It’s now painfully clear why the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) was so forcefully opposed to the House Homeland Security Committee’s hearings on homegrown radicalization in the Muslim-American community. According to many speakers at the hearing, one of the major obstacles to solving the problem of homegrown Islamic radicalization appears to be Muslim-American advocacy groups like CAIR.
CAIR, which has advised Muslim Americans not to talk to the FBI, is “attempting to drive a wedge between the Muslim community and the FBI,” Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) told the committee today. “CAIR is counterproductive and it is hurting the American Muslim community,” he added.
One of the witnesses at the hearing, Abdirizak Bihi, told the committee that his own mosque attempted to prevent him from contacting law enforcement when his nephew and 20 other young people were sent overseas to join the global jihad.
“They threatened me, intimidated me,” said Bihi. He asserted that when his sister tried to find out what happened to her son, mosque leaders told her that “if you go to the FBI or the police, they don’t care about you because you are Muslim. They will just send you Guantanamo.”
According to Bihi, CAIR declined to give assistance to the families whose children went missing. “We never got help from our leaders, from our big Islamic organizations,” he said. “If we don’t have organizations and Imams and leaders that create threats and hurdles and intimidations, we can [deal with the radicalization problem] ourselves.”
Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, said that it’s become difficult to address radicalization because major Muslim-American advocacy organizations have portrayed any investigations into the problem as “Islamophobia.”
“It is a problem that we can only solve. Christians, Jews, non-Muslims, cannot solve Muslim radicalization,” said Jasser. “We can close our eyes and pretend it doesn’t exist, we can call anyone a bigot or Islamophobe for even talking about it.” But, of course, that will not make the problem go away.