The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), a jihadi-tied Muslim advocacy group, is trying to persuade Americans that Islam was not implicated Thursday when a devout Muslim man attempted to execute a Philadelphia police officer for violating the Koran’s rules.
Edward Archer, 30, attempted to execute a police officer on Thursday on behalf of the Islamic State jihad group. After being arrested, he said in testimony relayed by the Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross, that that the Philadelphia police department is enforcing laws that are not compliant with Islam.
“He believes the police defend laws that are contrary to the teachings of the Koran,” Ross said.
Yet the Hamas-related CAIR has declared that Mr. Archer, an Islamic convert who investigators believe had traveled to Saudi Arabia and Egypt in recent years, was not a practicing Muslim. Archer was wearing Islamic attire when he attempted to execute a uniformed officer in cold blood.
But he is not a Muslim, declared Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, along with CAIR’s representatives.
A federal judge concluded in 2009 that “the government has produced ample evidence to establish the associations of CAIR… with Hamas.” Since then, FBI leaders have sharply reduced any connection to the group, which has also been and has been declared a terrorist organization by the United Arab Emirates.
CAIR-Philadelphia’s executive director, Jacob Bender, the group’s first Jewish chapter leader (and a noted radical anti-Israel activist), has led the effort to excuse Islam from the criminal act.
“At this hour, it does not appear that he was an observant or mosque-going Muslim,” Bender told Reuters on Friday. “I’ve called numerous imams and mosques to try to see if the name rings a bell with anyone. So far it hasn’t,” he said.
Bender, like many Islamic extremists, blames the Jewish state of Israel for many of the problems in the Islamic world. In a letter to the New York Times, Bender has blamed Israel for “the growth of terrorism and Islamist extremism” worldwide. Israel’s “oppression of the Palestinians” incites innocent Muslims to become jihadi suicide bombers, according to Bender.
Bender, a filmmaker, directed Out of Cordoba, an anti-Israel, Islamic supremacist documentary that was financed thanks to Saudi and Muslim Brotherhood money. The Alwaleed bin Talal Foundation, headed by a Saudi billionaire, was the top donor to his film. His film was heavily distributed by the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), a group that was founded by members of the Muslim Brotherhood. Like CAIR, ISNA was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial – the largest terror-financing case in American history.
When Bender was appointed CAIR-Philly’s executive director, Jewish groups warned that he would be used to advance their agenda. “CAIR is far off the radar screen of the Jewish community,” said Ethan Felson of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, in an interview with the Jewish Daily Forward concerning Bender’s appointment. “The Jewish community looked at their record and said, ‘We won’t work with this group.’”
“Unfortunately, there are Jews who are anti-Jewish and anti-Israel,” added Abe Foxman of the Anti Defamation League.
The Maryland Outreach manager of CAIR also weighed in on the shooting, rejecting Archer’s claim to Islam.
“Islam is a religion that encourages Muslims to coexist with their interfaith counterparts,” said Zainab Chaudry of CAIR-Maryland. “These kind of acts. They do not reflect the teachings of Islam.”
Moreover, CAIR was founded in the very city where the Islamic State attacker attempted on Thursday to assassinate the police officer.
In 1993, the FBI wiretapped an Islamic extremist meeting in Philadelphia that was hosted by the Palestine Committee (PALCOM), a Muslim Brotherhood, Hamas backing outfit whose membership included current CAIR executive director Nihad Awad. During the Philadelphia meeting, PALCOM members were instructed to refer to the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas in coded language, so as not to tip off authorities to their terror-financing activities. Awad, a Hamas supporter, would later be chosen to head CAIR, and remains its top official today.