Al Manar – the official broadcasting arm of the terrorist group Hezbollah – is again attempting to discredit (and thus silence) respected American national security experts. And as a means of doing so, they are touting a now-public letter by the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) which refers to respected foreign policy analyst Dr. Walid Phares as "an associate to war crimes" and a "conspiracy theorist."
The issue stems from the fact that the Mitt Romney presidential campaign has named Phares to its team of national security advisors.
CAIR, which authored the letter and sent it to Romney, doesn't approve of the appointment. Neither does Hezbollah.
In a posting on Hezbollah's official TV broadcast arm al Manar, the terrorist organization (implicated by a UN Tribunal in the 2005 assassination of Rafiq Hariri of Lebanon) attacked Professor Walid Phares. They cited an article which was based on a CAIR letter leveling vicious attacks on the Jihadism expert and author of The Coming Revolution: Struggle for Freedom in the Middle East. The Hezbollah propaganda arm warned that, by appointing Phares as one of his advisors on Middle Eastern affairs, Republican hopeful Mitt Romney is echoing the appointment by the State Department of Heinz Mahoney as deputy ambassador for the US in Damascus.
Hezbollah charged that Mahoney "is an American spy, married to a Syrian, speaks Arabic fluently, and is an expert in recruiting agents and spies." On Phares's non-related appointment, the Iranian regime's proxy wrote: "imagine what the coming days will bear in terms of surprises, accusations and explosions." To validate its statement, Al Manar cited the above-noted (US-based) Daily Beast article by McKay Coppins that trashed Professor Walid Phares by referring to the CAIR letter sent to Romney asking for Phares's removal. McKay's article was based on CAIR's letter and Hezbollah used it to attack Phares.
Observers noted that this wasn't the first time CAIR and Hezbollah media campaigns converged to the point of merging. Last Spring, CAIR, accused by many to be a front for the terror group Hamas, also sent a letter to Rep. Pete King demanding the removal of Professor Phares from the list of expert witnesses in the hearings on Jihadi radicalization. That letter was also picked up and publicized by the Iranian-backed daily al Akhbar in Lebanon. Writing in as Siyassa of Kuwait, Hamid Ghuriafi said "the campaign of incitement waged by Nihad Awad, director of CAIR, against Professor Walid Phares, a Congressional advisor, is full of lies and misrepresentations. It was executed at the request of the Iranian regime after Phares appeared in an American movie ("Iranium") released two weeks ago. In that film, Phares called on the Obama Administration and the international community to expedite a regime change in Tehran by supporting the democratic Green revolution in Tehran, which could lead to the crumbling of the Khamenei-Ahmedinejad regime." (See: CAIR Director Accused of Sectarian Incitement Against Congressional Advisor). Many in the Arab world view CAIR as a force of extremism inside the United States as reported in al Qanat.
Although Hamas is Salafi Islamist and Hezbollah is Khomeinist, they seemingly do work together as allies of Iran's regime. Since CAIR appears to be a front for Hamas, it is becoming clear to many in Washington nowadays that CAIR is at the intersection of the Muslim Brotherhood and of Hamas's influence, thus in the same camp as Hezbollah. Some argue that the fact that the campaign against Professor Phares was also fueled by a Hezbollah propagandist - a California-based university teacher, As'ad Abukhalil, who also viciously attacked Phares (see: As'ad Abukhalil: America's Hezbollah Propagandist)– it is becoming obvious that US propaganda operations against US experts must be coordinated by Hezbollah and Hamas via their propagandists and fronts.
Abukhalil writes in Iran-funded al Akhbar of Beirut. He used to appear on Hezbollah's broadcast arm al Manar and he attacks the same target that CAIR attacks. So the circle is closed.
Randall Todd "Ismail" Hoyer, who initiated attacks against Dr. Phares, and was later jailed for terrorism offenses.
As we widened our research, we discovered that the campaign that's been leveled against Steve Emerson and Daniel Pipes since the 1990s was also coordinated by CAIR. More importantly, the current campaign against Phares was initiated in 1999 by a CAIR official, Randall Todd "Ismail" Royer, in a libel article against the scholar, published on IViews, an Islamist online media site. Worse, we learned that Royer was indicted as a leading member in the terror cell indicted in 2002, known as the Virginia Paintball Jihad cell. CAIR has never been investigated about Jihadist Royer who served as its officer on "civil rights."
For the time being, observers in the field of national security and defense are disturbed by the collusion between the Hezbollah propaganda campaign and CAIR's. "That both groups target the same experts, over and over again, in a synchronized manner, is ominous. It needs to be thoroughly analyzed" said an expert who works for the US Government in the field of intelligence.
From our view, there could be no greater testimony to the correctness of Dr. Phares's appointment to Governor Romney's national security team than the fact that these nefarious groups are vehemently opposed to this important assignment.