A Textbook Case of Intolerance

July 22, 2008 at 6:33 pm | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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Saudi textbooks. Click image to expandSaudi textbooks

Because they are so clearly designed for the convenience of large testing companies, I had always assumed that multiple-choice tests, the bane of any fourth grader’s existence, were a quintessentially American phenomenon. But apparently I was wrong. According to a report put out by the Hudson Institute’s Center for Religious Freedom last week, it seems that Saudi Arabians find them useful, too. Here, for example, is a multiple-choice question that appears in a recent edition of a Saudi fourth-grade textbook, Monotheism and Jurisprudence, in a section that attempts to teach children to distinguish “true” from “false” belief in god:

Q. Is belief true in the following instances:
a) A man prays but hates those who are virtuous.
b) A man professes that there is no deity other than God but loves the unbelievers.
c) A man worships God alone, loves the believers, and hates the unbelievers.

The correct answer, of course, is c). According to the Wahhabi imams who wrote this textbook, it isn’t enough just to worship god or just to love other believers—it is important to hate unbelievers as well. By the same token, b) is also wrong. Even a man who worships god cannot be said to have “true belief” if he loves unbelievers.

“Unbelievers,” in this context, are Christians and Jews. In fact, any child who sticks around in Saudi schools until ninth grade will eventually be taught that “Jews and Christians are enemies of believers.” They will also be taught that Jews conspire to “gain sole control of the world,” that the Christian crusades never ended, and that on Judgment Day “the rocks or the trees” will call out to Muslims to kill Jews.

These passages, it should be noted, are from new, “revised” Saudi textbooks. Following a similar analysis of earlier versions of these same textbooks in 2006, American diplomats immediately approached their Saudi counterparts about the more disturbing passages, and the Saudis agreed to conduct a “comprehensive revision … to weed out disparaging remarks towards religious groups.”

The promised revision—hailed, at the time, as a great diplomatic success—was supposed to be finished by the beginning of the 2008-09 school year and was accompanied by a Saudi PR campaign. Among other things, the Saudis sponsored an interfaith dialogue last week, one that all participants hailed as a great breakthrough—despite the fact that the actual meetings took place in Spain as it would be too embarrassing for Saudi Arabia to host Christian and Jewish religious leaders on its own soil. But although the beginning of the 2008-09 school year is nearly upon us, the only textbook revisions have been superficial, and the most disturbing part of the message—that faithful Muslims should hate Jews and Christians—remains.

Normally, the contents of another country’s textbooks would be of no interest to us. Indeed, I’ve no doubt that there are plenty of U.S. textbooks that contain insane, incorrect, or otherwise unacceptable information. Saudi school textbooks are a special case, however. They are written and produced by the Saudi government and subsequently distributed, free of cost, to Saudi-sponsored schools as far afield as Lagos, Nigeria, and Buenos Aires, Argentina. Americans are not the only ones who worry about their influence. In Britain, a small political storm began last year when British mosques were found to be distributing Saudi books that called on Muslims to kill all apostates.

Still, even if U.S. diplomacy is a legitimate response to this peculiarly insidious form of propaganda, it clearly isn’t a sufficient response. Far more significant, and surely more effective, would be a unified response from the rest of the world’s Muslims, the vast majority of whom do not share Saudi views and do, occasionally, say so. The Hudson Insitute report cites a few of them, outside as well as inside Saudi Arabia. It would be useful, for us but especially for them, if they would say so more often and more loudly.

Of course, we are not a Muslim nation, and Americans cannot, by themselves, orchestrate a meaningful Muslim response to Saudi extremism. But we do have a large Muslim population, we do have friends in the moderate Muslim world, and we do have some money, much of which is wasted, to spend on public diplomacy. We also have two presidential candidates who are arguing hard this week about the best ways to combat terrorism, the best way to deploy guns and aid, the best uses of American military power.

Here is a novel idea for both of them: Make sure that children in Iraq, Afghanistan, and in Islamic schools all around the world have decent fourth-grade textbooks. It might save a lot of trouble later on.


New Hudson Institute Report Shows Saudi Ministry Textbooks Still Teach Extreme Intolerance

July 16, 2008 at 12:26 am | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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comment by Jerry Gordon, American Congress for Truth, July 15, 2008

picture-of-nina-shea.jpgEarlier today, I talked with Nina Shea of Center for Religious Freedom at the Hudson Institute who was wrapping up a second Saudi text report. The 90 page report, “2008 Update: Saudi Arabia ’s Curriculum of Intolerance,” with a foreward by former CIA director R. James Woolsey was just released this afternoon. The Washington-based Institute for Gulf Affairs assisted in completion of the report released, today. This second Saudi text study encompassed a review of supposed reform texts drawn from the website of the Saudi Education Ministry. It reveals virtually no change in the core Wahhabi doctrine of hate and incitement to violence against other religions that was unveiled when the first Saudi text study was concluded in 2006. This means that the September 2008 deadline promoted by our State Department has been breached. As regards the current contretemps over the Islamic studies texts at the Islamic Saudi Academy in Virginia examined by the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), where Shea is a Commissioner, this most recent Saudi text study throws in serious doubt the hasty efforts by the ISA Islamic studies faculty at redacting Saudi texts to conform to alleged US standards. Further as Ms. Shea comments it also questions the veracity and intent of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and the World Muslim League’s current ‘ecumenical meetings’ with other faiths being held in Madrid, Spain this week.

Here are some examples by the Hudson Institute Center for Religious Freedom report:

    They assert that unbelievers, such as Christians, Jews, and Muslims who do not share Wahhabi beliefs and practices, are hated “enemies.” Global jihad as an “effort to wage war against the unbelievers” is also promoted in the Ministry’s textbooks: “In its general usage, ‘jihad’ is divided into the following categories: …Wrestling with the infidels by calling them to the faith and battling against them.” No argument is made here that such references to jihad mean only spiritual and defensive struggles. Lessons remain that Jews and Christians are apes and swine, Jews conspire to “gain sole control over the world,” the Christian Crusades never ended, the American universities of Cairo and Beirut are part of the continuing Crusades, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion are historical fact, and on Judgment Day “the rocks or the trees” will call out to Muslims to kill the Jews.

    They teach that it is permissible for a Muslim to kill an “apostate,” an “adulterer,” and those practicing “major polytheism.” Shiites are among those identified as “polytheists.” One lesson states that “it is not permissible to violate the blood, property, or honor of the unbeliever who makes a compact with the Muslims,” but is pointedly silent on whether security guarantees are extended to non-Muslims without such a compact. Other lessons demonize members of the Baha’i and Ahmadiyya groups.

The reports notes the looming deadline of September 2008 negotiated with our State Department and questions the lack of genuine interfaith tolerance recently espoused by King Abdullah that we have posted.

    This analysis is issued as a deadline nears for the removal of intolerant teachings from all Saudi textbooks. This commitment stems from the Saudi government’s “confirmation” of policies that resulted from extensive bilateral negotiations with the U.S. ; these policies were publicly announced and lauded as “significant developments” by the State Department in July 2006. Whether Saudi Arabia ’s “comprehensive revision of textbooks” will be achieved by the start of the September 2008 school year remains to be seen. As the report documents, thorough textbook reform has not yet occurred.

    Saudi King Abdullah is taking a leading role in interfaith dialogue initiatives, including convening a conference in Madrid later this week. The report notes that the Saudi Education Ministry’s continued teaching of hatred and violence against other religious believers raises concerns about whether the Saudi government has a genuine desire to find common ground with other religions.

What this second Saudi text review by the Hudson Institute reveals is that the Wahabbi xenophobic doctrine still prevails in Saudi Arabia and that representations that core Quaranic elements would be ‘reformed’, and ‘modified’ are pure taqiyya-religiously sanctioned dissimilitude to fool the kafirs, the unbelievers, us. Shame on our State Department for believing in good faith that a new day has dawned in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It hasn’t. What is the expression, the more things change, the more they remain the same.


Review Finds Slurs In ’06 Saudi Texts

July 15, 2008 at 1:28 pm | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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Academy in Fairfax Making Revisions

By Jerry Markon and Ben Hubbard
Washington Post Staff Writers
Tuesday, July 15, 2008; B01

A Saudi-funded academy in Fairfax County used textbooks as recently as 2006 that compared Jews and Christians to apes and pigs, told eighth-graders that these groups are “the enemies of the believers” and diagrammed for high school students where to cut off the hands and feet of thieves, a Washington Post review of the books has found.

Saudi officials acknowledged that the textbooks used at the Islamic Saudi Academy had contained inflammatory material since at least the mid-1990s but said they ordered revisions in 2006. School administrators said that they have been scrambling to change the texts and that all potentially offensive passages will be gone by the coming academic year. But, they said, teachers have always been told to avoid inflammatory material in the classroom.

A sampling of 2006-07 Islamic studies textbooks showed that much of the controversial material had been removed. At least one book still contained passages that extolled jihad and martyrdom, called for victory over one’s enemies and said the killing of adulterers and apostates was “justified.”

The academy, founded in 1984, has about 1,000 students in pre-kindergarten through grade 12 and is separated into boys’ and girls’ schools. It is the only Saudi-funded school in the United States. About 70 percent of the academy’s students are U.S. citizens drawn from the region’s Muslim communities. About a quarter are Saudi.

The school has leased land from Fairfax for two decades and has been the subject of growing controversy. Last month, the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom said the academy’s textbooks contain passages that advocate violence, less than a year after calling on the State Department to close the school unless it can prove that it is not teaching religious intolerance.

As a small group of protesters gathered recently outside the academy, less than 15 miles from the District, Fairfax officials were weighing what to do about the school’s $2.2 million annual lease, which is signed by the Saudi Embassy and is “contingent upon” State Department approval. In May, the county Board of Supervisors extended the lease for another year, the fifth time it has been renewed since 1988, but Fairfax has since asked the State Department to determine whether the county should continue leasing the property to the school. Continue Reading Review Finds Slurs In ’06 Saudi Texts…

Gerry Connolly: “Candidate questioned on source of contribution”

July 3, 2008 at 4:45 pm | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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OneNewsNow, July 2, 2008

A conservative group is calling on a Democratic congressional candidate in Virginia to return a campaign contribution from a Muslim leader with ties to the Palestinian terror group Hamas.

The Traditional Values Coalition (TVC) is asking Gerry Connolly, the chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, to return a $500 contribution from Nehad Hammad, an alias used by Nihad Awad. Awad is the executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and a former spokesman for the Islamic Association for Palestine – a group that raised money for Palestinian jihadists.

TVC has also criticized Connolly’s staunch defense of the Islamic Saudi Academy, a Saudi government-run school in northern Virginia that the Commission on International Religious Freedom has urged the State Department to shut down. The school has used textbooks that promote violence and hatred against Jews and Christians.

James Lafferty, TVC spokesman, notes Connolly has yet to explain his acceptance of the contribution. “We’ve heard him go back and forth on what’s being taught at the Islamic Saudi Academy,” he explains. “At first he accused us of slander when we read excerpts from the federal report on the Academy. But now, just recently, I guess he’s sensed a change or a shift in the political winds, and he’s now calling on the State Department to do an investigation. So he’s always ready to go with the flow, and I’m sure he’s always paying attention to what public sentiment is,” Lafferty contends.

According to Lafferty, Connolly sees Muslims as a major voting bloc in northern Virginia. “Here where we live in northern Virginia, it’s called the ‘Wahabbi corridor,’ and there is a growing number of radical Islam organizations here. [T]he Muslim community in general is growing, and he’s pandering to the most violent people among the Muslims who live here. I don’t believe all the Muslims who live here are as extreme as the people that Mr. Connolly works with, but I guess he thinks they are,” Lafferty explains.

He believes Connolly “needs to come clean and scrub his campaign of all terrorist influence and sympathizers.” Lafferty says Connolly also needs to be asked whether the contribution from the CAIR founder affected his “vigilance” in protecting the people of Fairfax County from the “cell of terrorists operating within it.”

New English Review: The Islamic Saudi Academy: a ‘hot potato’

July 1, 2008 at 3:31 pm | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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by Jerry Gordon (July 2008)

This article focuses on the controversy generated by a report of the Congressionally chartered group, The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (
USCIRF). The report spearheaded by Nina Shea of the Hudson Institute. The USCIRF reviewed the Saudi-sponsored Islamic Saudi Academy (ISA) of Fairfax , Virginia, in particular the hate texts from its Wahhabi Islamic Studies program. It tells the story of a coalition of regional and national grass roots activist groups and a courageous U.S. Congressman, author of the landmark 1998 federal legislation (PL 105-202) that created the USCIRF, Rep. Frank Wolf of Northern Virginia . Who, faced with the feckless political actions of Fairfax County government officials, has vaulted the problems of the ISA from a local to a national and international arena. In the words of one of the leaders of the grass roots protests against the ISA, its Saudi Embassy sponsorship and its Wahhabi hate texts, Jim Lafferty of the Traditional Values Coalition (TVC), and a former Capitol Hill aide, it has become a “hot potato.”

Christine Brim of the Center for Security Policy (CSP), noted in an email comment to the author the common thread from the 1990’s to today regarding citizen actions against the Saudi-sponsored ISA and the positions of local leaders:

Over the last twenty years, the boards of supervisors of Poolesville, Loudoun County , Fairfax County , and officials at the State Department all demonstrated the same craven support for the terrorist-financing regime of Saudi Arabia ‘s first radical madrassa in the U.S. , the Islamic Saudi Academy. Time after time, elected local officials gave in to the ISA in the face of Saudi petrodollars and intimidation. The good news is that also over the last twenty years, local citizens have organized and won against the ISA in Poolesville , MD and Loudoun County , VA. This year, the residents of Fairfax county have a chance to close down the ISA as recommended by the USCIRF. We have a chance especially in this election year; especially given the ISA Director’s refusal to obey Virginia laws to report – not to cover up – the alleged sexual abuse of a five year old student.

The scandal is how Gerald Connolly and the rest of the Fairfax board of supervisors may have created a political climate over the last several years making that alleged cover-up a probability.

Unlike Connolly, more socially responsible citizens in Poolesville , MD and in Loudoun and Fairfax counties have spoken out against the Saudis and against Saudi lessons in shariah law which requires violent jihad against other religions and against civil liberties.

A Washington Jewish Week report on the ISA hate text controversy entitled: “Islamic Text books get an F” raised the level of concern:

Pro-Israel activist and Silver Spring resident Sarah Stern, founder and president of the think tank EMET: Endowment for Middle East Truth, said the presence of institutions such as ISA exemplifies “a huge infiltration” of Saudi influence in America . Many of these institutions, she added, regularly expose students to militant Islamist philosophy.

“They’re hiding behind our constitutional protections, and we in the West who have a hands-off attitude are being seduced by our own naiveté,” she said. “It’s happening right under our noses. We are asleep at the wheel of history and we’ve got to wake up and take the sand out of our eyes.”

(Continue Reading this Article)

MY VIEW: Andrea Lafferty – Saudi school debate is about more than cutting the grass

July 1, 2008 at 1:05 am | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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June 27, 2008

Alexandria Times

The Islamic Saudi Academy in Alexandria is operated by the Saudi government and it has a long history of teaching young Muslims violence against non-Muslims and its faculty and students history of breaking the law.

Several members of our coalition told this to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors in May when they were voting to renew the lease on the county-owned property to the Saudi embassy.

We told them about the reports of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, a bi-partisan, multi-religious commission created by President Clinton, which had asked the State Department to close the school. When one of our members quoted an anti-Semitic remark from the commission’s report, Board chairman Gerry Connolly shouted “Slander!” and erupted into a rant in defense of the “academy.”

One-by-one, supervisors congratulated the Saudis for keeping the grass cut and not racing cars in the neighborhood. They ignored the substance of the debate and went right to patting each other on the back. Supervisor Penny Gross compared the Saudi school which, until it was discovered in 2006, included diagrams of how to cut off a person’s hands and feet, to Catholic schools.

The finale of the supervisors’ presentation was a special guest Mr. Abdullah Al-Shabnan, the school’s Director General. After a glowing introduction by Chairman Connolly, Mr. Abdullah Al-Shabnan nervously praised the school.

That was May 19, 2008. Less than a month later on June 9, Al-Shabnan was arrested by Fairfax County police and charged with failing to act on a report of sexual abuse involving an Academy student and obstruction of justice. According to police, Al-Shabnan ordered the report of the sexual abuse deleted from the school’s computer. Continue Reading MY VIEW: Andrea Lafferty – Saudi school debate is about more than cutting the grass…

Islamic Saudi Hate Academy

June 21, 2008 at 1:09 pm | Posted in Shariah | 1 Comment
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by Joe Kaufman and Beila Rabinowitz
FrontPageMagazine.com | Friday, June 20, 2008

In Saudi Arabia, teaching hatred for others is a normal everyday scholastic activity. But what happens when that teaching gets transferred to the United States? One children’s school with branches in Virginia, the Islamic Saudi Academy, has managed to accomplish this with hate-filled texts, a terror-linked website, and students and school personnel that have been involved in radical activity.

The Islamic Saudi Academy (ISA), an institution run by the government of Saudi Arabia, has been occupying northern Virginia, since 1984. Within the state, it has two facilities, one in Fairfax (pre-K – first grade) and one in Alexandria (grades 2 – 12). The school offers all of the standard curriculum: Math, English, Social Studies, Science, etc. However, what has been of concern to many is the group’s religious studies.

In October of 2007, the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), an organization established by the United States Congress, issued a press release calling for the closure of ISA, until the school’s textbooks would be made available to it for inspection, which they were not. The release stated that “significant past documented concerns remain about whether what is being taught at the ISA explicitly promotes hate, intolerance and human rights violations, in some cases violence.”

The concerns of the commission were based on previous findings regarding Saudi curricula, which showed that Saudi authorized school textbooks encouraged violence and theft, even religiously sanctioned murder, against a variety of non-Muslim groups.

In July of 2006, the Saudi government released a statement, saying that it would, within one or two years, “revise and update textbooks to remove remaining references that disparage Muslims or non-Muslims or that promote hatred toward other religions or religious groups.” But without having the material in front of it, the commission was not able to determine if the Saudis were indeed abiding by their own commitments.

Between USCIRF’s first action and now, the commission has been able to acquire and review 17 current ISA textbooks for examination, and the findings have been disturbing to say the least. According to USCIRF, some of the passages in the texts “clearly exhort the readers to commit acts of violence.” These acts include the killing of apostates (converts from Islam) and the taking of the lives and property of Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists and those adhering to the Shiite faction of Islam.

In addition, according to the commission, the reviewed texts “show evidence of truncation, omission, cutting and pasting, and the use of correction tape or fluid to cover over text – but not sufficient revision to remove all objectionable material.” As well, some of the material was altered but contained “identical wording.”

Besides the textbooks, the ISA’s website has set off alarms. From March of 2000 through August of 2001, the site had a link to IslamiCity, a website that repeatedly calls for the murder of Jews and repeatedly “curses” Jews and Christians. Some statements from IslamiCity include:

  • May Allah curse the Jews and Christians for they built the places of worship at the graves of their Prophets.”
  • “The Jews will fight with you, and you will be given victory over them so that a stone will say, ‘O Muslim! There is a Jew behind me; kill him!’”
  • “The Jews are being punished in their graves.”

From March of 2000 through February of 2002, ISA’s website contained a link to Islam Question and Answer, a site authored by Saudi radical Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid, which stresses violence against non-Muslims and others. Some quotes from it include:

  • “There cannot be harmony between Jews – who are usurpers and aggressors, who have oppressed and persecuted others, and who are known for their treachery and corruption throughout the world, historically and in the present age… As the Muslims and Jews are enemies residing in opposing religious and doctrinal camps, it is not possible for them to be brought together unless one is made to submit to the other by force.”
  • “There is no doubt that it is prescribed to engage in jihad against the enemies of Allaah, Jews and others, with our lives and our wealth. That includes every means that will weaken their economy and cause them harm… The Muslims in general should cooperate in righteousness and piety and help the Muslims in all places in ways that will lead them to prevail and strengthen them and enable them to manifest the symbols of religion, to practise the teachings of Islam and to implement the rulings of sharee’ah and carry out hudood punishments, and whatever will lead to their victory over the kuffaar, Jews, Christians and others.”
  • “The Sahaabah were unanimously agreed on the execution of homosexuals, but they differed as to how they were to be executed. Some of them were of the view that they should be burned with fire… And some of them thought that they should be thrown down from a high place then have stones thrown at them… Because the evil consequences of homosexuality are among the worst of evil consequences, so its punishment is one of the most severe of punishments in this world and in the Hereafter.”

Today, the above ISA web links have been replaced by new extremist links. Beginning in August of 2002, ISA’s website linked to Al-Islam, a site run by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Endowments, Da‘wah and Guidance. The site, similar to the previous mentioned sites, propagates hatred against Jews and Christians. Al-Islam includes such brutal pleas as: “Let there be curse upon the Jews and the Christians…” and “May Allah the Exalted and Majestic destroy the Jews.”

As well, entire web pages on Al-Islam are devoted to fighting jihad – jihad, which the site defines as “holy war.” The index for the site’s ‘Al-Jihad’ section is as follows:

  • The superiority of Jihad and moslem warriors (Mujahideen)
  • Judgment concerning Jihad
  • Staying behind from battles
  • Characteristics of Mujahideen
  • Elements of the battle
  • Stages of battles
  • Booty and Al-Fai
  • Pledges and covenants

Another website that ISA currently links to is Arab News, a site that labels the Islamic Association for Palestine (IAP), the former American propaganda wing of Hamas, as “Palestinian[s] who believe in the liberty of [sic] there holyland” and describes Radio Islam, a site that publishes Mein Kampf and the Protocols of the Elders of Zion, as “[sic] Informations about Zionism and Palestine.”

Furthermore, according to the school’s website, from 2000 to 2001, the 9th and 10th grade ISA curriculum included learning about “the reform of Mohammed Bin Abdulwahab and his alliance with the Saudi family, who united the Arabian Peninsula during the first half of the 20th century.” Bin Abdul Wahhab was the individual from which Wahhabism was created, arguably the movement that ignited the terrorist threat faced by the world today.

Between the textbooks and the websites, ISA students could get quite an education in hatred and violence, two subjects that young children should not be exposed to, especially kindergarteners. Unfortunately, though, it seems that at least some of the ISA students took these vicious lessons to heart.

Ahmed Omar Abu Ali was 1999 class valedictorian at ISA. In an act of foreboding, his class named him “Most Likely to Be a Martyr.” Foreboding, because, in November of 2005, he would be convicted of joining Al-Qaeda and plotting to assassinate President Bush. He received a 30 year prison sentence for his crime.

As stated in an FBI criminal complaint, ISA graduates Mohammed Osman Idris and Mohammed Hassan El-Yacoubi, in December of 2001, were on their way to Israel, for what seemed to be a suicide mission. El-Yacoubi, during a search that was conducted by El Al security personnel, was found to have had on his person a farewell letter from his younger brother, Abdalmuhssin, who himself had attended ISA. The letter was in Arabic, and according to writing experts, it contained language discussing an attack that was to be carried out against Israelis, possibly in relation to Hamas or Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ).

In August of 2002, Idris was sentenced to four months in jail for lying on a passport application.

And it’s not just the students. Ismael Selim Elbarasse is a former comptroller (accountant) for ISA. Elbarasse, named as a co-conspirator for the 2007 Holy Land Foundation (HLF) terror trial, has been described by the U.S. government as a “high-ranking” Hamas operative for his financial dealings with Hamas leader Mousa Abu Marzook. In August of 2004, Elbarasse was arrested, after police viewed his wife videotaping sensitive parts of Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay Bridge from his vehicle.

Earlier this month, on June 9th, the Director General of ISA, Abdullah Al-Shabnan, was taken into custody for failing to report the alleged sexual abuse of a five-year-old ISA student. This, while protests have erupted over the school’s use of violent texts.

ISA is most certainly not the only Islamic facility to be teaching hatred and violence in America, but it is one that has been caught and exposed. Under pressure, the U.S. State Department has called on the school to reform its educational materials by August, but if history is any indicator, the school’s future will be no different than its past.

On September 11, 2001, terrorists coming from Saudi Arabia flew planes into our buildings causing death and destruction. This school, the Islamic Saudi Academy, in contrast, is evidence that Saudi Arabia is now attempting to destroy us from within.

Joe Kaufman is the Chairman of Americans Against Hate and the founder of CAIR Watch. Beila Rabinowitz is the Director of Militant Islam Monitor.

The Saudi Agenda in Our Education System Threatens Our Country

June 20, 2008 at 9:19 am | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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June 18, 2008
Andrea S. Lafferty
TVC News
267.jpgTom Clancy could not write it any better.
A school operated by the Saudi government, using materials from the Saudi Ministry of Education, sits clandestinely on a hill in Alexandria, Virginia without any markings but with a security force with the intensity of the one at Fort Knox. Called the Islamic Saudi Academy, even its sign out in front of the school and the Academy’s buses bear only the innocuous initials “ISA.”

A number of criminal activities have led federal and local law enforcement authorities to visit the academy which is in a former high school building leased since 1989 from Fairfax County by the Saudi Arabian Washington embassy—the lease signed by the Saudi Ambassador.

Sometimes they come with search warrants as the Fairfax County police did earlier this month when they seized computers and other files and arrested Mr. Abdullah Al-Shabnan Director General of the Islamic Saudi Academy, who was charged with failing to report a child abuse allegation and obstruction of justice, according to a police report about the June 9 arrest.

Mr. Abdullah Al-Shabnan Director General
of the Islamic Saudi Academy

abdullah_al-shabnan.jpgOne of the most famous ISA graduates is Ahmed Omar Abu Ali, an ISA valedictorian. Abu Ali, 27, grew up in the Washington suburb of Falls Church. He joined al-Qaida after traveling to Saudi Arabia to attend college in 2002.courtroom-cartoon.jpg

As a member of a Medina-based al-Qaida cell, Abu Ali discussed numerous potential terrorist attacks, including a plan to assassinate President Bush and a plan to establish a sleeper cell in the United States. He is presently serving a 30 year sentence in a federal prison after a federal appeals court rejected his challenge to the conviction. The court also ordered his re-sentencing because it deemed the 30 year term insufficient for the seriousness of his crime.
AP photo/Maryland Dept of Transportation/

islam-1.jpgThen there is the infamous ISA’s former finance officer whose favorite past time was photographing the support system under the Chesapeake Bay Bridge on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Most Americans are familiar with this story although almost no one knew the connection to the Islamic Academy.

Ismail Elbarasse was taken into custody after police spotted his wife videotaping the Bay Bridge. He was a long term employee and an accountant at ISA. He was terminated by the Academy in 1998 — the same year he was jailed for refusing to cooperate with an investigation into the finances of the radical Muslim group Hamas.

Federal investigators say they believed the footage of the Bay Bridge was “reconnaissance and surveillance” for a possible terrorist attack, The Baltimore Sun reported. The images included close-ups of cables and support features “integral to the structural integrity of the bridge,” according to court papers. According to an affidavit filed for a search warrant of the couple’s Annandale, Va., home, investigators said they believe six other videotapes discovered in the car contained footage or images of the Bay Bridge and other structures or potential targets. During the investigation of Hamas financing and its relationship to Middle East terrorism, Elbarasse was jailed for refusing to testify in the case.

All Americans need to be concerned about home grown terrorism. This is not just an issue facing the citizens of Northern Virginia.

In May, a Minnesota television news crew was assaulted by officials at a Muslim school.

Officials at the charter school attacked a TV news crew yesterday that came to investigate whether the publicly funded institution complied with a state order to stop accommodating Islamic prayers and religious programs.

KSTP-TV in Minneapolis-St.Paul reported police are probing the incident at the Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy in Inver Grove Heights, Minn., which is housed in the same building as a mosque and the Minnesota chapter of the Muslim American Society. The station said a photographer was injured while wrestling with two school officials over a camera.

In California, federal attorneys and agents, mounting a counterterrorism offensive in Lodi, saw a dark future for the Farooqia Islamic Center. They have alleged in court that the facility’s secret mission may have been to recruit and groom American Muslims for the jihad – the holy war against enemies of Islam.

In testimony at an immigration court hearing Aug. 9,2005, FBI agent Gary Schaaf compared the Lodi school to militant madrassahs – Muslim seminaries – in Pakistan: “Our investigation has come across information that the (planned Lodi) madrassah is part of a long-term plan … during which students would be spotted and assessed and maybe eventually be ready to commit acts of violence in the U.S.”

The Traditional Values Coalition is responding to the concerns of our member-churches by confronting this growing national crisis.

andrea_testify.jpgOn May 19, 2008, Traditional Values Coalition testified against the lease renewal of the Islamic Saudi Academy and was berated by Gerry Connolly, the chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. As a TVC spokesman quoted from one of the textbook passages, Connolly attempted to shout him down and repeatedly yelled “Slander!” The board of supervisors voted unanimously to renew the lease with the Saudi Embassy. Most of the members of the Board of Supervisors have been endorsed by the Virginia Muslim Political Action Committee where Connolly has also been endorsed in his campaign for a seat in Congress.

On June 11, 2008, The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom released a report that the Saudi government’s academy, the Islamic Saudi Academy in Northern Virginia continues to use textbooks which “do not conform to international human rights norms” by exhorting the reader to violence. The USCIRF is a bi-partisan federal commission tasked with exposing severe violations of religious freedom around the world—established under the Clinton Administration.

Some material in the textbooks examined by the federal commission also promoted intolerance toward Jewish and other faiths. 242.jpg
The authors of a 12th-grade text on Koranic interpretation state that apostates (those who convert from Islam), adulterers and people who murder Muslims can be permissibly killed.
Some material in the textbooks examined by the federal commission also promoted intolerance toward Jewish and other faiths.

The authors of a 12th-grade text on monotheism write that “(m)ajor polytheism makes blood and wealth permissible,” meaning that a Muslim can take with impunity the life and property of someone believed guilty of polytheism. According to the panel, the strict Saudi interpretation of polytheism includes Shiite and Sufi Muslims as well as Christians, Jews, Hindus, and Buddhists.
Then on June 17, 2008, Traditional Values Coalition led a protest demonstration in front of the Islamic Saudi Academy where Islamic school personnel attempted to intimidate us by videotaping the faces of each demonstrator as well as taking pictures of people from local churches who attended the demonstration.

This school is operated by the Saudi government. Just as an American school overseas teaches “American” curriculum such as the Revolutionary War, our Presidents and major holidays, this Saudi school teaches from the Saudi Wahabbist texts provided by the Saudi Ministry of Education.

Most of the 9-11 hijackers were Saudi nationals, educated in schools just like this one.

An earlier report stated that these Saudi texts have taught children that peaceful coexistence with so-called “infidels” is unattainable and that violence to spread Islam is not only permissible, but an obligation. It encourages violence toward others, and misguides the pupils into believing that in order to safeguard their own religion, they must violently repress and even physically eliminate the other.

From coast to coast, these Islamic schools all share a common bent toward the Wahabbi brand of Islam. Jihad and violence against “infidels” are matters of Islamic “faith” and its Shariah law. Denying that this material is taught at these schools is denying the whole basis for their creation by the Saudi government and for the millions of dollars the Saudis pour into their operation each year.

America must remain vigilant even as spokespeople for the school say they omitted these teachings years ago or federal agents are not good translators. American education is always intended to uplift the minds of the young and offer a hopeful approach to the future. This is not the intent or the result of the poisonous “education” being promoted in the Saudi madrassahs across America.
**The USCIRF has listed Saudi Arabia is one of the Countries of particular concern (CPCs) because Saudi Arabia engages in particularly severe violations of religious freedom. The term “particularly severe violations of religious freedom” means systematic, ongoing, egregious violations of religious freedom, including violations such as a) torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment; b) prolonged detention without charges; c) causing the disappearance of persons by the abduction or clandestine detention of those persons; or d) other flagrant denials of the right to life, liberty, or the security of persons. The CPC designation makes these countries subject to U.S. diplomatic and economic actions.

Stand and Deliver the ‘Clean books’, Islamic Saudi Academy

June 18, 2008 at 9:43 pm | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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Stand and Deliver the ‘Clean books’, Islamic Saudi Academy

by Jerry Gordon, American Congress for Truth blog

20080617-215832-pic-157543443_r350×200.jpgThere was a flurry of news articles on yesterday’s protest demonstration at the Islamic Saudi Academy (ISA) in Alexandria, Virginia. The Washington Post, entitled its version, “Group Says School Teaches “hate”, the Washington Times headlined theirs, “Islamic school draws fire”. Both pieces drew attention to the basis for protests, the Islamic hate texts revealed in the USCIRF report. The group of 15 protesters had signs that said:

    Honk to Stop Islamic Terrorism;

    This Saudi school is Anti-Semitic and Anti-Christian.

Andrea Lafferty, executive director of Traditional Values Coalition organized the ISA protest with participation by the United American Committee, Virginia Chapter, the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Security Policy (CSP) and Act! for America Virginia and Maryland volunteers.

Lafferty commented:

    They’re free to come here and worship, but they are not free to come here and teach hate.

Christine Brim of the CSP said:

    They don’t have a First Amendment right in this country to incite violence against other groups.

Rahima Abdullah, the ISA education director replied to these allegations:

    That’s absolutely not true. What we teach here is love and and tolerance.
    We have new books now and the ones the commission is talking about have been out of use for some time, and were misinterpreted, then.

But the focus of both articles was on the arrest and charging of the school director general, Abdalla Al-Shabnan with not reporting a claim of child abuse of a five year old pre-school student by a family member that required him to file an incident report under Commonwealth of Virginia law. As we have posted in the AP story, Al-Shaban neglected to file a report in a timely manner within 72 hours as prescribed by law. Further, he ordered the written report of incident deleted from a secretary’s computer thereby resulting in a charge of obstruction of justice. Al-Shabnan faces a hearing on August 1st. If convicted, he could face a possible 12 month jail sentence. As noted in the Washington Times :

    Fairfax County Police searched school offices last month and seized computers, notebooks, student files and disks.

Neither Mr. Al-Shabnan or school officials would comment. Shabnan wasn’t returning calls.

It was left to the CNSNews.com account to question whether the ISA was cleaning up its act in a headline: “Islamic Saudi Academy Prepares “Clean” Books for Fall”.

‘Clean’ books on Wahhabi doctrine means expunging many elements of the canon of Islam, the Qu’ran, Hadiths, the sayings, and the Sira, the biography of Mohammed the Messenger of Allah, as well as, the basic elements of Shari’a Law the bedrock of Wahhabism. Seems to us there would be much left to read in the ISA Islamic studies course, if that were the case. The CNSNews.com report had several revelatory exchanges with school officials, State Department and USCIRF spokespersons.

Judth Ingraham, spokesperson for the USCRIF indicated that the State Department didn’t turn over textbooks that the Saudi Embassy had turned over to State and the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. The USCIRF had to resort to obtaining them from other sources, including Members of Congress. In 2006, the Saudi government said it would “revise and update textbooks to remove remaining refernces that disparage [Shia and other] Muslims or promote hatred towards other religions”.

CNSNews.com queried the State Department and got this bizarre response:

    “Since they’re already made public [ on the Saudi Ministry of Education Web site] we don’t need to duplicate them on our web site or give them to ( the Commission) because they’ve already been put out in the public domain”.

Then the logical question was why did the USCRIF have to scramble and use other means to obtain these allegedly public documents. Typical State Department bafflegab.

A spokesman for ISA, a U.S. history teacher, David Kovalik was shown these wordings from an ISA textbook and agreed that they were offensive:

    The cause of discord. The Jews conspired against Islam and its people. A sly, wicked person who sinfully and deceitfully professed islam infiltrated (the Muslims).

Kovalick’s response was:

    Well, that is very anti-semitic and uh, wow, no but those don’t exist in our books.

I guess the CNSNews.com reporters forgot to ask Kovalick whether he could read Arabic. Because, he looks like a dhimmi engaging in pre-pacakgedtaqiyyah-religiously sanctioned dissimilitude to fool the ‘infidel’, us.

When State was questioned about its own investigation, the result was more bafflegab from their spokesperson.

    We’re continuing to review the hard copy ones received, and we’re working with the Saudi government. But they are taking place. This is a priority, it’s not something that we’ve slipped under the rug.

Sounds like a Freudian slip to me.

Then an ISA official indicated that “the books will not include controversial subject matter” but will still teach Islam. That’s a virtual impossibility given the analysis of the canon of Islam by analysts like Bill Warner of the Center for the Study of Political Islam.

With doubtless tongue in cheek, USCIRF spokeperson, Ingram said:

    If that’s true, we are working toward the same goal. Let’s start the school year off on the right foot, with ‘clean’ textbooks.

What was the famous cry of English Highwaymen of the 18th century confronting frightened stage coach passengers? Applied in this instance it would be ’stand and deliver’, ISA.

Islamic Saudi Academy lost one accreditation. Will it lose another, given USCIRF report?

June 17, 2008 at 5:44 pm | Posted in Shariah | Leave a comment
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By Jerry Gordon, American Congress for Truth, blog

Christine Brim of the Center for Security Policy found a fascinating article from the Washington Post, circa, 2002, concerning the “withdrawal” of the embattled Islamic Saudi Academy (ISA) from the prestigious Virginia Association of Independent Schools. According to the Washington Post, article:

Sources familiar with the decision said the Virginia accrediting agency became concerned that the school was not adhering to its standards on funding and governance and asked questions earlier this year. The association’s standards require that the governing board be independent, that the administration be stable and that funding not come primarily from a single source.

The Washington Post article further noted:

Sources said that the association’s board probably would have stripped accreditation from the school if it had not withdrawn, but that it had not met to discuss such a move.

The sources also said that some board members were concerned about aspects of the school’s curriculum. The Washington Post in January reported that some Islamic studies classes at the school use Saudi Arabian textbooks that promote hatred of other religions. However, the curricular concerns were not part of the questioning that led to the withdrawal, sources said.

It seems that the concerns about ISA hate texts and espousal of Wahhabi doctrine were in evidence back in 2002.

We have confirmed that the ISA is not on the roster of VAIS. See here.

If you go to the ISA website it states:

ISA is fully accredited with SACS (Southern Association of Colleges and Schools) and CITA (Commission for International and Trans Regional Accreditation).  The ISA’ achieved SACS Standards and received re-accreditation. The Academy will also adhere to the Action Plan set forth to implement the recommendations by the SACS quality assurance team.

Note that the head of SACS accreditation back in 2002 said:

…he would be concerned if the [ISA]was teaching hatred.

With the release of the USCIRF report on the hate texts used in the current school academic year, shouldn’t SACS be concerned about this evidence of ISA teaching hatred?

To answer this question, I put a call into the Decatur, Georgia office of SACS and found that Mr. Bush had gone into ‘semi-retirement’ and was referred to the Virginia office. I posed concerns about what SACS would do in the wake of the release last week of the USCIRF report on the hate texts. The person who answered said that a ‘responsible officer’ would get back to me.

Equally troubling were the answers quoted in the Washington Post article by the spokesperson for the Saudi US Embassy , Nail Al-Jubeir, brother of the current Saudi Ambassador . Al-Jubeir, the Embassy spokesperson in 2002, said:

We don’t do the day to day running of the school.

The embassy views the school as independent because it runs its own affairs, though “it is part of the royal court”.

In a recent post on the ISA kerfuffle, we noted:

The ISA is closely related to the Saudi government. The chairman of the northern Virginia Saudi-sponsored school is the Royal Saudi Ambassador to the U.S. The lease with Fairfax County, just renewed for a term of two years, was executed and paid for by the Royal Saudi government. The annual lease payment is $2.2 million The federal Employer Identification Number used on the leasehold documents is that of the Saudi Embassy in Washington, DC.

Another revelation of seeming importance is the ISA tax status. The IRS as of this spring had no record of ISA paying taxes or of any filing of the required application to exempt it from paying taxes.  Its FEIN (Federal Employer Identification Number) is registered to the “Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia”, according to the USCIRF.

The plot thickens as to what has been uncovered about ISA, the investigations will doubtless reveal more.

All triggered by the USCIRF report of hate texts used by ISA. Stay tuned for more.

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