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Congress must defend 9/11’s sacred ground and expose the Islamist imams

Office of the Honorable John Boehner
United States Congressman, 8th Congressional District (Ohio)

Office of the Honorable Mitch McConnell
United States Senator, Kentucky

June 21, 2010
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Dear Congressman Boehner and Senator McConnell,

Thank you in advance for your time. I would like to ask if you will review and share with your congressional colleagues the following information which includes, but is not limited to, a collection of quotes and documented activities pertaining to a number of Islamic preachers (Imams) in America.

It is important to know that for them, being truthful to Americans would place their agenda in jeopardy; and when confronted, their strategy is to maintain that their words have been “taken out of context,” to dismiss critics as fringe groups who irrationally fear Islam, and to throw out accusations of “anti-Muslim bigotry” and “intolerance”.

They falsely play victim and have no legitimate defense; for it is their prejudices, religious intolerance, and ideological dogma that can threaten safety and civil society.

When the audience is the American public, these particular ideologists will speak of peace, dialogue and inclusiveness. When they are in front of their co-religionists, the conversation changes.

Undermining al Qaeda in Yemen; Should the US outsource its security to a war criminal?

The global reach of al Qaeda in Yemen became clear when a Nigerian disciple of the murder cult nearly blew up an airliner over Detroit. In response, the Obama administration is strengthening its support for Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh, one of the regions longest serving dictators and one of the most corrupt.

President Obama said he hopes to communicate to “Muslims around the world that al Qaeda offers nothing except a bankrupt vision of misery and death, including the murder of fellow Muslims, while the United States stands with those who seek justice and progress.” The hypocrisy is stunning.

The US administration is well aware that Saleh’s government is committing atrocities against civilians that rise to the level of war crimes. In a Darfur-like conflict in Sa’ada, northern Yemen, collective punishment of Shiite civilians includes indiscriminate bombing and intentional starvation. A former recruiter for Usama bin Laden leads the military with the help of tribal militias, former Iraqi army officers and foreign jihaddists. Over 200,000 are homeless from the war and largely deprived of aid. When Oxfam warned of a “humanitarian catastrophe of terrifying proportions,” the Yemeni Health Minister threatened to expel the organization.

Journalists who report on the carnage are tried as terrorists, like Abdulkarim al Khaiwani, or disappear like Mohammed al Maqaleh, who reported an air strike that killed 87 war refugees in September and hasn’t been seen since.

In south Yemen, police shot and killed dozens of anti-government protesters since 2007. Thousands were arrested. (Torture in Yemeni jails is brutal.) At a recent demonstration, southerners raised the US flag like a distress signal for rescue from tyranny. Funeral marches snake for miles along dusty roads.

If bombed starving children, disappeared journalists and bloody protesters aren’t enough for those who ascribe to the strongman theory of Middle Eastern politics, there’s also Yemen’s consistent duplicity on the terror issue.

President Saleh is a long time al Qaeda appeaser who relies on militants as an essential base of support and deploys terrorists as mercenaries. It’s no surprise Yemen’s al Qaeda morphed into a transnational threat or that its leadership survived a recent spate of Yemeni air strikes. The surprise is that the US is staking its security on President Saleh, the King of Spin. Saleh promised to reform after the 2000 USS Cole bombing, the 2002 Limburgh bombing and after qualifying for the Millennium Challenge Account in 2005. He said things were going to be different after the 2006 donor’s conference and the 2008 US Embassy attack that killed 13. In Yemen, al Qaeda is dubbed “the other face of the regime” in reference to the multi-tiered enmeshment between the two. Officials covertly provide training, transport and passports to jihaddists. When Yemen needs fighters, it releases terrorists from jail and puts them on the payroll.

If Obama’s goal is to push back on the terror threat from Yemen for a few years, then Saleh’s messy air strikes, botched raids and half hearted hunting may achieve some limited disruption. But at the root of Yemen’s growing terror threat is elite, not popular, support for al Qaeda. In 1994’s civil war between north and south Yemen, Saleh used veterans of bin Laden’s Afghan jihad to defeat the “Godless communists” in the south. Some of these bin Laden loyalists are now military commanders, governors and ambassadors.

Conventional wisdom holds that al Qaeda fanatics could raise a small army in such a poverty stricken, rowdy and largely illiterate country. Saudi money funds the spread of hard core Salafism while most rural areas have no clean water, electricity or medical services. Jobs go to government loyalists. But instead of lining up as suicide bombers, Yemenis all over the country are protesting for civil rights.

Yemen is not, as Maureen Dowd said, a place “that breeds people who want to kill us.” Yemenis are a kind hearted and courageous people. Last week, Women Journalists Without Chains led the 31th weekly demonstration to support banned newspapers. When ten Sana’a University professors, Academics against Corruption, were fired for exposing massive theft, protesters took to the streets in solidarity. In Aden, security forces strafed a peaceful sit-in at al Ayyam Newspaper, an award winning independent banned in May. Police set the offices on fire and arrested its editors, claiming they were hunting al Qaeda.

The Yemeni people have their own narrative that delegitimizes al Qaeda’s bloody imperialism. In Yemen, democracy is not a dirty American word but a constitutional right denied by a thuggish regime.

Despite the smiling assurances of Yemen’s legion of Baghdad Bobs, Yemen’s government is a brutal mafia. The idea that has broad resonance in Yemen is not the coming of the global caliphate, but the coming of the democratic state.

What Yemen needs, if not a war crimes tribunal, is a major crimes tribunal to purge corrupt officials and foster governmental legitimacy. Yemen’s public funds and lands, foreign aid and oil revenue were stolen by President Saleh and his relatives for decades, while millions of children wither from malnutrition and never attend school. Stability will be achieved when the Yemeni oligarchy accounts for its crimes against the nation. Maybe with amnesty, they’ll leave quietly and a caretaker government of Yemeni technocrats can take the reins with little bloodshed.

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Jane Novak is a long-time analyst and expert on Yemeni internal affairs. The author of over 60 articles on Yemen, Jane was dubbed by the Swiss daily NZZ “the best known foreigner in Yemen.” In 2007, her Armies of Liberation web site was banned by the Yemeni government. Jane can be reached via email here.

I am a proud American and I oppose the closing of Guantanamo Bay

Today I had the honor and privilege of joining other family members and victims of terrorism in meeting with members of the Guantanamo Review Task Force and the Detention Policy Task Force at the Department of Justice. I learned a lot about what our new President is doing and what he has the members of the task forces working on. After doing my own research and listening to the others present today I do not believe that there is a valid reason to close Guantanamo Bay. We are at WAR with TERRORISTS. OUR CONGRESS enacted the Military Commissions Act of 2006 to deal with the issues at hand, including the prosecution or release of detainees who were captured during the current war.

Do you really want these terrorists to face trial within the US along with the rights afforded to US citizens with the strong possibility that they will get off on a technicality? Do you want these dangerous terrorists to be held within the U.S.? The President ordered Guantanamo Bay closed within a year and he has made statements to the effect that this base is a black eye on our country. I heard from many family members today who have visited the base and can attest to the conditions. These prisoners are treated better than ordinary U.S. citizens who have committed crimes! They have access to laptops, get to meet frequently, and can pray whenever they want-they are NOT being tortured! (see Inside Gitmo) And why should our military be made to feel for even a second that they have not served our country bravely and that we are anything but grateful for all of their sacrifices? I am nothing but proud of our military and their selfless efforts all around the world.

Why should the United States or its citizens feel that they have to apologize to the world for being attacked or go on a PR campaign to improve its image? We do not! I feel that our President puts us at shame when he recently said in a trip overseas that he will restore America to its greatness. WE ARE A GREAT NATION, WE ALWAYS HAVE BEEN A GREAT NATION, AND I AM PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN. I don’t need to apologize and the President should not be apologizing to the world for me or for the U.S. for actions that are necessary to bring justice to the over 3000 victims and their families and to prevent further terrorist attacks on our nation.

Did you know that there is talk of reading terrorists their rights and excluding statements made by detainees who are not read their rights? Are we forgetting that we are at war? Are we forgetting all of the people [who] have died over the last 10 years for our country? Are we doing all we can to prevent the next terrorist attack?

Please know that if we do not begin to speak up now that we will lose our chance. Forward this email, write your own, call or write your politicians and demand that justice be served (and swiftly). The current actions of our President will make our country a mockery of the world when we can’t even effectively deal with known terrorists, some of which have already tried to plead guilty but were denied the chance to do so when President Obama stopped the Military Commissions.

We are wasting time and energy that could very well be spent on preventing future attacks or aiding all of the survivors of the attacks that have already occurred. Let the intelligence community do their job that they were assigned to do and stop getting in their way. Don’t bring known terrorists to U.S. soil when there is an effective way to deal with them already set up. Stop listening to the liberal media who are trying to fill our heads and headlines with exaggerations, lies, and one-sided arguments. As a family member said today, “Closing Guantanamo is the easy and lazy thing to do.” Stop this travesty of justice!

In honor of all of those who serve our country and all of the victims of terrorism and their families,

God bless America!

Melissa Long
June 17, 2009
Voices of September 11

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Editor:

Melissa Long’s fiancé was murdered during the 9/11 attacks upon our nation.

For those family members of the victims of terrorism unable to attend the Department of Justice’s meetings, but still interested in expressing views, the DOJ “welcome[s] written submissions.” Please send your written comments via email (nsd.ovt@usdoj.gov) or fax (202-514-4275) to the Office of Justice for Victims of Overseas Terrorism (OVT) no later than June 19, 2009. * Click here for a few questions to consider when writing them.

* The deadline for submitting comments has been extended to June 26, 2009.

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Update, 3:45 PM EDT: We thank Michelle Malkin for linking over and Military Families United for cross-posting Melissa’s letter.