Encouraged by the Pakistani regime, Islamist-led protests are taking place in Europe and America on the anniversary of the August 5, 2019 decision by the Indian government to revoke the "special status" of the Jammu and Kashmir region of India. In an apparent effort to replicate the Iranian regime sponsored annual Al Quds Day protests – which take place annually in Iran, Lebanon and various European capitals – in 2020, the Pakistani regime declared each August 5 to be Youm-i-Istehsal, or the 'day of exploitation'.
The main August 5 protest took place outside the Indian embassy in Washington D.C. Organized by the World Kashmir Awareness Forum, the protest was sponsored by a variety of prominent Islamist groups, including the U.S. Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO), the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA).
The World Kashmir Awareness Forum (WKAF) is a project of Ghulam Nabi Fai. In 2011, Fai was charged by American prosecutors with secretly serving as an agent of the Pakistani government. Fai admitted to extensive contact with Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), which has a long history of involvement with terror groups and other Islamist causes. Up to 2011, prosecutors showed, the ISI transferred an extraordinary $3.5 million to Fai and his previous organization, the Kashmiri American Council – all in a covert attempt to influence American policy on Kashmir.
Other WKAF leaders include Khalid Qazi, who previously helped raise money for the Global Relief Foundation, a charity the federal government designated as a terrorist organization in 2002 because of its links to Bin Laden and Al Qaeda.
Among the rally sponsors, USCMO is a Turkish regime-linked Islamist umbrella organization; CAIR is perhaps the best known and most active lawful extremist organization in the United States; and ICNA is the American branch of Jamaat-e-Islami, a violent South Asian Islamist movement.
In 2019, after Islamist Watch uncovered links between one ICNA subsidiary and Pakistani terrorist organizations Lashkar-e-Taiba and Hizbul Mujahideen, several congressmembers called on the federal government to investigate the network.
Abdul Malik Mujahid, a vocal supporter of the Hamas operative Muhammad Salah;
British MP Afzal Khan, once a prominent Jamaat-e-Islami operative;
Ather Zia, an American academic and open advocate for Kashmiri jihadist Asiya Andrabi;
Sahar Shabbir, daughter of prominent separatist leader Shabbir Shah, who is accused by Indian prosecutors of involvement with terror finance and collaboration with Paksitani terrorist organization Jamaat-ud-Dawa.
Meanwhile, in a further sign that Western Islamists are shifting their attentions away from Israel and onto India, the halfhearted fury, expressed by American Islamist organizations in May during the Israeli conflict with Hamas, appears now to have mostly subsided.
But while in Islamist eyes, Kashmir, it seems, is the new Gaza, and India is the new Israel, Islamist organizations still apparently struggle to draw in significant crowds to their new cause. A photo posted by ICNA revealed a tiny crowd. Once again, it seems, Islamist fury is far removed from ordinary American Muslim sentiment.