While the Cordoba House project needs more transparency about who will be funding the project beyond those that have already been identified, this Staten Island project raises red flags.
The group, Muslim American Society, is proposing building a mosque on the site of a former convent that the Catholic Church has shuttered. The proposed sale had caught the local community off guard and this meeting was supposed to clear the air. The archdiocese did not have a representative at the meeting.
For those who aren't familiar with the Muslim American Society, they do have links with the Muslim Brotherhood, which is a worldwide movement that has spawned the likes of al Qaeda and jihadi groups that have attempted the overthrow of the Egyptian government, engaged in terrorism against Israel and the US, and which supports the likes of Hamas and Hizbullah. The Muslim Brotherhood's committed to the globalization of Islam through a variety of means, including violent jihad. Residents have a right to be wary.
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Needless to say, the meeting didn't exactly go as planned as it turned into a shouting match and the sponsors had to end the community meeting early.
One of those asking questions, Robert Spencer, repeatedly sought an answer to a simple question - "Do you denounce Hamas and Hizballah?" and eventually got a response that "MAS denounces any act of terror in the United States or outside."
What was so tough about answering that question? The response, however, does leave the door open to some interpretation because MAS would likely see Israel's actions to defend itself as terrorism, and wouldn't see the furtherance of jihad as an act of terror because it is a legitimate use of force under Islamic law.
The Muslim American Society does have strong links with pro-terrorist groups and supports an ideology that is antithetical to peaceful coexistence with those who don't support their ideology. The Investigative Project has a full dossier on the MAS.
Then, there's the positions previously taken by the people in charge of the MAS, which rallied in support of Hamas and Hizbullah:
Those spokespersons for the MAS at the meeting attempted to deflect the issue, but fell short of a proper explanation. They could not sufficiently answer questions on the group's ties to the Muslim Brotherhood remain or the group's ongoing support for groups that include Hamas and Hizbullah.
This is a situation that bears continued examination.
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