February 18, 2012 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - Omar Abdel Rahman [aka, the "blind" sheikh] is currently serving a life sentence in a maximum security prison for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.
Plucked from this relative obscurity, he has once again been injected into the news cycle, this time as part of gambit by Egyptian Islamists [including presidential candidate Hazem Abu Ismail] to secure Rahman's release in exchange for 19 Americans [most employed by NGOs] who are being held hostage in the country, accused of fomenting civil unrest.
According to Iran's semi-official Press TV news agency [see, http://www.presstv.ir/detail/227393.html] Ismail, "...an Islamic thinker, and a presidential hopeful said the parliament ...must play a pivotal role in pressuring the government to hold serious talks with the US over the release of [the] al-Azhar cleric...an Egyptian lawyer told Press TV that the Parliament along with the government should take the initiative to propose the release of the detained Islamic leader in exchange for 19 Americans who will be tried later this month on charges of receiving funds to instigate violence in the country..."
Ismail has long been recognized as an influential Muslim Brotherhood intellectual but officially broke ties with the party [wink-wink-nod-nod] upon his announcement as a candidate for the Egyptian presidency.
An important aspect of his candidacy rests upon the assertion that Egypt should abrogate its peace treaty with Israel [see, http://bikyamasr.com/47045/egypt-candidate-abu-ismail-no-gambling-no-bikinis-no-alcohol-islamic-dress/]
The demand for Rahman's release is not a new issue to Egyptians however.
As we reported in an April 21, 2011 piece [see, Egypt's "Freedom" Revolutionaries Demand That U.S. Release Terrorist Omar Abdel Rahman, The Blind Sheikh
"According to multiple reports [see for example, http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2011/04/21/general-ml-egypt-protest_8428796.html] a large mob of Islamists has gathered outside the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt demanding that Omar Abdel Rahman, aka the "Blind Sheikh," be released from confinement in the United States. Rahman is serving a life sentence for his role in multiple terror plots including the first bombing of the World Trade Center in 1993. Those conducting the protest are not your garden variety Muslim Brotherhood riff-raff, as Associated Press is reporting, 'The protest leader was Abboud el-Zomor, who was released from an Egyptian prison in March after serving multiple sentences for his role in the assassination of former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat.'"
It's likely that such pressure tactics by the Muslim Brotherhood will only stiffen the already considerable resolve expressed by some DC lawmakers to pull the plug on foreign aid to the country.
Standing in opposition are the usual suspects, Hillary's State Department and the WH, still eager to curry favor with the terrorist Muslim Brothers.
©2012 PipeLineNews.org. All rights reserved.