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July 07, 2011

Washington Post goes slack over Islamic Society of N. America

The Washington Post, covering an interfaith religious service, took "diversity" at face value (“3 faiths, 1 message of respect; A service at Washington National Cathedral featuring readings by Christian, Jewish and Muslim clergy is part of a project among U.S. houses of worship to promote religious tolerance,” June 27).

One of the participants featured was Imam Mohamed Magid, identified as “president of the Islamic Society of North America.” Imam Magid, The Post reported, “chanted a passage from the Koran about the value of diversity.”

In a 2004 talk at Georgetown University, Imam Magid rejected descriptions of the Islamist Sudanese government’s campaign in rebellious Darfur region as genocide. The imam also claimed the number of victims had been greatly exaggerated. In 2005, the U.N.’s International Criminal Court indicted Sudan’s ruler, Omar Hassan al-Bashir, for directing genocide in Darfur.

ISNA has ties to Egypt’s fundamentalist Muslim Brotherhood, which The Post does not mention. Neither does it report that a member of the society's board of directors, Jamal Badawi, was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Justice Department’s successful 2009 prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development. HLF leaders were found guilty of raising millions of dollars for Hamas, (the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement), designated a terrorist organization by the U.S. government.

A speaker at ISNA’s annual convention in 2009 was Imam Warith Deen. Imam Deen has said of the Holocaust that “Jews were being punished for being serially disobedient to Allah.”

News reporting often can do no more than sketch the identities of those being covered. Still, even sketches ought to include relevant background. (From an unpublished CAMERA letter to the editor at The Post.)

Posted by ER at July 7, 2011 12:58 PM

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