Saturday, January 31, 2009

FBI Stops Returning CAIR's Phone Calls. Finally.

The following story from the Investigative Project on Terrorism is welcome news, long, long, long overdue.

I wouldn’t say the FBI seeing the light about CAIR exactly proves there is a God; but it does prove that repetition of simple, glaring facts, over long periods of time, does actually get exceptionally slow (and reluctant) learners to grasp new and exciting concepts. Eventually. Sometimes.

FBI Cuts Off CAIR Over Hamas Questions

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has cut off contacts with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) amid mounting concern about the Muslim advocacy group's roots in a Hamas-support network, the Investigative Project on Terrorism has learned.

The decision to end contacts with CAIR was made quietly last summer as federal prosecutors prepared for a second trial of the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), an Islamic charity accused of providing money and political support to the terrorist group Hamas, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

CAIR and its chairman emeritus, Omar Ahmad, were named un-indicted co-conspirators in the HLF case. Both Ahmad and CAIR's current national executive director, Nihad Awad, were revealed on government wiretaps as having been active participants in early Hamas-related organizational meetings in the United States. During testimony, FBI agent Lara Burns described CAIR as a front organization.

Hamas is a US-designated foreign terrorist organization, and it's been illegal since 1995 to provide support to it within the United States.

The decision to end contacts with CAIR is a significant policy change for the FBI. For years, the FBI worked with the national organization and its state chapters to address Muslim community concerns about the potential for hate crimes and other civil liberty violations in the wake of the September 11, 2001 terrorist

But critics said the FBI improperly conferred legitimacy on CAIR by meeting with its officials, even as its own investigative files contained evidence of CAIR leaders' ties to Hamas.

Please read this important article in its entirety.

We've been tracking this problem a long time, such as here, here, here, and here. The feds have been as stubborn as they can be. In fact, stupidly so. I can only imagine that this present decision, made in the nick of time before the hopeless Eric Holder becomes Attorney General, is an effort to prevent the FBI from being left completely on the outside of whatever domestic counterterrorism efforts will be left during the Obama administration.

It certainly appears that the FBI's decision was made last summer after federal proescutors lost the Holy Land Foundation case the first time. I think the prosecutors desperately tried to explain to the FBI the difficulties of convincing a jury that the bad guys are really so bad, when defendants keep showing jurors their coffee mugs from the nation's premier law enforcement agency with the "Friends Share Everything" motto on it.

I'll bet at least one prosecutor even had to be talked out of naming the FBI as an unindicted co-conspirator.


Brian H. Gill said...

I agree that the FBI may have been slow to become cautious about CAIR. And, your connection of the HLF trial status with the FBI's decision is plausible.

However, I think there may be historical points that at least contributed to the FBI's reluctance to distance itself from CAIR.

The FBI's reputation took a beating in the sixties and seventies, for a variety of reasons. Correctly or not, the bureau got the reputation for being a very white, WASPish organization.

I think it's possible that the FBI is very - possibly too - conscious of how a rejection of CAIR may appear to people who still live near the year 1968.

What I found remarkable, although not surprising, was that this FBI/CAIR split has received so very little attention in America's national news.

And, I was impressed by the professionalism in a letter written by the Omaha FBI office's special agent - and other points at "FBI, CAIR, and Hamas - This is Interesting, but Not News" (January 30, 2009)

T.R. Clancy said...

Hi Norski

I don't consider the FBI to merely have been reluctant. FBI-CAIR were practically going steady. CAIR was in charge of training agents in how to interview Muslims. Or how not to interview them. Check out my other posts on this.

I understand your point about perceptions. But as an American, I'd like the front-line domestic counterintelligence agency to be focused on its mission, not on how it's being perceived by interest groups, and especially by people living too close to 1968--who are by definition not competent to deal with the realities for us who are living too close to 9/11/2001.

Nixon and Hoover aren't the enemy. Jihad is. Worrying about what those burnouts thought is what got us to 9/11.

I agree the feds have lots of professionals, but in Detroit our former US Attorney was in an extremely close relationship with Muslim leaders who are known advocates for jihad, Muslim Brotherhood, Iran, and Hezbollah. Meanwhile, there hasn't been a terrorist indictment in Detroit since 2001, in spite of constant indictments for money laundering, cigarette smuggling, real estate fraud, and other crimes with proceeds going to Hezbollah--suggesting a tremedous amount of jihadist sympathy. No terrorist indictments in 7 years means there are either no jihadists operating in Dearborn, or the FBI's not doing it's job.

Thanks for writing in. Interesting comments.

Anonymous said...

FBI is Finally Cutting Ties with Terrorist Front Group

Muslims Against Sharia congratulate The Investigative Project on making this possible!


Anonymous said...

I still have no faith in our local FBI. This information is not new to them. They learned it somewhere in the middle of building the bridge but kept on hammering.

I love this quote from The Departed,
"My theory on the FBI is they're like mushrooms – feed 'em shit and keep 'em in the dark."

I am sure CAIR would agree

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