by George Michael
2nd part of 2
CAIR, MPAC, and AMC
Emerson's detailed investigations into CAIR have generated consequences for this Islamist group in Congress. For example, in December 2006, following an appeal by "CAIR Watch" founder Joe Kaufman, Sen. Barbara Boxer (Democrat of California) rescinded an award to CAIR official Basim Elkarra, stating that she was uncomfortable with many of CAIR's positions. Not long after, Emerson disclosed Rep. Bill Pascrell's (Democrat of New Jersey) role in sponsoring a CAIR forum to be held in a Capitol facility. The Republican Party House Conference objected to this use by CAIR, whose members the Republican Party had labeled as "terror apologists." It was also Emerson who discerned that CAIR had effectively been founded by Hamas.
He has long sought to expose CAIR's leading officials who have previously expressed extremist views and been linked to militant activities. One of these is Ghassan Elashi, founder of the
Emerson has released documents and tapes showing that leaders of the Muslim Public Affairs Committee (MPAC) have defended Hezbollah, excused Hamas terror attacks, compared the
In December 2004, MPAC again focused on Emerson in a report entitled Counterproductive Counterterrorism: How Anti-Islamic Rhetoric Is Impeding America's Homeland Security. It pointed out that several key public officials, including former national security advisor, Gen. Brent Scowcroft, had praised the efforts of MPAC in working with government officials to combat terrorism in
The American Muslim Council (AMC) may have been Emerson's most dramatic exposé so far. He took issue with an invitation that President Bill Clinton extended in 1996 to Abdurahman Alamoudi, a prominent Muslim-American leader and the executive director of the AMC. The meeting between the president and Alamoudi was to take place in the White House.
But the matter went even further. Emerson recorded a speech in which Alamoudi voiced support for both Hezbollah and Hamas. Emerson also obtained a recording of Alamoudi calling for bombings in the
The Investigative Project on Terrorism
Emerson founded the Investigative Project on Terrorism in 1995 and currently serves as its executive director; this think tank and archive maintains the world's largest collection of nongovernmental data on radical Islamic groups, including more than four million documents, thousands of hours of clandestine video and audio recordings made at radical Islamic conferences, training sessions, fundraising activities, and assorted gatherings; and tens of thousands of original terrorist manuals and periodicals. The IPT has also compiled a database of thousands of known or suspected terrorists as well as dossiers on radical groups.
The IPT website offers a comprehensive counter-Islamist source of information, with government documents, proprietary information, and breaking stories. The IPT also employs analysts to collect and interpret data and sends associates to listen to speeches by Islamist leaders. To inform interested parties of its work, it mails out daily updates. Emerson also contributes to the Counterterrorism Blog website, which posts articles and information relating to radical Islam, terrorism, and nonviolent Islamist threats.
The IPT receives information from a variety of sources, including many not available to government agencies. The archive holds the trial exhibits from the first
The IPT, acting as a nongovernmental agency, assists, without fee, numerous government offices and agencies, in part because constitutional limitations tie the hands of federal and state security services. Due to a strong civil liberties tradition rooted in the First Amendment, the
The constraints imposed on government agencies investigating terrorist threats created space for Emerson's Investigative Project. Since the mid-1970s, federal authorities have been hampered in their efforts to monitor political extremism, largely due to the legacy of the secret FBI project designated COINTELPRO. Negative publicity surrounding that program led the Justice Department to change FBI law enforcement and investigative methods to de-politicize the FBI. The Levi guidelines, adopted in April 1976, require evidence of a criminal predicate or a reasonable suspicion before commencing investigation of a dissident group. These changes had dramatic consequences, not least that the number of domestic intelligence cases dropped from 1,454 in 1975 to only 95 in 1977. Nothing in the guidelines, however, precludes the FBI from opening an investigation based on information received from a private group. NGOs such as the IPT and individuals such as Shannen Rossmiller have done much to fill the void. For its part, the IPT monitors not only radical Islamic groups in
Emerson believes that the Islamist movement in the West continues to strengthen, in large part due to what he refers to as the "cultural jihad," which provides a congenial environment in which Islamists can flourish. He cites survey data indicating that many Muslim communities in the West sympathize with aspects of the Islamist worldview. These cultural jihadists in turn give moral support to the terrorists. In Globalized Islam: The Search for a New Ummah, the French scholar Olivier Roy argues that Muslims in the West often experience a trauma of "deterritorialization" because they feel estranged from their native lands. To overcome anomie and alienation, young Muslims find solace in a new, purified Islam and attach themselves to a "virtual ummah [Islamic nation]" built by them on the Internet. This pool of mostly young, alienated, Muslim men provides a reservoir from which Islamists can recruit in the West.
In Emerson's opinion, the November 2, 2004 murder of Theo van Gogh by Mohammed Bouyeri was a watershed event that inspired Europeans to reevaluate the viability of the multicultural model, seeing that it results not in peaceful coexistence but rather in separatism and cultural jihadism, threatening the social fabric of
Emerson has not gone unnoticed by Al-Qaeda. In September 2006, a leading public representative of the organization—American-born Adam Gadahn, who has adopted the Muslim name of Azzam al-Amriki—mentioned Emerson and several other Americans in a public videotape. The video begins with an introduction by bin Laden's lieutenant, Ayman al-Zawahiri, who refers to Gadahn as a "brother" and "a perceptive person who wants to lead his people out of darkness into the light." Then Gadahn invites Emerson and the others to Islam:
If the Zionist crusader missionaries of hate and counter-Islam consultants like Daniel Pipes, Robert Spencer, Michael Scheuer, Steven Emerson, and yes, even the crusader-in-chief, George W. Bush were to abandon their unbelief and repent and enter into the light of Islam and turn their swords against the enemies of God, it would be accepted of them and they would be our brothers of Islam.
Emerson and his colleagues remain unimpressed and continue their work.
George Michael is associate professor of political science and administration of justice at the
Copyright - Original materials copyright (c) by the authors.
 Steven Emerson, American Jihad: The Terrorists Living Among Us (
 Ibid., pp. 5-25.
 With Brian Duffy,
 See also Steven Emerson, "Stymied Warriors," The New York Times Magazine, Nov. 13, 1988; Beau Grosscup, The Newest Explosions of Terrorism: Latest Sites of Terrorism in the 1990s and Beyond (Far Hills, N.J.: New Horizon Press, 1998), p. 405.
 James Kirkpatrick Davis, Spying on
 See "Why Jihad Watch?" JihadWatch, accessed Oct. 1, 2009; "About Us," Middle East Media Research Institute, accessed Oct. 1, 2009; "About the Project," Terrorism Awareness Project, accessed Oct. 1, 2009.
 John Robb, Brave New War: The Next Stage of Terrorism and the End of Globalization (
 "About the Investigative Project," The Investigative Project on Terrorism, accessed Oct. 1, 2009.
 Jamie Glazov, "The-Islamist Lobby in the House: An Interview with Steven Emerson," FrontPageMagazine.com, Aug. 4, 2009.
 Sue Myrick, "The War at Home: When Will We Open Our Eyes?" editorial, Feb, 5, 2008, accessed Nov. 29, 2009.
 Peter L. Bergen, Holy War, Inc.: Inside the Secret World of Osama bin Laden (
 "Who Killed Abdullah Azzam?" Time, Nov. 24, 1989.
 United States of America, Appellee, v. Omar Ahmad Ali Abdel Rahman, United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, New York, Aug. 16, 1999.
 Simon Reeve, The New Jackals: Ramzi Yousef, Osama bin Laden and the Future of Terrorism (Boston: Northeaster Press, 1999), p. 15.
 "Testimony," The Investigative Project, accessed Oct. 1, 2009.
 John Mintz, "The Man Who Gives Terrorism a Name," The
 The 9/11 Commission Report (
 Steven Emerson, "
 E-mail correspondence with Steven Emerson, Nov. 19, 2009.
 Emerson, American Jihad, p. 37; Rohan Gunaratna, Inside Al Qaeda: Global Network of Terror (
 Gunaratna, Inside Al Qaeda, p. 6.
 See Raymond Ibrahim, "The Dark Side of Zakat: Muslim 'Charity' in Context," Pajamas Media, Aug. 15, 2009.
 Steven Emerson, "How to Really Fight Terrorism," The Wall Street Journal, Aug. 24, 1998.
 WTHR- NBC (
 Emerson, American Jihad, p. 80.
 Daniel Pipes and Sharon Chadha, "CAIR: Islamists Fooling the Establishment,"
 Emerson, American Jihad, pp. 93-8; Harvey Kushner with Bart Davis, Holy War on the Home Front: The Secret Islamic Terror Network in the
 Emerson, American Jihad, pp. 84-5; Kushner, Holy War on the Home Front, pp. 109-12.
 "HLF Officials Convicted on All Counts," IPT News, The Investigative Project, Nov. 24, 2008.
 FrontPageMagazine.com, Feb. 9, 2008; The Christian Science Monitor, Jan. 2, 2009.
 United States of America v. Mohammed Abu Marzook, et. al.,
 Emerson, American Jihad, pp. 103-4; The
 Associated Press, Apr. 13, 2005.
 The New York Times, Nov. 24, 2008.
 Associated Press, Sept. 27, 2007.
 "Viva Palestina: An IPT Investigative Report," Investigative Project on Terrorism, accessed Nov. 17, 2009.
 "Foreign Terrorist Organizations,"
 Emerson, American Jihad, pp. 111-6; Kushner, Holy War on the Home Front, p. 52.
 "Target Terrorism," CBS 48 Hours, Jan. 30, 2002.
 "ADL Commends Law Enforcement for Arrests of Suspected Terrorist Supporters," Anti-Defamation League, Feb. 20, 2003.
 E-mail correspondence with Bill West, chief, Special Investigations Section, Immigration and Naturalization Service,
 Newsweek, Dec. 29, 2006.
 Steven Emerson, "One Muslim Advocacy Group's Not-So-Secret Terrorist Ties," The New Republic Online, Mar. 28, 2007.
 Emerson, American Jihad, pp. 197-203.
 Steven Emerson, "Kicking a CAIR Extremist off the Human Relations Commission," FrontPageMagazine.com, Nov. 6, 2006.
 United States of America v. Holy Land Foundation, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Dallas Division, Appendix A, CR no. 3:04-CR-240-G.
 IPT News, Jan. 29, 2009; FoxNews.com, Jan. 20, 2009.
 Steven Emerson, "Threatened by the Jihad," FrontPageMagazine.com, Mar. 14, 2007; Daniel Pipes, "MPAC, CAIR, and Praising Osama bin Laden," FrontPageMagazine.com, June 1, 2007.
 Daniel Pipes, "MPAC on Steven Emerson and Me," Daniel Pipes Blog, July 12, 2004.
 Counterproductive Counterterrorism: How Anti-Islamic Rhetoric Is Impeding
 "Profile: American Muslim Council (AMC)," Center for Grassroots Oversight, accessed July 7, 2009; Steven Emerson, "Friends of Hamas in the White House," The Wall Street Journal, Mar. 13, 1996.
 Emerson, "Friends of Hamas in the White House."
 The New York Times, Oct. 26, 2000.
 "Target Terrorism," CBS 48 Hours, Jan. 30, 2002.
 "Declaration in Support of Detention," United States of America v. Abdurahman Muhammad Alamoudi, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division, no. 03-1009M, Sept. 30, 2003.
 David Frum and Richard Perle, An End to Evil: How to Win the War on Terror (
 United States of America v. Abdurahman Muhammad Alamoudi.
 Steven Emerson, Jihad Incorporated: A Guide to Militant Islam in the
 Steven Emerson, "DOJ Oversight: Preserving Our Freedoms while Defending against Terrorism," testimony before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary, Washington, D.C., Dec. 4, 2001; idem, American Jihad, p. 14.
 The Investigative Project on Terrorism, accessed July 7, 2009.
 Emerson, American Jihad, pp. 20-1.
 "The Federal Bureau of Investigation's Compliance with the Attorney General's Investigative Guidelines," (Redacted), Special Report, Office of the Inspector General,
 See Shannen Rossmiller, "My Cyber Counter-jihad,"
 Steven Emerson, "Jihadism: Where Is It At in 2006?"
 Olivier Roy, Globalized Islam: The Search for a New Ummah (
 BBC News, Nov. 2, 2004;
 "Radical Islamism in Europe," interview with Irshad Manji, Steven Emerson, and Gilles Kepel, Aspen Institute, Washington, D.C., Dec. 2004.
 "A Special Interview with Steve Emerson," The Journal of Counterterrorism and Homeland Security International, June 2006; Roy, Globalized Islam, pp. 234-43; on
 Associated Press, May 27, 2004; Fox News, Oct. 29, 2004; Annette Stark, "Peace, Love, Death Metal,"
 Raffi Khatchadourian, "Azzam the American," The New Yorker, Jan. 22, 2007.
 Beila Rabinowitz, "What Al Qaeda's Call for Pipes, Spencer, Emerson, and Scheuer to Convert to Islam Means," PipeLineNews.org, Sept. 19, 2006.