USA: Islamophobic group working with Zionist regime spied on Muslims

CAIR says Islamophobic group working with Israeli government spied on Muslims for over a decade

The Council on American-Islamic Relations has released new evidence about an anti-Muslim group’s web of spies and their connections to the Israeli government


Yesterday the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) held a press conference detailing new evidence about spies paid to surveil Muslims. CAIR’s findings show that an anti-Muslim group, working with the Israeli government, spied on prominent Muslims and Muslim organizations for over a decade.

Last month the group fired Romin Iqbal, the former Executive and Legal Director for one of its Ohio chapters, after it discovered that he was sharing audio recordings and confidential information with the Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT). IPT was founded by the infamous Islamophobic author Steven Emerson and has been referred to as “a leading source of anti-Muslim racism.” CAIR said the IPT was “communicating with and providing assistance to Israeli intelligence with the office of then-Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.”

Whitney Siddiqi, the CAIR-Ohio community affairs director, called the revelations a “complete betrayal” at the time.

According to CAIR, two additional individuals have come forward to confess that they have spied on behalf of IPT. One is a Virginia Muslim named Tariq Nelson who was paid by the hate group from 2008 through 2012 and the other is an IPT whistleblower who detailed how the organization gathered confidential information in an effort to protect the Israeli government.

“The fact that anti-Muslim bigots and anti-Palestinian racists have invested so much time and effort in spying on our community is a sign of the importance of our community,” said CAIR National Deputy Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell in a statement. “These hate groups are terrified that American Muslims will use our political activism, civic engagement and legal work to advance justice here and around the world. They’re right to be afraid because that’s exactly what we’ve been doing and will continue to do, God willing.”

At the press conference CAIR presented statements from both individuals, proof that IPT paid one of the spies for their work, tax documents outlining IPT’s major donors, and a dossier that IPT compiled on former Representative, and current Minnesota Attorney General, Keith Ellison.

According to an exclusive report on the scandal in the Washington Post, Tariq Nelson was the person who recorded critical remarks that Ellison made about Israel at a 2010 fundraiser. That recording was leaked by IPT and used by anti-Palestinian groups to help block him from becoming chairman of the Democratic National Committee in 2016.

Ellison didn’t address the political impact of the recording in his comments to the Post, but he acknowledge that the issue of Muslim surveillance was an important one. “The truth about the long campaign of disinformation — spying on Muslims engaged in legitimate First Amendment activity, paying people tens of thousands of dollars to conduct smear campaigns based on deception — continues to come out,” he told the paper. “If the last 10 years have shown us anything, it is that the so-called ‘Muslim scare’ was always deliberate disinformation pitting Americans against each other.”

“Keith Ellison was IPT’s main target for many years,” said CAIR National Deputy Director Edward Ahmed Mitchell during the press conference. “They compiled a massive dossier on him, targeting his public and private remarks, his speeches, his articles. They were trying to find anything they could to undermine this inspiring black, Muslim politician. They were spying on him for years.”

“I would like to take this opportunity to call on the Justice Department, on the FBI, on the U.S. Treasury to investigate and hold Steven Emerson and the Investigative Project on Terrorism accountable,” said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. “Why is he allowed to spy for a foreign entity in service to the state of Israel? Spying on American Muslims, on legal organizations should not be allowed and I hope that the Justice Department will take this call very seriously.”

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