I converted to Islam at the age of 18, on February 25, 2001 at the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City (ISGOC). (I left Islam in 2003 and went back to ISGOC as an informant for law enforcement from 2006 to 2011.) Before that, I had visited the mosque on numerous occasions to ask questions and to observe prayers. Around this time, I met a young African-American Muslim man named Ali, as well as his older brother Abdul-Tawab. The two were very devout in their faith as Muslims, and I saw them regularly at the mosque.
One day, as I was preparing to leave the mosque, I was standing in the tiled space outside of the carpeted area where you left your shoes before you went into the prayer area. I was talking to Saad Mohammed, the Director of Dawah (Islamic evangelism/outreach) at the ISGOC. While we were speaking, Ali passed us and went out the door with a big smile on his face. Saad Mohammed waited until the door shut and said to me, “There goes a young man excited about Islam.” Those words came back to me and sent chills up my spine last night.
I don’t know how I missed it (most likely because of work and school), but I found out just last night that Ali Muhammad Brown, the young man so excited about Islam, is now in custody facing terrorism charges. I was watching Fox News and saw that Greta Van Susteren was hosting a show on so-called Lone Wolf terrorists. I caught the program in progress, and the first picture I saw put up onto the screen was Ali Muhammad Brown’s.
I am not surprised by Ali’s actions, since I know what Islam truly teaches, as opposed to the smokescreen that many Muslim leaders feed the media. Ali was over at my house once and we were out on the porch joking around. I jokingly called him a punk, and he became very angry, because he stated that, “A punk is a faggot, and I am no faggot.” I apologized, and we did not speak much after that. Not too long after that incident, Ali and his brother left Oklahoma. I only spoke with Abdul-Tawab once by phone, while hanging out with some other converts (they called Abdul-Tawab to tell him that I was engaged to be married to a Pakistani woman in England. The marriage didn’t happen.)
To anyone in the media or law enforcement out there who wonders what his motive was, skeptical of his claims that it was because of his devout Muslim faith, I say to you I can testify that this is so. This man was devout and Islam was his life. I am in no way surprised he was willing to kill for it and provide material support for other jihadists. I offer my condolences to the victims of his jihad. I pray that the government and law enforcement agencies will wake up and quit believing this nonsense that jihadists practice some hijacked form of Islam. A simple reading of the Islamic texts will show them otherwise. However, as Robert Spencer has so awesomely stated, these people assume, wish, or hope that Islam is just like Judaism and Christianity and that the religion teaches peaceful coexistence with no jihad imperative. Ali Muhammad Brown and so many others are absolute proof, to those willing to see it, that this is completely false.
Note: Saad Mohammed, the Director of Dawah at ISGOC, was shown right before my interview on Megyn Kelly, denying access to the mosque leaders to Fox News. We once discussed what Imam Suhaib Webb told me about the three choices (conversion, subjugation, or death) to be offered to non-Muslims. Saad Mohammed agreed and stated that Muslims in the U.S. were on the first part, calling to Islam, at this point in time. This is Islam, not a radical form of Islam, but pure Quranic Islam as practiced by the Islamic prophet Muhammad himself.