This has been going on for years. In my book Onward Muslim Soldiers, written in early 2003, I discussed a camp that had recently been discovered in rural Alabama, with shot-up school buses, the works. “Terrorists Training in Rural America?,” by Erick Stakelbeck for CBN News (thanks to LGN):
CBNNews.com – RED HOUSE, Va. – Islamic extremists in the United States have traditionally set up shop in big cities with large Muslim populations: places like New York City, Dearborn, Michigan and even Washington, DC. But one secretive group is doing just the opposite.
They call themselves Muslims of America. They’ve established compounds throughout the rural U.S. Members say they moved to the countryside to lead peaceful lives free of “Western decadence.” But others say that doesn’t tell the whole story.
“Certainly, when you’re in a rural area it enables you to better escape from the prying eyes of law enforcement,” said CBN News consultant David Gartenstein-Ross.
He says Muslims of America has close ties to a violent Pakistani group named Jamaat Al-Fuqra. Both groups are led by the same extremist cleric: Sheikh Mubarak Gilani.
“Sheikh Gilani is an extremist figure known to be very much involved in the jihads against India, also known to be very much anti-Semitic,” Gartenstein-Ross said.
Gilani’s images and messages are all over the Muslims of America Web site.
He founded the group during a visit to Brooklyn in 1980. Shoe bomber Richard Reid and Beltway sniper John Allen Muhammed are said to have been among his followers.
Gilani encouraged his U.S. pupils-mostly African Americans-to move to rural areas and establish Muslim communes. The group now has dozens of these communes nationwide.
“Al Fuqra has compounds from coast-to-coast.and what this indicates is they’re going to areas where land is plentiful–where you can get land for relatively cheap prices,” Gartenstein-Ross said.
CBN News visited the group’s 45-acre site in Red House, Virginia – a town so small you can barely find it on a map. There are no traffic lights, and the only signs of industry are a pair of convenience stores. So when a street sign popped up named after a radical Pakistani sheikh-along with men and women dressed in traditional Islamic garb- the locals took notice.
Sheikh Gilani has been on U.S. intelligence agencies’ radar for years. He’s currently under investigation for possible ties to al-Qaeda. He also trained jihadists to fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan during the 1980s.
Read it all.