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Posts Tagged ‘Muslim

House rejects proposal identifying “Islamic religious doctrines” that could be used by terrorist groups

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By Robert Spencer
Jihad Watch
July 14, 2017

Choosing denial and willful ignorance instead of knowledge of the motivating ideology of the jihadis who have vowed to destroy us. That’s just asking to be defeated.

“If you have an amendment that says we’re going to study one religion and only one, we’re going to look at their leaders and put them on a list — only them — and you are going to talk about what’s orthodox practice and what’s unorthodox, then you are putting extra scrutiny on that religion,” said Muslim Brotherhood-linked Rep. Keith Ellison.

Yes, you are. And there is a reason for that: 30,000 jihad attacks committed in the name of Islam and in accord with its teachings since September 11, 2001. No one religion has anything approaching that kind of record of death and destruction. So why shouldn’t we put extra scrutiny on that religion?

Ellison added: “You are abridging the free exercise of that religion.”

No. The free exercise of any religion is not a license to break existing laws. The free exercise of religion is not a free pass to commit treason or subversion or sedition.

The amendment would have required the Defense Department to conduct “strategic assessments of the use of violent or unorthodox Islamic religious doctrine to support extremist or terrorist messaging and justification.”

There is nothing “unorthodox” about jihad violence in Islamic law and doctrine. But even this tepid recommendation was too much for the short-sighted 217 cowards of the House, who have passed up an opportunity to strengthen our defense against the global jihad.

“House rejects controversial study of Islam,” by Rachael Bade and John Bresnahan, Politico, July 13, 2017:

The House on Friday rejected a controversial GOP proposal identifying “Islamic religious doctrines, concepts or schools of thought” that could be used by terrorist groups — something opponents say is unconstitutional and will lead to the targeting of Muslims.

More than 20 centrist Republicans joined with Democrats to defeated [sic] the amendment, 208 to 217. Drafted by conservative Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.), the proposal called for the Pentagon to identify Islamic leaders who preach peaceful beliefs versus those who espouse extremist views.

The proposal has drawn heavy criticism from Muslim lawmakers serving in Congress, Muslim interest groups and the American Civil Liberties Union, who say the proposal would unfairly target Muslims. They don’t trust the Trump administration to conduct the analysis.

“If you have an amendment that says we’re going to study one religion and only one, we’re going to look at their leaders and put them on a list — only them — and you are going to talk about what’s orthodox practice and what’s unorthodox, then you are putting extra scrutiny on that religion,” said Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), who is Muslim.

Ellison, who met with Franks to try to persuade him to withdraw the proposal, added: “You are abridging the free exercise of that religion. This is the wrong way to do what he’s trying to do.”…

“Right now, there is a certain spectrum within the Islamist world that is at the root of the ideological impulse for terrorism,” Franks said. “Ironically, Muslims are the prime targets of these groups. To suggest that this is anti-Muslim is a fallacy, and I think that anyone who really understands it knows that.”

Franks also took issue with Ellison’s suggestion that the amendment infringes on the First Amendment’s protection of religious freedom, pointing out that he is the chairman of the International Religious Freedom Caucus.

“We’ve worked very hard to protect the religious freedom for everybody,” he said. “But it is important that we empower America to identify those heroic Muslims within the world that will help us begin to delegitimize this ideology of global jihad.”

The amendment would require the Defense Department to conduct “strategic assessments of the use of violent or unorthodox Islamic religious doctrine to support extremist or terrorist messaging and justification.”

The proposal requires the assessment to identify religious doctrines and concepts that extremists use to recruit potential terrorists, radicalize them and ultimately justify their heinous acts.

It also asks Pentagon officials for “recommendations for identifying key thought leaders or proponents.”

The proposal also requires the Pentagon to identify Islamic schools of though that could be used to counter jihadist views, as well as leaders who are preaching these sorts of doctrines….

 

Sansour Wants Jihad? Give Her Jihad

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By William L. Gensert
American Thinker
July 13, 20117

Linda Sarsour, a pro-sharia, progressive Islamic activist and former Director of the Arab American Association who also helped organize January’s National Women’s March (the one with the pink vagina hats) recently called for “jihad” against the “tyrant” Donald J. Trump in a speech to the Islamic Society of North America.

Sarsour said, “We are struggling against tyrants and rulers not only abroad in the Middle East and the other side of the world, but here in these United States of America where you have fascists and white supremacists and Islamophobes reigning in the White House.”

She also said in the speech, “When I wake up every morning and remember who is sitting in the White House, I am outraged.”

Wow, she must be tons of fun at a party.

Of course, Sarsour explained how Americans are just too stupid to understand the nuance in her call to jihad.  No, no, no, you silly little American dolts, she wasn’t calling for violence, you don’t understand — it’s Trump who is calling for violence by insisting he serves out the presidential term he was duly elected to serve.  His refusal to resign or commit suicide, or whatever gets him out of office is the real violence here.  I’m afraid that most progressives agree with her.

Well if she wants jihad, I say we give it to her.  We are in a battle for the very soul of the nation.  Accept her declaration as is without being percipient to the underlying threat and we will be well on our way to losing.  It’s not just us who will lose, it’s the entire world — there is no one nation or even group of nations with the moral clarity and bravery to replace America as the last best hope for humanity.

If we accept her call to jihad as nonviolent, then calling for jihad against her personally is not a call to violence either.

There are many good Muslims in America today, who are grateful for the opportunity this nation gives them to live a better life.  Still, it seems to me that some Muslims come to this country and refuse to assimilate (Sarsour says they shouldn’t). They want Americans to change for them and then when people refuse, the get angry and call for jihad.  They want our women in tents and veils with their genitals mutilated, while all LBGTs are thrown to their death from the rooftops.

In short, they want us to obey sharia law.  Sharia gives infidels (anyone not a Muslim) three choices to coexist with Islam (the religion of peace): convert, pay, or die.  If this was their game plan, than they should have never come here.  Yet, the left champions their right to not assimilate and backs their desire to force us to change our nation, our society, and our values to accommodate them.  In other words, liberals think there is nothing wrong the extinguishment of Western civilization as embodied by America.

Sorry, but America is doing just fine the way we are.  It’s not us who need saving, at least not yet.

President Donald Trump gave a speech extolling the value of Western civilization and culture to the world and the entire progressive media and academic enterprise reacted in an apoplectic frenzy.  Yet, Sarsour calls for jihad against our president and of course, those same people are either silent or submissively bend over backward to be apologists for the religion of peace.  That’s the thing with this particular form of apologia (for Islam, of course), it needs morons to follow or good men to not fight back.  Remember, to paraphrase Edmund Burke, “Evil triumphs when good men do nothing.”

One way to look at the left is they are good people who are merely misinformed — but that is wrong. They really do hate America and Americans.  They seem to think that anytime someone brings up Western civilization or the virtues of the Republic of America, it should be followed by an apology or at the very least an opening of veins.  Progressives want power and control, and in order to get it, they are willing to force the nation to commit cultural and national suicide.  This is why they have no problem with Sarsour’s call to violence against the president.  Trump won’t apologize for America.  He stands up for America.  Hence, he must be a racist and a fascist.

Instead of trying to radically transform the nation in the image of Venezuela, proponents of this ideology should simply partake of the real thing and go live in that spectacularly failed socialist experiment.  Maybe they want to lose a few pounds.

One thing I can tell them is they should bring their own toilet paper and a gun because an American in Caracas today is prey, a soon-to-be carcass — hey, people gotta eat.

Barry gave his best effort at achieving the radical transformation of the nation into a socialist paradise.  Then he tried to foist his mini-me, Hillary, on the nation but Americans were smarter than that.  They saw her as an arrogant, entitled, outright criminal masquerading as a politician who nevertheless, was so unlikeable  that “unnamed sources” high in the Clinton campaign have said even her husband didn’t vote for her — but that’s just silly; everyone knows Bill wanted her to win so he could date again.

“Do we have the desire and the courage to preserve our civilization in the face of those who would subvert and destroy it?” Trump asked — and it’s the right question at the right time.

Critics have labeled the speech “nationalist,” “xenophobic,” and “racist.”  Yet if that were so, then why did the Poles love it — are they nationalistic, xenophobic, and racist as well?  To the left, if a speech is not an expiation of America’s sins or repentant for the country’s success it is nationalistic and racist.

Trump is not overly concerned with decorum.  He is his own man, a man who endeavors to live his life by his own rules and that means he will never accept the role of victim or patsy.  He hits back, and he is not afraid to defend this nation’s way of life and has no problem stooping to the level of his enemies to do so.  As would most Americans until very recently, .

However, conservatives seem to hold themselves to a higher sense of propriety; they will not fight as progressives do.  With progressives — and make no mistake, Sarsour is a progressive in good standing — everything is game, your family, the ones you love, the way you look, even the number of scoops of ice cream you have with your pie ala mode.  Either do as they say or be destroyed.

Once Trump became President, it quickly became apparent to him how he was going to be treated by the very antipathetic liberal polity and media.  He faced an existential choice with regard to his presidency, accept it in passive pajama-boy fashion, probably resulting in a one-term presidency not long remembered and of little note, but paradoxically get better press, or fight and accomplish as much as he could, while keeping as many promises as possible.

Trump understands the time is now to fight back against the outrageous behavior of the left.  Sarsour needs to be called out for exactly what she is: a radical Islamic supremacist intent on taking this country into sharia hell.  Progressives need to be told that Americans love America as the epitome of Western civilization it is.

Calling out people like Sarsour for their commitment to violence and standing up for our nation’s exceptionalism as Trump did in Poland should be the rule for our leaders and not the exception.

Linda Sarsour: The Enemy of the State

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By Robert Spencer
Jihad Watch
July 8, 2017

 

Anni Cyrus exposes Linda Sarsour’s hatred for America and for free society in general.

Muslim Travel Ban? Hardly

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By Raheel Raza
Clarion Project
June 29, 2017

 

 

 

ISIS’ Sick Use of a Swingset

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By Ran Meir
Clarion Project
July 4, 2017

In a horrific clip published by Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) in Syria, six people were executed after being accused of cooperation with the West. The six men are handcuffed to the horizontal bar of a swingset and executed with their own weapons, while one of them is beheaded.

ISIS is trying to deliver a message: This is what happens to people who cooperate with the West and this will be the fate of anyone who conspires against them.

Editor’s note: We occasionally publish Islamic State videos in order to expose their hateful ideology for what it really is. We believe that only by educating the public about the true nature of the threat posed by Islamism can the ideology be defeated.

Women’s March Co-Chair Linda Sarsour Calls for a ‘Form of Jihad’ against ‘Islamophobes’ in White House

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By Lauretta Brown
Townhall
July 6, 2017

Linda Sarsour, a Muslim activist and co-chair of the Women’s March, called for “a form of jihad” against “white supremacists and Islamophobes reigning in the White House,” in remarks this past weekend at the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA) convention.

“A word of truth in front of a tyrant or leader, that is the best form of jihad and I hope that we when we stand up to those who oppress our communities that Allah accepts from us that as a form of jihad,” she said, “that we are struggling against tyrants and rulers not only abroad in the Middle East or in the other side of the world, but here in these United States of America where you have fascists and white supremacists and Islamophobes reigning in the White House.”

“Our number one and top priority is to protect and defend our community, it is not to assimilate and please any other people and authority,” Sarsour added. “Our obligation is to our young people, is to our women, to make sure our women are protected in our community.”

“Our top priority and even higher than all those other priorities is to please Allah and only Allah,” Sarsour concluded.

After the remarks drew fire on Twitter Thursday, Sarsour posted a full video, linked above, of her remarks claiming that the “right wing tries to demonize” her leadership and “editing videos is their favorite pastime.” She also emphasized that her work as an activist is “rooted in Kingian non-violence.”

Muslim Brotherhood-linked Rep. Keith Ellison falsely claims 35 mosques attacked under Trump

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By Robert Spencer
Jihad Watch
June 23, 2017

Many of these “hate crimes” were just crimes: “The ACLU listed several burglaries in Alabama that targeted mosque donation boxes. But according to a police statement, authorities found ‘no evidence that these crimes are hate crime related.’ Another example involves a 16-year-old boy who set fire to a mosque, but authorities do not believe the arson was a hate crime. The ACLU also lists the murder of a young Muslim woman outside a mosque that occurred Sunday. Police currently believe the crime was a ‘road rage incident’ and not a hate crime….Ellison mischaracterizes some of the incidents CAIR reported by calling them ‘attacks,’ exaggerating instances like hate mail by including them in the 35-number from his tweet.”

This is all familiar. For years, Islamic advocacy groups such as the Hamas-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) have wildly exaggerated the incidence of anti-Muslim hate crime, often misrepresenting crimes committed by Muslims themselves as anti-Muslim hate crimes, in order to portray Muslims in the U.S. as victims of widespread persecution. In reality, FBI statistics show that Jews are twice as likely to be victims of hate crimes as Muslims.

The objective is clearly to deflect counter-terror efforts, claiming that Muslims are more victimized than victimizer, and that counter-terror efforts are part of that victimization.

Ellison has multiple links to the Muslim Brotherhood, so this is no surprise coming from him.

“FACT CHECK: Have There Been 35 Mosque Attacks Under Trump?,” by David Sivak, Daily Caller, June 21, 2017:

Democratic Congressman Keith Ellison tweeted Sunday that there have been 35 “mosque attacks” in the Trump era.

 

Verdict: Unsubstantiated

Ellison exaggerates an outdated and imprecise statistic. However, there have been a number of hate crime incidents directed at mosques in recent months. It remains to be seen whether these incidents are part of a growing trend.

Fact Check:

In his tweet, Ellison links to a Buzzfeed article that claims there have been around 35 “incidents of threats, vandalism and arson at U.S. mosques since January.” The figure is roughly based on an outdated statistic mentioned in a March press release from the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).

To establish a more current estimate, The Daily Caller News Foundation analyzed an ongoing list of incidents compiled by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). The analysis found alleged incidents at about 60 mosques across the country to date. Many of the incidents noted by CAIR are included in the ACLU listing.

The ACLU’s list relies on local news reports, so the number of incidents could be higher if news outlets did not cover an incident or if the ACLU could not find all instances reported by local media.

The number of “anti-mosque incidents” the ACLU compiled may also be overstated because not all incidents were investigated by police as hate crimes. In addition, the list includes more subjective “incidents” like zoning disputes over the construction of new mosques.

The ACLU listed several burglaries in Alabama that targeted mosque donation boxes. But according to a police statement, authorities found “no evidence that these crimes are hate crime related.”

Another example involves a 16-year-old boy who set fire to a mosque, but authorities do not believe the arson was a hate crime.

The ACLU also lists the murder of a young Muslim woman outside a mosque that occurred Sunday. Police currently believe the crime was a “road rage incident” and not a hate crime.

Police reports and investigations are not infallible, but “anti-mosque” statistics issued by groups like the ACLU should be taken with a grain of salt. According to the FBI, “only when a law enforcement investigation reveals sufficient evidence to lead a reasonable and prudent person to conclude that the offender’s actions were motivated, in whole or in part, by his or her bias, should an agency report an incident as a hate crime.”

Ellison mischaracterizes some of the incidents CAIR reported by calling them “attacks,” exaggerating instances like hate mail by including them in the 35-number from his tweet….

 

Both Ellison’s tweet and the Buzzfeed article frame recent mosque incidents in the context of the Trump era. The article looks at incidents since January, the month President Donald Trump was inaugurated. However, evidence of a link between Trump’s presidency and attacks on mosques is unsubstantiated….

The Left has one more argument: kill them!

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By Robert Spencer
Jihad Watch
June 24, 2017

The Left, and its Muslim allies, have never been open to rational discussion or debate. And now they’re growing increasingly thuggish and violent.

“Ann Coulter: The Left Has One More Argument: Kill Them!,” by Ann Coulter, Breitbart, June 21, 2017:

After a Bernie Sanders supporter tried to commit mass murder last week – the second homicidal Bernie supporter so far this year — the media blamed President Trump for lowering the bar on heated political rhetoric by calling his campaign opponents cruel names like “Crooked Hillary” and “Lyin’ Ted.”

As soon as any conservative responds to Trump’s belittling names for his rivals by erupting in a murderous rage, that will be a fantastically good point. But until then, it’s idiotic. Unlike liberals, conservatives aren’t easily incited to violence by words.

What we’re seeing is the following: Prominent liberals repeatedly tell us, with deadly seriousness, that Trump and his supporters are: “Hitler,” “fascists,” “bigots,” “haters,” “racists,” “terrorists,” “criminals,” and “white supremacists,” which is then followed by liberals physically attacking conservatives.

To talk about “both sides” being guilty of provocative rhetoric is like talking about “both genders” being guilty of rape.

Nearly every op-ed writer at The New York Times has compared Trump to Hitler. (The conservative on the op-ed page merely called him a “proto-fascist.”) If Trump is Hitler and his supporters Nazis, then the rational course of action for any civilized person is to kill them.

That’s not just a theory, it’s the result.

A few months ago, 38-year-old Justin Barkley shot and killed a UPS driver in a Walmart parking lot in Ithaca, New York, then ran over his body, because he thought he was killing Donald Trump. During his arraignment, Barkley told the judge: “I shot and killed Donald Trump purposely, intentionally, and very proudly.”

In the past year, there have been at least a hundred physical attacks on Trump supporters or presumed Trump supporters. The mainstream media have ignored them all.

Schoolchildren across the country are being hospitalized from beatings for the crime of liking Trump. In Pasco, Oregon, a 29-year-old Trump supporter was stabbed in the throat by a Hispanic man, Alvaro Campos-Hernandez, after a political argument.

Last month, the anti-jihad scholar Robert Spencer was poisoned in Iceland by a Social Justice Warrior pretending to be a fan, sending Spencer to the hospital.

It’s become so normal for leftist thugs to assault anyone who likes Trump that, in Meriden, Connecticut, Wilson Echevarria and Anthony Hobdy leapt out of their car and started punching and hitting a man holding a Trump sign, rolling him into traffic right in front of a policeman.

If any one of these bloody attacks had been committed by a Trump supporter against a Muslim, a gay, a Mexican, a woman, or a Democrat, the media would have had to drop its Russia conspiracy theory to give us 24-7 coverage of the epidemic of right-wing violence.

The liberal response to this ceaseless mayhem toward conservatives is to produce a single nut, who fired a gun in the Comet Ping Pong pizzeria in Washington, D.C., last December (hurting no one) to “rescue children,” after reading on obscure right-wing blogs that the restaurant hid a Democratic pedophilia ring. (They’ve also hyped a long list of “hate crimes” that were utter hoaxes.)

Congratulations, liberals! You got one. And some tiny number of girls raped men last year. QED: Both sexes have a rape problem.

Liberal aggression has ratcheted up dramatically since the dawn of Trump, as has the dehumanizing rhetoric, but epic violence from the left is nothing new.

We don’t have to go back more than century to note that every presidential assassin and attempted presidential assassin who had a political motive was a leftist, a socialist, a communist, or a member of a hippie commune. (Charles J. Guiteau, Leon Czolgosz, Giuseppe Zangara, Lee Harvey Oswald, Lynette “Squeaky” Fromme, and Sara Jane Moore.)…

Liberals know damn well that their audience includes a not-insignificant portion of foaming-at-the-mouth lunatics, prepared, at the slightest provocation, to smash windows, burn down neighborhoods, physically attack, and even murder conservatives. But instead of toning down the rhetoric, the respectable left keeps throwing matches on the bone-dry tinder, and then indignantly asks, “Are you saying conservatives don’t do it, too?”

Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Asra Nomani accuse Dem senators of ignoring them in hearing

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By Brooke Singman
FoxNews
June 23, 2017

Women’s rights activists Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Asra Nomani have accused four female Democratic senators of ignoring them during a committee hearing last week, complaining the lawmakers did not ask them a single question.

“This wasn’t a case of benign neglect,” Ali and Nomani wrote, in a New York Times op-ed published Thursday. “What happened that day was emblematic of a deeply troubling trend among progressives when it comes to confronting the brutal reality of Islamist extremism and what it means for women” in Muslim communities.

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing was titled, “Understanding the Tools, Tactics, and Techniques of Violent Extremism.”

Chairman Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., and ranking Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., invited Ali, Nomani and two other witnesses to testify. Hirsi Ali and Nomani are outspoken critics of attitudes and policies that marginalize women in Islamic societies.

But the witnesses, in their joint op-ed, accused Sens. McCaskill, Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D.; Maggie Hassan, D-N.H.; and Kamala Harris, D-Calif., of not asking either of them “a single question.”

‘I just was shocked to see how I somehow put on an invisible cloak when I walked into the hearing room.’

– Asra Nomani

Hirsi Ali and Nomani added: “Just as we are invisible to the mullahs at the mosque, we are invisible to the Democratic women in the Senate.”

“It is inexplicable that the other senators didn’t utilize their time to speak with these two women,” Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., told Fox News. “I appreciate the courage they have to speak up.”

But a spokesperson for McCaskill pushed back on Hirsi Ali and Nomani’s claims, telling Fox News that McCaskill agreed to invite both women to testify because of their “experience” with the subject matter.

The hearing also took place on the same day as the shooting at a congressional baseball practice that left House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and several others injured.

“Given time constraints, and the fact that a potential terrorist attack occurred several miles away just hours before the hearing, [McCaskill] chose to direct the majority of her questions that day to Michael Leiter, the former Director of the National Counterterrorism Center under Democratic and Republican administrations, and one of the world’s foremost experts on counterterrorism,” McCaskill spokesman Drew Pusateri told Fox News.

Johnson had pointed out the lack of questions directed to the other witnesses halfway through last week’s hearing.

“This has been a little bit unusual hearing so far, we have four witnesses and all of the questions have been addressed to Mr. Leiter—listen, I appreciate your expertise and service to this country,” Johnson said, to which Leiter offered to “step out” of the hearing.

“No, no, no—I want you there,” Johnson added.

John Lenczowski, the founder and president of Institute of World Politics, also was on the panel.

Harris declined to comment, and the offices of Hassan and Heitkamp did not respond to Fox News’ request for a response.

While the Democratic senators directed their questions to other witnesses, only two of the eight Republican senators — Johnson and Daines — attended the hearing and participated in questioning.

But Nomani told Fox News that she and Hirsi Ali understood the “human circumstances” for their absence, but were disappointed by the approach of the Democratic senators who did attend.

“The silencing of Ayaan and me through the act of omission, and ignoring our presence, is just ironic considering this is the grievance that Democratic feminists level against their critics and their opponents,” Nomani told Fox News. “I was prepared for aggressive conversation and debate, but I just was shocked to see how I somehow put on an invisible cloak when I walked into the hearing room from the perspective of the Democratic senators who champion women, and battle to be heard.”

Nomani told Fox News she and Hirsi Ali are “committed” to working with the committee and plan to continue meeting with both majority and minority staffs.

An aide from the minority staff said they had invited Nomani in for a meeting, but it has yet to be scheduled.

Brooke Singman is a Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter at @brookefoxnews.

 

Hezbollah Terrorists Caught in US Planning Attack

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By Ryan Mauro
The Clarion Project
June 11, 2017

New Hezbollah recruits in Lebanon salute during a ceremony
New Hezbollah recruits in Lebanon salute during a ceremony (Photo: AFP/Getty Images)

The pace of jihadist activity has been so intense lately that an incredibly important story has been barely reported on:

Two terrorists belonging to Hezbollah, a puppet of the Iranian and Syrian regimes, have been arrested for planning attacks in the U.S., with one scouting potential targets in New York including JFK International Airport.

Both are citizens who entered, exited and re-entered the U.S.

Although the Iranian and Syrian regimes regularly organize terrorist attacks through its Hezbollah proxy, the plotting of attacks on U.S. soil and on Americans overseas is very significant, but not unprecedented.

The two arrested terrorists are Ali Kourani of the Bronx, New York and Samer El-Debek of Dearborn, Michigan. Each is a well-trained militant who belongs to Hezbollah’s Islamic Jihad branch that is tasked with perpetrating terrorist attacks, preferably with some level of deniability.

Yet, under questioning, Ali Kourani explicitly told the FBI in 2016 and 2017 that he was a “sleeper” agent of Hezbollah’s Islamic Jihad carrying out “black ops” for Hezbollah and “the Iranians.”

His first round of training took place in Lebanon in 2000 when he was only 16-years old. Kourani admitted to the FBI that he was accepted by Hezbollah because his family is connected to a top official in the terrorist group. He said one of his brothers is the “face of Hezbollah” in Yater, Lebanon and boasted that his family’s name is like the “Bin Laden’s of Lebanon.” In other words, his family is famous for being terrorists.

Shockingly, in 2003 (two years after the 9/11 attacks), this member of a famous terrorist family successfully entered the U.S. and became a student. He also went by the names of “Jacob Lewis” and “Daniel.”

In 2008, he then joined Hezbollah’s Islamic Jihad branch. Shortly thereafter, he applied for naturalization and became a citizen in April 2009, all the while lying about his connections to terrorism. If his boasts are true, a simple look of his family would have tipped off the U.S. government about who Kourani was.

Kourani predictably lied throughout his process to become a U.S. citizen, including denying any plans to travel overseas when he applied to become a citizen. Only a month after becoming a citizen, he went to Guangzhou, China, on a so-called “business trip” to the location of a medical company that produces chemicals that can be used in bombs. Stolen chemicals from the company were later found in the possession of Iranian terrorists in Thailand planning bombings.

In 2011, Kourani went to Lebanon for a second round of terrorism training in RPG and various firearms. He then came back into the U.S. to use the skills he acquired.

On the orders of his Hezbollah handler, he began identifying and surveilling targets.

According to the criminal complaint, his handler directed him to “surveil and collet information regarding airports, including the layout of terminals, the locations of cameras and personnel, and other security features. In response, Kourani provided detailed information to [his handler] regarding specific security protocols, baggage-screening and collection practices and the locations of surveillance cameras, security personnel, law enforcement officers and magnetometers at JFK and an international airport in another country.”

Some historical context is important here: This is a revival of Iran’s ambitions to target New York’s JFK International Airport. Iran already tried to carry out an attack at the airport once and was preparing to do so again.

The previous plan (in 2007) was to blow up fuel tanks and pipelines going to the airport. The FBI confirms that one of the individuals involved in this plot had links to “militant groups” in Iran and Venezuela and had regularly contact with Iranian authorities.

There were various other Iranian links, including the involvement of an operative who was previously part of an Iran-sponsored bombing in Argentina in 1994.

Kourani also used Google Maps to research LaGuardia Airport in Queens, New York (specifically its terminals) in April 2011. He also looked up the U.S. Armed Forces Career Center in Queens in February 2013.

Kourani conducted surveillance on a governmental building in Manhattan with FBI offices inside; an Army National Guard office in Manhattan; an Army Armory building in Manhattan and a Secret Service office in Brooklyn.

He looked for people tied to the Israeli military. He was also tasked with making contacts who could provide firearms to Hezbollah operatives in the U.S.

In addition, Hezbollah wanted Kourani to do something in Mexico and Canada. His handler talked about possibly having him fly to one of these countries and cross into the U.S. by land using his passport. Hezbollah has ties to Latin American drug cartels, which may have something to do with the talk of a trip to Mexico.

The surveillance of targets in preparation for expected Hezbollah attacks continued until at least September 2015, as per the complaint.

Like Kourani, Samer El-Debek is a naturalized citizen who belonged to Hezbollah’s Islamic Jihad branch. He communicated via email with someone who owned a business in Iran.

El-Debek acted as an agent of the terrorist group from 2007 to September 2016, with his salary growing to over $1,000 per month plus medical expenses. He is a specialist in bomb-making and began confessing to the FBI after Hezbollah accused him of being an American spy and detained him for four months until he falsely admitted to being one.

El-Debek was first trained in 2008 and received four rounds of training total. One round included six days of religious teaching, where a sheikh taught about Islam’s rules and “martyrdom ideology.” His explosives training focused on remotely-detonated bombs.

El-Debek was specifically taught how to make IEDs like the one Hezbollah used on a bus of Israeli tourists in Bulgaria in 2012 that killed 6 people and injured 32. He told the FBI that the bomber was his aunt’s nephew.

In 2009, he was sent to Thailand to dispose of bomb ingredients from a Hezbollah safehouse that they believed to have come under surveillance. His cover was that he was traveling to Thailand for paid sex, going so far as to hire a prostitute and to have her enter the safehouse so he could try to discover any surveillance taking place.

In 2011, El-Debek flew to Colombia and entered Panama on a Hezbollah mission to identify gaps in security at the Panama Canal and the Israeli embassy. He returned to Panama in 2012 to identify weaknesses in the Panama Canal’s construction and security gaps and find out how close someone could get to a ship passing through.

He was told to conduct surveillance of the U.S. embassy but did not, fearing it would compromise his mission.

Hezbollah detained El-Debek in December 2015 until April 2016, accusing him of being a U.S. spy and demanding a confession. He eventually did so. Based on the complaint, it appears the detention caused him to open up to the FBI during voluntary questioning (assuming his story is true).

This is only a tiny portion of what Iran and Hezbollah is doing to try to attack targets in the U.S. at home and abroad. This is the experience of only two Hezbollah terrorists we caught.

If this is the scale of what we do know, then what horrors are being planned that we don’t know about?

 

Ryan Mauro

Ryan Mauro is ClarionProject.org’s Shillman Fellow and national security analyst and an adjunct professor of counter-terrorism. He is frequently interviewed on top-tier television and radio.
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