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The Ahmed Bedier I Know - CAIR official leaves to continue fomenting radical Islam under guise of peace initiative

May 27, 2008

The Ahmed Bedier I Know
By Joe Kaufman | Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Samar Jarrah: "It's fascinating that some people who are supposedly terrorism experts and are advising this country are spending time to write about you moving up and changing your career. I mean, it's not like belittling you in any way, but I thought they would have much more important things to do."

Ahmed Bedier: "Yeah, I mean, well, if they think you're a terrorist, then they want to watch your movement." (WMNF, True Talk, May 23, 2008)

After five long years, Ahmed Bedier is now gone from the Hamas-related Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR); forced out, according to the group, so that it could move in another direction; stepped down, according to him, in start of a new project. Whatever the real reason may be, while Bedier may have left CAIR, he continues to foment radical Islam.

Since the beginning of 2003, Ahmed Bedier has served in an official capacity for CAIR, holding positions as Communications Director of CAIR-Florida and Executive Director of CAIR-Tampa.

Throughout his tenure, Bedier acted as the voice of Palestinian Islamic Jihad leader Sami Al-Arian in the media. It had seemed as though that was the reason for his hiring at CAIR, to be CAIR's eyes and ears and mouth after Al-Arian's arrest in February of 2003. And that made sense, as Al-Arian was one of the founders of CAIR's now defunct parent organization, the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), and both Al-Arian and Bedier were located in the Tampa/St. Pete area.

In time, Bedier established himself as a leading voice in CAIR, even appearing on national television news programs, such as Fox News' Hannity & Colmes. However, while he was praised by the national CAIR office, the organization never granted Bedier a national position. Recently, that opportunity was given to the younger Ahmed Rehab, the Executive Director of CAIR's Chicago, Illinois office. Rehab, who like Bedier is an Egyptian, now holds the job as National Director of Communications Strategy.

According to Bedier, he left CAIR because he felt the desire to pursue new avenues of interest. He stated on his radio program, True Talk, on May 23, 2008, "I'm no longer with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), which I've been there for the past five years been volunteering even longer... As Executive Director I founded the chapter, here in Tampa. But, you know, there comes a time when you move on... CAIR is a great organization, but it's time to move on, pass on the torch. And now, I have an announcement... I'm working on a new project that will focus on peacemaking."

But as pointed out by the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT), CAIR has a different story. According to the Civil Rights Coordinator of CAIR-Tampa, Ramzy Kilic who has helped Bedier defend two University of South Florida (USF) students, Youssef Samir Megahed and Ahmed Abdellatif Sherif Mohamed, accused by the U.S. government of transporting explosives Bedier was retired by CAIR. Kilic stated, "CAIR-Florida decided to make a change and go into a new direction. We wish Ahmed the best"

Regardless of which story is true, though, with or without CAIR, Ahmed Bedier continues in his radical Islamist ways, this month, referring to the creation and sustaining of Israel as a "disaster" and a "catastrophe." He stated on his May 9th radio show, "At the end of the program, we want to dedicate some time to what they're calling the 60th Anniversary Celebration of Israel's Independence. I really don't know what they gained independence from. We call it the Nakba, a disaster occupation for 60 years."

He continued, "[S]peaking of the Nakba, the local Muslim community is having which is being put on by the Muslim American Society in association with American Muslims for Palestine They're presenting, memorializing 60 years of Al-Nakba, the catastrophe... Anyone that's interested in remembering the 60 years of catastrophe and the occupation, there's going to be an event coming up on Saturday, May 17th, from 3 to 11 PM."

These statements can easily be added to the long list of past extremist quotations from Bedier, including:

Ahmed Bedier, many times, comes across as a non-threat, as he participates in numerous interfaith gatherings while cracking jokes and flashing a big smile. However, the man behind the smile is one that is infatuated with how the United States responds to terrorism and obsessed with Israel's very existence.

He is a man who has worked for and has attended a mosque, the Islamic Society of Pinellas County, that propagates material calling for the waging of violence against non-Muslims: "[S]o long as Kufr is present in this world, it is necessary to wage Jihad against it to finish it off, and so long as all the disbelievers do not openly accept Islam and adopt the Islamic way of life, Muslims are duty-bound to make Jihad against them."

He is a man very different from the "peacemaker" that has been portrayed by himself and the media. But the very fact that he was a leader of CAIR, a group that has ample ties to terrorists overseas, makes him someone to be wary of. And no, he is no longer with CAIR, but as witnessed above, his extremist jihad still goes on.

Joe Kaufman is the Chairman of Americans Against Hate, the founder of CAIR Watch, and the spokesman for Terror-Free Oil Initiative.

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