Wednesday's conviction of Hassan Abujihaad should serve as a warning sign to the lethality and danger to our security from political Islam (Islamism). Islamism is an ideological clear and present danger to our security. Until we figure this out and finally begin the debate within the Muslim community about how to separate religion and politics within the Islamic consciousness, there will be many more traitorous Abujihaads produced out of the political grievance mills which many American mosques and American Islamist organizations have become.
Sean Holstege, Arizona Republic reports today about the Navy sailor's quiet life and how it took a sinister turn. The Muslim American Society's Arizona Chapter and Freedom Foundation (MAS-AZ) director, Deedra Abboud, dismisses Mr. Abujihaad as part of the "victim mentality" combined with a "little delusion." I would imagine she harbors under the delusion that the MAS, CAIR (Council for American Islamic Relations) and other American Islamist organizations have nothing to do with that victimization mantra which she clearly acknowledges here as problematic – and yet remains the overwhelming central focus of the work of domestic Islamists like herself.
I believe the American people deserve an apology from Ms. Abboud (or from her previous employer, CAIR-Arizona) for defending a now-convicted traitor. Where is the outrage from any of the American Islamist organizations for how this traitor maligned the name of Muslims and the Islamic faith with his treason? In a calculated manner, they choose to rather be silent about the man who they claimed was a victim and is now a convicted traitor who they reflexively defended because he was Muslim. This should expose the agenda of Islamist organizations which have a set of priorities at conflict with the clear and present danger to American security posed by the ideology of Islamism.
The American Islamic Forum for Democracy had, before at the time of his arrest and indictment, been on record calling for the highest punishment of this traitor and that he be made an example of what happens to those who choose the transnational goals of political Islam over American citizenship. We again reiterate that call for the heaviest punishment our law will provide this traitor.
Do organizations like CAIR or MAS not see how their rush to support any victim-mongering Muslim that shows up on their doorstep ends up putting them in this case, for example, in defense of radical Islamists who are traitors? But their default is to trust Islamists and blame the government until proven otherwise in a court of law, despite all the evidence to the contrary. Their default is to soak up media bandwidth with grievance campaigns and victimization hoping that America forgets when the guilty verdict comes in – rather than joining modernists and reformists in our counterterrorism, counter-Islamism, and counter-Jihadist efforts.
As I noted on March 6th in my Republic piece, the political rhetoric which consumes Islamist organizations and many political mosques and imams from their bully pulpits is the underlying fuel for radicals with a similar political agenda and grievance list.
It does not matter that overt violence may not be preached from most mosque pulpits. What matters is that the grievances and goals of terrorist organizations like HAMAS, al Qaeda, and Islamic Jihad are in fact echoed and excused. What matters is that the concept of ummah still reverberates in mosques as the intent to collectivize Muslims into a Muslim “nation” – a goal at odds with the foundations of Western, liberal, secular democracies. What matters is that Islamist fundamentalism and Wahhabism are spread without counter. A real investigation and exposure of these mosques and institutions and ideas would prove this.
The report out March 6th is a good start at exposing the problem. While the details of what ended up driving Abujihaad into violence appear to be part of the cyberjihad he gravitated toward while in the Navy, the more important stage is trying to ascertain what ideologies led him to search out those sites and how we as a Muslim community can and should reform that – without denial or obfuscation.
It is the foundational belief at the American Islamic Forum for Democracy that political Islam is the driving ideology which plants the seeds of separatism and lost identity, and ultimately drives a radical Islamist’s desire to become part of the transnational Islamist movement against the very nations in which these homegrown terrorists reside.
It's time for local reporters and investigators to start asking local mosques, including the one Abujihad attended, whether they will condemn militant Islamist organizations by name and whether they will stand against the establishment of the Islamic state and the global movement of political Islam. Here are some other questions for them to ask them to clarify where they stand in the global Islamist agenda.