IPT The invitation-only fundraiser was sponsored by Reps. Keith Ellison, D-Minn.; Andre Carson, D-Ind.; and Steve Israel, D-N.Y., chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, and took place on the evening of May 16, 2012, at the W Hotel in Washington D.C.
In attendance were about 20 members of a Syrian dissident group and 10 officials representing Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas front groups. Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR)Executive Director Nihad Awad was perhaps the most prominent attendee and played a key role in organizing the event. Awad has openly championed Hamas and defended suicide bombings as “legitimate resistance.”
CAIR, an unindicted co-conspirator in the 2007-2008 Holy Land Foundation Hamas money-laundering trials, was described in FBI testimony as having been created by Hamas. In a 2007 federal court filing, prosecutors described CAIR as conspiring with other branches of the Muslim Brotherhood to support terrorists.
The FBI officially severed relations with CAIR in 2008 because of its ties to Hamas.
During the fundraiser, Pelosi sat at the same table with Awad and Barzinji.
Speaking to the attendees in her 10-minute address, she said the Democratic Party should become the natural home of Muslim-Americans, because Republicans fan the flames of “Islamophobia.” She focused exclusively on Islamophobia, a term devised by radical Islamists and their apologists to silence critics, while avoiding any mention of terrorism carried out by Islamists in the United States.
Also speaking were Israel, Ellison, Carson, and Reps Alyson Schwartz, D-Pa., and Chris Murphy, D-Conn. Israel and Murphy were said to have been the most vehement among the members of Congress in attendance in terms of their incendiary accusations of Republican-incited Islamophobia. One observer said that it was striking that “there was not a scintilla of comments in defense of U.S. national security.” However, they welcomed each of the Hamas and Muslim Brotherhood front groups represented at the event into the “Democratic community” without any mention of their well-documented terror links.
Following the speeches, a prominent attorney, Mazen Asbahipublicly rose to announce the creation of a new organization called the National Muslim Democratic Council (NMDC). Asbahi was Obama’s 2008 Muslim outreach director but was forced to step down when his prior association with a radical Muslim cleric, Jamal Said, became public. Said was an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation terrorism financing trial. READ MORE