PART 1 – Introduction
According to CBC, “M-103 now goes to the bottom of the list of private member’s business and is expected to return for an hour of debate in early April. At that time, it could be passed in the House but if a recorded vote is requested, that would occur the following Wednesday.”
On February 20, Faisal Kutty expressed his own approval of the motion in an article published by the Toronto Star. In his comment, Mr. Kutty also made several remarks about sharia.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Faisal Kutty is an Assistant Professor of Law at Valparaiso University (Indiana) and an Adjunct Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School (Toronto). Since 2010, Faisal Kutty has been selected among the 500 World’s most influential Muslims by the Amman-based Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Institute. See 2017 edition.
Faisal Kutty “co-founded and served as vice-chair and legal counsel to the Canadian chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), now renamed National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM).”
In 2009, the FBI severed its liaison relationship with the Council on American-Islamic Relations because of its links with the terrorist organization Hamas. In 2014, the RCMP rejected the NCCM’s so-called anti-terrorism guide. The guide promoted jihad (misleadingly presented as “striving, struggling and exertion in the path of good“ / Guide p.10) and several Islamist scholars including proponents of armed jihad.
From 2001 to 2004, Faisal Kutty was on the Board of Human Concern International (HCI) and, after that, one of its representatives. Aside from its charity work, HCI has been involved in the sponsorship of several conferences featuring Islamist speakers in Canada, including the leader of the Jamaat-e-Islami in 2008 (2008 program / sponsorship). Canadian authorities refused to grant JEI leader, Qazi Hussein Ahmad, a visa for attending the HCI-sponsored conference at the time. HCI’s sponsorship of Islamist speakers and the involvement of its representative in Pakistan with Al-Qaida were discussed at length in a reply by Point de Bascule to an HCI’s former vice-president in 2015.
In 2006, Faisal Kutty was invited to meet with four members of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Intelligence. He has also been involved with the RCMP and CSIS in the past.
In his recent remarks published by the Toronto Star, Faisal Kutty mentioned that Motion 103 is not a bill. According to him, the eventual adoption of Motion 103 will bring “no new law or changes to laws.” However, the motion itself asks the Government to study how to “develop a whole-of-government approach to reducing or eliminating systemic racism and religious discrimination including Islamophobia.” Such general mandate opens the door for the government to reintroduce clauses similar to Article 13 (repealed from the Canadian Human Rights Act in 2013) or present bills inspired by Quebec’s censorship Bill 59.
According to Faisal Kutty, those of us who warn about an insidious implementation of sharia principles in Canada and present Motion 103 as a manifestation of this trend have, at best, bought into the “moral panic” and, at worst, belong to a “lunatic fringe.”
In spite of key leaders advocating for an Islamic conquest of the West (and of Canada in particular) and acting on it, we should not worry, according to Faisal Kutty.
In 1995, at a conference held by the Muslim Arab Youth Association in Toledo (Ohio), Muslim Brotherhood spiritual guide, Youssef Qaradawi, told his supporters: “We will conquer Europe, we will conquer America! Not through sword but through Da’wa.”
In 2002, Qaradawi drew a parallel between the military Muslim offensives of the past in Europe and the current Islamic offensive with preaching and ideology (including legal warfare) in the West today.
Youssef Qaradawi: “Islam will return to Europe as a conqueror and victor, after being expelled from it twice – once from the South, from Andalusia, and a second time from the East, when it knocked several times on the door of Athens. […] I maintain that the conquest this time will not be by the sword but by preaching and ideology…”
When he worked at establishing a Council of Sharia in Montreal, the leader of the Muslim Council of Montreal (representing more than 70 Islamic institutions in the Greater Montreal today), Salam Elmenyawi, acknowledged Qaradawi’s authority and told Le Devoir that he could consult with him in the future to settle issues of Islamic jurisprudence.
Somehow, according to Faisal Kutty, it would be buying into the “moral panic” to imagine that these Montreal-based Islamic institutions and others looking at Qaradawi for guidance are doing just what he is advocating.
On May 26, 2007, Faisal Kutty partnered with Salam Elmenyawi (El Manyawi) and others for a “strategy forum” on “Islamophobia and National Security” in Montreal.
Rather than warning us about the project pursued by Qaradawi and his supporters in the West, Faisal Kutty has misled us into believing that Youssef Qaradawi is a man seeking a dialogue with the West.
A few years before being publicly endorsed by Faisal Kutty, Qaradawi had explained that dialogue with non-Muslims always serves ulterior motives for advancing the cause of Islam. In 1990, in a speech given in Algeria that became the basis for his book Priorities of the Islamic movement in the coming phase, Qaradawi mentioned two motives to justify interfaith dialogue: preventing Christian leaders from supporting fellow Christians involved in conflict with Muslims and improving the image of Islam. In other explanations on the usefulness of interfaith dialogue for his cause, Qaradawi pleaded for converting non-Muslims to Islam (“Invite them to Islam”) and rallying them against Israel.
Youssef Qaradawi also considers that “true Islam is essentially political.” He describes the role of mosques as being “to guide the public policy of a nation, raise awareness of critical issues, and reveal its enemies. From ancient times the mosque has had a role in urging jihad for the sake of Allah.” Qaradawi also justifies the killing of Muslims who leave Islam. In fact, Qaradawi explained that “If they [Muslims] had gotten rid of the apostasy punishment, Islam wouldn’t exist today.” (Video) Qaradawi also justifies female genital mutilation and the killing of homosexuals. In 2009, he told his viewers on Al-Jazeera that Hitler had been sent by Allah to punish the Jews and that he was hoping the next massacre of Jews would be at the hands of Muslims.
In his recent defense of Motion 103 and sharia, Faisal Kutty wrote that “There is no monolithic understanding of the Sharia – there is a spectrum of interpretations ranging from the very liberal to the extreme conservative. In fact, the inherent diversity and pluralism of the Sharia may be the best tool we have to counter the violent and antimodern narratives of extremists.”
Given Faisal Kutty’s endorsement of Youssef Qaradawi, how does his own “modern” interpretation of sharia differ from the “extremist” narratives he is alluding to?
According to the introduction (p.vii) of the Umdat Al-Salik (Reliance of the Traveller), a very respected manual of sharia in Muslim Brotherhood circles, “The four Sunni schools of Islamic law, Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i, and Hanbali, are identical in approximately 75 percent of their legal conclusions.” The English translation of the Umdat Al-Salik has been approved by the University Al-Azhar (Cairo). It is also been endorsed by the International Institute of Islamic Thought, an important U.S.-based Muslim Brotherhood research centre operating worldwide, Tariq Ramadan, Mohammad Fadel (“the famous’ Umdat al-salik”) and it has been sold by Hussain Hamdani at Ihya Productions.
In what follows, we have examined several positions taken by Faisal Kutty over the years to better understand where his own “modern” interpretation of sharia leads.
JANUARY 22, 1992 – In a letter to the Toronto Star, Faisal Kutty advocates that Muslim countries should implement “their standards” that differ from Western standards. This difference in standards is symbolized by the opposition between OIC’s Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam (1990) and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) regarding freedom of expression and other issues. Today, the OIC includes 56 Muslim countries and the Palestinian Authority.
JULY/AUGUST 1995 – Faisal Kutty reports about Jaafar Idris and Siraj Wahhaj’s participation at the 21st ISNA Canadian Annual Conference without giving the slightest information about both Islamist leaders’ supremacist agenda already well known at the time.
DECEMBER 29, 1995 – An organization represented by Faisal Kutty circulated a petition for the release of Ahmed Said Khadr after he was arrested for the bombing of the Egyptian embassy in Islamabad. Khadr died in 2003 in the company of Taliban and Al-Qaida members, when Pakistani troops attacked their South Waziristan safe house. An Al-Qaida website praised Khadr as a “Martyr of Afghanistan.”
JANUARY 1996 – In a piece entitled Islamists and the West: Co-existence or Confrontation?, Faisal Kutty misrepresents Youssef Qaradawi as a man advocating dialogue with the West and Hassan Turabi as a person who refused to impose his doctrine by force. The year before, Qaradawi had called for a Muslim conquest of Europe and America at a MAYA convention in Toledo (Ohio). As for Turabi, he has been the main force behind the forceful introduction of sharia in Sudan in the eighties. In a Canadian legal case, Turabi’s Sudan was described as a “country of horrors [where] people are whipped in the name of Shari’a, terrorist bases are harboured and the Christians in the South are exterminated.”
MARCH 1998 – Faisal Kutty criticizes Canada’s immigration authorities when they banned Wagdi Ghoneim from entering Canada because they had reasons to believe he was a member of a terrorist organization. Wagdi Ghoneim declared: ”Brothers, we pray to Allah that we be terrorists, if terror means Jihad for the sake of Allah.”
JULY/AUGUST 1998 – Faisal Kutty objects to Rachid Ghannouchi being banned from entering Canada in spite of a long list of terrorist activities waged by Ghannouchi’s Ennahda organization in the eighties and nineties.
OCTOBER 2, 2001 – After Benevolence International’s links with Al-Qaida were reported, Faisal Kutty tells the Toronto Star that these were “false rumours and innuendos.” In February 2003, the director of Benevolence International Foundation’s Canadian branch pleaded guilty to diverting donations meant for widows and orphans to Islamic fighters in Chechnya and Bosnia.
OCTOBER 11, 2001 – After it was reported that the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY) was being “considered for inclusion on an updated U.S. Treasury Department list of groups accused of funding political violence,” Faisal Kutty comes to its defence and declares that WAMY is a “very respected organization,” and that people “would be shocked” to hear allegations linking it to terrorism. In 2012, the Canada Revenue Agency revoked WAMY’s charitable status after concluding that it had transferred funds to a component of Al-Qaida’s support network in 2001.
2004-2005 – Faisal Kutty strongly supported a proposal for government-approved Muslim faith-based tribunals (aka sharia tribunals) in family matters in Ontario. Opponents to the project highlighted the discriminatory nature of the principles that would have been endorsed by the government if the proposal had been adopted.
JUNE 26, 2006 – In a piece entitled “Good intentions are not enough,” Faisal Kutty argues that Human Rights Commissions need more funding, expanded powers and increased powers of punishment. Mr. Kutty signed his letter as vice-chair of the Canadian Council on American-Islamic Relations, now renamed National Council of Canadian Muslims, an advisor to the Trudeau government on Motion 103. Many other key supporters of Motion 103 have either endorsed censorship proposals such as Bill 59 in Quebec (Majzoub, Bouazzi) or supported legal procedures against critics of Islam in the past.
JULY 17, 2006 – Faisal Kutty “was invited by the Consulate General of the United States in Toronto to meet with four members of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Intelligence.” He has also been involved with the RCMP and CSIS in the past.
DECEMBER 2006 – In a piece for Canadian Dimension, Faisal Kutty challenges the idea that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UHDR) is truly universal.
MAY 24, 2008 – Faisal Kutty accepts to be part of a panel with Jamaat-e-Islami (JEI) leader, Qazi Hussain Ahmed, at ISNA-Canada’s 34th Annual convention. Canadian authorities refused to grant Qazi Hussein Ahmad a visa. JEI’s founder, Syed Maududi, has described the mission of Islam as being the “destr[uction of] all States and Governments anywhere on the face of the earth which are opposed to the ideology and programme of Islam regardless of the country or the Nation that rules it. […] Islam requires the earth – not just a portion – but the whole planet.”
MARCH 31, 2012 – Faisal Kutty accepts to be honored by the Council on American-Islamic Relations three years after the FBI had severed its liaison relationship with the same organization because of its links with the terrorist organization Hamas.
NOVEMBER 12, 2014 – Faisal Kutty endorses NCCM’s so-called anti-terrorism guide after it was rejected by the RCMP. The guide recommended several Islamist scholars including proponents of armed jihad and provided a misleading definition of jihad.
FEBRUARY 20, 2017 – In his recent piece in favour of Motion 103 published by the Toronto Star, Faisal Kutty wrote that “for most Muslims, especially in the West,” only the personal aspect of sharia is relevant to them. Yet, as NCCM / CAIR-CAN vice-chair, Faisal Kutty himself advocated giving more power of censorship and punishment to Human Rights Commissions in order to prevent the criticism of Islam. This is hardly a private concern. In an interview granted to an Egyptian magazine, Tariq Ramadan, one of the most popular ideologues in Muslim Brotherhood circles frequented by Faisal Kutty, specifically advised his supporters operating in Canada to use the Canadian legal framework (deemed “one of the most open in the world” by Ramadan) to subtly and gradually introduce rules of sharia in the public sphere. Ramadan strongly urged his supporters not to openly mention their commitment to sharia: “The term shariah in itself is laden with negative connotations in the Western mind,” Ramadan stated. “There is no need to stress that. […] For the time being this is not how we want to be perceived,” he added.
In spite of his endorsement of Islamist supremacists such as Youssef Qaradawi and Hassan Turabi, Faisal Kutty has been presented as a fighter for human rights by the American University where he teaches law.
JANUARY 22, 1992 – Go down to January 22, 1992 to retrieve this letter among Faisal Kutty’s documents published by The Toronto Star.
[EXCERPT] Faisal Kutty: “The resurgence of Islam is an inevitable fact and cannot be simply ignored away. People in nations as diverse as the former Soviet Muslim republics and Bosnia to Algeria wish to return to their Islamic roots after a failed tango with secularism.”“The West has to make a choice: a) accept this fact and take a position of co-operation and understanding for the choice of these people to govern themselves according to their standards, or, b) oppose this trend and enter into a new cold war – with the Islamic world.”
In 1990, given their opposition to sections of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR / 1948), Muslim country members of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) adopted their own Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam to stress “their standards,” as Faisal Kutty put it. Contrary to the UDHR, the Cairo Declaration makes freedom of expression conditional on respect for sharia and it does not endorse the right to abandon one’s religion. Article 22a of the Cairo Declaration specifies that “Everyone shall have the right to express his opinion freely in such manner as would not be contrary to the principles of the Shari’ah.” This is only a small part of the large divide between the West and the Islamic world to which Faisal Kutty alluded in his 1992 letter. Today, the OIC includes 56 Muslim countries and the Palestinian Authority.
JULY/AUGUST 1995 – Faisal Kutty presents a report on the 21st ISNA Canadian Annual Conference that took place in St. Catharines (Ontario) from May 19 to May 22, 1995. His report, published by the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, presents without the slightest reservation several speakers (including Jaafar Idris and Siraj Wahhaj) whose hegemonic agenda was already well known in 1995.
Already in 1975 at an MSA convention in Toledo, Jaafar Idris had given a lecture on The process of Islamization in which he stated that “The aim of the Islamic movement is to bring about somewhere in the world a new society wholeheartedly committed to the teachings of Islam in their totality and striving to abide by those teachings in its government, political, economic and social organizations, its relation with other states, its educational system and moral values and all other aspects of its way of life.”
Idris added that the responsibility of Islamists operating in North America is to build parallel communities within the larger communities to which they are opposed.
Jaafar Idris: “If our ultimate aim is to form a community of our own, then the embryo of that [Islamic] community has to be formed in the womb of the community that we desire to change. Only in this way can we face the challenges of the community to which we are opposed.”
Advocating the formation of a parallel Muslim community “in the womb […] of the community to which we are opposed” should qualify as a call to “perpetuat[e] the ‘us’ versus ‘them’ divide” to paraphrase a 2015 comment by Faisal Kutty. Yet, Mr. Kutty did not express the slightest reservation about the promoter of this hegemonic project in his report on the convention.
Jaafar Idris was expelled from the U.S. in 2003 for visa violations. According to a 2004 Washington Times’ article, during his stay in the US capital, Jaafar Idris “held Saudi diplomatic credentials and had an office at the Saudi embassy. He lectured at the [Saudi] institute [near Washington] and espoused Wahhabism.”
Another speaker whom Faisal Kutty presents without the slightest reservation is Siraj Wahhaj.
In 1992, shortly after the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles, Siraj Wahhaj gave a sermon in which he advocated harnessing street violence in the U.S. for the benefit of Islam.
Siraj Wahhaj: “We don’t need to arm the people with 9mms and Uzis [submachine guns]. You need to arm them with righteousness first. And once you arm them with righteousness first, then you can arm them [with weapons]. […] If we go to war, brothers and sisters – one day we will, believe me – that’s why you’re commanded jihad. […] They [Youth who felt excluded] need to get out of the street and get into the masjid [mosque], learn Islam and then get [back] in the street. Because these people got guts and courage a lots of Muslims don’t have …”
DECEMBER 29, 1995 – On December 3, 1995, Ahmed Khadr, the regional director of Ottawa-based Human Concern International (HCI) in Pakistan was arrested in connection with the bombing of the Egyptian embassy in Islamabad, which killed 16 persons.
On December 15, 1995, the Toronto Star reported that HCI Executive Director, Kaleem Akhtar, “said he was shocked to hear of Khadr’s arrest and the organization is working to secure his release.”
Ahmed Khadr’s wife, Maha Elsamnahh, also told the Toronto Star that “We have nothing to do with politics. We are relief workers and we are just trying to make human life easier here.”
On January 16, 1996, the Globe and Mail revealed that Khadr’s legal defense was taken care of by the Jamaat-e-Islami, an Islamist organization close to the Muslim Brotherhood, mostly active in Pakistan, India and Bangladesh that was founded by Syed Maududi.
In his book Jihad in Islam, Maududi described the mission of Islam as being the “destr[uction of] all States and Governments anywhere on the face of the earth which are opposed to the ideology and programme of Islam regardless of the country or the Nation that rules it. […] Islam requires the earth – not just a portion – but the whole planet.”
On December 29, 1995, the Toronto Star reported that Faisal Kutty and his Canadian Muslim Civil Liberties Association rallied behind Khadr and circulated a petition for his release.
Several Ottawa-based Muslim associations also asked Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chrétien to intervene on behalf of Khadr during a commercial mission already planned in Pakistan in mid-January. (Ottawa Citizen, January 3, 1996, p. C3)
During his stay in Pakistan, PM Chrétien met Khadr’s family and pressured his Pakistani counterpart, Benazir Bhutto, to release him.
In her book Guantanamo’s child, author Michelle Shephard indicates that “No one in the Canadian Security Intelligence Agency (CSIS) knew that the prime minister was going to meet the Khadr family, or if someone had, they hadn’t told [CSIS’ leadership].” According to Shephard, “Khadr [had been] a subject in dozens of probes by CSIS’s ‘Sunni Islamic Terrorism Section.’ Khadr may never have been charged in Canada but as far as CSIS was concerned, he was a terrorist.”
According to Maclean’s magazine, “In 1995, Osama bin Laden told an Egyptian interviewer that Human Concern International funded an al-Qaeda charitable front called ‘Blessed Relief.’ Khadr was in charge of Human Concern International’s Pakistan office at this time.”
In the February/March 1996 issue of the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Faisal Kutty made an appeal to his readers to contribute to Khadr’s legal costs.
According to La Presse columnist Lysiane Gagnon, PM Chrétien gave in to pressures by Muslim lobbies when he contacted the Pakistani government for Khadr’s release in 1996. Before Gagnon wrote her comment in 2002, Khadr had been released by Pakistan without being charged in March 1996 and had resumed his terrorist activities with Al-Qaida. In 2002, he was on the UN Security Council’s list of most wanted terrorists.
According to Maclean’s magazine, “Khadr died in 2003 in the company of Taliban and al-Qaeda members, when Pakistani troops attacked their South Waziristan safe house. An al-Qaeda website profiling ‘120 Martyrs of Afghanistan’ described him as an al-Qaeda leader and praised him for ‘tossing his little child [Omar] in the furnace of the battle’.”
According to the National Post, Ahmed Khadr was also connected to Benevolence International (BIF), a “charity shut by Ottawa for financing terrorism.” On February 11, 2003, Faisal Kutty was described as “the spokesman of the Canadian branch” of Benevolence International. In 2015, Faisal Kutty claimed that he was not the spokesman, but the lawyer of this terrorist organization.
See the entry dated October 2, 2001 in this chronology for more information about Benevolence International.
JANUARY 1996 – Contrary to many high profile Islamists who claim nowadays that Islam has nothing to do with violence or terrorism (for example: Munir El-Kassem claiming in 2013 that “Faith and terrorism are an oxymoron, they do not exist together.”), Faisal Kutty provided an entirely different explanation for the origin of the violence generated by Islamists when he quoted Muslim leader Hassan Turabi in 1996:
Hassan Turabi (ALSO Original excerpt): “Whenever religious energy is … suppressed, it builds up and ultimately erupts either in isolated acts of struggle or resistance, which are called terrorist by those in power, or in a revolution. On the other hand,” [Turabi] continues, “when Islam is allowed free expression, it will bring about social change peacefully and gradually.”
“Since Islam is based on sincere conviction and voluntary compliance,” added Kutty still quoting Turabi, “an Islamic state cannot be imposed on a reluctant society.”
Presenting Hassan Turabi as a person who refused to impose his doctrine by force is a gross misrepresentation of reality. It does not match Turabi’s record as a political leader in Sudan. All that had to be known about Hassan Turabi and his totalitarian methods was known in 1996 when Faisal Kutty endorsed him.
Hassan Turabi (1932-2016) was the main force behind the introduction of sharia in Sudan in the eighties. In the short profile of Turabi that he presented in his book Voices of resurgent Islam, John Esposito described him as “a founder of Sudan’s Muslim Brotherhood [who] is currently [in 1983] Attorney General of the Sudan.”
As the Attorney General of Sudan, Hassan Turabi played a key role in the decision to charge Muslim reformer Mahmoud Mohamed Taha with apostasy and to kill him in conformity with sharia law. Taha had pleaded for the reform of certain Islamic principles. Turabi’s involvement in the decision to kill Taha was covered in a 2006 New Yorker article.
In a case heard by Canada’s Immigration Commission, Turabi’s Sudan was described as a “country of horrors [where] people are whipped in the name of Shari’a, terrorist bases are harboured and the Christians in the South are exterminated.” In this Canadian legal case, Turabi himself was described as the “leader [of a] genuine ‘Islamist International’” and “the ideologue of the military regime in Sudan.”
The Canadian legal decision Almrei (Re), 2009 FC 1263 (Section 274) also indicates that “[Usama] Bin Laden and his entourage moved to Sudan in 1991 at the invitation of the Islamist leader, Hassan Turabi.” Bin Laden lived in Sudan until 1996. On August 12, 1993, the Clinton administration added Sudan to the U.S. list of State Sponsors of terrorism.
In his 1990 speech that led to his book Priorities of the Islamic movement in the coming phase, Youssef Qaradawi listed a series of “political principles brought to this earth by Islam” in which he included “changing wrong by force whenever possible,” wrong being what does not conform to sharia, of course.
In a 2015 letter addressed to the Canadian Senate, Faisal Kutty claimed that he “ha[s] openly and unequivocally condemned violence of all kinds.” Other Islamists are taking care of that. Faisal Kutty’s approach has not stopped him, however, from misrepresenting ideologues like Turabi and Qaradawi who have explicitly justified the use of violence and advocated for a Muslim conquest of the West as promoters of dialogue and tolerance. This is an essential aspect of the ideological jihad advocated by Youssef Qaradawi.
MARCH 1998 – On January 7, 1998, Egyptian cleric Wagdi Ghoneim was stopped by Canada’s immigration authorities from entering the country at the Canada-U.S. border near Detroit. According to the Ottawa Citizen (January 10, 1998), the Canadian government had reasons to believe that Ghoneim was a member of a terrorist organization. Ghoneim had also “provided conflicting information to immigration officials and a visa officer at the Canadian Consulate in Detroit.” The Canadian Government’s files also showed that Wagdi Ghoneim “had been denied a visitor’s visa by the Canadian Embassy in Cairo in May 1993.”
In a column for the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Faisal Kutty protested Ghoneim’s innocence. A coalition of eleven major Muslim organizations also asked the federal government for an apology.
Here are some of the positions taken by Faisal Kutty’s “prominent imam” that have made the headlines in recent years.
FEBRUARY 3-10, 2010 – Wagdi Ghoneim: “We are a nation that excels in the production of the art of death. That’s why our enemies are terrified of us. […] Brothers, we pray to Allah that we be terrorists, if terror means Jihad for the sake of Allah.” (Video)
SEPTEMBER 2014 – Wagdi Ghoneim declared his support for the Islamic State (ISIS / ISIL)
DECEMBER 2012 – According to Raymond Ibrahim, Wagdi Ghoneim and other Muslim leaders portrayed the popular protests against Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood President Morsi and his Sharia-heavy constitution as products of Egypt’s Christians. In this context, after praising Allah for the death of the late Coptic Pope Shenouda in 2012, Wagdi Ghoneim threatened Egypt’s Christian Copts with genocide in a video entitled “A Notice and Warning to the Crusaders in Egypt.” Ghoneim suggested that most of the people at the anti-Morsi protests were Copts, “and we know you hid your [wrist] crosses by lowering your sleeves.”
Wagdi Ghoneim: “You are playing with fire in Egypt, I swear, the first people to be burned by the fire are you [Copts]. […] The day Egyptians […] and I don’t even mean the Muslim Brotherhood or Salafis, regular Egyptians […] feel that you are against them, you will be wiped off the face of the earth. I’m warning you now: do not play with fire!.”
FEBRUARY 11-14, 2012 – A visit by Wagdi Ghoneim in Tunisia was met with considerable opposition, particularly after he expressed his support for female genital mutilation. According to Tunisia Live, “Ghoneim recently issued a statement clarifying that although FGM is not mandatory, that it is an option supported by Islamic science, and it should be considered as a form of cosmetic surgery. […] The practice has a number of forms, but most commonly involves the full or partial removal of the clitoris and the inner and outer labia.”
NOVEMBER 8, 2008 – Wagdi Ghoneim: “As the Prophet Muhammad said, everybody is born Muslim, and their parents convert them to Judaism, to Christianity, or to Zoroastrianism. That’s why the Christians have something called baptism. They put the child in water, and he becomes a Christian. So what was he originally? A Muslim.” (Video)
JULY/AUGUST 1998 – In the spring of 1998, Canada’s Immigration authorities told Tunisian Islamist leader Rachid Ghannouchi that “he was not admissible to Canada because there was reason to believe his organization was linked to terrorism.” Ghannouchi had been invited in Toronto to speak at a conference hosted by the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), a key component of the North American Muslim Brotherhood’s infrastructure.
In his report on ISNA’s conference published by the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Faisal Kutty relayed “philosopher” Ghannouchi’s “astonishment” at being refused by Canada but he did not provide the slightest detail about the terrorist activities led by his organization in the eighties and nineties in Tunisia and in France.
Faisal Kutty quoted Rachid Ghannouchi as follows: “Using violence to achieve political goals is refused in our view of Islam.”
In its 2003 refusal to grant refugee status to one of Rachid Ghannouchi’s lieutenants, Canada’s Federal Court of Appeal described Ghannouchi as “a terrorist who is an integral part of the international Islamist movement [and who] is regarded by some sources as one of the masterminds of terrorism. This legal case listed several terrorist activities waged by Ghannouchi’s Ennahda organization in the eighties and nineties:
Bombing attacks in Tunisia and France;
Arsons on cars and buildings;
Throwing acid into people’s faces;
Physical attacks in schools and universities;
Use of Molotov cocktails, etc.
Ghannouchi did not make it to ISNA’s conference in 1998 but Mahfoud Nahnah did. In his report, Faisal Kutty described him as “the main speaker” at the conference and the “founder and president of the Algerian Islamic party, Harakat Mujtamaa As-Silm,” (Movement of Society for Peace), another Muslim Brotherhood entity.
According to Faisal Kutty, “the charismatic leader [Mahfoud Nahnah] was sentenced to 10 years’ imprisonment [for being] one of the leading critics of the socialist regime which took power after Algeria obtained its independence.”
A biography of Mahfoud Nahnah published by the European Institute for Research on Mediterranean and Euro-Arab Cooperation indicates that, in 1976, Mahfoud Nahnah was condemned to 15 years in prison for destroying electric posts.
ISNA-Canada was the organizer of the 1998 conference. In 2013, one of its substructures, the ISNA Development Foundation, had its charitable status revoked after the Canada Revenue Agency concluded that it had provided tax receipts to a second entity that transferred funds to a third entity whose armed wing wages jihad in India.
In January 1998 and December 2000, Faisal Kutty enjoined his readers at the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs to contribute to the Jerusalem Fund for Human Services (JFHS), a component of Hamas’ North American infrastructure.
On October 7, 2000, while Faisal Kutty was on the board of NCCM / CAIR-CAN, the organization also published an Action Alert urging its supporters to fund JFHS.
In the nineties, JFHS tried to get charitable status from the Canada Revenue Agency. Its demand was rejected because JFHS’ donees (the recipients of JFHS’ funding) were not deemed acceptable according to statutory provisions in the Income Tax Act. On March 23, 1998, in a letter sent to JFHS, the Canada Revenue Agency pointed out that many organizations receiving funding from JFHS were linked to Hamas. Hamas had been listed as a terrorist entity by the U.S. government on October 8, 1997 and was listed by the Canadian government on November 27, 2002.
Canada Revenue Agency (pp.7-8): “There are indications from a variety of publications, documentaries, and media reports that the character of JFHS’s operations is substantially similar to that of organizations affiliated with the Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas and, in fact, that JFHS affiliates and many of the organizations in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip receiving funding from JFHS function as part of a support network for Hamas.”
In 1998, Yusuf Islam (the British singer formerly known as Cat Stevens) was the guest of honour at a JFHS’ fundraising event in Toronto. In 1989, Yusuf Islam supported Ayatollah Khomeini’s fatwa asking Muslims to kill Salman Rushdie. See video.
Aside from being engaged in the destruction of Israel (Hamas 1988 Charter / article 13), Hamas’ leaders have frequently advocated the Islamic conquest of the West (2006/Jan – 2006/Feb – 2008 – 2011 – 2012). In 2011 for example, Hamas leader Mahmoud Al-Zahhar said on TV that Western civilization “will not be able to withstand the great and glorious Islam.” On July 16, 2013, Hamas threatened to launch terrorist attacks in countries where Israel’s embassies are located. Canada is among the potential targets, of course.
OCTOBER 2, 2001 – After Benevolence International’s links with Al-Qaida were reported, Faisal Kutty told the Toronto Star that these were “false rumours and innuendos.”
On February 11, 2003, the National Post reported that the director of Benevolence International Foundation’s Canadian branch (BIF-Canada) “pleaded guilty in the United States yesterday to diverting donations meant for widows and orphans to Islamic fighters in Chechnya and Bosnia.” Faisal Kutty was identified as the organization’s spokesman in the article.
National Post: [EXCERPT] “The case of Benevolence International showed how some Islamic aid agencies in such countries as Canada have secretly supported violent Muslim jihads, or holy wars, around the world by illegally redirecting their donors’ money.”
“Benevolence International is based in Illinois but had branch offices in several countries, including Canada. The Canadian branch began operating in 1992, with offices in Mississauga and later Waterloo. The organization raised money from Canadian mosques and Muslim student groups.”
“While Arnaout claimed to be running a humanitarian aid organization, U.S. authorities said he was funding bands of Muslim fighters carrying out what they see as their religious duty to wage holy war. In March, authorities searched Arnaout’s office in Bosnia and found documents linking him to bin Laden. He was arrested the following month.”
[…] “When reports about Benevolence first surfaced following the Sept. 11 attacks, Faisal Kutty, the spokesman for the Canadian branch, released a statement calling the allegations of a terrorist link ‘false rumours and innuendos’.”
On February 23, 2015, the Point de Bascule Director criticized the Canadian security agencies’ inappropriate outreach initiatives with Islamists before the Standing Senate Committee on National Security and Defence and he gave the example of a so-called de-radicalization activity in which RCMP Superintendent Doug Best joined with Faisal Kutty at the University of Windsor in November 2014.
After that, Faisal Kutty condemned the Point de Bascule director’s testimony and wrote in the Huffington Post that: “I have never served as a spokesperson for any terrorist organization. A lawyer, representing a client, is a far cry from a spokesperson.”
Faisal Kutty was identified as a “spokesman” of Benevolence by The Record (Kitchener / June 15, 2002) and by the National Post (November 20, 2002 and February 11, 2003). After searching in the archives of these newspapers, we were unable to find an erratum message or a note published at the request of Faisal Kutty by the publisher of either newspaper specifying that Faisal Kutty was not BIF-Canada’s spokesman as previously reported, but its lawyer.
Whether Faisal Kutty was BIF-Canada’s lawyer or spokesman, the central point remains that it was highly inappropriate for the RCMP to join him in a so-called de-radicalization activity in 2015.
Faisal Kutty’s involvement with BIF-Canada is only one case that should have raised a flag at the RCMP. Faisal Kutty’s misrepresentation of the Muslim Brotherhood spiritual guide, Youssef Qaradawi, as a man seeking a dialogue with the West in 1996 while the same Qaradawi is advocating for a Muslim conquest of the West (1995 – 2002), is one of many other statements that should have also raised a flag.
There is much more. Read the rest here.
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