movement. Tzortzis was once forced to disavow a statement he made claiming that apostates
from Islam should be beheaded. He has also claimed: "We as Muslims reject the idea of freedom
of speech, and even the idea of freedom."

Jamal Badawi
MAS Co-founder
A founding member of MAS, Jamal Badawi is a prominent Muslim Brotherhood-linked cleric
who was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator during the 2008 Holy Land Foundation terrorism
financing trial. Badawi describes suicide bombers and Hamas terrorists as "freedom fighters" and
"martyrs." He also advocates the right of men to beat their wives if they show "disregard for
[their] marital obligations."

Khaled Lamada
Islamic Relief USA Board Member
Khaled Lamada is a prominent Egyptian-American, who has a long history of involvement with
Muslim Brotherhood organizations. His social media accounts are filled with Muslim
Brotherhood insignia, including the notorious R4BIA sign exhibited by Muslim Brotherhood
supporters since 2013. Writing and sharing posts mostly in Arabic, Lamada has also circulated
text praising the "jihad" of the "Mujahidin of Egypt" for "causing the Jews many defeats." He
has republished claims on Facebook that praise Hamas for inflicting a "huge defeat" against the
"Zionist entity."

Further, Lamada has circulated videos that claim the current leader of Egypt, President Sisi, is
secretly Jewish, and that he opposes the Muslim Brotherhood on the orders of the Jews. One
video further claims that Jews are sowing division among Egyptian Muslims by encouraging
sexual activities. Lamada's only comment about these anti-Semitic conspiracies is: "I hope this is
not true." Lamada has even disseminated claims that America is controlled by a Zionist lobby,
which is working to demonize Muslims and plan an invasion of Sudan and the Nile Valley.

Mikaeel Smith
Islamic Seminary (Qalam Institute) Instructor
Another ICNA speaker, Mikaeel Smith is a graduate of Dar ul-Uloom al-Madania, an Islamic
seminary in New York that belongs to the Deobandi sect–a hardline South Asian movement
whose offshoots include the Taliban. Accordingly, in an article published at Muslim Matters,
Smith describes homosexuality as "evil" and like a "tumor." Referring to the death sentence
prescribed by sharia law, Smith notes that "when living in America, or any other non-Islamic
country for that matter ... the penal law and some aspects of civil law are not to be implemented."
He adds, however, that, "this does not mean that a Muslim should lose sight of what his or her
belief deems to be ideal."

Mohammad Elshinawy
Hardline Cleric
Mohammad Elshinawy claims he was under NYPD surveillance from 2004. According to the
NYPD's case synopsis, Elshinawy is a hardcore Salafi and many of his students expressed
interest in jihad.

Elshinawy states that women who do not wear hijab that covers their entire body, except for the
face and hands, are condemned to hellfire, and are likely to get breast cancer:

"Sister, wallahi, I fear for you. How many beautiful girls with beautiful skin got
tried with skin cancer that is so common females now-a-days! How many
beautiful girls had to go through a procedure, an agonizing, depressing grievous
procedure, because she is tried with breast cancer! You think these diseases were
always so common. Wallahi, they were not – not in the age of obedience."

Mohamed Rateb Nabulsi

Syrian-born Professor
A speaker at the 2016 MAS-ICNA convention, Nabulsi is a Syrian imam who has sanctioned
Palestinian suicide bombings. In his 2001 “ruling on martyrdom operations in Palestine,” he
wrote, “All the Jewish people are combatants" acceptable as targets for attacks in Israel. And, in
2016, he met with senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Qatar.

He has also endorsed the death penalty for homosexuals, and suggested in a 2010 post on his
website that same-sex marriage was a reason for Muslims to wage violent jihad against the West.
He is so extreme, in fact, that he was banned from Denmark in 2017 as a “hate preacher.”

Mokhtar Maghraoui
Islamic Seminary (Al-Madina Institute) Instructor
Mokhtar Maghraoui is a “foundation scholar” of the Al-Madina Institute and a speaker at past
MAS-ICNA conferences. In one speech, Maghraoui defends the stoning of adulterers and the
killing of criminals although suggests that an Islamic society should show mercy.

Maghraoui is a former member of the Fiqh Council of North America, an organization with a
long history as a platform for prominent Muslim Brotherhood clerics.

Tariq Ramadan
Swiss Muslim Brotherhood Academic
Tariq Ramadan, the grandson of Muslim Brotherhood founder Hassan al-Banna, and a prominent
Islamist in his own right. For example, in 1998 Ramadan wrote a foreword to a collection of
fatwas [religious rulings] by the Muslim Brotherhood cleric Yusuf al Qaradawi. According to
this book, a husband, "has the right to forbid his wife to visit another woman, if he thinks this
visit may cause a prejudice to his wife, his children or his marital life", and a "woman should not
take the initiative to talk to men she does not know".
In 2017, when Imam Shaker Elsayed of the notorious northern Virginia Dar al-Hijrah mosque
endorsed female genital mutilation, Ramadan released a 10-minute video defending Elsayed
from criticism. In his video, Ramadan stated Muslim leaders who advocate for FGM should be
understood as "brothers," part of "our community" and Muslims who disagree should engage
them with "internal discussion" and are instructed "not to expose them."
Though Ramadan has been a regular at ICNA-MAS/ MAS-ICNA conventions for several years,
he is currently fighting multiple rape charges in France, and thus has not appeared at any MAS-
ICNA events since his arrest in 2018.

Yasir Qadhi
Salafi Cleric
Yasir Qadhi is a frequent speaker for ICNA events, and is one of the most well-known Islamist
preachers in the United States. His extremism started early; as a Master’s student at the Islamic
University of Madinah, in 2001, Qadhi delivered a viciously anti-Semitic talk: “As for 80 to 90
percent of the Jews in our times, they are Ashkenazis, i.e. Khazars, i.e. Russians. … Look at
them — white, crooked nose, blonde hairs… These are not a Semitic people,” he said. Qadhi
then told his audience to read Hoax of the Holocaust, which he called “a very good book.” Later,
Qadhi called his rant against Jews a youthful indiscretion, and professed his appreciation for
Jews. Yet in the same year, Qadhi also defended notorious Holocaust denier David Irving.

Though he has insisted otherwise, Qadhi’s extremist sympathies are not solely confined to his
youth. In October 2016, Qadhi defended the Taliban to a commenter on Qadhi’s Facebook page,
writing: “The Taliban might have had strange beliefs and customs (from your perspective), but it
was their country that was falsely invaded, and they did what every single nation would do. Fight
back. Sadly, some American politicians have far more blood on their hands than the Taliban and
Al Qaeda combined…”

And, in March 2017, Qadhi wrote about convicted Al Qaeda fundraiser Babar Ahmad on
Facebook, saying: “Honored to know Babar Ahmad as a friend.” In July 2014, Ahmad was
sentenced to twelve-and-a-half years in prison for providing material support to terrorists.
Ahmad, who pled guilty to the charges against him, was the operator of the website Azzam
Publications, which raised money and recruited fighters for Al Qaeda and the Taliban. In March
2016, Qadhi wrote: “I was honored to perform hajj one year with Babar Ahmad.”

Speakers at MAS-ICNA 2018/ MAS-Los Angeles 2018
Below are 35 of the most popular, influential, and extreme speakers at this year’s MAS-ICNA
and MAS-LA conventions. Some speakers appeared at one of the two recent conferences,
while others addressed both events.

Abdeljalil Mezgouri
American Imam
MAS LA 2018
Abdeljalil Mezgouri is an imam and director at the Islamic Center of San Diego (which
frequently co-sponsors events with the Council on American-Islamic Relations—a group
designated as an unindicted coconspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing trial).
The Islamic Center recently celebrated its 35th anniversary by hosting CAIR staffer Zahra Billoo,
who has claimed that the FBI recruits members for ISIS and the Taliban.

Mezgouri is also and a frequent speaker at fundraisers for Islamic Relief USA, the American
branch of a worldwide Islamist charity franchise that has long been accused of funding terrorism.
For example, in 2005, Russian authorities accused Islamic Relief of supporting terrorism in
Chechnya. And in 2012, the Swiss banking giant UBS closed Islamic Relief’s accounts and
“blocked donations coming from its customers to the charity,” reportedly over terror financing
fears. Four years later, HSBC did the same.

Mezgouri’s mosque was attended by the family of Jehad Serwan Mostafa, who was charged for
supporting Somali Al-Qaeda offshoot al-Shabaab.

Abdool R. Khan
Abdool Khan has served as the imam of the ICNA-VA Masjid in Alexandria, VA since 2013,
and is a graduate of the Islamic University in Madinah. He is the chairman of the ICNA Shari’ah
Council and a member of the Fiqh Council of North America.

He spoke at the 2005 ICNA conference in a session called “The Making of a Proper Muslim
from the Perspectives of Al Banna and Al Mawdudi” (founders of the Muslim Brotherhood and
Jamaat-e-Islamiya respectively), in which he claimed that Western powers were trying to
delegitimize Islam.

He has been a frequent guest of the MAS-ICNA convention, having spoken at the 2013, 2014,
and 2016 events (in one of his MAS-ICNA lectures, he cites and briefly praises Muslim
Brotherhood spiritual leader Yusuf Al Qaradawi, saying that Qaradawi valued “social welfare”,
“freedom” and “human dignity.”).

Abdul Malik Mujahid

Pakistani-born Imam

Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid is a vocal supporter of the late Muhammad Salah, who was accused
by federal prosecutors of being a Hamas operative. In 1995, Bill Clinton designated Salah as a

Mujahid is also a vocal critic of Israel. In 2016, he tweeted a Middle East Monitor (an
infamously anti-Israel publication) article that blamed Israel for inspiring Myanmar’s “genocide”
of the Rohingya.

In a 2014 lecture, he (half-jokingly) claims that the Christian Salvation Army is trying to take
over Pakistan, that Muhammad was not a violent man and allowed Jews to worship freely,
defends Muhammad Morsi’s election in Egypt as “fair” and democratic, and dismisses claims
that Morsi was Islamist.

Abdelgawad Konsouh
Egyptian-born Physician
Abdelgawad Konsouh has been a longtime speaker at MAS-ICNA conferences. His social media
shows his support for former Egyptian president Muhammad Morsi and the Muslim Brotherhood
itself, with images of the four-fingered Muslim Brotherhood “Rabia” symbol found on his
Facebook profile).

Konsouh has been known to share anti-Semitism on his Facebook page; in one instance, he
shared a post touting the famous hadith that commands Muslims to fight against Jews to bring
about the Day of Judgment. The post then surmises that Jews plant trees in Israel in order to
shield themselves from the inevitable Muslim onslaught.

Abdul-Nasir Jangda
Islamic Seminary (Qalam Institute) Instructor
Jangda is a Texas-based cleric who studied Islam and the Qur’an at a Pakistani Deobandi
seminary. Deobandis are a particularly hardline sect of south Asian Islam, and Jangda’s
seminary—Jamia Binoria in Karachi, Pakistan—fits right in. In 2009, BBC journalist John
Humphreys reported that Jamia Binoria was “brainwashing” children into supporting terrorism.
Indeed, in 2015, Pakistani law enforcement raided the seminary after including it on a list of
madrassahs (Islamic seminaries) linked to terrorist organizations.

Jangda is now an instructor at Salafi seminary Qalam Institute and is closely involved with
Quranic educational programs in the United States. According to a dossier of some detailed notes
published by Jangda's students, Jangda has reportedly taught: “The thing to understand is that the
husband has his set of divinely given rights one of which is the right to have his physical desires

Jangda has also described the Jews of Mecca as “really bad people” who were “very hateful,
very spiteful,” and “the enemy” and advocates the killing of apostates and adulterers. And, those
who do not accept Islam, Jangda warns in a sermon titled "A Tour of Paradise and Hellfire," will

be "chained up with so many chains they will be walking around the fire pits of hell dragging
these chains. And then they will be put inside the fire and burned to a crisp."

Aisha Al Adawiya
Social Justice Activist
Aisha Al-Adawiya was born in Alabama and converted to Islam after finding a copy of the
Qur’an in a bookshop, and speaking with Malcolm X. She is prone to spreading anti-Israel
conspiracy theories on Twitter; in November 2018, for example, she tweeted a DemocracyNow!
article asserting that Israel assassinated Yasser Arafat.

Though she speaks frequently about women’s rights in Islam, Adawiya is a vocal supporter of
alleged rapist Tariq Ramadan on Twitter. She has been associated with him since before he was
arrested, attending an event with him at Columbia in 2017.

Ali Tos
Turkish Envoy
MAS LA 2018
Ali Tos is a representative of the Diyanet, Turkey’s Directorate of Religious Affairs, which has
been aggressively promoting Turkish interests and supporting Islamism in Europe and America.
Tos’ Facebook page shows that he works for the Diyanet Center of America (DCA), which
recently celebrated the two-year anniversary of its opening in 2016. It was established with great
fanfare, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and other officials from his Justice and
Development Party (AKP) attending the event. On its website, DCA states that it “works in full
cooperation with the Religious Affairs Directorate of the Republic of Turkey (Diyanet),” which
did in fact finance its establishment with a cool $100 million in state money.

As Turkey’s main Islamic authority, the Diyanet holds a legal monopoly on Muslim religious
affairs in the country. Under the influence of Erdoğan, the Diyanet’s budget has quadrupled and
it has become infiltrated by Islamist ideology. In July 2017, the Diyanet directorate published a
report stating that Islam is “superior” to Christianity and Judaism and insisting that “Interfaith
dialogue is unacceptable.”

Altaf Husain
ISNA Leadership
Altaf Husain has a multitude of extremist connections. He is the Vice President of the Islamic
Society of North America (ISNA) and former two-term president of the Muslim Students’
Association (MSA)—an organization created by Muslim Brotherhood members and termed an
“incubator” for Islamist extremism by the NYPD.

In his capacity as ISNA leadership, Husain disinvited Muslim activist Wajahat Ali from ISNA’s
2018 conference because Ali participated in a dialogue with liberal Zionists as part of the
Shalom Hartman Institute's Muslim Leadership Initiative (MLI). The program includes travel to

Israel to meet with Israelis and Palestinians to learn about their perspectives. Ali published
ISNA's letter on his Facebook page telling him he no longer was welcome: "Other than our creed
as Muslims, there is perhaps nothing more exemplary and unifying than our community's support
for the Palestinian people of all faith traditions, in their struggle against occupation and
dispossession," Husain wrote. Ali apparently failed to meet that standard, and letting him speak
"would cause us to conflict with our principles and potentially harm the purposes for which our
organization exists."

Dalia Mogahed
Academic and Author
Dalia Mogahed is the Director of Research at the Washington, D.C- based Institute for Social
Policy and Understanding (ISPU). Mogahed once granted a friendly interview on a radio show
hosted by a member of the Islamist movement Hizb ut Tahrir, which advocates the “eradication”
of the "entity of Jews." In her interview, Mogahed insisted that Sharia law promotes “gender

Mogahed is a protégé of John Esposito, executive director of the Prince Alwaleed Bin-Talal
Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University and a longstanding
apologist for the Muslim Brotherhood. The pair worked together at the Gallup Center, and co-
authored the book Who Speaks for Islam? What A Billion Muslims Really Think in 2007.
Mogahed denies any connection between radical Islam and terrorism.

Speaking to the Religion Newswriters Association in September 2008, she said that "'Islamic
terrorism' is really a contradiction in terms" to mainstream Muslims "because terrorism is not
Islamic by definition." She has also said that Muslims "primarily" believe Sharia is "law that is
going to make society more just, and that cannot be co-opted or thrown out at the whim of a
despotic leader.” When she was asked about links between CAIR and ISNA and Islamic radicals,
Mogahed replied that it would be unfair to have those groups "disenfranchised" because of
"misinformation." Without offering evidence, she claimed "there is a concerted effort to silence,
you know, institution building among Muslims. And the way to do it is [to] malign these groups.
And it's kind of a witch hunt."

Dunia Shuaib
Independent Islamic Speaker
Dunia Shuaib is a popular speaker in Islamist circles. Shuaib claims that ISIS’s penchant for
burning its prisoners alive is no worse than Israeli and American military actions, which she
refers to as “terrorism.” Shuaib has promoted the videos of Neturei Karta, an extremist fringe-
Jewish organization which claims that all Middle Eastern conflict is the fault of “Zionist Jews”.
Shuaib writes that a Neturei Karta activist “exposes the truth about Zionism.” Neturei Karta is an
ally of the Iranian regime and supports a number of far-Right and neo-Nazi organizations across

Esam Omeish
Libyan-born Physician
Esam Omeish is the former MAS president. In one of his speeches, given at a 2000 anti-Israel
rally, he applauded Palestinians for accepting that "the jihad way is the way to liberate your
land." A few years later, in an April 2004 speech at a MAS conference in Overland Park, Kansas,
Omeish stated that either Islam will "become the dominant religion of the next century," or "we
may be forcibly rejected from the West because of forces of intolerance, racism, and bigotry."
And, in a 2004 letter to the Chicago Tribune, as president of MAS, Omeish defended the Muslim
Brotherhood and its influence on American Islam: “The influence of Muslim Brotherhood ideas
has been instrumental in defining our understanding of Islam within the American and Western

After videos of his inflammatory speeches surfaced, Omeish was forced to resign from his
appointment to a Virginia immigration commission in 2007.

Hussain Kamani
Islamic Seminary (Qalam Institute) Instructor
Kamani is American-born and studied for several years at an extremist Deobandi seminary in
England. He works as an instructor for the Qalam Institute. In his courses and lectures, Kamani
has said of sex slavery:
And then Allah...said if a person wishes to fulfil his desires, his common desires,
there are only two ways he can fulfill these desires where he will not be held
responsible for it. ... How? What are the two things? ... The first thing is that he
fulfills his desires with a spouse. The second thing is that he fulfills his desires
with a female slave that belongs to him.

One of the Qalam Institute’s most popular courses–titled “The Prophetic Code” and taught by
Kamani–warns Muslims to seek “cleanliness” and “purity”, and therefore “do not resemble the
Jews.” Kamani also cites Quranic commentary to advise parents: “Order your children to pray at
the age of seven. And beat them (lightly) if they do not do so by the age of ten.”

In a talk titled “Sex, Masturbation and Islam,” Kamani explains that Muslim men may fulfill any
sexual desires “with a female slave that belongs to him.” Those who commit adultery or have sex
outside of marriage, Kamani explains, must be “stoned to death.” And when Muslim husbands
are learning to “train their wives,” beating them, Kamani concedes, should only be a “last
measure.” Western society, Kamani also declares, is “filth. … We are surrounded by filth … our
environment is full of this filth, everywhere we turn.”

Hussam Ayloush
CAIR-LA Director
MAS LA 2018
Hussam Ayloush has been the Executive Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations-
Los Angeles (CAIR-LA) since 1998 and is well-practiced at creating controversy. In 2016, he

was heavily criticized, when following the crash of a Russian military jet, he tweeted “I’m sad
about the crashed Russian military jet. The Tu-154 could have carried up to 180 military
personnel instead of just 92!” Ayloush later apologized, saying his tweet was a “knee-jerk”

He has equated the Israeli army to ISIS terrorists during a program at the Islamic Institute of
Orange County:
“You know how many hundreds of Jewish American kids are recruited to join
the Israeli occupation army? Hundreds. Every year. They leave their country,
leave America, to go join with an army that is engaged, with no debate, in
major violations of human rights, and maybe some would argue, and I'm one of
them, war crimes…No one has ever established a CVE program to see, why
would normal Jewish American kids leave their home and join to be part of an
army committing war crimes.”

In 2015, he said that “You know, you don't hear about countering violent extremism to deal with
the thousands of Jewish-American kids who join the Israeli army killing the people of Gaza.
When was the last time the DHS–the Dept. of Homeland Security–or the FBI approached the
Jewish community to ask them to deal with this trend? Actually, there are many more Jewish
Americans who have joined the Israeli army than there are Muslim Americans who join ISIS."

Last month, Ayloush came under fire for calling Israel and Iran “cancerous tumor[s]” and
“murderous regimes” that should be “terminated”—despite CAIR’s history of involvement with
Iranian politicians and interest groups. He has also long used the term “Zionazi” to describe
supporters of Israel.

Ieasha Prime
Women’s March Speaker
Ieasha Prime is the Women’s Program Coordinator at the infamous Dar al-Hijrah (DAH) mosque
in VA. DAH has been a subject of controversy for some time; al Qaeda terrorist Anwar al
Awlaki served as DAH’s imam in the months before the 9/11 attacks. More recently, another
DAH imam, Shaker Elsayed, stirred controversy by condoning female genital mutilation (FGM).

In January 2018, DAH hosted a women’s convention in response to Elsayed’s remarks, but the
attendees were reportedly unable to have an honest, comprehensive discussion of FGM. While
the FGM panel was moderated by Ieash Prime herself (she also served as a speaker at the
speaker at the 2017 Women’s March on Washington), journalist Hannah Allam reported that
“the key dispute was sidestepped: Does the mosque believe there’s a religious argument for any
form of genital cutting?” Prime even “dismissed the idea that keeping Elsayed on staff cost Dar
al-Hijrah credibility in addressing FGM.”

Imad Bayoun
Lebanese-born Professor
MAS LA 2018

Bayoun is Lebanese, earned his PhD from Texas A&M, and now works as a faculty member of
UC-Riverside. Bayoun has praised MB founder Hassan al-Banna and Islamist ideologue Sayyid
Qutb, whose writings inspired Osama bin Laden. Bayoun claimed Qutb's writings, such as his
manifesto Milestones, were "largely misunderstood" in remarks at the Muslim American Society
of Greater Los Angeles' 20th Annual "Agents of Change" convention in 2017. Bayoun also
lamented Qutb's execution in 1966 by Egypt's Nasser regime.

Jihad Saafir
California-based Imam
MAS LA 2018
Saafir is an Imam and leads a Los Angeles-based Islamic center named Islah LA. In an
interview, he praised his Islah Academy as an alternative to public schools, saying, “These
schools are terrible. Your child's going to end up gangbanging.” During his session in the MAS-
LA conference, he again claimed that public schools resemble and prepare children for prison.
He also used his session to praise the prominent extremist preacher Siraj Wahhaj, and the
notoriously anti-Semitic black supremacist group, Nation of Islam.

Jonathan Brown
Academic and Author
MAS LA 2018
Islamist convert Jonathan Brown is the director of the Saudi-funded Prince Alwaleed bin Talal
Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU) at Georgetown University. Brown
married his fellow Muslim Georgetown graduate, Laila Al-Arian. He is notorious for his extreme
statements and Islamist connections. In 2013, he spoke at a fundraiser for the Hamas-linked
Council on American-Islamic Relations which was also attended by Islamist activist Linda

Brown serves as an "instructor" at the Fairfax Institute, a religious training organization run by
the International Institute of Islamic Thought (IIIT). While the IIIT claims it is simply "dedicated
to the revival and reform of Islamic thought and its methodology in order to enable the Ummah
to deal effectively with present challenges," it has a long history of extremist links. In the 1990s,
Federal investigators found evidence that IIIT helped fund a front group for Palestinian Islamic
Jihad. A US Senate committee in 2002 noted that an IIIT employee provided material support to
Osama bin-Laden. In 2008, federal prosecutors in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing
trial introduced evidence that included IIIT as one of the Muslim Brotherhood's "list of our
organizations and organizations of our friends."

In February 2017, Brown came under fire for an IIIT speech defending Sharia-sanctioned rape
and sex slavery. In his speech, he claimed that "the Sharia understanding of slavery" is "not
comparable at all" to slavery as it existed in America.

Brown has also displayed hostility toward Ahmadiyya Muslims, a minority moderate Muslim
sect. When Ahmadi activists, including writer Kashif Chaudhry, publicly condemned a recent
conference whose entire purpose was to incite hatred against their sect, Brown retaliated on
behalf of the Islamists. Brown accused Chaudhry of "throwing law-abiding Muslims under the

bus" for "exercising their Constitutionally protected freedom of religion", and continued: "what I
find totally beyond the pale with Ahmadi PR operators like Kashif Chaudry is that they call
Muslims takfiris [Muslims who accuse other Muslims of apostasy] for doing no more than
following the consensus position of all Sunni and Shiah scholars."

Brown’s Facebook page reveals more Islamist radicalism, like his pro-MB R4BIA symbol
Facebook profile. For him, this symbol popularized after the Egyptian military's brutal 2013
crackdown on the MB indicates that "subverting progress towards more accountable government
cannot be allowed." Despite the MB's totalitarian and violent legacy, Brown’s Facebook postings
declare that "to use 'the Muslim Brotherhood' in the same sentence with Isis, terrorism or
extremism cannot be tolerated."

Khalil Meek
Muslim Legal Fund of America Director
Khalil Meek is a convert to Islam the former Vice President of the Dallas/Ft. Worth chapter of
the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). When the US Supreme Court refused to
hear an appeal regarding the Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing trial, Meek described it
as “a dark day for America.” He also once wrote a letter to a Michigan judge requesting leniency
for convicted terrorist Rasmea Odeh, describing her as a “community leader.”

Kifah Mustapha
Chicago-based Imam
Kifah Mustapha is an imam and director of Chicago’s Bridgeview mosque. In a video introduced
as evidence during the Holy Land Foundation terror financing trial in 2008, Mustapha can be
heard praising Hamas terrorism, chanting:
“O mother, Hamas for Jihad. Over mosques' loudspeakers, with freedom. Every
day it resists with stones and the dagger. Tomorrow, with God's help, it will be
with a machine gun and a rifle.”
In October 2015, during the outbreak of the “stabbing intifada” in Israel, Mustapha posted on
Facebook in support of the attacks. And in 2017, Mustapha invoked Muslim Brotherhood
founder Hassan al-Banna in an Oct. 8 sermon posted on his Facebook page.

Meanwhile, the demonstrably sexist Mustapha has written that a Muslim woman shouldn’t wear
“attractive” clothes, use noticeable makeup, travel without the company of “other trusted Muslim
sisters,” approach a romantic interest, or spend time alone with her fiancé. Mustapha serves as
the official appointed representative of Lebanon’s Ministry of Religious Affairs (Dar Al
Fatwa)—the same religious body that opposed a Lebanese bill that would have criminalized
marital rape and domestic abuse. Mustapha has also written that Muslim husbands have a “right
to take a second wife,” that a Muslim father may block his daughter’s choice of spouse, and that
the option of surrogacy is forbidden for Muslim women — even if they are infertile.

Laila Al-Arian
Al Jazeera Producer
MAS LA 2018
Laila Al-Arian is the daughter of Palestinian Islamic Jihad board member Sami Al-Arian, the
wife of Jonathan Brown, and a producer for the Qatari-owned Al Jazeera news network. In 2018,
the Council on American-Islamic Relations awarded her an “Excellence in Media” award.

At the 2009 ISNA convention, an essay by Al-Arian was distributed which lamented the
"chilling effect" the Holy Land Foundation verdict would have on the Muslim community:
With its propaganda-like quality, the evidence was clearly intended to provoke an
emotional response. For example, jurors were repeatedly shown videos of grisly
suicide bombings that none of the defendants were in any way connected to, or
accused of planning.

And, in an article in Turkish news site World Bulletin, she gave an interview defending her father
as an “activist” and victim of the “pro-Israel lobby” even though the presiding judge in his 2005
trial concluded Al-Arian was in fact a board member of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ)
terrorist group. Sami Al-Arian’s membership in PIJ was confirmed by the host at a 1991
fundraiser; the host named al-Arian as the head of the PIJ's active arm long before supposed
"enemies from the pro-Israeli lobby" detected his involvement in terrorism. Meanwhile, Al-Arian
helped arrange American visas for other PIJ board members, including the man who has run the
group since 1995.

Linda Sarsour
Social Justice Activist
Despite Linda Sarsour’s position as a co-organizer for the Women’s March on Washington, in
2011, she also expressed her desire to “take away the vaginas” of two female anti-Islamism
activists: Brigitte Gabriel and Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Ali is herself already a victim of FGM in
Somalia. In May 2017, a Dartmouth student confronted Sarsour about this tweet. Sarsour
responded by attacking the student for his race, saying, “I have a young white man in the back
who is not impacted by any of the issues that I mentioned.”

Critics of Sarsour have denounced her friendly relationship with the anti-Semitic Louis
Farrakhan, or Sarsour’s public praise for convicted murderers such as Rasmea Odeh. Sarsour has
also claimed that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the 2009 “underwear bomber,” was a CIA

Last year, Sarsour was exposed for silencing Asmi Fathelbab, a Muslim woman who worked for
Sarsour at the Arab American Association of NY (AAANY). In an article in the New York Post,
Fathelbab revealed that Sarsour refused to consider Fathelbab’s accounts of sexual assault at the
hands of a Muslim man, and even threatened Fathelbab with permanent unemployment in the
Arab and Muslim community.

Maryam Amir
Independent Islamic Speaker
MAS LA 2018
Maryam Amir served as the president of the MSA chapter at UC San Jose for two years. She
writes for Islamist cleric Suhaib Webb’s website, She emphasizes tying
religiosity with social justice and condemns racism within the Muslim community against fellow
Muslims and larger society. But, at the recent MAS-LA conference, she reportedly called
homosexuality a gift—in that someone who has homosexual tendencies would have the “gift” of
not having children or a family and could instead focus that time on serving god in other ways.

Mazen Mokhtar
MAS Director
Mazen Mokhtar is an Egyptian-born Islamist, board member of Muslim Brotherhood-connected
Islamist umbrella group US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO) , and the Executive
Director of MAS.

In August 2004, the U.S. government accused Mokhtar of hosting a website,,
which solicited donations for the Taliban and Chechen Mujahideen, and called for Muslim to
carry out attacks in the West along with advice about how best to do so.

Mokhtar was also charged in 2007 with tax fraud in this connection, and investigators hoped to
broaden the charges to include support for terrorism; yet with no explanation, then-U.S. Attorney
Chris Christie dropped charges in 2008, saying only that "further prosecution is not in the
interests of the United States at this time." Mokhtar was also among those present at a private
meeting in New York City with Turkish president Erdogan in 2016.

Mohamed Qatanani
New Jersey-based Imam
Imam Mohammad Qatanani, the leader of the Islamic Center of Passaic County, is fighting a
deportation order after federal officials found he failed to disclose a previous conviction in Israel
for membership in Hamas. According to his own lawyer, Qatanani was also a member of the
student chapter of the Muslim Brotherhood in Jordan. A July 2008 N.J. Office of Homeland
Security and Preparedness intelligence report about the state's Hamas network identifies
Qatanani as a Hamas supporter. In 2015, former board members and a congregant of Qatanani’s
Islamic center filed a lawsuit alleging that Qatanani had used $88,000 of the mosque’s money to
fund his legal battle.

In 2007, Qatanani prayed for the defeat of “occupation and oppression” in Iraq, Palestine, and
Chechnya. He also preached that Jews and Christians “will be swiftly punished by Allah” and
that Muslims should not speak badly of Sheikh Yousef Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the
Muslim Brotherhood.

Muzammil Siddiqi
California-based Imam
MAS LA 2018
President of ISNA in 1996-2000, and still closely involved today, Siddiqui has served as the
director of the Islamic Society of Orange County since 1981. In an interview previously
published on ISNA’s website, Siddiqi condemned the LGBT community: “Homosexuality is a
moral disorder. It is a moral disease, a sin and corruption…” which must be “checked and
corrected.” Siddiqi even expressed support for laws in countries where homosexuality is
punishable by death.
In the 1990s, Siddiqui called for “the whole land of Palestine” to come under Islamic rule:
I can see that there is already some impact after Jihad in Afghanistan in the
Intifada movement in Palestine. With this, more courage, more strength, more
confidence and shall I even say that in a few years we will be celebrating with
each other the victory of Islam in Palestine. Insh'allah, we shall be celebrating the
coming of the Masjid al-Aqsa under the Islamic rule. We shall be celebrating
insh'allah the coming of Jerusalem and the whole land of Palestine insh'allah and
the establishment of the Islamic State throughout that area.

Nihad Awad
CAIR Director
Nihad Awad is the Executive Director and co-founder of the Council on American-Islamic
Relations. During the early 1990s, when Awad worked for the (now defunct) organization
Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), the organization distributed a pamphlet (stamped with
its logo) called "America's Greatest Enemy: The Jew! And an Unholy Alliance!" The anti-
Semitic booklet was featured in counterterrorism expert Steven Emerson's 1994 PBS
documentary "Terrorists Among Us." According to Emerson, Awad allowed the booklet to be
distributed at the 1995 Muslim Arab Youth Association (MAYA) conference in Chicago, at
which Muhammad Siyam, a high-ranking Hamas official, told the crowd, "Finish off the Israelis!
Kill them all! Exterminate them! No peace, ever!"

Awad has also parroted the common anti-Semitic conspiracy theory that Jews control the
American government. In a 1998 lecture at Georgetown University, Awad told his audience that
U.S. policy is "driven in part by the Jewish origin of many Clinton administration officials."
Awad continued, "Who of Clinton's advisors ... is opposing the latest agreement with Iraq? Look
at their names. Look at ... their ethnic or religious or racial background. You will see that these
are the same groups that belong to the same interest groups in the administration."

More recently, Awad applauded the current Turkish Islamist government—which routinely jails
dozens of journalists and tortures political prisoners—as "a very impressive example of
supporting the oppressed in the Islamic world." And, in December, Awad and CAIR advocated
that a Washington, D.C. street be named after the assassinated Hamas-supporting journalist
Jamal Khashoggi.

Omar Suleiman
Hardline Cleric
MAS-ICNA 2018, MAS LA 2018
Imam Omar Suleiman was condemned by moderate Muslim activists in 2013 after he described
homosexuality as a "disease" and a "repugnant shameless sin." He refers to the Islamic death
penalty for the "people that practiced sodomy."

In a 2012 talk titled "Fighting Zina," Suleiman claims that women who are too close with their
brothers are likely to commit incest. Women, he declares, should never be alone with a man
outside of her family. Further, he warns, without condemnation, that women who commit
adultery risk being killed by a family member.

Suleiman also works as an instructor at the Al-Maghrib Institute, a prominent Salafist institution.
His colleagues include Abdullah Hakim Quick, who calls upon God to "clean and purify Al-
Aqsa from the filth of the Yahood [Jews]"; and Abu Eesa Niamatullah, who says of Jews: "They
find it so easy and natural to do what they do....Look at them today, look at the way they
massacre. They blow up babies like as if it's a computer game. They have no humanity, no
morality, no ethics."

Osama Abuirshaid
AMP Policy Director
Osama Abuirshaid works as the National Policy Director of American Muslims for Palestine
(AMP), an organization the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) notes “promotes extreme anti-Israel
views and has at times provided a platform for anti-Semitism under the guise of educating
Americans about “the just cause of Palestine and the rights of self-determination.” Abuirshaid
previously served as the editor of Al Zaytounah, the official newspaper of the Islamic
Association of Palestine (IAP), which the U.S. government has described as part of “Hamas’
propaganda apparatus.”

Abuirshaid has written that the terrorist group Hamas is “an army for liberation” whose fighters
“rise up for the blood of martyrs, and in a In another post, Irshaid praised Hamas's "steadfastness
and sacrifice," and claimed, "Gaza is victorious...The descendants of the Muslim David are
rubbing the dust with the nose of the descendants of the Jewish Goliath."

At a May 11th 2018 AMP speaking engagement, he parroted an anti-Semitic conspiracy theory
by telling his audience that most modern Jews are “not [real] Jews.”

Oussama Jamal
USCMO Board Member
Oussama Jammal is the General Secretary of Islamist umbrella association US Council of
Muslim Organizations. He is also the director of a MAS department named Public Affairs and
Civic Engagement (MAS-PACE). Jammal is also the Vice President of the Mosque Foundation
in Bridgeview, IL (also known as the Bridgeview Mosque), which has a long history of
connections to terrorism. In 2003, Jammal raised $50,000 at a Mosque Foundation prayer service

for terror operative Sami al-Arian, the North American representative of Palestinian Islamic

Saad Tasleem
Islamic Seminary (Al-Maghrib Institute) Instructor
MAS-ICNA 2018, MAS LA 2018
Saad Tasleem is a former punk-rock band leader, and current instructor at the Al-Maghrib
Institute, a Salafi religious training organization. He is a frequent tweeter, and has called Israel a
“terrorist state.” Tasleem equates Israel with ISIS, and writes that “There is no doubt that history
will look back at those who supported Israel's brutal occupation of Palestine and the savagery
and violence against its people just as we now look back at those who supported the Nazis in the
1930's and 1940's.”

Saad Tasleem is the brother of Fahad Tasleem, who is a lead instructor of the radical group

Shakeel Syed
AMP Board Member
MAS LA 2018
Shakeel Syed is a southern California-based Islamist activist who championed the lost legal
cause of the so-called Irvine 11—a group of 11 anti-Israel students at UC Irvine who pre-planned
and orchestrated coordinated disruptions of a public lecture by Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren
in 2011. 10 of the 11 students were prosecuted for conspiracy and disrupting a public meeting.

Syed has also advocated the release from incarceration of Islamist professor, Tariq Ramadan,
who stands accused of several violent rapes in France.

Suleiman Hani
Hardline Cleric
Suleiman Hani is a hardline cleric who writes that “‘Freedom of speech’ is a facade of a tool that
is used inconsistently by those in power” and is used to stifle “objective discussion” of the
“Holocaust and Jews.” He also promotes 9/11 conspiracy theories – he notes “the very strange
collapse of building 7” and “the arguments about the actual perpetrators of 9/11 (and the plethora
of evidence on both sides of the debate).” He concludes that “this smokescreen of a ‘war on
terror’ has continuously been exposed as a war on Islam multiple times.” He also warns Muslims
against looking at women, claiming that “lowering your gaze” will provide “insight” – the
“opposite of that is the blindness which Allah attributed to the homosexuals.”

Hani frequently presents shows on Huda TV, an Islamic television station that hosts prominent
extremist clerics. Hani uses his program on Huda TV to claim that the kuffar [unbelievers] will
suffer the “abode of hellfire. … This is what they gathered from their evil.” He states that “the
disbelievers, these are the evil people. … they will be beaten and hammered and turned to dust
and then returned back. They will be given a bed of fire, full of darkness.” Those who commit
adultery, Hani continues, will be “put in a pit of fire.”

Tareq al Suwaidan
Muslim Brotherhood Leader
MAS LA 2018
Tareq al Suwaidan is a prominent Muslim-Brotherhood member based in Kuwait. He was trained
in the classical Islamic sciences in his youth and lived and then studied in the United States from
the age of 17. He has preached to large audiences in the U.K. Canada, and Australia, and in
prominent institutions across the Middle East—including the Georgetown University School of
Foreign Service in Qatar. In one lecture, he declared the state of Israel to be a deviant country
and destined to be eradicated in its entirety. He also said that “Everyone must participate in this
battle, wherever they may be – from Indonesia to the Muslim minorities in the U.S. Everybody
must participate.”
He continued, saying:
"The firing of rockets continues. These rockets have paralyzed Israel
completely. Israel is completely frozen. They all went trembling into their
holes. The blood (we) sacrifice is undoubtedly precious, but the equation is:
'Our dead are in Paradise, and theirs are in the Hellfire.' We are not afraid of
martyrdom. Just a short while ago, you were chanting: 'Death for the sake of
Allah is our loftiest desire.' Well, the death that you desire has just come to
you. We have no problem with death. We are different from the Israelites. 'You
shall find them to be the people most eager to protect their lives,' while we
desire death, desire martyrdom. The difference is very clear.”

In 2013, Al Sudaiwan was fired from his position of director general of Riyadh-based Arab
television channel Al-Resalah by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal on account of his connections with
the Muslim Brotherhood. Al-Suwaidan has also posted pictures of himself with Hamas political
bureau head Khaled Mash’al, whom he named “my brother,” and with Muslim Brotherhood
cleric Yousef Al Qaradawi.

Ubaydullah Evans
Islamic Educator
MAS LA 2018
Ubaydullah Evans is the Executive Director of the American Learning Institute for Muslims
(ALIM) and the first African American to graduate from the Islamic Law program at Al-Azhar,
the world's largest Sunni Islamic educational institution, where many of the world's most brutal
terrorists received their formal religious training. In a lecture on the history of Islam, Evans
offered a defense of the Taliban, stating, “A lot of people malign the Taliban… they were trying
to run a country like you run a madrassa. You just can’t do that.” The Taliban merely lacked
“worldly sophistication”.

Evans has attacked prominent cleric Hamza Yusuf for discussing social issues within the black
community as a white man, claiming that his being white “precludes the possibility of his being
able to make such comments with integrity.” He further stated that “the ontological fact of
whiteness” prevented Yusuf from understanding the significance of what he was saying, and that
despite all of his accomplishments, “he-is-still-white” [sic].

Wesley Lebron
Islamic Educator
Also known as AbdurRazzaq Abu Sumayyah, Wesley Lebron is a Puerto Rican convert to Islam.
He runs the New Jersey chapter of IslamInSpanish, which circulates Islamic knowledge in the
Spanish language. On Facebook, Lebron is a vociferous anti-Semite. He warns Muslims “not to
become like the Jews”, and posts links titled “Zionist Jew Bill Maher owned by Glenn
Greenwald” and “Jews did 9/11.”

Zaid Shakir
Hardline Cleric
Zaid Shakir has a long history of promoting and defending violently extremist ideas. In a 2001
article titled, “Muslim involvement in the American political process,” Shakir wrote that
Muslims should reject “the legal and political system of America”, which is “sinful and
constitutes open rebellion against Allah.” He argued that “Islam presents an absolutist political
agenda, or one which doesn’t lend itself to compromise,” and that because Islamist involvement
in politics has largely failed, Muslims should not discount violence, citing examples such as the
Taliban’s “armed struggle” in Afghanistan. He further warned against “seeking the help of,” or
“befriending,” the “kuffar, Jews and Christians.”

In a 2007 blog post, Shakir argued that “Zionists” and the FBI were responsible for the February
1993 World Trade Center bombing, and that there were “glaring weaknesses and inconsistencies
in the official narrative” of the 9/11 attacks.

In a 2010 editorial in Tikkun, he claimed that the jihadist Luqman Ameen Abdullah, who died
after attempting to shoot FBI agents, was the victim of a “self-serving racist agenda.”

Zahra Billoo
CAIR Staffer
MAS LA 2018
Zahra Billoo has served as the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations’
San Francisco Bay Area chapter since 2009. In 2017, Billoo questioned whether U.S. soldiers
should be honored or remembered on Memorial Day, writing that the holiday is a “struggle” for
her. When criticized, she took a step further and called the U.S. military murderers and
occupiers, and compared U.S. military operations to Taliban terrorism. Indeed, Billoo once
tweeted that she “feels more responsible for and outraged by US military terrorism in Pakistan
than Taliban terrorism there.”

In 2011, Billoo’s CAIR chapter was condemned after it discouraged Muslims from cooperating
with the FBI on matters related to terror. Billoo also accused the Bureau of “creating terror plots
that don’t exist” and suggested that the FBI itself might have planned the foiled terrorist
activities. And, at the 2017 Islamic Society of North America conference, Billoo warned that the
US Government aims to persecute Muslims: “We [know they have done this] with other
communities, that they’re going to send us to concentration camps.”

In November 2014, her chapter of CAIR honored convicted Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ)
member Sami Al-Arian with the “Promoting Justice Award,” despite the fact that he pleaded
guilty to funneling money to PIJ. She has continued to tweet in defense of Al-Arian (even once
saying that she “finds inspiration” from him). She regularly refers to Israel as an “apartheid”
state and supports Hamas.


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