My organization, Americans for Peace and Tolerance (APT), just released a video showing 6th graders from Wellesley, MA as they rise from prostrating themselves alongside Muslim men in a prayer to Allah while on a public school field trip to the largest mosque in the Northeast. Teachers did not intervene. Parents have not been told.
The video was taken inside the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center – Boston's controversial Saudi-funded mega-mosque – during a Wellesley Middle School social studies trip to the mosque, ostensibly taken to learn about the history of Islam first-hand. Yet the video reveals that the students are being blatantly mis-educated about Islam. A mosque spokesperson is seen teaching the children that in Mohammed's 7th century Arabia women were allowed to vote, while in America women only gained that right a hundred years ago. This seems to be an increasingly recurring theme in American schools – the denigration of western civilization and the glorification of Islamic history and values. In fact, just recently, the American Textbook Council revealed that the New York State high school regents exam whitewashes the atrocities that occurred during the imperialistic Islamic conquest of Christian Byzantium, Persia, the African continent, and the Indian subcontinent, even as it demonizes European colonialism in South America.
The mosque spokesperson also taught the students that the only meaning of Jihad in Islam is a personal spiritual struggle, and that Jihad has historically had no relationship with holy war. As far as we know, the school has not corrected these false lessons.
Our organization, APT, is a non-profit group run by Jews, Christians and authentically moderate Muslims opposed to the radicalization of America's historically moderate Muslim community. For the past three years we've been sounding the alarm about the radical leadership and Saudi funding of the Boston mega-mosque and the organization that runs it, the Muslim American Society, which has been labeled by Federal prosecutors as "the overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in America."
The Islamic Society of Boston was founded by Abdulrahman Alamoudi, who is currently serving 23 years in jail on terror charges. For years, its board of trustees included Yusuf al Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood who was banned by Bill Clinton from the United States in 1999. Qaradawi now chairs the Muslim American Society's university, which offers classes inside the mosque. Over half the mosque's $15.5 million price tag was funded by wealthy Saudis and since it opened, several of its leaders, donors and members have been implicated in Islamic extremism.
Oussama Ziade, a big donor to the mosque, is now a fugitive in Lebanon after being indicted in 2009 for dealing in the assets of an Al Qaeda financier. Ahmad Abousamra, the son of the Boston Muslim American Society's former vice-president Abdulbadi Abousamra, is now a fugitive in Syria, fleeing the country before being indicted in 2009 on charges of aiding Al Qaeda. One of the mosque's imams, Abdullah Faaruuq, was captured on tape in 2010 telling followers to "pick up the gun and the sword" and to defend another local terrorist Aafia Siddiqui from the U.S. government. Siddiqui, who was one of the imam's congregants, is an MIT graduate and Al Qaeda member awaiting sentencing for attempting to murder FBI agents in Afghanistan while shouting "death to America." (LINK)
The mosque leadership continues to be embraced by top Massachusetts political and religious leaders. These include Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, as well as a group of local progressive rabbis and Christian clergy, who all insist despite evidence to the contrary that the mosque is moderate and its critics are just bigots.
Indeed, this is a familiar refrain by leaders nationwide in response to the increasing public realization that Islamic leaders are not as moderate as they present themselves. Radicalism is growing and many moderate Muslims have been silenced. In various parts of the country, public schools are allowing Muslim extremists to promote Islam to our children. Something's broken here. Our leadership is failing. It's now up to ordinary citizens to fix it.