Three Republican U.S. House members have written to FBI Director Robert Mueller, applauding the Bureau's decision last summer to cut off contact with the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR).
The Investigative Project on Terrorism (IPT) reported Jan. 29 that concerns over CAIR's roots in a Hamas-support network prompted the cut off. Information linking CAIR and founders Omar Ahmad and Nihad Awad to that Hamas support effort were unveiled in the prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development (HLF).
Jurors convicted five HLF officials on 108 counts in the case in November.
On Monday, U.S. Reps. Sue Myrick (R-NC), Patrick McHenry (R-NC) and Paul Broun (R-GA) wrote Mueller "to express our strong support for this action." Myrick leads the bi-partisan Anti-Terrorism Caucus.
The letter cites a specific exhibit from the HLF trial, a Muslim Brotherhood memorandum about the group's goal in North America. It described that goal as "a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and "sabotaging" its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God's religion is made victorious over all other religions."
Other evidence showed how CAIR was born out of the Brotherhood's effort to help Hamas.
"We found the evidence produced by the Department of Justice to be the silver bullet to CAIR's claim that they represent the American Muslim community," the letter said. "We do not believe that the American Muslim community supports terrorists who want to destroy America, and therefore CAIR's claims are false and misleading.
Based on the facts the Department of Justice entered into public records, any link between the FBI and CAIR would be extremely troubling. That is we write to commend you for looking at the facts and deciding to sever ties with CAIR."
Myrick and Broun already sent House members a "Dear Colleague" letter on Jan. 30 with a copy of the IPT report. The letter advised House members to "think twice before meeting with representatives of CAIR," noting "there are indications that this group has connections to HAMAS." [Emphasis original]
Last week, U.S. Sens. Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Charles Schumer (D-NY) wrote to Mueller to endorse the move and inquire whether there are exceptions to the policy and whether it applies equally to FBI field offices as well as headquarters.
That echoed a similar letter from U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA), which sought assurances that the policy was going to survive a change in administration and inquired about issues CAIR would have to address with the FBI before its access is restored.
CAIR has dismissed the FBI move as "an unfortunate legacy of the Bush administration's misguided and counterproductive efforts to marginalize mainstream American Muslim organizations."