Do the math. The 15 floors planned for the Ground Zero Mosque just don’t add up.
What’s the goal? Maybe the Imam’s goal is not simply to force a provocative “insensitivity” about 9-11 on the American public, with the help of America’s elites. Maybe the Imam’s long-term goal is to force Shariah law on the American public – of course, again, with the help of America’s elites.
Why don’t the 15 floors add up? How many floors does Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf need for the mosque portion of this triumphal Islamic command center planned for the two building sites at 45-47 Park Place in New York City? Think about it: maybe 2 floors for the mosque itself and related offices. A 3rd floor for the swimming pool, a 4th for the 500 seat auditorium, a 5th for the halal restaurant and halal culinary school, a 6th for the art studios, the childcare center and library, a 7th for the gym and basketball court. Add an 8th floor for miscellaneous storage and offices. And then add a 9th floor for the September 11 memorial, an after-thought that was recently added to the Imam’s plan, although that may in fact be more of a room off to one side than a whole floor.
That leaves six mystery floors empty – or dedicated to other activities. Six floors – that’s a lot of offices, a lot of employees, maybe more than half of the 150 full-time and 500 part-time jobs the Imam says he’ll bring to Lower Manhattan. What are Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf’s plans for those six mystery floors?
Follow the Shariah Index Project to solve the puzzle of the 6 mystery floors: We found two hidden websites with copiously deleted information, all about the Imam’s Cordoba Institute Shariah Index Project. For reference, here’s the Imam’s most recent hidden website (also available here as a pdf). And here’s the Imam’s earlier hidden website (also available here as a pdf). The information on those websites – information that the Imam tried to hide with a new whitewashed version – suggests that the six mystery floors of the Ground Zero Mosque will be dedicated to the Imam’s long-term goal: the Shariah Index Project, designed to benchmark Shariah compliance, to distribute Shariah propaganda, and to enforce Shariah law in America and worldwide.
Drawing from those hidden webpages and other sites, we’ve constructed a timeline for the Shariah Index Project and a partial list of Rauf’s partners in the Project. In Part 2, we’ll reveal the disturbing background and views of those partners. And in Part 3, we’ll present the bottom line – how this all ties together as a historic Islamist effort to market and to enforce Shariah in America, starting from Ground Zero.
Numbered Documents, for everyone’s convenience! Below, from the hidden websites, is the evidence Rauf tried to cover-up. We’ve even numbered the Shariah Index Project documents he mentioned, to make it easy for the Imam and his staff – for example, Courtney Erwin, attorney and director of the Shariah Index Project and corporate contact for the Cordoba Institute – to provide copies to the American public.
Courtney Erwin could end the cover-up of these documents today, given her leading role in the Shariah Index Project since its inception. Erwin, by the way, has been working in Doha (Qatar, home of jihad-supporter Sheik Qaradawi, so admired by Imam Rauf) for the past three months. She states that her team includes a “Qatari legal researcher,” presumably for ongoing work on the Shariah Index Project. She may also be working with one of the core Shariah experts partnering in the Shariah Index Project, Dr. Jasser Auda, since January 2010 an Associate Professor in the Public Policy Program, Faculty of Islamic Studies, Qatar Foundation in Qatar. (Qatar is also one of the countries Imam Rauf is scheduled to visit on his State Department-funded trip this summer.) Look for much more on Erwin and Auda in Part 2.
American citizens and their elected officials should ask Rauf, Erwin and their associates to end the Shariah Index Project cover-up, and to disclose all documents, meeting notes, emails and attendee lists from 2006 to the present day. You don’t ask, you don’t get.
August 2006 – The Planning Meeting – Meeting #1
We know from the first hidden website that the Shariah Index Project (SIP) had its initial meeting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in August 2006. Attendees explored the idea of creating an “index” to measure the degree of Shariah governance for ALL nations, and deliverables from the meeting were (1) a “vision” statement and (2) a roadmap for the project. Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf convened and chaired this meeting, which included “four scholars from India, Malaysia, and Pakistan.” From the second hidden website, we know that these first four participants Rauf recruited were international leaders affiliated with the Muslim Brotherhood – and on key advisory boards in Shariah Compliant Finance:
Professor Dr. Mahmood Ahmad Ghazi, Pakistan, (Chairman of the Shariah Board for the State Bank of Pakistan and former president of International Islamic University);
Professor Dr. Mohammad Hashim Kamali, Malaysia (Dean of the International Institute of Islamic Thought & Civilization and Former Interim Chairman, Constitutional Review Committee, Afghanistan);
Professor Dr. Tahir Mahmood, India (Founder/Chairman, Amity University Institute for Advanced Legal Studies, New Delhi, and former Dean of the Faculty of Law, Delhi University);
Dato’ Abdul Hamid Mohamad, Malaysia (Judge, Federal Court of Malaysia … Malaysian Supreme Court). [Such a small world here at Big Peace – this is the same judge honored by Elena Kagan in the Al-Sanhuri lecture series at Harvard on November 11, 2008, as we reported here a couple weeks ago.]
February, 2007 – Expanding the Core Group – Meeting #2
The original five Shariah authorities (1 from Pakistan, 3 including Rauf from Malaysia, 1 from India) met again, adding five more members from Indonesia, Iran (to “represent the Shi’a perspective,” possibly Mohammad Javad Larijani – see Bayefsky’s research below for August 2008), Turkey, Pakistan and Malaysia. This new Group of Ten Shariah Index Authorities created a new (3) Roadmap (2.0), and a new (4) Basis for Evaluation Document,which sets out an initial list of Islamic legal principles relating to governance. The group also distributed (5) Research Assignments, which would support the project and which they would present at the next meeting.
May 2007 – The First Draft of the Shariah Index – Meeting #3
This was a very productive session, involving the same ten Shariah experts. They refined the Basis for Evaluation document, resulting in the “creation of two new documents: (6) Essential Features of Shariah-Compliant Governance and the first iteration of the (7) Shariah Index (1.0), inclusive of seventy-four principles of Islamic governance derived from Islamic law.”
“Additionally, the group developed a (8) Strategic Plan for the project, which highlighted key dates and tasks. They also identified a (9) short and long-list of scholars to approach for support.”
October 2007 – Expansion and Operations Plans – Meeting #4
The Core Group of Ten grew to at least 14 members, with new Shariah authorities from Bahrain, England (possibly Dr. Jasser Auda who may have been in the UK at the time?), Morocco, and Lebanon (to “include the Arab Shi’a perspective”). Interestingly, it also included three ratings experts – identified later as unnamed representatives from Gallup Organization, Pew Research Center, and Dr. Robert Rotberg of Harvard University. The meeting’s deliverables were closing in on the final product:
“the group further refined the (10) Index [ie, Shariah Index 2.0], which they organized into four major sections–1)Normative Declarations, 2) Qualifications ofLeaders, 3) Governance, and 4) Maqasid al Shariah–with each of these sections broken down into a number of measurable principles derived from Shariah. “
The group also revisited and refined their (11) strategic plan [2.0] and committed to (12) three detailed research and writing tasks: 1) long articles, 2) sourcing and citing principles, 3) proxy questions for each principle.
November 2007 – July 2008 – Building the Shariah Index Apparatus – Individual Meetings #5
Over the next eight months, the Cordoba Initiative staff worked with the 14 Shariah experts – and the 3 “ratings experts” from Gallup, Pew and Harvard – to write the (13) Preamble to the Project and “further refine the philosophy, overall structure, and organization of the (14) Index [ie, Shariah Index 3.0] as well as each of the principles.”
August 2008 – Final Publication Plans – Meeting #6
Anne Bayefsky identified the Iranian participant in Shariah Index Project from this photo from the August 2008 meeting: Iranian Mohammad Javad Larijani, who has justified torture of Iranian dissidents as legal punishments under Shariah law. This August 2008 meeting planned the publication of the Shariah Index Project book – and associated polls done by Gallup and Pew – for March 2009:
At the most recent meeting in August 2008, the scholars agreed that the index would be a Maqasid al Shariah Index [the influence of Jasser Auda who had possibly joined in October 2007], measuring a state’s Islamicity through both its governance and society. Representatives from the Gallup Organization governance index pioneer, Dr. Robert Rotberg, joined the discussion by phone on the second day. Following these conversations with rating and indexing specialists, the scholars worked to (15) finalize the index, including its methodology and measurable indicators [ie, Shariah Index 4.0]. The scholars also finalized preparations for the book to be published concurrently with the Index and findings. After the formal meetings concluded, Cordoba staff worked one-on-one with a number of the scholars, soliciting additional information requested by the ratings experts prior to their formal work on the Index as well about the Indexing methodology and the book, with significant work with Gallup and Dr. Rotberg as well as production of the book scheduled for the upcoming 6 months. The target date for the (16) Index results and book is March 2009, with the public launch to follow.
November 21, 2008 – The Book Launch Celebration with the Muslim Brotherhood’s IIIT- Meeting #7
The International Institute of Islamist Thought (IIIT), a Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated organization in Northern Virginia, met to launch the publication (pdf here) of an abridged edition of Rauf’s “What is Right with Islam is what is Right for America.” The meeting was chaired by IIIT Vice President Jamal Barzinji, and the publisher of the abridged edition is a group called American Muslims for Constructive Engagement (AMCE). Also promoted in that series of “Reader’s Digest Condensed Islamism”: Harvard’s Noah Feldman’s “Fall and Rise of the Islamic State,” “1) Who Speaks for Islam: By John Esposito and Dalia Mogahed. Dalia Mogahed is head of the Gallup project on Muslim public opinion, the most likely contact at Gallup for the earlier meetings on the Shariah Index Project (more on that relationship, and on the AMCE and their U.S. government backers in Part 2).
The book series, by the way, was funded by the Kingdom Foundation – as in the Alwaleed Bin Talal Kingdom Foundation of Saudi Arabia.
December 19, 2008 – Final Coordination with the Muslim Brotherhood’s IIIT – Meeting #8
Rauf met with Muslim Brotherhood’s IIIT leadership to discuss the Shariah Index Project (here as pdf). A key figure, Dr. Jasser Auda, met with Rauf at IIIT Headquarters in Northern Virginia. Auda has the background and the brains to be coordinating the Shariah Index Project behind the scenes from Qatar, making Rauf simply a U.S. salesman for an effort that may actually be directed by others. More on Auda in Part 2.
Let’s Review. All those numbers begin to add up:
The Ground Zero Mosque has at least 6 mystery floors. We suggest that they’ll be used by the Shariah Index Project.
The Shariah Index Project was built by at least 14 Shariah experts. We have the identities probably of 7 of them, and Rauf should reveal the other 7 right away.
The Shariah Index Project generated at least 16 documents and maybe a final book, and Rauf should release all of these – right away.
The issues at stake in the Ground Zero Mosque and the Shariah Index Project are not about Americans supporting the Constitution’s protection of religious freedom. Americans support that protection.
The issues at stake here are about Americans protecting the Constitution from Shariah-adherent groups using the protective guise of religious freedom to attack the Constitution itself – using a triumphal Ground Zero mosque as “the base” for a project to institutionalize Shariah in America.