Interestingly enough, in the post 9/11 era, the FBI prided itself on fostering relationships with Islamic groups like the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR). Now that’s changing. Will this set back FBI relations with the Islamic American communities across the country?
By Mary Jacoby
WASHINGTON — The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has cut off contacts with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) amid mounting concern about the Muslim advocacy group’s roots in a Hamas-support network, the Investigative Project on Terrorism has learned.
The decision to end contacts with CAIR was made quietly last summer as federal prosecutors prepared for a second trial of the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF), an Islamic charity accused of providing money and political support to the terrorist group Hamas, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
CAIR and its chairman emeritus, Omar Ahmad, were named un-indicted co-conspirators in the HLF case. Both Ahmad and CAIR’s current national executive director, Nihad Awad, were revealed on government wiretaps as having been active participants in early Hamas-related organizational meetings in the United States. During testimony, FBI agent Lara Burns described CAIR as a front organization.
Hamas is a US-designated foreign terrorist organization, and it’s been illegal since 1995 to provide support to it within the United States.
UPDATE: FBI spokesman John Miller issued a statement early Thursday afternoon in response to the story: ” The FBI has had to limit its formal contact with CAIR field offices until certain issues are addressed by CAIR’s national headquarters. CAIR’s leadership is aware of this. Beyond that we have no further comment.”