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Who Are the Radical Muslim Activists Visiting the White House, and How Concerned Should We Be?


“The White House has selectively omitted genuine [Muslim] moderates and instead has picked radical Muslims to meet."

(Photo: AFP)

After an exhaustive review of the White House visitor logs, the Investigative Project on Terrorism appears to have made a number of noteworthy discoveries.

Several years ago, the logs revealed the president's close relationship with union bosses like Andy Stern-- who dominated the guest list in 2009-- and now it appears to be showing a surprising number of visits by individuals linked to radical Islamist causes.

The report shows that Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) representatives have visited the White House at least twenty times since 2009, despite the fact that it was named an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Trial.  It should be remembered that in 2009, the FBI actually severed ties with the organization, explaining that it no longer views it as an "appropriate liason partner" because of its possible connections to the Muslim Brotherhood and its offshoot, Hamas.

More specifically, individuals like Hussam Ayloush, Louay Safi, Esam Omeish, Muzammil Siddiqi, and Mohamed Elibiary all visited at least once, and representatives of the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) -- which has a long history of antisemitism and twisting the terrorist threat into allegations of Islamophobia-- also visited dozens of times.

Many of the individuals have reputable credentials, but have taken a number of noteworthy positions.

Here are a few:

  • Hussam Ayloush, Executive Director of CAIR's Los Angeles Office: Has called Israel's treatment of Palestinians "borderline genocidal," and says Romney has "blind servitude" to Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu.  He attended two White House meetings.
  • Louay Safi, Former Executive Director of the Islamic Society of North America: Worked at Fort Hood prior to the 2009 terrorist attack, and was suspended shortly thereafter. Said we must be "sympathetic" to those "fighting for freedom" in Palestine, and that we must be "against the occupiers and the oppressors."  He attended two White House meetings.
  • Esam Omeish, former head of the Muslim-American Society:  Former head of an organization created by the Muslim Brotherhood, Omeish is one of the most radical in the group. The IPT writes that he personally hired radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki in 2000 to head a Virginia mosque, and publicly mourned an airstrike that killed one of the founders of Hamas in 2004. He has visited the White House three times.
  • Muzammil Siddiqi, former head of the Islamic Society of North America: ​Said in a 2001 article for the San Francisco Chronicle that he does not support violence against gays, but supports laws in countries where homosexuality is punishable by death. Siddiqi had one meeting at the White House in 2010.
  • Mohamed Elibiary, Homeland Security Council: Spoke at a conference in 2004 honoring Iran's Ayatollah Khomeni as a "great Islamic visionary;" condemned the prosecution of Hamas fundraisers in the United States; defends Sayyid Qutb, who Osama bin Laden cited as one of his main influences; accused of leaking documents to prove Islamophobia, and damage Texas Gov. Rick Perry.  Invited to help craft Obama's counterterrorism strategy in 2010.
  • ​Muslim Public Affairs Council Leaders: ​Representatives from the Muslim Public Affairs Council have visited the White House far more than the other groups, at least one of its leaders logging 24 visits between December 2009 and March 2012. They said Hezbollah's 1983 attack on U.S. Marine Barracks-- which killed 241 people-- was not "in a strict sense, a terrorist operation," and that it would have been praised had it been directed against Washington's enemies.  Founder Salam al-Marayati said in 2005 that "Counter-terrorism and counter-violence should be defined by us."  Often push the narrative that the U.S. is waging a war on Islam, conflating legitimate terrorism concerns with Islamophobia.  President Obama personally called one of the organization's leaders, Haris Tarin, to congratulate him for his "community engagement."

Though most of the above visitors, again, have reputable credentials-- Louay Safi is a fellow at Georgetown University, for instance-- it should be noted that genuinely moderate Muslims have not been similarly welcomed.

Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, an Arizona-based, American-born moderate Muslim and former Navy officer, told the Daily Caller: “We’ve never been invited and nether have any of [the 24 leaders in] our American Islamic Leadership Coalition.”

Steve Emerson, the founder of the Investigative Project on Terrorism, added: “The White House has selectively omitted genuine [Muslim] moderates and instead has picked radical Muslims to meet.”

The Investigative Project on Terrorism article concludes:

President Obama opening the White House to radical Islamists compromises American security in at least two ways. First, it legitimizes groups and individuals whose track records beg skepticism and scrutiny. Second, White House visitor logs show that top U.S. policy-makers are soliciting and receiving advice from people who, at best, view the war on terrorism as an unchecked war on Muslims. These persons' perspectives and preferred policies handcuff law enforcement and weaken our resolve when it comes to confronting terrorism.

Want to do some White House investigation on your own? You can comb through the visitor logs on this special section of TheBlaze.

Click here for a complete list of White House guests with radical ties, via the Investigative Project on Terrorism.

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