Monday, May 5, 2008

Debbie Almontaser, Ali Jawad and Daniel Pipes' "battle that's just really begun"

Ali Jawad. Imad Hamad. Debbie Almontaser.
They are all Arab and Muslim Americans.
They all have been the targets of anti Arab anti Muslim bigots. These bigots want to marginalize American Arabs and Muslims. Any political or economic empowerment of politically involved Arabs and Muslims is considered a threat.

The Ali Jawad episode with the McCain campaign reminded me of the vile conspiracy that led to the resignation of Debbie Almontaser as principal of the Khalil Gibran School in New York City
In “Battle in Brooklyn, a principal’s rise and fall- critics cost Muslim Educator Her dream School,” The NYT 4/28/08, by Andrea Elliott.

The hate mongers and the pro- Israel crazed crowd got its way with Ms Amontaser..

“Ms. Almontaser, a teacher by training and an activist who had carefully built ties with Christians and Jews, said she was forced to resign by the mayor’s office following a campaign that pitted her against a chorus of critics who claimed she had a militant Islamic agenda. In newspaper articles and Internet postings, on television and talk radio, Ms. Almontaser was branded a “radical,” a “jihadist” and a “9/11 denier.” She stood accused of harboring unpatriotic leanings and of secretly planning to proselytize her students. Despite Ms. Almontaser’s longstanding reputation as a Muslim moderate, her critics quickly succeeded in recasting her image.”

“The conflict tapped into a well of post-9/11 anxieties. But Ms. Almontaser’s downfall was not merely the result of a spontaneous outcry by concerned parents and neighborhood activists. It was also the work of a growing and organized movement to stop Muslim citizens who are seeking an expanded role in American public life. The fight against the school, participants in the effort say, was only an early skirmish in a broader, national struggle. “

Google Imad Hamad or Debbie almontaser and what comes up is a number of website that feed from the same cesspool of hate of Arabs and Muslims.

The Times writes:
“Mr. Pipes was joined in the monitoring effort by other self-declared watchdogs of militant Islam. Their Web sites are often linked to one another and their messages interwoven. One critic, David Horowitz, founded Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, a campaign aimed at college campuses. He noted in an interview that monitors of radical Islam have increasingly trained their sights on nonviolent Muslim-Americans.”

Ms Almontaser sued to get her job back. The Times states:
“This was a situation where she was subject to sanction not for anything she said, not for anything she did, but because a newspaper reporter twisted what she said and the result of it was negative press for the city and the Board of Ed,” Federal Appeals Judge Jon O. Newman told a city lawyer at a hearing in February.”

Daniel Pipes, a leading figure in the vile conspiracy, stated that “It’s a battle that’s really just begun.”

The question is: are the Arab and Muslim Americans ready to face down these sworn enemies?


So far, not.

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