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Election Myth #1: George Bush Fights Muslim Terror

By Jared Israel
[Posted 1 November 2004]

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I am preparing some articles on foreign policy illusions that have been fostered or strengthened during this presidential election. It is my contention that groups with various foreign policy concerns are sold custom-designed story lines, providing them with Establishment figures to believe in and root for, even though said story lines have nothing to do with reality.

The three groups I am focusing on are:

a) strong defenders of Serbia, who get sold on the Republican story line;

b) strong defenders of Israel, who get sold on the Republican story line;

and

c) strong opponents of the Iraq war, who get sold on the Democratic story line.

In fact US foreign policy has flowed remarkably smoothly from Bush Senior to Clinton to Bush Junior, despite phony public posturing and misleading media coverage, which create the imaginary story lines.

Take the question of terror.

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The Story line: Democrats are soft while  Republicans are tough on terror

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Summary

Over the past few days I've received quite a bit of email from supporters of both Yugoslavia and Israel containing one-sided 'evidence' supporting the Bush-is-sincere-about-fighting-terror story line.

One such email reprinted a November 2000 Wall Street Journal article by reporter Steven Emerson, who specializes in terrorism.  The article charged that Hillary Clinton had invited Islamic extremists into the White House, thus greatly enhancing their political strength among Muslims.

The article was published just before the 2000 election, when Ms. Clinton was running for the US Senate.

Emperor's Clothes has posted much evidence that Islamic terror in the Balkans and also in Central Asia and the Middle East could not exist absent the covert support of the US and European Establishments. [1]

However, in this present article I'll stick to Steven Emerson's much more limited accusation. I will argue that Emerson is right concerning Hillary Clinton's legitimization of Islamic extremists, but that his other, implied argument - that the Republicans are better - is a spectacular deception.

According to Mr. Emerson, in 1996 Ms. Clinton began "reaching out"  to the American Muslim Council (AMC), founded in 1990 by one Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi.

Emerson writes that this was serious because al-Amoudi and other AMC leaders are extremists who openly support Hamas, Hezbollah and the Muslim Brotherhood.  By inviting al-Amoudi to the White House, the Clintons were telling Muslims all over the world that the US government has no problem with Muslim leaders who support terror.

Emerson's accusations make sense.  The only problem is, he doesn't discuss the Republicans.

As we shall see, before Clinton was elected, the administration of President Bush, Sr. worked closely with Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi to set up a Muslim Chaplain program in the most sensitive area possible - the US military.

The current President Bush catapulted al-Amoudi's credibility sky high by casting him as a moderate Muslim leader at a highly publicized 'national prayer day' on September 14, 2001 (three days after 911). 

Two years later, al-Amoudi was arrested while apparently using a million dollars of Libyan money to arrange the assassination of Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah. He has pled guilty and was sentenced October 16th. His lawyer says he is cooperating, naming names.

This means al-Amoudi was a major player in the world of international terror. It is difficult to believe US intelligence had no inkling of this, especially since al-Amoudi's access to the US military and three administrations would trigger serious security investigations, at least from the Secret Service.  So what does this say about George Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and the "fight against terror"?

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Hillary Clinton and the American Muslim Council

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Emerson writes that by 1966 the AMC:

"... had clearly established a record in support of radical Islam. In a letter to the Philadelphia Inquirer published on Oct. 14, 1994, Mr. Alamoudi stated that the 'major Islamic parties in Jordan, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Egypt, Malaysia, Pakistan, and Turkey are undeniably moderates.' This is plainly false. Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood, the Jordanian Islamic Action Front, Algeria's Islamic Salvation Front and the Pakistani Jamaat-Islami have all endorsed or carried out violence. Mr. Alamoudi specifically declared in a March 5, 1993, Fox Television interview: 'I am for the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.'" [2]

The Muslim Brotherhood is the parent of virtually every terrorist group in the Middle East and has provided the ideological impetus for  moving Muslim-dominated states (such as Sudan) in a fanatical direction. [3]

The Brotherhood's motto is:

"Allah is our objective.
The messenger is our leader.
Quran is our law.
Jihad is our way.
Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.
" [4]

So Mr. Emerson is quite right about Mr. al-Amoudi and the Muslim Brotherhood.

Emerson goes on to quote various pro-terrorist statements made by AMC leaders after 1996, when Ms. Clinton began "reaching out"  to them. For example:

"On Oct. 13, 2000, CAIR and the AMC sponsored a rally outside the Israeli Embassy in Washington where the speakers led the crowd in a chant: Khybar, Khybar, ya, ya Yahood, jesh Mohammed sofa ya'ud. (Translation: 'Khybar Khybar, oh Jews, the army of Mohammed is coming for you.') It is a refrain used by [the Muslim Brotherhood group] Hamas threatening the annihilation of Jews as was done to the Jewish tribe in Khybar, Saudi Arabia, by Mohammed in the year 628."  [2]

As described by Mr. Emerson, the AMC in general and Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi in particular are violence-supporting extremists, not moderate Muslims.  This is not hyperbole. Two weeks ago, Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi was sentenced to 23 years in jail after pleading guilty to receiving $1 million USD from Libya's Moammar Gadhafi for the purpose of assassinating Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah. The assassination plot apparently resulted from a personal squabble between Gadhafi and Abdullah, which Gadhafi tried to resolve gangster style:

[Excerpt from Washington Times starts here]

In the statement [issued when he pleaded guilty], al-Amoudi said he contacted Saudi dissidents in London for Libyan government officials who wanted them to kill Prince Abdullah, and that he had been summoned to Tripoli by a Libyan official angry over the treatment of leader Moammar Gadhafi by the crown prince during an Arab League Conference in March 2003.

Two weeks after the summit, the statement said, the Libyan official told al-Amoudi he wanted to punish the Saudis and cause "headaches"  and disruptions in Saudi Arabia. Later, the statement said, al-Amoudi was told by Libyan officials - including one identified in the document as "high-ranking" - to have the Saudi dissidents arrange to assassinate Prince Abdullah. [5]

[Excerpt from Washington Times ends here]

Mr. al-Amoudi was sentenced to 23 years:

[Excerpt from Contra Costa Times starts here]

[...]

His lawyers urged a lighter sentence, portraying Alamoudi as a minor player in the bizarre scheme to assassinate Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah.

But Alamoudi pleaded guilty in July to illegally moving cash from Libya, admitting that he pocketed nearly $1 million and used it to pay conspirators in the plot, which sources said came close to succeeding before it was broken up by Saudi intelligence officials.
[6]

[Excerpt from Contra Costa Times ends here]

(The argument attributed to Al-Amoudi's lawyers is manifestly absurd.  How can one describe as a "minor player" the person who sets up an assassination by distributing a million dollars to the hit men?) 

The point of Steven Emerson's article - and the reason it is being sent around the Internet just before today's presidential election - is that Hillary Clinton, meaning the Democrats, embraced al-Amoudi. This despite al-Amoudi's publicly proclaimed terrorist sympathies. Of course, the Secret Service does security checks on people invited to the White House, so the Clintons would have been informed that al-Amoudi was a Muslim extremist. And knowing this they still boosted him with White House invitations.

Certainly a Republican president would never have done such a thing…would he?

After some flak about al-Amoudi, Ms. Clinton returned 50,000 USD to the AMC. George W. Bush returned one thousand dollars.  Given the relatively small amount the AMC had donated to Bush, one could speculate that the Bush people hadn't bothered to check who he was. But of course, from then on, and certainly after Emerson's article, they would stay away from him, right?

Wrong.

As you may recall, after 911 Bush said repeatedly that a) the US would not tolerate any nation which in any way gave comfort to terrorists and b) that the US was fighting extremists, not Islam, which, Bush explained, is a religion of peace.

To drive this home, on September 14th the Bush people staged a 'National Prayer Day' at the National Cathedral and invited a few, supposedly moderate Muslim leaders to attend. As reported by Fox News, which is friendly to the Republicans:

"One of the leaders invited to appear with Bush was Abdurahaman Alamoudi [Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi], the president of the American Muslim Council. Three days after the hijackings, Alamoudi joined Bush at a prayer service dedicated to the victims of the attack." [7]

If the Secret Service did routine security checks on visitors to the Clinton White House, imagine the care with which they checked Muslim leaders invited to a "national prayer day" with Bush following 911!

It is impossible that Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi and other Muslim leaders with similar views were invited by mistake.  Rather, at a time when the US was supposedly fighting Muslim terror, the Bush government was deliberately broadcasting to Muslims in this country and around the world that it favored Muslim extremists.

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Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi assists Clinton and Bush, Sr. with… the US military?

================================================

In December 1993, the US Army swore in the first Muslim Chaplain.  Al-Amoudi's AMC was involved:

"The search for a Muslim chaplain began in 1983 and was propelled in the past three years by the creation of the American Muslim Council and statute changes in Defense Department requirements for military chaplains." [My emphasis] [8]

Clinton became President in January 1993, so the first Muslim Chaplain was sworn in while he was President. But as the article above reports, "The search for a Muslim chaplain…was propelled in the past three years by the creation of the American Muslim Council…"

Al-Amoudi set up the AMC in 1990. From 1990 to the end of 1992, al-Amoudi was working with the Bush administration to create a Muslim presence in the US army.  Wouldn't Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney order a routine security check on a Muslim group before involving them in such a sensitive project?  Of course he would.  Once again, by putting al-Amoudi and his extremist AMC in a position of such conspicuous prestige, the Bush people were sending a message to Muslims - and to the US army.

In his Wall Street Journal article, Steven Emerson noted that when confronted about her relationship to Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi, Mrs. Clinton said that although she "would have had serious disagreements"  with things said by some of the people invited to the White House, it was OK to invite al-Amoudi because:

"...[the Clinton] administration has tried to...promote a framework for peace, [which]...certainly included lines of communication to many different groups and many different individuals." [2]

This is double talk. If the Clinton government were seriously fighting Muslim extremism, then the last thing they'd want would be to give a leading extremist the credibility of Presidential access.  Obviously, the desire to have "lines of communication" doesn't require a) that said lines be open to everyone or b) that all such "communication" be conducted publicly, let alone in the White House.

So much for Hillary Clinton's explanation.

But consider how Bush Press Secretary Ari Fleischer tried to justify having Muslim extremists at the Sept. 14, 2001 'prayer day':

[Excerpt from Fox News transcript starts here]

"White House Spokesman Ari Fleischer emphasized that inviting the clerics did not mean the president saw eye-to-eye with them.

'I don't think it would surprise anybody that the President often has meetings to discuss a whole host of issues with people that he may not agree with everything they may have said in the course of their lives or careers,' Fleischer said." [9]

[Excerpt from Fox News transcript ends here]

Keep in mind that a) not only is this the same sort of double talk used by Ms. Clinton to justify her government playing footsy with al-Amoudi but b) it's a plain lie.  Bush didn't meet with Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi and other extremist Muslim leaders to discuss issues; he showcased them in a national day of mourning, thus giving them star status among Muslims - they were the Muslim leaders with access to the President after 911!

And this took place a year after Steve Emerson's article exposing al-Amoudi in the widely read Wall Street Journal.

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Let us assess...

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First, regarding the apparent assassination attempt, Gadhafi had a fight on live TV with Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah at an Arab Summit meeting March 1, 2003. The two Arab dictators accused each other of being stooges for the US:

[Vancouver Province article starts here]

[...]

Gadhafi charged in the full glare of the TV cameras that Saudi Arabia's King Fahd had been ready to "strike an alliance with the devil" [i.e., the US - EC] to defend the kingdom after Iraq's 1990 invasion of neighbouring Kuwait.

Millions of TV viewers across the Arab world were able to see Abdullah cursing Gadhafi before Egyptian state TV pulled the plug on the live feed from the conference hall.

"Who exactly brought you to power?" the Saudi royal asked the Libyan leader, alluding to suggestions his 1969 overthrow of the British-backed monarchy enjoyed U.S. support.

"You are a liar and your grave awaits you," he spat.
[10]

[Vancouver Province article ends here]

Sounds like gangsters kept by the US having a cat fight, doesn't it?

"The spat sparked demonstrations by thousands of Libyans near the Saudi embassy here, and on Monday Saudi daily newspaper Okaz said Kadhafi's regime posed more of a threat to the Arab world than foreign powers and should be toppled."[11]

Based on that, Gadhafi allegedly decided to have Abdullah bumped off. Hence he gave al-Amoudi a million dollars to organize the hit.

Second, the Federal prosecutors who just got Al-Amoudi sentenced to 23 years in jail do not refer to the assassination plot as 'alleged' but as quite real.  Indeed, so does US Attorney General John Ashcroft:

[Associated Press dispatch starts here]

Bush administration officials sought to portray the prosecution as a victory in the war against terrorism.

The sentence "shows that the system works: a terrorist facilitator has been sentenced to jail and we have reason to suspect that through his cooperation, we will obtain intelligence that will assist us in our ongoing efforts to advance these critical investigations," Attorney General John Ashcroft said.
[12]

[Associated Press dispatch ends here]

But if Federal law enforcement officials say the assassination plot was real and stopping it was a great victory against terrorism, why does the Bush administration continue to act as if nothing had happened?  In September, the US lifted economic sanctions against Libya and freed over a billion dollars in Libyan assets. At the end of September, Secretary of State Powell met for the first time in many years with the Libyan Foreign Minister. Following that meeting a "senior State Department official" told the New York Times that the US:

"...continues to have 'serious concerns' that Libya may have plotted to assassinate Crown Prince Abdullah of Saudi Arabia...'We are committed to working step by step through these issues,' the official said.'" [13]

"Serious concerns?" And, "Working through it step by step"?

During the first presidential debate, George Bush said:

"...[W]e've affected the world in a positive way. Look at Libya. Libya was a threat. Libya is now peacefully dismantling its weapons programs. Libya understood that America and others will enforce doctrine [?], and the world is better for it." [14]

Third, Moammar Gadhafi is no small-time gangster. He can afford to hire the best. He would never have trusted al-Amoudi with a million dollars, let alone a super-sensitive plot to assassinate the Saudi head of state, unless al-Amoudi were a known factor, an established international terrorist operative. Which means he has been organizing terrorist attacks on ordinary people around the world.

That being the case, two things follow. First, al-Amoudi has the blood of ordinary people on his hands - certainly Israelis, probably people in the Balkans and Chechnya as well. Second, al-Amoudi worked with the Clintons and both Bush administrations.  He was a guest at the White House. He was allowed to operate within the US military, setting up Muslim religious services.  (Not bad for a "terrorist facilitator"!) Given all this, it is inconceivable that he was not subjected to security checks.  Are we to believe US intelligence had no idea who he was? Especially when he was publicly saying things that really made it quite clear:

"At another Washington rally, on Oct. 28, 2000, the AMC's Mr. Alamoudi led the thousands in attendance to chant their support for Hamas and Hezbollah. 'Hear that, Bill Clinton, we are all supporters of Hamas,' he declared. 'I wish they argued that I am also a supporter of Hezbollah.' (When the New York Daily News asked about these comments earlier this week, Mr. Alamoudi denied making them, telling the reporter: 'You better check your Arabic.' When the reporter noted that he had given the speech in English, Mr. Alamoudi replied, 'It was in English? Oh my God, I forgot!')" [2]

So what do we have?  First, to put it bluntly, the US and the Europeans are the biggest sponsors of Muslim extremist and secessionist terror in the world.  Witness Kosovo, which NATO has quite literally turned into an attack base for the terrorist Kosovo Liberation Army. [1]

Second, the Saudi dictatorship is a US client state depending entirely on US arms (it gets more than any other country in the world! [15]) and military protection. Saudi Arabia spends billions of dollars sponsoring Muslim extremist mosques and schools around the world. Schools for terror.

Third, Gadhafi, also a sponsor of terrorism, though on a more modest scale, and who (according to Prince Abdullah) was put in power by the US, decides to assassinate Abdullah. Whom does he hire?  Why, naturally, that 'moderate' Muslim leader al-Amoudi from the US, the guy who worked with the first Bush and Clinton administrations creating a Muslim presence in the US military, and who shared a nationally publicized 'day of prayer' with Bush, Jr. after September 11th. (This even as he was functioning as an international "terrorist facilitator" and publicly declaring his desire to murder all Jews.)

The plot is revealed, but the US continues improving relations with Libya. Bush Sr. welcomed al-Amoudi to work with Muslims in the US military. Bush Jr. treated al-Amoudi as a hero. But following the revelation that al-Amoudi is a "terrorist facilitator," Bush Jr. does not resign from the US presidency along with his entire cabinet, which in a normal world is exactly what he would have to do after it became clear that he had given aid and comfort to the worst enemies of ordinary Americans. No, not just aid and comfort - George Bush did much worse than that. Bush exalted a "terrorist facilitator". Instead of resigning, Bush acts as if nothing has happened, nothing at all. And John Kerry, the 'opponent,' says nary a word.

Which brings us back to the question of people being sold phony 'story lines' about the Democratic and Republican parties. I began researching al-Amoudi three days ago, after receiving an email which used him as evidence that the Democrats were soft on terror.  The woman who sent that email is an American who witnessed first hand Western support for Muslim terrorists in Bosnia. She is honestly devoted to getting out the truth about Yugoslavia. But I think she clings to the hope that one side of the US Establishment is somewhat sincere about fighting terrorism, because the alternative view, that neither the Democrats or Republicans are sincere, means that ordinary people must rely on their own organizing, not friends in high places, in trying to change US policy.

The US Establishment is fully aware that ordinary people cling to hope about 'the system,' and therefore stories are designed to make  Establishment figures appealing to different groups. The story that 'gives hope' to people like my friend is: The democrats are soft on (or even influenced by) terrorists, but Republican leaders at least want to try to fight terror.  

And so my friend sends around Steven Emerson's article, which a) leaves out the role of the US in sponsoring terror - which my friend has witnessed! - and b) attacks only the Democrats, thus serving to whitewash the Republicans.

Steven Emerson, the terrorism expert, attacked Hillary Clinton for her dealings with al-Amoudi. Fair enough.  But why has he not uttered a squeak about George Bush's elevation of Al-Amoudi to exalted status at that 'day of prayer,' September 14th 2001?

Following the arrest of al-Amoudi as an international "terrorist facilitator," why hasn't the media demanded an investigation of the intimate dealings between Mr. al-Amoudi and the Clintons and Bush's?

Why not?

Jared Israel
Editor in Chief, Emperor's Clothes

***

[Footnotes and Further Reading Follow The Appeal]

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Footnotes and Further Reading

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[1] In the summer of 1999, NATO took over Kosovo. What NATO  then did illustrates how the US and European Establishments use fanatical terrorists as a political weapon.  I suggest you first read our interview with three women from the Kosovo town of Orahovac,  "Nightmare by Design: How NATO Changed a Kosovo Town into a Racist Hell," at
http://emperors-clothes.com/misc/savethe.htm
For more on the transformation of Kosovo into a terrorist base, see
"Stranger than Fiction: NATO and the US Sponsor Terror in Kosovo and Macedonia," at
http://emperors-clothes.com/articles/jared/nocrime.htm
and
"How NATO and the UN Sponsor Terrorists in Kosovo," at
http://emperors-clothes.com/analysis/nocrime.htm

* Regarding the Middle East and Central Asia, see "Zalmay Khalilzad - Special US Envoy for Islamic Terror," at
http://emperors-clothes.com/archive/khalilzad-facts.htm

* Regarding the US-instigated transformation of the PLO from defeated terrorists to exalted statesmen, see for example "In 1989 U.S. Secretary of Defense Cheney Pushed to Create a Palestinian State," at
http://www.emperors-clothes.com/analysis/fuller.htm

[2]  Campaign 2000; Hillary and Hamas; The first lady has a long record of association with Islamic militants. By Steven Emerson
http://opinionjournal.com/editorial/feature.html?id=65000531

[3] Regarding the Muslim Brotherhood's role as parent of Middle East Muslim extremism, see
http://www.fas.org/irp/world/para/mb.htm
Regarding the Brotherhood's involvement in Sudan, see
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/3190770.stm 

[4] Muslim Brotherhood Movement Homepage at
http://www.ummah.org.uk/ikhwan/

[5] The Washington Times, July 31, 2004 Saturday, Nation, 720 words, U.S. Muslim admits guilt in plot, By Jerry Seper

[6] Contra Costa Times (California), October 16, 2004 Saturday, F; Brief; Pg. 4, 516 words, Activist sentenced for plot to kill leader, Washington

[7] Fox News; Monday, October 01, 2001
Some Muslim Leaders Seen With Bush
Expressed Support for Terrorist Group
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,35384,00.html

[8] The Washington Times, December 4, 1993, Saturday, Final Edition, Part A; NATION; Pg. A4, 531 words, Army swears in Muslim captain as military's 1st Islamic chaplain, Larry Witham;

[9]  Fox News Network, Fox Special Report with Bret Hume(18:00), September 28,2001 Friday, Transcript # 092801cb.254, News; Domestic, 2453 words, Political Headlines, Tony Snow, Jim Angle, Carl Cameron, Bret Baier, Rita Cosby
Note: The  Fox News transcript is divided by a google ad; it looks like the transcript ends, but it continues after he ad.
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,35384,00.html

[10] The Vancouver Province (British Columbia), March 2, 2003 Sunday Final Edition, News; Pg. A20, 393 words, Bad boy Gadhafi in TV feud with Saudi prince: 'You are a liar and your grave awaits you,' spits royal, Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt

[11] Agence France Presse -- English, March 3, 2003 Monday, International News, 367 words, Libya recalls ambassador to Saudi Arabia amid row with Riyadh, Tripoli, March 3

[12] Associated Press, October 16, 2004, Saturday, BC cycle, State and Regional, 598 words, Muslim activist sentenced to jail for illegal business dealings with Libya, By Jennifer C. Kerr, Associated Press Writer, Alexandria, Va.

[13] The New York Times, September 24, 2004 Friday Correction Appended, Late Edition - Final, Section A; Column 4; Foreign Desk; Pg. 3, 480 words, Powell Holds Brief Meeting With Minister From Libya, By Steven R. Weisman

[14] October 1, 2004, Transcript: 1st Presidential Debate of 2004
Center for Defense Information
http://tinyurl.com/695ly

[15] The TV documentary series, Frontline, did an informative program on US-Saudi military relations.  We've posted the transcript.  "The Arming of Saudi Arabia," Transcript of Frontline Show #1112 Air Date: February 16, 1993

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