Besides campaigning for the government to de-list Hezbollah and Hamas from the list of formally designated terrorist organizations, MPAC regularly gets its pom-poms out for individual terrorists. That is, while winking about how much it abhors “terrorism,” MPAC tirelessly insists that the government’s efforts to prevent and punish terrorism are a scam — camouflage for a neo-McCarthyite, “Islamophobic” persecution of Muslims.
For example, in 2002, when Bray was MPAC’s national director, he appeared on a panel with Sami al-Arian, who was then under investigation for his labors on behalf of the terrorist organization Palestinian Islamic Jihad. “Don’t fall for it, brothers and sisters,” Bray cautioned. “You have to realize this whole thing about terrorism is a paper tiger. It’s just an excuse. They’ve used it before. Before terrorism it was Communism. They’ve used it before. So don’t fall for the ‘terrorism.’” In 2003, al-Arian was arrested on terrorism charges. MPAC aggressively defended him throughout, portraying his prosecution as a bigoted smear of Muslims. But al-Arian eventually pled guilty to a terrorism conspiracy charge. In imposing the maximum sentence, a federal judge described him as a “master manipulator” who had been proved “a leader of the PIJ,” and who, contrary to his pretensions, did not defend Palestinian widows and orphans but created them by supporting suicide terrorism.
MPAC’s energetic support of al-Arian is typical. As the IPT profile demonstrates, it has consistently lambasted investigations of individuals and organizations involved in violent jihad and terrorist financing. It publicly sympathized, for example, with (a) Alamoudi, who was eventually convicted for his complicity in a Libyan plot to murder a Saudi royal (after which it emerged that he was a major fundraiser not only for the Hamas terrorist organization but for al-Qaeda); (b) the Holy Land Foundation, five of whose officers were later convicted in the Justice Department’s most significant terrorism-financing prosecution ever for transferring millions of dollars to Hamas; (c) Infocom and members of the Elashi family, who were eventually convicted for trading with enemy nations and, in the case of the Elashis, for supporting Hamas; (d) the Benevolence International Foundation, which was designated as a terrorism financier by the Treasury Department (its leader, Enaam Arnaout, ultimately pled guilty to racketeering charges, conceding that BIF had diverted charitable contributions to violent jihad); and (e) Rafil Dhafir, whose prosecution Marayati called a “sham,” but who was later convicted and sentenced to 22 years in prison for transferring funds to Iraq. On it goes.
So now MPAC is leading its longtime confederates among the Obama Left as they browbeat Romney. They are, of course, emboldened by the GOP establishment, whose loudest voices — rather than rallying behind conservative critics of Obama’s dalliance with the Muslim Brotherhood — have slammed Bachmann & Co. Yes, how dare they suggest that there might be a problem with giving important policy positions at the State Department and elsewhere to people with extensive Islamist ties?
By the way, did I mention that the Obama State Department uses Salam al-Marayati as an emissary? Yeah, in 2010, Secretary of State Clinton’s minions invited him to lecture diplomats in Paris and Geneva on religious liberty, free speech, and “Islamophobia.” The Bush State Department, too — they invited Marayati to Foggy Bottom in 2002, where he championed Rachid Ghannouchi, the head of Tunisia’s Muslim Brotherhood party. What lunatics these House conservatives are to intimate that we might have the wrong people shaping government policy.
— Andrew C. McCarthy is the author, most recently, of The Grand Jihad: How Islam and the Left Sabotage America.