The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) waged a new attack Tuesday on anti-Islamist Muslim Zuhdi Jasser, asking that a federal commission investigate Jasser’s financial supporters.
Jasser, founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, also serves on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). CAIR and other Islamist groups tried to block that appointment in 2012. Now, CAIR wants the USCIRF to investigate Jasser’s donors, who also give to other groups CAIR doesn’t like. The AIFD received $45,000 from the Abstraction Fund from 2010-12, a letter from CAIR’s Corey Saylor said.
The New York-based fund also gives money to the Investigative Project on Terrorism, the Middle East Forum and Jihad Watch. All, Saylor claimed, play an “active role in spreading anti-Islam prejudice.”
“At issue here is the reasonable concern that arises regarding Dr. Jasser accepting financial support from anti-Muslim groups while he is serving on a commission advocating for religious freedom,” Saylor wrote.
What a load of nonsense. As we have shown, CAIR and others toss around accusations of “Islamophobia” as a means of stifling criticism and deflecting attention from their own shady records. Jasser is a devout Muslim who repeatedly points out that Muslims are freer to practice their faith in the United States than anywhere else in the world. He calls out the victimization narrative promoted by CAIR and other Islamist groups.
In response to CAIR’s attack Tuesday, Jasser posted a link to a 2011 IPT report showing CAIR solicited money from Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi.
CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad praised Gaddafi’s rambling, 100-minute speech to the United Nations General Assembly for having “an impact in the hearts of many people in the world.” Awad later sought financial help from Gaddafi to underwrite a program to give away one million Qurans to government officials and the general public in America and to help start up a new foundation.
In addition, State Department records obtained by the IPT show CAIR solicited huge donations during 2006 trips to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Despite that, CAIR continues to label information about its foreign financial support as “Internet Disinformation.”
“CAIR’s operational budget is funded by donations from American Muslims,” its website says. (To see a debunking of CAIR’s “disinformation” claims, click here.)
Tuesday’s letter was CAIR’s second to the USCIRF about Jasser in the past month. It also took statements Jasser made during a recent television appearance to argue that he would “deny religious rights to Muslim military personnel.” In fact, Jasser–a Navy veteran–said that during his service “I was able to practice my faith, fast, pray, and I never saw the need for” new policies allowing for beards, turbans, and other religious garb for active duty military members.
It’s fine to debate that point. But CAIR’s ongoing campaign to strip Jasser of his position shows they don’t want debate. They want a monopoly on determining what is acceptable for American Muslims to believe.