Leftist/Jihadist Alliance Update: the lefties at Think Progress posted this video. They think they have caught Congressman Peter King (R-NY) in a "Gotcha" moment on this one, but not unexpectedly, they play fast and loose with the facts. In their post they quote King thusly:
“[Y]ou could say that 80-85 percent of mosques in this country are controlled by Islamic fundamentalists,” he said in 2004.
The impression one might get from this is that King originated this figure -- pulled it out of his hat, made it up. In reality, he is on very firm ground here, but Think Progress doesn't tell you that. The Naqshbandi Sufi Sheikh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani said this in a State Department Open Forum on January 7, 1999: “The most dangerous thing that is going on now in these mosques, that has been sent upon these mosques around the United States – like churches they were established by different organizations and that is ok – but the problem with our communities is the extremist ideology. Because they are very active they took over the mosques; and we can say that they took over more than 80% of the mosques that have been established in the US. And there are more than 3000 mosques in the US. So it means that the methodology or ideology of extremist has been spread to 80% of the Muslim population, but not all of them agree with it.”
Kabbani based his statement on personal investigation of 114 American mosques, and never retracted his words, despite enormous pressure from American Muslim advocacy groups. In October 2001 the New York Times reported: “Sheik Kabbani said that he stood by his claim in his State Department speech that 80 percent of American mosques had been taken over by extremists, because of the 114 mosques he first visited in the United States, ‘Ninety of them were mostly exposed, and I say exposed, to extreme or radical ideology,’ based on their speeches, books and board members.”
This estimate has been borne out by more recent studies.
(Video thanks to Looney Tunes.)