At Wednesday's rededication ceremony of the Saudi-funded Islamic Center of Washington, D.C., President Bush missed a perfect opportunity to repudiate apologism for radical Islam, and instead announced his latest plan to get the Muslim world to stop hating America: appoint a special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC).
Bush praised the OIC, saying, "We admire and thank those Muslims who have denounced what the Secretary General of the OIC called ‘radical fringe elements who pretend that they act in the name of Islam.'" The special envoy's mission, Bush said, would be to "listen and learn" to OIC ambassadors.
While this may sound nice, it is rooted in complete ignorance of the rampant radicalism, pro-terrorist, and anti-American sentiments routinely found in statements by the OIC and its leaders, including referring to "Islamophobia" — and not the mass slaughter of innocents in the name of Islam — the "worst form of terrorism," as OIC did last May.
In 2002, the OIC published its "Declaration on International Terrorism." Therein, the authors stated, amongst other outrageous claims, that there was no such thing as Palestinian terrorism, writing, "We reject any attempt to associate Islamic states or Palestinian and Lebanese resistance with terrorism." To the OIC, groups like Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, and Hezbollah are not terrorists, but "freedom fighters."
This is just the beginning of a litany of the OIC's wrongs.In March 2006, OIC General Secretary Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu embraced Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal at a press conference at OIC's headquarters. Ihsanoglu whitewashed: "With its win, Hamas begins a new stage in the development of the Palestinian issue. We assure that Hamas will deal with all national and international requirements in a practical and logical way."
At a "special session" of the OIC in August of the same year, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called for "the elimination of the Zionist regime," a statement that OIC failed to condemn. Moreover, the OIC has repeatedly backed Iran's nuclear ambitions. As Ishanoglu said in April, "All member states of the OIC and I have obviously supported Iran's right to access peaceful nuclear technology," despite clear indications that the Iranian regime's uranium-enrichment program is designed chiefly to make nuclear weapons.
And then, there is OIC's explaining away of the 9/11 attacks, which "expressed the frustration, disappointment, and disillusion that are festering deep in the Muslims' soul towards the aggressions and discriminations committed by the West."
These are the people that President Bush feels the need to "listen and learn" from. And the Bush administration's wishful thinking extends beyond his feelings toward the OIC, to the very location where Bush was giving his speech.
The 2005 Freedom House report on the Saudi-led radicalization of American mosques specifically identifies the Washington Islamic Center as a hotbed of hatred. In the past decade, I personally collected numerous copies of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion from the mosque. The Freedom House report chronicles the center's extremism: imams instructed their students to distance themselves from the West, forbade Muslim students from wearing the traditional cap and gown at during University graduation, and warned that participating in American holidays was the "most dangerous form of imitating the unbelievers, the most destructive and the most prevalent among the Muslims."
The center's library included a Saudi text book for 11th graders that described "the role of the Jews in the corruption of the European way of life," and that Jews used "innocuous-sounding themes as ‘progress and civilization' or ‘individual freedom' to destroy Europe."
There are many more examples in the report. Unfortunately, the President's lack of awareness is not limited to the OIC and the Washington Islamic Center, but also to the officials of the so-called "moderate" Muslim organizations whom the FBI, Department of Justice, Defense Department, and Department of State routinely invite to meetings and hearings.
In his speech, Bush said, "This enemy falsely claims that America is at war with Muslims and the Muslim faith, when in fact it is these radicals who are Islam's true enemy." Yet that very talking point is the refuge of America's supposedly mainstream Muslim organizations like the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) and the Islamic Society of North American (ISNA).
In March 2002, in response to an FBI raid of Islamist organizations in Northern Virginia, CAIR Executive Director Nihad Awad said, "This is a war against Islam and Muslims… Our administration has the burden of proving otherwise." In February 2004, MPAC Vice Chairman Aslam Abdullah said, "in the name of the ‘war on terror,' Islam and Muslims have become a target in America and elsewhere," and in June 2004 Abdullah accused President Bush of engaging in "a religious and racist agenda and prejudice against Islam, Muslims, and Arabs." In 2004, Louay Safi, a top ISNA official, went further, writing that the "assertion by ‘world leaders' that the war on terrorism is not a war on Islam is nothing but a piece of propaganda and disinformation that was meant to appease Western Muslims and to maintain the coalition against terrorism."
Meanwhile, Bush's own Justice Department recently formally named CAIR and ISNA as Muslim Brotherhood–front groups, listing them as unindicted co-conspirators in the largest terrorist financing case in U.S. history, against the Holy Land Foundation, an alleged Hamas front group.
In his wrongheaded outreach to the OIC, the president aligns with those who think the West is responsible for Islamic terrorism. Bush himself has said we "abandoned Muslims in the Middle East to tyrants and terrorists." Yet Wahhabism was born in the 18th century, long before Western colonialism in the Middle East and the resulting appointment of despotic rulers. It was the fascist Muslim Brotherhood that gave birth to terrorist groups like al Qaeda and Hamas, and it is the absence of a reformation that keeps the Muslim world boiling and in regression.
Unfortunately, despite his best intentions, the president gave the wrong speech at the wrong time. Perhaps the most telling indicator of his error was the fact that hours after his speech, CAIR, the un-indicted co-conspirator in the Hamas case in Dallas, congratulated the president on the appointment of a representative to OIC. With friends like these, who needs enemies?
— Steve Emerson is executive director of the Investigative Project on Terrorism
MIM: The State Department and Washington's new "dhimmiplomacy". Note that the OIC was created in response to a conspiracy theory -an attack on the Al Aqsa mosque by a deranged Christian which was blamed on the Jews. The attack triggered an Islamist version of the Reichstag fire which was blamed on a communist and used to justify a violent Nazi crackdown against their opponents. After the Al Aqsa attack the Grand Mufti ordered attacks on Jews. No wonder it is an organisation which "alot of people in the region look to" just as they did Mufti Al Husseini who aligned with Hitler and started rumors about an attack on Al Aqsa mosque which resulted in the 1929 Hebron massacre and the murder of hundreds of Jews.
Note that "The OIC was created in 1969 in response to an arson attack on the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem."
Acccording to Dr.Daniel Pipes:
Allegations that the Zionists planned to do away with the Mosque of Al-Aqsa, the holiest Islamic shrine in Jerusalem, and replace it with the Third Temple inspired the Western Wall riots of 1929 and poisoned Arab-Jewish relations in Palestine. Forty years later, the same issue gave birth to the Organization of the Islamic Conference, the United Nations of Muslim countries. In August 1969, a deranged Australian Christian by the name of Michael Dennis Rohan (which many Muslims turned into Cohen) set fire to that mosque. Though Israeli firefighters quickly extinguished the blaze and Rohan soon after confessed to setting it, Muslims around the world convinced themselves that the Israeli authorities had paid Rohan between $50,000 and $100 million to burn the mosque. Bellicose pronouncements echoed from all parts of the Middle East and rioting erupted in India, leading to widespread loss of life. King Faysal of Saudi Arabia capitalized on these passions to convene 25 Muslim heads of state at a meeting in Rabat, Morocco. Out of that meeting came the OIC. http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/313
Jun 27, 5:32 PM EDT
AP Photo/Gerald Herbert
Bush to Name Envoy to Islamic Conference By BEN FELLER
Associated Press Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush announced Wednesday he will establish an envoy to a coalition of Muslim countries, with hopes of bolstering ties to the Islamic world and improving the image of the United States.
Bush's special envoy, who has not yet been named, will be a liaison to The Organization of the Islamic Conference. The intergovernmental organization, representing more than 50 Islamic states, promotes Muslim solidarity in social and political affairs.
"Our special envoy will listen to and learn from representatives from Muslim states, and will share with them America's views and values," Bush said in a ceremony honoring the 50th anniversary of the Islamic Center, a mosque and cultural center in Washington.
"This is an opportunity for Americans to demonstrate to Muslim communities our interest in respectful dialogue and continued friendship," Bush said.
The United States has never before had a diplomat dedicated to dealing with The Organization of the Islamic Conference, or OIC. The establishment of a U.S. envoy comes as the plodding war in Iraq has fanned anti-American sentiment across the Muslim world.
The OIC was created in 1969 in response to an arson attack on the al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. It now has 57 members and is the second-largest international organization in the world, after the United Nations.
"This is an organization that a lot of people in the region look to, and we thought it was the right time to appoint somebody," State Department spokesman Sean McCormack said. Previously, according to the State Department, U.S. relations with the organization have been handled mainly by the U.S. ambassador to the country holding the OIC's rotating presidency, which is currently Turkey.
Those attending Wednesday's ceremony, including Bush, took off their shoes as they entered. Bush listened as a verse from the Quran was read.
"We live in a time when there are questions about America and her intentions. For those who seek a true understanding of our country, they need to look no farther than here," Bush said.
"This Muslim center sits quietly down the road from a synagogue, a Lutheran church, a Catholic parish, a Greek Orthodox chapel, a Buddhist temple - each with faithful followers who practice their deeply held beliefs and live side by side in peace," he said.
Bush singled out Iran and Syria and accused them of religious and political repression.
"Millions seek a path to the future where they can say what they think, travel where they wish and worship as they choose," he said. "They plead in silence for their liberty and they hope someone, somewhere will answer.
"So today in this place of free worship, in a heart of a free nation, we say to those who yearn for freedom from Damascus to Tehran: you are not bound forever by your misery. Plead in silence no longer. The free world hears you. You're not alone. America offers you its hand in friendship. We work for the day when we can welcome you into the family of free nations."
Abdullah Khouj, president of the Islamic Center of Washington, noted it was Bush's third visit. The president's first visit was after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks when he denounced prejudice against Muslims in the United States. He also visited in December 2002.
Sheet: Strengthening Our Friendship with the Muslim Community Worldwide
President Bush Announces He Will Appoint A Special Envoy To The Organization Of The Islamic Conference
President Bush Rededicates Islamic Center of Washington
Today, President Bush Participated In The Rededication Of The Islamic Center Of Washington, In Washington, D.C.
President Dwight D. Eisenhower attended the Dedication Ceremony of the Islamic Center of Washington on June 28, 1957, to demonstrate America's respect for the Islamic faith. To underscore this respect for Muslims everywhere, President Bush visited the Islamic Center of Washington six days after the 9/11 attacks to denounce any prejudice against Muslim-Americans.
The President Announced He Will Appoint A Special Envoy To The Organization Of The Islamic Conference (OIC). The OIC is an inter-governmental organization that strengthens political, economic, social, cultural, and scientific cooperation among its 57 member states.
- The President's Announcement Reaffirms The United States Government's Outreach To Muslim Communities Based On Mutual Respect And Understanding. This is the first time in history that a president has made such an appointment to the OIC.
- The Special Envoy Will Represent America's Views And Values And Work To Demonstrate To The Wider Islamic World Our Interest In Respectful Dialogue And Continued Friendship. The Envoy will maintain formal contact with the OIC Secretariat, the Secretary General, the chairing country, plus other member countries, to follow OIC affairs and activities, understand the views of OIC members and leaders, seek ways for the U.S. and the OIC to cooperate, and seek to promote U.S. views on important policy matters that may come before the OIC.
Today, We Have An Opportunity To Help The Forces Of Moderation Win The Great Struggle Against Extremism. In the Middle East, we have seen the rise of a group of extremists who seek to use religion as a path to power and a means of domination.
- Extremists Falsely Claim That America Is At War With The Muslim People And The Muslim Faith, When In Fact It Is These Radicals Who Are Islam's True Enemy. They have staged spectacular attacks on Muslim holy sites to divide Muslims and make them fight one another, and they have killed more Muslims than they have killed people of any other faith.
- The President Has Committed His Administration To Helping People Fight Off Terrorism And Find Their Own Paths To Prosperity And Peace. The efforts underway in Afghanistan and Iraq are central to this struggle, but the struggle will not end there. The stirrings of a democratic future have already been seen in other parts of the Middle East, though they may take time to be realized.
- Men And Women Of Conscience Have A Duty To Speak Out And Condemn The Murderous Movement Of Extremists - And In This Effort, Moderate Muslim Leaders Have The Most Powerful And Influential Voice. America admires and thanks those Muslims who have denounced what the OIC Secretary General called "radical fringe elements who pretend that they act in the name of Islam," and we must encourage more Muslim leaders to add their voices.
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Return to this article at:
MIM: The OIC welcomed the move as a sign of American dhimmitude towards Muslims and issued a press release gloating that the move showed "American interest in respectful dialogue and continued friendship".
OIC Secretary General welcomes President Bush's decision
to appoint a special envoy for the OIC
The Secretary General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu has welcomed and expressed his appreciation for the important decision of the US President Mr. George W Bush to appoint a Special Envoy for the Organization of the Islamic Conference. It should be mentioned here that the US President announced the decision yesterday on June 27 2007 during his visit to the Islamic Center of Washington. The Secretary General has expressed his hope that this decision would contribute to furthering the dialogue between the USA and the OIC and constitute a qualitative step forward in the path of historic reconciliation between the West and the Muslim World.
The Secretary General appreciated that the President's deliberation recognized OIC's rejection of radical fringe elements who pretend that they act in the name of Islam. He has also welcomed President's view that this initiative would improve mutual understanding and cooperation between America and people in predominately Muslim countries and that it would demonstrate to Muslim communities their interest in respectful dialogue and continued friendship.
Prior to the Statement of the President at the Islamic Center, the US Secretary of State Dr. Condoleezza Rice personally informed the OIC Secretary General of this significant decision made by the US Administration over telephone. During the conversation, the Secretary of State praised the positive role and efforts of the OIC in promoting moderation and development in the Muslim World. In his response, the Secretary General thanked Dr. Rice for this new initiative of improving mutual understanding between the US and the Muslim World and expressed the readiness of the OIC General Secretariat to engage and cooperate with the Special Envoy. Secretary of State Rice and Secretary General Ihsanoglu agreed to continue their dialogue in the coming period with a view to contributing to the promotion of culture of tolerance, peace, dialogue and mutual understanding.
The decision of the US Administration to appoint a Special Envoy followed the establishment of an OIC Ambassadorial Group in Washington DC in March 2007.
Jeddah, 28 June 2007
Link to the Text of President Bush Speech :
You can download the Video of this Speech Here
CAIR Welcomes Announcement of U.S. Envoy to Islamic Conference
June 29, 2007
Muslim civil rights group views initiative as move toward greater dialogue
WASHINGTON, June 27 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Council on American-
Islamic Relations (CAIR) today welcomed an announcement by President Bush
that he will name a special envoy to the Organization of the Islamic
Conference (OIC), a world body made up of 57 Muslim-majority nations. (SEE:
President Bush made that announcement at an event marking the 50th
anniversary and rededication of the Islamic Center of Washington, D.C., the
same mosque he visited after the 9/11 terror attacks.
He said: "Our special envoy will listen to and learn from
representatives from Muslim states and will share with them America's views
and values. This is an opportunity for Americans to demonstrate to Muslim
communities our interest in respectful dialogue and continued friendship."
SEE: Bush to Name Envoy to Islamic Conference (AP)
"We welcome the appointment of a special envoy to the OIC as
recognition that positive and respectful dialogue is the best way to build
bridges of understanding between our nation and the Muslim world," said
CAIR Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper.
Hooper joined the president, foreign diplomats, government officials,
and interfaith leaders at today's event marking the mosque's anniversary.
CAIR, America's largest Muslim civil liberties group, has 33 offices,
chapters and affiliates nationwide and in Canada. Its mission is to enhance
the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties,
empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and
CONTACT: CAIR National Communications Director Ibrahim Hooper, 202-488-
8787 or 202-744-7726, E-Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; CAIR Communications
Coordinator Rabiah Ahmed, 202-488-8787 or 202-439-1441, E-Mail:
email@example.com; CAIR Communications Coordinator Amina Rubin, 202-488-8787,
E- Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
MIM: Among the activities at the Islamic Center of Washington DC is da'wa and "giving seminars to those who newly embraced Islam". Judging from the pictures taken of president Bush, (seated next to Adullulah Khouj the head of the mosque dressed in Saudi fundamentalist tradition)Muslims are hoping that the president will set a precedent for "respectful dialogue" aka dhimmitude which other Americans will soon follow along the path to a United States of Allah. The center proudly notes:
"According to our official records, more than 14,000 people have declared the Shaha'da and accepted the Islamic faith since our opening in 1957."