Radical Islamist groups are planting activists posing as ordinary Muslim Americans to ask candidates questions at the presidential debates.
Most recently, the controversial Council on American-Islamic Relations, several of whose leaders have been prosecuted on terror-related charges, sent the executive director of its Chicago chapter to take part in the Democratic presidential debate in Des Moines, Iowa, which was supposed to be an opportunity for “ordinary people” to ply candidates with questions.
At Saturday’s debate, aired on C-Span, CAIR-Chicago Executive Director Ahmed
Rehab stood up and asked Sen. John Edwards if he would help Muslims fight “prejudice” and other “abuses” such as hate crimes.
“It seems we’re facing a culture of fear-mongering,” Rehab complained.
“Senator, in the ’60s, Malcolm and Martin gave up their lives fighting for justice for all,” he added. “The civil rights movement is not over. It’s not done yet. We’re still fighting.
“Senator,” he continued, “we would like to know if you will fight with us if elected president.”
A number of Muslim activists around Rehab erupted into applause and cheers.
“You’ve got some fans,” Edwards remarked, before vowing to end “profiling” of and “spying” on Muslim terrorist suspects. He also promised to “close Guantanamo” and stop the “torture” of terrorist detainees.
Despite Rehab’s assertion that Muslims are victims of hate crimes and other abuses on a “regular basis,” the FBI last month released 2006 data showing anti-Islamic crimes have fallen 68 percent since 2001, and represent just 11 percent of all religiously motivated attacks. According to a report in Investor’s Business Daily, the overwhelming majority of such crimes — 66 percent — target Jews.
Also, at last month’s Republican debate in St. Petersburg, Fla., a former CAIR intern was selected by host CNN to challenge GOP presidential hopefuls about the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and complain about the anger they’ve created in the Muslim world.
Wearing a hijab, Yasmin Elhady complained they’ve created anger in the Muslim
world. “My question has to do with the current crisis in Iraq, as well as the U.S. efforts in Afghanistan,” she said.
“After living abroad personally in the Middle East for a year, I realized just how much damage the Iraq war and the perception of invasion has done to the image of America,” Elhady added. “What would you do as president to repair the image of America in the eyes of the Muslim world?”
CNN, which claimed to pick questioners at random from a pool of “undecided
voters,” did not cite Elhady’s activist background with CAIR. The network simply identified her as “Yasmin from Huntsville, Ala.” (She actually lives in Los Angeles, where she attends college at UCLA.)
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