The Corner


Abdurahman Alamoudi was sentenced today to 23 years’ imprisonment for terrorism financing, false statements on his naturalization petition, and tax violations. The sentence was imposed by Judge Claude Hilton of the U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Virginia.

Alamoudi was influential in the American Muslim circles, and thus in Washington. He participated in several political and charitable organizations, founding the American Muslim Council – an enthusiastic supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah. The federal government permitted him a key role in selecting the Islamic clerics who minister in the military and in the prison system. Over the years, moreover, he occasionally traveled the globe as an emissary of the State Department.

As we now know, he also traveled to Libya, engaged in financial transactions with Qadhafi’s government, and collected hefty sums (including the $340,000 seized from him when he was arrested last year), which were designed to be routed back to his causes in the U.S. without the knowledge of American authorities. All of those activities violate the International Emergency Economic Powers Act imposes terrorism-related sanctions prohibiting unlicensed travel to and commerce with Libya.

Alamoudi has also admitted to participating with high-ranking Libyan officials, including Qadhafi himself, in a plot to murder Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah — a plot said to have ensued even after Qadhafi publicly purported to renounce terrorism and abandon his nuclear ambitions.

Whether Alamoudi will actually serve the 23 years is questionable. His plea agreement contemplates cooperation with the government. If he provides truthful information or testimony that helps the government further investigations — particularly terrorism cases — he could become eligible for a significant reduction. Time will tell. But remember how up in arms many activist groups were when Alamoudi was arrested — once again claiming that DOJ was unfairly targeting Muslims for prosecution. (Alamoudi himself made the claim in this letter from prison.) His conviction and sentence are significant achievements. Don’t expect to read too much about them in the Times.

Most Popular

White House

The Trivialization of Impeachment

We have a serious governance problem. Our system is based on separation of powers, because liberty depends on preventing any component of the state from accumulating too much authority -- that’s how tyrants are born. For the system to work, the components have to be able to check each other: The federal and ... Read More

‘Texodus’ Bodes Badly for Republicans

‘I am a classically trained engineer," says Representative Will Hurd, a Texas Republican, "and I firmly believe in regression to the mean." Applying a concept from statistics to the randomness of today's politics is problematic. In any case, Hurd, 42, is not waiting for the regression of our politics from the ... Read More

Feminists Have Turned on Pornography

Since the sexual revolution of the 1960s, the feminist movement has sought to condemn traditional sexual ethics as repressive, misogynistic, and intolerant. As the 2010s come to a close, it might be fair to say that mainstream culture has reached the logical endpoint of this philosophy. Whereas older Americans ... Read More

Put Up or Shut Up on These Accusations, Hillary

Look, one 2016 candidate being prone to wild and baseless accusations is enough. Appearing on Obama campaign manager David Plouffe’s podcast, Hillary Clinton suggested that 2016 Green Party candidate Jill Stein was a “Russian asset,” that Republicans and Russians were promoting the Green Party, and ... Read More

Not Less Religion, Just Different Religion

The Pew Poll tells us that society is secularizing -- particularly among the young -- and who can deny it? That is one reason that the free expression of religion is under such intense pressure in the West. But it seems to me that we aren't really becoming less religious. Rather, many are merely changing that ... Read More