NEW YORK, Nov. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A prominent national human rights and advocacy organization today applauded the Florida State Tea Party Convention's decision to disinvite a scheduled speaker, controversial Islamic supremacist Hassan Shibly of the Hamas-linked hate group the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
The American Freedom Defense Initiative (AFDI) had earlier today called for such a move on the part of Tea Party officials. Shibly was scheduled to speak at the Florida State Tea Party Convention in Daytona Beach, November 4-6, 2011.
"We applaud this decision as a victory for common sense and good judgment," said AFDI National Executive Director Pamela Geller. "Hamas-linked CAIR is given a platform everywhere -- the mainstream media and even government and law enforcement routinely go to them. It is their foes who never have a platform." Geller will be addressing the Convention as scheduled.
The Investigative Project on Terrorism has noted that Shibly, the director of Hamas-linked CAIR's Tampa chapter, "has a track record of defending terrorist groups and acting as an apologist for radical Islam. Following the 2006 Israel-Lebanon War, Shibly granted legitimacy to Hizballah by characterizing it as a 'resistance movement' that provides valued social services to the Lebanese people. 'They're absolutely not a terrorist organization,' Shibly said, and 'any war against them is illegitimate.'" Hizballah has been on the U.S. State Department's list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations since 1999.
Hamas-linked CAIR frequently attempts to intimidate numerous government agencies and citizens' groups into dropping events featuring foes of international jihad activity, including Geller. Last week it falsely claimed in a press release that Florida Governor Rick Scott and Senator Marco Rubio declined to speak at the Florida State Tea Party Convention because Geller was speaking as well. In reality, neither Rubio nor Scott had ever confirmed their appearance at the Convention; they were invited but due to scheduling conflicts are unable to attend. CAIR, however, never corrected its false information, or apologized to the Tea Party or to Geller.
Hamas-linked CAIR itself has numerous ties to jihad terror, and consequently has been listed on AFDI's Threats to Freedom Index. Recently U.S. District Judge Jorge A. Solis cited "ample evidence" that CAIR participated in a "criminal conspiracy" led by the Holy Land Foundation, Hamas's main fund-raising arm in the U.S. CAIR was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation Hamas terror funding case.
The FBI has discontinued all contact with CAIR because of its terror ties. In the summer of 2010 it has embarked upon a concerted campaign of intimidation and defamation to silence public figures who speak out against jihad and Islamic terrorism, including Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY), the Rev. Franklin Graham, Florida Congressional candidate Dan Fanelli, and Connecticut Congressional candidate Rick Torres.
CAIR has a long record of duplicity and deception. Although it has received millions of dollars in donations from foreign Islamic entities, it has not registered as a foreign agent as required by the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), despite spreading Islamic supremacist propaganda within the United States.
Although it presents itself as a civil rights group, CAIR actually has numerous links to Islamic supremacist and jihad terror groups. CAIR founders Omar Ahmad and Niwad Awad (who still serves as CAIR's executive director) were present at a Hamas planning meeting in Philadelphia in 1993 where they and other Hamas operatives conspired to raise funds for Hamas and to promote jihad in the Middle East. CAIR has steadfastly refused to denounce Hamas and Hizballah as terrorist groups.
Several former CAIR officials have been convicted of various crimes related to jihad terror:
* Ghassan Elashi, founder of CAIR's Texas chapter, in 2009 received a 65-year prison sentence for funneling over $12 million from the Islamic charity known as the Holy Land Foundation to the jihad terrorist group Hamas, which is responsible for murdering hundreds of Israeli civilians
* Mousa Abu Marzook, a former CAIR official, was designated by the U.S. government in 1995 as a "terrorist and Hamas leader." He now is a Hamas leader in Syria.
* Randall Royer, CAIR's former civil rights coordinator, in 2004 began serving a 20-year prison sentence for aiding al-Qaida and the Taliban against American troops in Afghanistan and recruiting for Lashkar e-Taiba, the jihadist group responsible for the 2008 Mumbai jihad massacres.
* Bassem Khafagi, CAIR's former community relations director, was arrested for involvement with the Islamic Assembly of North America, which was linked to al-Qaida. After pleading guilty to visa and bank fraud charges, Khafagi was deported.
* Rabih Haddad, a former CAIR fundraiser, was deported for his work with the Global Relief Foundation (which he co-founded), a terror-financing organization.
In 1998 Omar Ahmad, CAIR's co-founder and longtime Board Chairman, said: "Islam isn't in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth."
After he received unwelcome publicity as a result of this statement, Ahmad denied saying it, several years after the fact. However, the original reporter, Lisa Gardiner of the Fremont Argus, stands by her story.
CAIR's spokesman Ibrahim Hooper once said: "I wouldn't want to create the impression that I wouldn't like the government of the United States to be Islamic sometime in the future."
AFDI/SIOA is one of America's foremost organizations defending human rights, religious liberty, and the freedom of speech against Islamic supremacist intimidation and attempts to bring elements of Sharia to the United States.
Join the SIOA Facebook group here.
For more information, contact Pamela Geller at firstname.lastname@example.org.
SOURCE American Freedom Defense Initiative