September 18, 2007
Homeland Security Implications of the Holy Land Foundation TrialBy Joseph Myers
The on-going Holy Land Foundation trial has established important facts about the resident domestic Islamic jihad threat inside the United States. Although evidence brought forward in documents and testimony has explosive implications for US Homeland Security, the intelligence community, and every American citizen, relatively little media attention has been paid to it.
This information also has serious implications for professionals, military and civilian, involved in homeland security, DoD plans and strategy as well as national agency intelligence analysts and local law enforcement. The raw documents outlining the strategic goals and activities of the Muslim Brotherhood in America, now exposed for public view, are substantiating the concerns and information long raised by various private sector counterterrorism think-tanks, organizations and blogs such as Stephen Emerson's Investigative Project and Robert Spencer's Jihad Watch among others.
From an intelligence perspective, the first thing in assessing and evaluating these raw, translated documents is that they all passed sufficient legal scrutiny to be entered into evidence in a federal trial. Secondly, since these are raw, primary sourced documents of the Muslim Brotherhood and not secondarily sourced, they are the equivalent in a tactical or operational sense of key leadership defector, or detainee debriefing statements, or the capturing of the enemy's strategic campaign plan. Indeed the title of one document is "An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America." Third, the defendants did not challenge in court the authenticity or veracity of the evidentiary documents. All of which immediately speaks to both the credibility and reliability of these reports for intelligence analysis and exploitation.
Civilization Jihad and the Settlement Strategy
The Brotherhood's strategy memo, while published in May 1991, was drafted earlier, upon a
In other words this strategy has already been operative for at least 20 years in America. The strategic objective of the Brotherhood in America is clear:
The primary strategic concept to accomplish the Brotherhood's objective is "civilizational jihad," the usurpation and replacement of American Judeo-Christian and Western liberal social, political and religious foundations by Islam. The campaign plan is one of colonization, described by the Ikhwan as a "settlement strategy." Explaining this concept they describe it as establishing Islam in America as "stable," "rooted" and "enabled on which the Islamic structure is built and with which the testimony of civilization is achieved." Recognizing this strategy cannot be carried forward alone by the Brotherhood they recognized the strategy requires that, "They are then to work to employ, direct and unify Muslims' efforts and powers for this process. In order to do that, we must possess a mastery of the art of "coalitions", the art of "absorption" and the principles of "cooperation."
This strategic concept serves to accomplish the clandestine, conspiratorial and ultimate ends and grand strategy of the Ikhwan movement globally and was described this way in a recently published unclassified Pentagon analysis:
The Brotherhood document notes it is their
The re-establishment of the Islamic caliphate is likewise the same objective as al- Qaida's, only pursued along different yet reinforcing paths.
Networks, NGOs and Front Organizations
Their strategic concept is oriented on an "organizational" approach, toward building and developing organizations and networks that implement "civilizational jihad" in a gradual and efficient fashion. This organizational and structural approach is what "constitutes the heart and the core" of their strategy. Following the steady organizational development of Mohamed, beginning with the first mosque, and developed in the modern context by Hassan al-Banna, who resurrected militant Islam by establishing organizations of all types:
A companion memorandum from the same period provides a shorthand history of the Brotherhood in America beginning in 1962, when the Ikhwan established its first Muslim Student Union which developed through programs of conferences and "camps."
In 1969 the Ikhwan established their separate leadership organization while retaining control and influence over the student unions. By the 1970s they began to establish affiliated "vocational" and professional organizations, including Muslim Doctors, Social Workers, and Science and Engineers syndicates. In the mid-70s the Muslim American Youth Association was established under the direction of the Brotherhood, coordinating Muslim youth coming to America from around the world. The Muslim Student Union in the 1980s transformed into the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). In 1981 they founded the Islamic Association of Palestine. That Association's work is directly tied to the Palestinian Intifada and the establishment and support of the Hamas terror organization [the root basis of the current trial] according to this document.
In testimony before the Senate Banking Committee in 2003, Richard Clarke said
A third important document is a transcription of a tape-recorded address by Zeid al-Noman in the early 1980s in which he discusses various 5-year phases of the history of Brotherhood activity in America. According to the Investigative Project,
Rod Dreher of the Dallas Morning News, who has been covering the Holy Land Foundation trial, cites Husain Haqqani, the head of Boston University's Center for International Relations (and himself a former Islamic radical) whose testimony corroborates that the Muslim Brotherhood "has run most significant Muslim organizations in the U.S. as part of the plan outlined in the strategy paper." Dreher notes that the Brotherhood
However, analysts should also focus on the Q&A where Noman discusses various activities of the group. Noman clarifies that the term "special work" refers to "military work" and training as opposed to "securing work", which deals with safeguarding the organization from penetration and monitoring by US security agencies or law enforcement -- in other words, their own counterintelligence activities.
In terms of military training, Noman highlights a distinct advantage in America because "there is weapons training in many of the Ikhwan's camps" whereas in other countries that training would have to be conducted secretly or at great risk. It is likely that the Ikhwan in America has been and is conducting military training for contingencies in America, and to support Brotherhood activities in jihad combat in foreign lands. It should be inferred there are latent military capabilities in US Ikhwan organizations.
Another important concept of the Civilizational-Jihad is
According to the Brotherhood's strategic concept, Islamic religious and educational centers are what,
The Centers constitute the hub "for a small Islamic society" which is a reflection and a mirror to our central organizations."
The Islamic center would serve the interests of all aspects of the Muslim community, at both the individual and family levels, and be
In other words, the Islamic Center serves as a settlement enclave for raising battalions of Muslims and
Key Judgments on the Ikhwan in America
According to the new US counterinsurgency manual, FM 3-24, an insurgency is defined
What the Brotherhood in America has explained to us, in somewhat lofty but stark terms, is clear. They exist in America to overthrow our American civilization, our Constitutional order and replace it with an Islamic civilizational model. As an individual "citizen" that sort of activity constitutes sedition. As an organization, the Muslim Brotherhood, its adherents and its enablers, should be considered part of a latent insurgency, engaging in protracted mobilization with clear potential of military capabilities.
Again FM 3-24:
Their campaign plan describes the structure and organizations of its network, its subversive intent and reflects its political and colonization activism to "increase insurgent control."
The Muslim Brotherhood ideology and human network is the thread binding their macro organization together in terms of leadership and direction, while the affiliated and spin-off organizations serve as nodes and perform functional and specialized roles in line with the general strategic concept of building enclave Islamic communities and performing jihad-oriented tasks. Consider the way law enforcement treats organized crime. Individuals and subordinate organizations of known mafias are not viewed and treated as separate and independent entities of the mafia organization. Why should the Brotherhood be treated any differently?
In this colonization approach the "Dawa" [the strategic communication messages] of the Brotherhood, serves to influence both national and local American culture, society, policies, and programs, while proselytizing and growing their jihad community in support of the grand strategic objective of a restored caliphate.
This executive branch directive allows for the collection and retention by DoD of foreign intelligence information on US persons defined as US citizens, green card holders or legal aliens with legitimate visas.
Intelligence "may be collected by a DoD intelligence component only if it is necessary to the conduct of a function assigned the collecting component...." DoD can collect information freely given by consent, information publicly available and information deemed to be "foreign intelligence" if the US person meets any of these "foreign intelligence" criteria:
In its own documents, the Ikhwan in America has defined itself as a hostile threat to the American constitutional order. It has identified itself as a "foreign agent" of the greater global jihad, and exists as part of the transnational "Ikhwan Movement." The Holy Land Foundation trial has established evidence of material support to terrorism by Brotherhood entities and ties to international terrorism, namely Hamas and likely other jihad terrorist organizations in the Middle East. Therefore, the Muslim Brotherhood in America meets all three criteria of DoD Directive 5240.1-R.
The Muslim Brotherhood by virtue of its activities constitutes a current and continuing "threat to public safety." Law enforcement intelligence is a distinct category from national security intelligence. Law enforcement intelligence requires a "criminal predicate" or expectation of a violation of domestic laws commensurate with the protection of civil liberties. The Muslim Brotherhood as a latent insurgency, as part of the global jihad espousing the ideology of jihadism to destroy American civilization, with objectives overlapping al-Qaida's and a history of material support to terrorism, should be presumed to be a current and continuing criminal racketeering activity. They should be targeted just like the mafia.
No one talks about a "moderate" mafia.
The NYPD Report states,
By definition the Ikhwan in America came to these shores expressly identified with its religious roots and strategic objectives, and did not arrive here aiming to assimilate into America. In fact their stated goal is quite the opposite: to assimilate America into the Caliphate.
The NYPD report continues,
According to the Brotherhood strategy,
It should be inferred that Muslim Brotherhood dominated or influenced Islamic Centers and front groups are the start point for phased Islamic radicalization and may also serve as the projection platform for radicalized, jihad-oriented American Muslims.
Finally, the unclassified analyst's memo published in the Pentagon's J-2 intelligence staff on the implications of these Brotherhood strategy documents and as reported by Bill Gertz of the Washington Times and Doug Farah of the Counterterrorism Blog listed several critical conclusions of the Brotherhood's strategic plan for America:
The bottom-line conclusion on that J-2 analyst's memo is that the above assessment is accurate and consistent with the "intelligence reporting" from the Holy Land Foundation Trial.
Those Homeland Security, Intelligence and military officials involved in future plans, strategy and operations must recognize too they are more than 20 years behind on this threat.
Donald J. Reed critiqued the 2002 National Strategy for Homeland Security. He wrote,
It is now up to the strategic leadership within the US Homeland Security, military and intelligence communities to begin to demonstrate they have strategic comprehension of the resident and latent terrorist and insurgent threat in the United States and take appropriate steps to mitigate and defeat those threats.
Joseph Myers previously served at the Defense Intelligence Agency as both the Chief of the South America Division and Senior Military Analyst for Colombia. He writes and speaks on national security, irregular warfare and terrorism issues