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Militant Islam Monitor > Articles > Boca mayor angered after mosque uses name to promote controversial event

Boca mayor angered after mosque uses name to promote controversial event

Use of mayor's titles by Muslims to legitimize talk by neo Nazi shows need for politicians and the public to scrutinize Islamic institutions
April 14, 2005

MIM: The Assadiq Islamic Educational Foundation claims that the names of the mayor's on the flyer belonged to ones that 'had not yet been printed up'. Today a new flyer appeared on the Assadiq website which showed that the mayor's names had been removed but it appeared that it was the same flyer which had been altered. Obviously, the flyer must have been printed up in order for it to be scanned into the computer, and neo Nazi William Baker is still the keynote speaker at the event. http://www.militantislammonitor.org/article/id/538

The Assadiq Foundation event organisers claims that "the flier on the Web site was a rough draft and the 2,000 that were printed didn't list any guests of honor..." and that she " didn't know about Baker's history" appear to be attempts to "economise the truth". The fact that the Assadiq Foundation has not addressed the issue of Baker's neo Nazi ties,or disinvited him, further undermines their protestestations of ignorance regarding his background, which triggered the uproar to the mayor's listed appearences at the event.

It is a stretch to be asked to believe that Assadiq was not aware of Baker's association with the neo Nazi movement in the US. It also bears noting that on the Assadiq flyer Baker is labelled as being part of the Crystal Cathedral. This appears to be another attempt at deception, because Baker was thrown out by the group in 2002 because of his neo Nazi affiliations . http://www.ocweekly.com/ink/02/37/news-brin.php

Last year , Baker was cancelled as a speaker for the Muslim Student Association at FAU in Boca Raton, after people objected to having a neo Nazi /Holocaust denier on campus.

MIM: Dr.Daniel Pipes wrote an article about Baker's appearence at an Islamist conference in Toronto where local politicians participated in the gathering entitled "Canadian Islamists Host a neo- Nazi".

"It also bears noting that .... big-time authority figures ....participated in the "Reviving the Islamic Spirit" conference, thereby giving it and by implication, William W. Baker their blessing."

As I wrote recently of a comparable case in Boston where politicians did favors for a radical mosque: "The moral of this too-oft-repeated tale is not hard to guess: politicians and bureaucrats, journalists, clergy, academics, et al. need to know an Islamic institution is clean of Islamist associations and intentions before endorsing it ... Good will and ecumenical intent cannot substitute for research."

MIM: The Sun Sentinel article below, about the planned Islamist event, says that Boca mayor Steven Abrams, "had not heard of the mosque" until his title appeared on their event flyer together with neo Nazi William Baker.

Mayor Ernest -Jones stated that he agreed to pay a courtesy call at the event, after meeting the Assadiq Imam at an Islamic celebration,and had no idea who the scheduled speakers were.

Both mayor's statements illustrate the point which Dr.Daniel Pipes made when he wrote that," ...politicians ...need to know that an Islamic institution is clean of Islamist associations an'd intentions before endorsing it"....Good will and ecumenical intent cannot subsitute for research...


Boca Mayor angered after mosque uses name to promote controversial event


By Luis F. Perez
Staff Writer

April 14, 2005

Two mayors got angry e-mails this week berating them for planning to attend an event with a speaker a civil rights group says has a history of anti-Semitism.

Boca Raton Mayor Steven Abrams and Coral Springs Mayor Rhon Ernest-Jones said they didn't give the Assadiq Islamic Educational Foundation permission to use their names in a flier announcing a mosque celebration. The event's featured speaker is William Baker, president and founder of Christians and Muslims for Peace.

The Anti-Defamation League says Baker has a history of anti-Semitic activity.

Abrams, who is Jewish, said he has never heard of the Boca Raton-based mosque, was never invited to its event at a Boca Raton hotel and didn't give his permission to use his title in the invitation as a guest of honor.

Ernest-Jones, married to a Jewish woman, had a similar experience. He said he met Imam Sayed Mohammad Jawad Al-Qazwini and agreed to stop in and "pay respects" at the mosque's April 30 celebration of the Prophet Muhammad.

But Jones didn't know the speakers and didn't agree to have his title used to publicize the event.

"They completely used my name under false pretense," Ernest-Jones said.

Both men were aghast to find out what the Anti-Defamation League's thought about Baker.

"It's my view that the only thing Baker can add to this gathering is the poison of anti-Semitism," said Art Teitelbaum, the league's southern area director.

Attempts to contact Baker, based in Laguna Hills, Calif. failed. Al-Qazwini is traveling and unavailable to comment, said Zynab Hassan, 21.

A message on the mosque's answering machine said to contact Hassan or Mustafa Albassam, 19, with any questions regarding the event. Hassan and Albassam both said they're assistants helping to coordinate the celebration, but they were not involved in choosing the speakers.

Hassan said the flier on the Web site was a rough draft and the 2,000 that were printed didn't list any guests of honor. She also said she didn't know about Baker's history.

"I don't know that the imam knew that," Hassan said about Baker's past.

Teitelbaum said a 1982 book Baker wrote was filled with anti-Jewish, anti-Israel rhetoric. He said Baker was named chairman of the Populist Party in 1994, one of the leading anti-Semitic groups.

"It's regrettable and disheartening to find that this level of hatred and insensitivity exists among those who find Baker an attractive speaker and participant at their meetings," Teitelbaum said.

Both mayors responded to the angry e-mails that ended up on at least two Web sites.

Abrams cited Baker's affiliation with a group that disputes the Holocaust.

"Several of my family members perished in the Holocaust, and any suggestions challenging the historical record is repugnant to me," he said.

Luis F. Perez can be reached at [email protected] or 561-243-6641.


Boca Islamic group under scrutiny for neo-Nazi ties

Published Saturday, April 16, 2005 1:00 am

by By Sean Salai Boca Raton News
A new Islamic advocacy group in Boca Raton is under scrutiny for its ties to William W. Baker, a former chairman of the neo-Nazi political party of presidential candidate David Duke who was run out of town last year when he attempted to speak at Florida Atlantic University.

Local Jewish and civic leaders said Friday they were alarmed that the Assadiq Islamic Education Foundation, whose headquarters are listed at 831 E. Palmetto Park Road in Boca, had invited Baker back to Boca as featured speaker at an April 30 banquet at the Boca Marriott. Invited by Muslim students to speak at Florida Atlantic University in April 2004, Baker's first visit to the city was cancelled amid popular protest.

"I'd like to give [the Assadiq Foundation] the benefit of the doubt and say they got snookered, but this is the second attempt at getting Baker into Boca Raton, so they have to be aware of his reputation," said Bill Gralnick, southeast regional director of the American Jewish Committee.

Leaders of the Anti-Defamation League also protested last year's visit by Baker, on whom they have a long anti-Semitic file. Now head of Christians and Muslims for Peace (CAMP), Baker chaired the neo-Nazi Populist Party and organized its national convention in 1984.

"For me, it's alarm bells," Gralnick said. "Baker is in league with Islamicist elements that are probing the defenses of American Jewish communities. He makes money off them by being their white Anglo-Saxon mouthpiece who says bad things about Jews."

Sayed Mohammad Jawad Al-Qazwini, listed on the Assadiq Web site as the group's Imam and founder, did not answer media inquiries Friday.

On the Assadiq Web site, a page titled "Audio library" features a graphic of dripping blood and a series of recorded talks by Al-Qazwini.

The titles of his talks, which could not be accessed, range from "The Perpetual Endeavor to Protect Islam" and "The Ingredients to an Eternal Revolution" to "Traits of an Ideal Leader for an Eternal Uprising."

Until recently, a notice for the April 30 banquet headlined by Baker also listed the mayors of Boca Raton and Coral Springs as "guests of honor" on the Web site.

But that reference was removed Friday after Coral Springs Mayor Rhon Ernest-Jones and Boca Mayor Steven L. Abrams, a Jew, received several e-mails from constituents berating them for their participation in the event.

Abrams called the group Thursday to say he was never contacted about the event. In response, he received a telephone message in broken English claiming that none of the event's 2,000 printed invitations included his name when they were mailed out.

"From what I can tell, this group appeared in January or February," Abrams said Friday. "I know that the banquet's featured speaker, William Baker, sought to speak at FAU last year. He's certainly entitled to his views, but I don't want anything to do with him."

Abrams added, "Not knowing all of Baker's views, I would still venture to say that I don't agree with any of them. Even if he said I was a good mayor, I would still disagree."

Baker's Populist Party is perhaps best known for its 1988 presidential nominee, former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke.

Willis Carto, head of the now-defunct Liberty Lobby, founded the Populist Party in 1955. The father of American neo-Nazism, Carto also founded the Costa Mesa-based Institute for Historical Review, a group whose avowed purpose is Holocaust denial.

While Baker has claimed he never supported the views of Carto, he did advocate returning to segregation laws at the party's 1984 convention.

Critics have said Baker also articulated anti-Semitic views in a 1982 book on the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, "Theft of a Nation."

Longtime critics claim that many of Baker's professional credentials are made up. He claims even today to have a doctorate and to have been nominated for a Noble Peace Prize in 1997.

Baker, a resident of Laguna Hills, Calif., was once a regular guest speaker at the Rev. Robert Schuller's Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove. He was later ousted from the mega-church when his neo-Nazi credentials were exposed.

Sean Salai can be reached at [email protected] or 561-893-6427

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