Opinion

‘Islamist bullies at CAIR’ turn on American Muslim Navy vet

An American Muslim, Navy veteran and author who is a vocal opponent of the Council on American Islamic Relations says he’s being targeted by the group because of his connections to other groups that fight violent Islamists.

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M. Zuhdi Jasser

M. Zuhdi Jasser, vice chairman of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, told CNS News that CAIR is “trying to silence the opposition” by trying to get him removed from his post.

CAIR’s complaint is that Jasser is the president of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, a non-profit group that receives money from a foundation that also supports groups that battle violent Islam such as Jihad Watch, led by anti-Islamist activist Robert Spencer.

That means his Muslim group is taking money from a source of “anti-Muslim prejudice in the United States,” CAIR wrote in a letter to the commission on religious freedom’s chairman, according to CNS.

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The commission on international freedom was established by Congress in 1998 to publicize violations of religious freedom internationally and help the U.S. to respond. Its commissioners are appointed on a bipartisan basis and come from varied religious backgrounds.

Jasser, an American born to Syrian immigrants, was was appointed by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in early 2012, over CAIR’s objections, according to CNS.

Jasser, who is author of the book “A Battle for the Soul of Islam,” said CAIR “bullies” were just getting scared because of his high profile — particularly since he opposes Pentagon rules changes to allow beards to accommodate religious beliefs.

In his own time in the service, Jasser told an interview for Fox News, the issue of such accommodations was never critical.

He “was able to practice my faith, fast, pray – and I never saw the need for this type of bending over backwards for political correctness,” he said in the interview.

“The Islamist bullies at CAIR would not be paying so much attention to us lately at the American Islamic Forum for Democracy if we weren’t actually so effective in gaining traction among Muslims as well as in exposing their own hypocrisy and anti-American Islamism,” he told CNS.

“It is rather pathetic for an organization which purports to be about American and Muslim interests to squander its resources attacking other American Muslims as well as patriotic American foundations with their fabricated claims of ‘Islamophobia,’ all the while their directors send letters to foreign dictators and autocrats, enemies of the U.S., begging for money,” he said.

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