Based on some of the comments in the post Grave Concerns Over Faisal Gill, it seems that it’s necessary to walk readers through what has become known as “The Faisal Gill Affair” and what we’ve learned from it.
In March of 2004, Faisal Gill was questioned regarding his failure to disclose his work as the spokesman for the American Muslim Council and Director of Governmental Affairs for the Islamic Institute on SF 86, the form used to request a security clearance. The American Muslim Council was founded by convicted terrorist Abdurahman Alamoudi, an open supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah. The Islamic Institute, founded by Grover Norquist and financed by Alamoudi, was shut down for it’s links to radical islamist organizations. The way the security questionairre issue sorted out was that Gill was determined to be in some sort of technical compliance because at the time he wasn’t actually an employee of the American Muslim Council or the Islamic Institute, but a contractor working for “AG Consulting Group” which was headed by a Mr. Asim Ghafoor.
Many have focused on the relationship between the American Muslim Council and Faisal Gill, and that in itself is deeply disturbing. Regardless of the wisdom of granting a security clearance to someone associated with the AMC and the Islamic Institute one has to question why anyone would want to associate with these organization in any way. Prior to September 11th, the AMC’s website maintained a link urging Muslims not to speak with agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigations. The Islamic Institute was headed by Khaled Saffuri, who actively supported families of suicide bombers in Israel. The Islamic Institute provided breifings to Grover Norquist’s weekly gatherings on the topics of how the Islamic government of Sudan (a designated state sponsor of terrorism) is misunderstood and the selection process for Muslim chaplains in the U.S. Armed Forces over which they exerted significant influence. The agenda of the AMC and the Islamic Institute wasn’t exactly hidden, and a voluntary association with the organization, while not necessarily a disabling factor for granting a security clearance, ceratainly lends credence to the notion that Faisal Gill is supportive of this sort of agenda.
The more significant questions in this affair regard Faisal Gill’s relationship with Mr. Asim Ghafoor. Mr. Ghafoor is a noted advocate of imposing sharia law in the United States, as was noted in my previous post. According to a letter from U.S. Senators Charles Grassley and John Kyl,
“According to public records, Mr. Ghafoor has worked (primarily as a spokesman or attorney) for, with or otherwise in association with individuals and groups whom the United States government has stated are involved in, or suspected of supporting terrorism:
- Global Relief Foundation (GRF), whose assets were frozen by the Treasury Department in December of 2001;
- Committee to Free Rabih Haddad, an organization supporting Mr. Haddad, who was deported [in 2003] and whom the Treasury Department called a senior official with and co-founder of GRF, as well as a member of the Makhtab al-Khidamat (MAK), a precursor to Al Qaeda that was designarted as a foreign terrorist organization;
- Care International in Boston, allegedly affiliated with the Al Kifah Refugee Center, whose Brooklyn branch was named by prosecutors as the origin of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing; and
- World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY), an organization incorporated in Falls Church, Virginia by a nephew of Osama Bin Laden, whose offices were raided by federal agents in June of 2004, and whose offices in Pakistan Pakistan were raised in November of 2001.”
Mr. Asim Ghafoor is now Faisal Gill’s law partner. Mr. Norquist, who apparently intervened in the Bush White House on Faisal Gill’s behalf, and with whom he remains closely associated, has a deeply disturbing history of supporting radical islamic causes. Faisal Gill was one of perhaps a dozen people in the leadership of both the Islamic Institute and the American Muslim Council, and had frequent contact with folks like Khaled Saffuri and Abdurahman Alamoudi. And when Alamoudi went on a trip to, let’s say Beirut, in order to participate in a conference with Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah and Al-Quaeda, during the period that Faisal Gill was acting in the capacity of spokesman for the Islamic Institute that Alamoudi was leading, perhaps Faisal Gill knew nothing of it. But that really is asking for an astonishing degree of incompetence and inattention from Faisal Gill — one fault I generally wouldn’t ascribe to him.
In the end Faisal Gill retained his position and his security clearance, apparently with the help of a lot of pressure from Grover Norquist and a convenient technical distinction between being an employee of the Islamic Institute and being a contractor. I’m certain that Faisal Gill will trot out documentation that shows that the Department of Homeland Security found no evidence to revoke Faisal Gill’s security clearance or remove him from his position as Policy Director in the Department of Homeland Security. That documentation will perhaps be valuable in determining Mr. Gill’s fitness for a security clearance, subject to the degree of political influence that was weilded in order to force that conclusion. What it won’t do is provide any useful information for voters seeking answers about why Faisal Gill was associated with such unsavory characters in the first place. Nor will it answer questions about why he continues to associate with some of these same unsavory characters to this very day.
Just on this alone, does anyone think that with such a history that Faisal Gill is remotely electable?
Michelle Malkin: “Who Is Fasal Gill“, “Who Is Fasal Gill 2“, “Who Is Fasal Gill 3”
Salon.com “How Secure Is The Department of Homeland Security?”
Frank Gaffney, “A Troubling Influence”
Free Republic: “Grover Norquist’s Strange Alliance With Radical Islam”
American Spectator: “Eyes Wide Shut”
United States Senate Finance Committee, letter to the DHS Inspector General
UPDATE: GoodbyeJim has an interesting follow-up where they make this observation: “Thus the Libyans were indirectly paying Faisal Gill’s salary, or at least part of it.” Ouch.
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