OC Man Discussed Jihad, Domestic Terror: CAIR Angered

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The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) is angered over a case revolving around the arrest of the brother-in-law of a top Osama bin Laden lieutenant in Southern California's suburban Orange County. Ahmadullah Sais Niazi is accused of lying to immigration officials about his relationship with al Qaeda and other Islamist terror groups.

The LA Times revealed today that an informant for the FBI dropped the dime on Niazi and, as I predicted, it looks like Niazi was up to far more than simply failing to disclose trips to Pakistan. The informant, Craig Monteilh, posing as Farouk Al-Aziz, infiltrated several Orange County mosques and became friends with Niazi.

Monteilh claims that:

Niazi befriended him and began to lecture him about jihad, gave him lessons in bomb-making and discussed plots to blow up Orange County landmarks.

"He took me under his wing and began to radicalize me," Monteilh said....

Special Agent Thomas J. Ropel III testified at a bail hearing for Niazi that the defendant had been secretly recorded by an informant while initiating jihadist rhetoric and threatening to blow up abandoned buildings.

[And] attacks on Orange County shopping centers, military installations and court buildings.

Pretty outrageous, eh?

But this is CAIR, so you're pretty much already prepared to learn that their outrage had nothing to do with an alleged terror sympathizer among them. What outraged CAIR?

Ayloush said he was "100% sure" that Monteilh was the informant in question and expressed anger and disappointment that the FBI would infiltrate mosques. He accused officials of trying to entrap innocent Muslims, noting that Monteilh has been convicted of grand theft and forgery in the past. He said Muslims had worked hard to develop a partnership with the FBI -- and had been assured by J. Steven Tidwell, then assistant director in charge of the Los Angeles field office, at an Irvine forum in 2006 that their mosques were not being monitored. Now, Ayloush said, he has doubts about future relations with the FBI.

"This is religious profiling at its worst," Ayloush said about the FBI operation.

Let me reiterate what we know about the Niazi case (assuming the indictment and testimony against him by a federal agent are true):

--That Niazi lied on multiple occasions about his relationship with leading al Qaeda figures.

--That Niazi had contact with al Qaeda and other groups after becoming a naturalized US citizen.

--That the FBI has audio recordings of Niazi initiating conversations in which he discussed jihad and acts of domestic terror in California.

And CAIR is more worried about religious profiling than, you know, the terrorism thing?

This In Focus magazine article suggests that some Muslims in the community already suspected that Craig Monteilh, aka "Farouk Aziz", was a government plant but reported him to the FBI anyway as a possible terror supporter.

In fact, this would seem to confirm my earlier suspicions that the "Ahmed Niazi" mentioned in the In Focus article mentioned above is, in fact, the accused Ahmadullah Sais Niazi. You'll notice the article has Niazi surprised that "Farouk Aziz" was so open in his support for violent jihad. It also suggests that Niazi was one of those who suspected Monteilh was an informant (never trust the white convert guy) thus giving him motivation for what could be a shoot-first accusation.

Sure, sometimes informants have mixed motives and their information must be taken with that in mind. But if informants may not always be telling the whole story, the same goes double for those accused of a crime. Like, maybe, someone accused of being connected to al Qaeda.

It's actually kind of refreshing to know that CAIR is willing to help the FBI root out al Qaeda supporters -- even if they aren't willing to help root out those that support other terrorist organizations, such as Hamas or Hezbollah.

But it's also discomforting to think that they hold the mindset that any surveillance of people attending mosques constitutes some sort of ill conceived government plan to frame Muslims.

The last time I checked the vast majority of terrorists and their supporters weren't attending the local Unitarian-Universalist church. Where the hell would CAIR like the FBI to go looking for terrorists, at the dog track?

Of course we should have informants in mosques. If we don't, then we're wasting a lot of resources looking in places less likely to have actual terrorists.

It doesn't mean that the vast majority of American Muslims aren't patriotic secularists who are horrified at the thought of Islamist governance or of terroristic tactics to bring that governance. It just means that the sub-group -- terrorist supporters -- are likely to be found within that larger groups -- Muslims.

If Muslims don't like that than I'd suggest the problem is with the tens of millions (literally) of other Muslims who directly and openly support terror. This is not a misperception based on bigotry, this is how Muslims around the world describe themselves.

Deal with it you crybabies at CAIR.

The second observation to be made here is that Niazi hasn't been formally accused of being a terrorist himself or of planning terrorist acts. He's been accused of lying and filing false statement. The AG's office, it seems, is well aware of the problems presented by an entrapment defense. That's why, apparently, they aren't going after Niazi for anything other than is what is easily provable in court. You go for the low-hanging fruit.

So, why is CAIR so concerned about allegations made at a bail hearing and why is the LA Times devoting so much of their space trying to impeach an FBI informant who's testimony may not even enter into evidence at trial? Who stopped informing, by the way, two years ago.

The Times article reads like a CAIR press release. Seriously. They describe Dr. Amin al-Haq -- a wanted al Qaeda terrorist (who may be dead, inshallah) -- as:

an Afghan militant who fought the Soviet occupation of the 1980s with a U.S.-backed Islamic resistance force that now is branded an Al Qaeda affiliate.
The Times makes him seem like just another anti-Soviet mujahideen rather than as someone on OFAC's asset freeze list

It seems to me that the LA Times, like many liberal rags, is more concerned with multicultural sensitivity than it is to the threat of terrorism. More concerned with insensitive words and deeds than with sticks and stones ... and car bombs. The latter being far less likely to offend but slightly more likely to, ya know, kill you.

Posted by: Rusty at 01:08 PM

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