Steve Emerson Exposes Durbin Hearings as Political Cover
Read the transcript here:
FRANK GAFFNEY: Welcome to Secure Freedom Radio. This is a very special segment for me because we are joined by a man we have had on in the past, but not for awhile and it’s great have him back. He is Steven Emerson. I consider him to be a national treasure. He is the founder and executive director of an indispensable organization in Washington, D.C., known as the Investigative Project on Terrorism. He is the author of six books or co-author, including Jihad Incorporated. He has done some terrific work on—in film as well. And he’s just a go-to guy on issues like the one I wanted to visit about with him, namely, tomorrow’s hearing that is going to be held in a subcommittee of the judiciary committee, chaired by Illinois senator Dick Durbin, a Democrat, who happens to be the number two Democrat in the Senate as well. The Senate Majority whip. And Steve, I know you’ve been doing some research, both on—of the senator and some of his associations and also on some of the witnesses. Tell us, first of all, what is the—the thrust of this hearing and why should we be paying attention to it?
STEVEN EMERSON: Well, I don’t know that we should be paying attention to it. Frankly, it’s—it’s a hearing that Senator Dick Durbin, who is the senior Democrat from Illinois and the chairman of the subcommittee on the judiciary committee. It’s solely a hearing—essentially, it’s the anti-Pete King hearing. He has been in bed with radical Islam for the last eight years. And he has hidden that from basically the American public. Although, it’s really been a deliberate, willful turning of a blind eye by the mainstream media. He has aligned himself with CAIR, sent them letters of congratulations, agreed to speak to their banquets, fundraised for them, and most recently paid a visit to the Bridgeview Mosque, which, for those of you who don’t know what that is, it’s the largest—one of the largest mosques in the United States, it’s southwest of Chicago and it is considered the senior center of Hamas activity in the United States led by Imam Jamal Said who was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation case, which, as you know, was the case against the fundraisers for Hamas, all of whom were convicted. In that picture, which was printed in the Bridgeview Mosque newsletter online, it shows him with eight people, six of whom are actually allied with Hamas. Five of whom have been listed as unindicted co-conspirators. And four of whom have made statements calling for the killing of Jews.
FRANK GAFFNEY: Whoa.
STEVEN EMERSON: This is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of his alliance with these groups. His chief witness is a woman named Farhana Khera, head of Muslim Advocates. Her chief claim to fame is the allegation that, if you recall the case of Zazi, he was the New York Times would-be Square bomber, that the FBI had lost track of , actually, and the only time they’ve ever lost track of a terrorism suspect that they had 24/7, you know, surveillance–
FRANK GAFFNEY: [OVERLAP] Surveillance. Yeah.
STEVEN EMERSON: –on. The reason that they lost track of him was because the FBI went to the—to Zazi’s imam and asked the imam to notify the FBI if he, the imam, knew where Zazi was. Instead, the imam called up Zazi and said, the FBI’s looking for you, disappear. Miss Farhana’s interpretation of that was that the FBI was trying to entrap the imam and therefore, imams, not just Muslim citizens, should not talk to the FBI. My belief is that this woman is someone that should probably be behind jail rather than be testifying.
FRANK GAFFNEY: We’re talking with Steven Emerson, one of the country’s foremost experts on terrorism, jihadism, and the operations of the Muslim Brotherhood and its affiliates here inside the United States. Steve, you’ve made some very worrying charges here and information that I was unaware of and I imagine our audience is as well. Just to recap, of course, the King hearings that you’re referring to are those that Congressman Pete King, the chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, had on the House side two or three weeks ago now in which he was looking at radicalization inside the Muslim American community. And what you’ve described here is seemingly an effort by Senator Dick Durbin in a judiciary subcommittee on the Constitution, civil rights, human rights and the law, I believe it’s called, to basically try to provide political cover, I guess, for some of those very radicals we should be worrying about.
STEVEN EMERSON: Not only cover, let me go further. He issued a statement several years ago, if you remember, when the Attorney General guidelines were reinterpreted and revised to allow the FBI not to have their hands tied behind their back. And gave them a little bit more leeway in making connections between people in their database that had radical Islamic backgrounds and were in contact with people connected to these groups in the United States. So, a press conference was held by Senator Dick Durbin accusing the FBI of engaging in a behavior that allowed them to simply arrest Muslims only on the basis of race without any type of criminal evidence.
FRANK GAFFNEY: Whoa.
STEVEN EMERSON: And a critique that was demonstrably and a hundred percent wrong—and proven wrong by even the ACLU. So this is a man who is reckless, who has been protective of radical Islam. I mean, the more I read about it—I’ll be frank with you, I did not expect to read and find out as much bad information and his protection of radical Islam. He has a woman who works on his staff named Reema Deedin. D-e-e-d-i-n. Okay? She sends out e-mails under her own e-mail. Not the government’s e-mail. Which are e-mails reflecting the Muslim Brotherhood’s views in the United States. Their front groups, that is. She doesn’t mention the MB. But she sends out critiques, she attacks Peter King. This is a woman that should not be in the US, should not be working as a staff member. Certainly her activities on the staff while she’s working for Senator Durbin is either tolerated by him and if it isn’t tolerated by him, she should be fired. But it, frankly, it’s consistent with his whole entire policy of the last seven years of protecting radical Islamic groups.
FRANK GAFFNEY: Yeah.
STEVEN EMERSON: He even attacked Michael Waller in 2002, when Michael—2003, when Michael Waller criticized the FBI director for speaking before the American Muslim Council, which was a direct creation of the Muslim Brotherhood.
FRANK GAFFNEY: Yeah. Run by a man who is now serving twenty-three years–
STEVEN EMERSON: [OVERLAP] Twenty-three years.
FRANK GAFFNEY: –in federal prison, Abdul Rahman al-Amoudi. Steve, you mentioned bad information. I think what you mean is negative information. It’s very–
STEVEN EMERSON: [OVERLAP] Yes.
FRANK GAFFNEY: – high quality information. And it’s very negative in character. We’ve only got about two minutes left, Steve. Let me just ask you—because my guess is that one of the narratives that this hearing is designed to promote is one we’ve been hearing both from these Muslim Brotherhood fronts and more worrying still from senior US government officials, namely, that we are now confronting a far greater threat in America than terrorism.
STEVEN EMERSON: Yeah.
FRANK GAFFNEY: Namely, Islamophobia. Tell us about this sort of–
STEVEN EMERSON: [OVERLAP] Oh, this—you would like to know, this is news for you, that Michael Leiter, the head of the NCTC, who, you know–
FRANK GAFFNEY: [OVERLAP] The National Counter-Terrorism Center.
STEVEN EMERSON: Just gave a—just held a conference which was closed. It cost the taxpayers four million dollars. I got tweeted and e-texts from participants from DHS agents, FBI agents, saying close up shop, because the only problem was Islamophobia. And all we needed to do was outreach. That was the two day message of this entire conference. In which they featured apologists and even members of front groups for the Muslim Brotherhood. Mr. Leiter himself said that al-Jazeera was his favorite television station, radical Islam was only a nuisance, a tiny problem, and that Islamophobia was the biggest problem we faced.
FRANK GAFFNEY: Steve, this is absolutely chilling. It’s the kind of data and documentation that we rely upon the Investigative Project on Terrorism to provide. It is truly a public service that you make this available and do so, particularly, at a moment like this when, clearly, if this narrative takes hold, if we find that the US government is poised to basically describe the kind of conversation we’re having right now as, I don’t know, what? Hate speech? Well, that becomes part of the larger campaign to suppress it that we’ve seen in so many other places, the shariah blasphemy business, and I pray that your warnings, both here at Secure Freedom Radio and elsewhere will be heard. That Republicans, among others, will use this vehicle as—this hearing to counter the efforts that Dick Durbin is making and I thank you so much for spending a few minutes with us to talk about it. We will be following it closely, as I know you will, and we look forward to visiting with you about it very soon.
STEVEN EMERSON: And I appreciate, Frank, your—and your group and your efforts to spread the word and be activists in terms of alerting the American public and the Congress and lawmakers and government officials about the terrible threat we face not just from the violent jihadists, but from the apologists for the stealth jihadists.
FRANK GAFFNEY: Amen. Thank you, Steve. God bless you. Be well.
STEVEN EMERSON: [OVERLAP] You’re welcome.