The Universal Heritage Foundation will today, they say, "give locals an opportunity to combine both the fun of the Magic Kingdom with Islamic fundamentalism and the Muslim Caliphate." Rabinowitz and Mayer note a "sudden venue change," as well as "the conflicting nature" of the explanations offered for this change, and ask: "What are these people trying to hide?"
They continue: "The UHF is an Islamic 'propagation' center founded by the Islamic Circle of North America and the Muslim American Society - two of the largest and most radical Muslim organizations in the United States. . . .
"The 'Islam for Humanity' conference flyer proclaims a message of brotherhood and understanding. . . . However, UHF director Zulfiqar Ali Shah and president Ashraf Shaikh who are hosting more than 25 participants, seem to have a decidedly different agenda. The roster of these participants reads like a Who’s Who of militant Islam and many of them represent institutions and organizations linked to international terrorism.
"Actually to be perfectly factual, the roster of only a few days ago read more like the sinister Who’s Who list than the current one, and there is a reason for that. The organizers of the 'Islam for Humanity' event know that they are being observed, and are making changes along the way to attempt to blunt in advance the growing criticism that the presence of such notorious people naturally brings about.
"'We want to awaken the conscience of America: because if you remain on the side of injustice, the wrath of God will come,' he told the crowd. 'Please all Americans, do remember that, that Allah is watching everyone. If you continue doing injustice, and tolerating injustice, the wrath of God will come.' - Muzammil Siddiqui, the former president of Islamic Society of North America, Imam of the Islamic Society of Orange County in California and hastily removed, previously scheduled speaker at the UHF Conference.
"There are others.
"'In a similar vein, CAIR board member Imam Siraj Wahaj calls for replacing the American government with a caliphate, and warns that America will crumble unless it "accepts the Islamic agenda." Wahaj, it should be noted, served as a character witness for Sheik Omar Abdel Rahman, the Muslim cleric convicted for his role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing.' Front Page Magazine March 5, 2003 – Wahaj was also a scheduled speaker at the Conference who now appears to be AWOL from the event.
"Possibly the most controversial 'special guest' speaker scheduled - Saudi Sheik Abul Rahman Al-Sudais – has been apparently pulled also. Al-Sudais is the head Islamic cleric of Saudi Arabia. He has called upon Muslims to 'kill Jews and American worshippers of the cross.' . . .
"Critics, including terrorism expert Steven Emerson, accuse the American based Islamic group [Islamic Circle of North America] as having ties to the Muslim Brotherhood. The Muslim Brotherhood is the ideological godfather of all radical Islamic movements - including Hamas and Bin Laden's Al-Qaeda.
"Documents show Hamas officials have participated in previous ICNA events. UHF director Zulfiqar Ali Shah is past president of the ICNA. Ali Shah was also the principal at the Sunrise School of Islamic Studies whose co-founder, Mohammed Javed Qureshi, was 'dirty bomber' suspect Jose Padilla's direct supervisor at a local Taco Bell. . . .
"Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) not one usually associated with spreading right-wing conspiracy theories, said that, 'The Wahabi presence in the United States is a foreboding one…My fear is that if we don’t wake up and take action now, those influenced by Wahabism ’s extremist ideology will harm us in of yet unimaginable ways.'
"Regarding the Universal Heritage Foundation's patron organization, the ICNA [Islamic Circle of North America] counter terrorism expert Steven Emerson stated that: 'The ICNA’s hatred of the Jews is so fierce that it taunted them with a repetition of what Hitler did to them.' In his book - American Jihad - Emerson writes that, 'The ICNA openly supports militant Islamic fundamentalist organizations, praises terror attacks, issues incendiary attacks on western values and policies, and supports the imposition of Sharia [Islamic code of law].' . . .
The article concludes by examining "the ongoing story of Pastor Lee Wasson’s Kissimmee Christian Academy. The Academy provides a faith-based curriculum from second grade through high school. Unfortunately, the Academy’s 6 acres of fenced grounds are adjoined by a 25 acre parcel that, by happenstance, serves as the location of the UHF compound. . . .
"Together, the 31 acre combined properties comprise what used to be David People’s South Eastern Academy - a travel & culinary school - which eventually filed for bankruptcy. It was in this bankruptcy proceeding that Super Stop Petroleum Company became the landlord to both UHF and the Kissimmee Christian Academy, the chief corporate officer of Super Stop?
"Denise Qureshi. There is a possible alias with the name however, Muhammed K. Qureshi is another possibility. Qureshi [or the Qureshis, as the case may be] own an impressive list of holdings, at least one, apparently with Shahida A Siddiqui. . . . Since the Pastor’s landlord became Qureshi’s petroleum company, he has been continuously harassed and the particular form of harassment has taken its toll on the students, the parents and the financial health of the school.
"Eviction proceedings, inexplicable power outages, cessation of running water followed by suspicious floods – all seemingly calculated to take place at or near the first of the month when tuitions are due, have resulted in the student population falling by nearly 50% since mid-summer, when the new land lord took over.
"Wasson has a lease through the end of the school year, yet the harassment continues. Because of circulating rumors of possible violence many parents are not allowing their children to even venture near the school, this Friday [the day the UHF event is slated to begin] simply because of their fear of possible extremist repercussions, so the school will again have to close, imperiling the educative process, not to mention the school's already shaky finances.
"Keeping in mind that the location of the conference was changed after this statement, this is how Pastor Lee Wasson synopsizes the story. 'The Islamic conference in Kissimmee Florida is being held on property purchased by a "petroleum" company in south Florida. It is a 31-acre former college campus. This petroleum company has been trying [unsuccessfully so far] to evict our Christian School and small church from one of the buildings there. We lease a 10,000 sq. ft. building right in the middle of where this conference is scheduled and where Universal Heritage is opening their college. They have actually pictured our building on their website and call it the "Islamic Training Center." We have sued them. Now, according to the Islamic group as told to me today by Dr. Zulfiqar Ali Shah, the Universal Heritage Foundation has no association with the petroleum company save an old friendship with the company president which led them to the property.'"
ADDENDUM: William A. Mayer of Pipeline News, a coauthor of this piece, has written in to note that the link we had was to a site that had reprinted this piece without permission and to give us the correct link. Apologies and thanks to Mr. Mayer; the link is now repaired.