They were told how to “navigate the fine line between legal activism and material support for terrorism.” This was necessary because, you see, the U.S. has “criminalize[d] the support of the Palestinian people,” i.e., AMP can’t support Hamas outright, so here are some workarounds. “Pro-Palestinian Group Lectured On Skirting Terror Laws,” by Shane Harris, Daily Beast, December 5, 2014:
The U.S. has “criminalize[d] the support of the Palestinian people,” argues a top activist, making it tricky to avoid helping ”so-called terrorist organizations.”
A prominent Palestinian-American rights group that ordinarily advocates nonviolent protests held a conference in Chicago last month that included a lecture on how to “navigate the fine line between legal activism and material support for terrorism.”
At the event, sponsored by American Muslims for Palestine, a Milwaukee attorney and board member of the group accused U.S. policymakers of working to “criminalize the support of the Palestinian people.” The American government was doing this at “the behest of the Israeli government, its lobby,” added American Muslims for Palestine Vice President Munjed Ahmad, by forbidding charitable assistance to groups that are designated as foreign terrorist organizations and their supporters.
“We have to ensure that whatever we do, we’re not providing assistance to these so-called terrorist organizations,” Ahmad continued, seeming to question the legal justification for labeling them as such. A transcript and an audio recording of his remarks were obtained by The Daily Beast.
Ahmad added, “What’s very sad to me when we talk about terrorist organizations is that the state of Israel is not considered a terrorist organization. Uh, with our government, but it truly is the largest terrorist of all. Truly,” Ahmad said as his audience applauded.
The conference was attended by a number of prominent activists, academics, and others who represent the mainstream of the pro-Palestinian movement in the United States. Ahmad encouraged attendees to “continue to assist and advocate for Palestinians morally and even financially,” while being careful to steer clear of terrorism financing laws.
On the one hand, that sounds like good legal advice. But it was unclear why the conference sponsor—which is outwardly committed to legal forms of protest, including boycotts, and sanctions, and rallies on college campuses—felt the need to provide advice on how to provide financial assistance without running afoul of well-established anti-terrorism laws.
Among the conference sponsors was the Mosque Foundation. Two of its leaders were unindicted co-conspirators in a U.S. criminal trial against the Holy Land Foundation, which the Treasury Department accused of supporting Hamas….