On Wednesday, Glenn Greenwald released the names of five Muslim-Americans on whom, he alleged, the FBI and the NSA have unfairly spied.
However, what is clear after further investigation is that the five named individuals in the Greenwald expose’ have alleged ties to extremism, and also have allegedly engaged in radical activities.
The first person on Greenwald’s list is Faisal Gill. Gill was a spokesman for the American Muslim Council (AMC) while under the leadership of now-jailed Islamist radical Abdurahman Alamoudi, who was indicted and pleaded guilty in 2003 for financing terrorism and assassination plots. The Treasury Department documented that Alamoudi was a fundraiser for Al Qaeda. Alamoudi was subsequently sentenced to 23 years in prison for his ties to terrorism. When Gill served as a Department of Homeland Security policy director, he was reportedly fired temporarily for failing to disclose his ties to Alamoudi. Gill denied the allegations that were made against him.
The second person on this list, Asim Ghafoor, has held high ranking positions in the Global Relief Foundation (GRF), which was shut down by the U.S. government after a Treasury Department report found that “The Global Relief Foundation has connections to, has provided support for, and has provided assistance to Usama Bin Ladin, the al-Qaeda Network, and other known terrorist groups.” He once said, “We [Muslims] are here [in the U.S.] not just to be nice to people, not to say great things about people, but to bring truth and justice and Islamic ways to this country. …You should rule by Islam. Otherwise you’re a Kafir (unbeliever, non-Muslim).”
The third person listed is Dr. Agha Saeed, who is a founding member and national chair of the American Muslim Alliance (AMA), a group that works to get “qualified American Muslims elected to the U.S. Congress” and “all levels in the American Political System.” Saeed once testified on behalf of Sami Al-Arian, the U.S. leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad terrorist group, which has murdered countless Israeli Jews. Saeed said of Al-Arian during his criminal trial, “I believe that Prof. Arian had used the word ‘jihad’ to induce a spirit of self-purification and public benefit among the community members.” Al-Arian pleaded guilty in 2006 to “conspiracy to provide services to Palestinian Islamic Jihad.”
During the sentencing hearing, the U.S. district court judge said of Al-Arian’s actions:
But when it came to blowing up women and children on buses, did you leap into action then? Did you offer to form a committee to protect the innocent? Did you call your fellow directors and enlist their aid in stopping the bombing or even to stop the targeting of the innocent? No. You lifted not one finger, made not one phone call. To the contrary, you laughed when you heard about the bombings, what you euphemistically call “operations.” You even pleaded for donations to pay for more such operations. … The evidence was clear in this case that you were a member of Palestinian Islamic Jihad. You were on the board of directors and an officer. Directors control the actions of an organization, even the PIJ; and you were an active leader.
The fourth man on the list, Hooshang Amirahmadi, does not identify as a practicing Muslim. He once was president of the American-Iranian Council, a group that said Hamas and Hezbollah should be touted as legitimate organizations, and not radical Islamist groups. The American-Iranian Council was the predecessor to the National Iranian American Council, a group widely suspected of having ties to the Ayatollah’s regime in Tehran.
The fifth name on Greenwald’s list is Nihad Awad. Awad is one of the founders of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a group that was charged as an unindicted co-conspirator during the largest terrorism-financing case in U.S. history. Awad once publicly declared, “I am in support of the Hamas movement,” the radical Islamic group that is a U.S.-designated terrorist organization. Awad also worked as PR director for the Islamic Association for Palestine, a group that U.S. officials found “ample evidence” of being associated with terrorist group Hamas.