Although scores of examples from the government’s case show what we face, I offer just one found in a recent Nine/Eleven Finding Answers Foundation report: “On Aug. 16, 2007, a Miami jury convicted Adham Hassoun, Jose Padilla and Kifah Jayyousi of conspiring to provide material support to terrorists. A Department of Justice press release announcing the initial indictment against Hassoun, a Palestinian national living in Florida, stated, ‘As part of the conspiracy, Hassoun allegedly wrote a series of checks over several years — from 1994 to late 2001 — to unindicted coconspirators and organizations, including the Holy Land Foundation and the Global Relief Foundation, to be used to support violent jihad.’ Further, Raed Awad, HLF’s Florida representative and fund raiser, served as the Imam at Jose Padilla’s mosque.’”
There is much more, including this from the government’s case: “HLF is also mentioned in The 9/11 Commission Report in connection with the investigation of Anwar Aulaqi, an Imam in San Diego and Falls Church who allegedly had a ‘close relationship’ with hijackers Nawaf al-Hazmi and Khalid al-Mihdhar. Investigators probing Aulaqi prior to 9/11 learned that he ‘knew individuals from the Holy Land Foundation and others involved in raising money for the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas.’”
That the government was unable to convince a jury of this is either the fault of the prosecutors or the blindness of the jurors. I suspect it is the latter. Americans are extremely reluctant to brand a class of people and put them in categories. Our enemies know this, so they trade on our sorry history of slavery and racism and wrap themselves in the image of civil rights workers seeking only the same freedoms everyone else enjoys.
In a related matter, the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom has recommended that an Islamic school in Northern Virginia that is supported by the Saudi government be closed until it can be determined whether the school promotes radical Islam. The commission has criticized what it calls a lack of religious freedom in Saudi society and the promotion of religious extremism in Saudi schools. Officials at the Islamic school in Northern Virginia say the textbooks used to teach hate, but no longer do. They refuse to provide the “new” textbooks for examination. Here’s a deal: condition the approval of every Islamic school and mosque in the United States on the construction of Christian and Jewish schools and houses of worship in Muslim countries. That would stop them dead in their tracks because the freedoms we offer here, which they want to destroy, are not offered there in a religiously intolerant and politically totalitarian environment.
The government should retry the Holy Land Foundation case and hope for a better jury and a better outcome.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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