“Obsession” - Happy Ramadan:  “The Third Jihad” - Happy Eid

“Obsession” - Happy Ramadan:  “The Third Jihad” - Happy Eid

by Sheila Musaji

Resources for Responding to “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War With the West” DVD Mass Distribution to 28 million Americans. 
History of Obsession: Radical Islam’s War With the West
Who is behind Relentless, Obsession and The Third Jihad? for a background on those responsible for the production, mass distribution, and promotion of the film. 
In-Depth Summary & Analysis of “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War on the West” for a point by point discussion of the film.
 
What You Can Do to respond to Obsession.
November 2008 - Jews on First has published a very comprehensive and detailed rebuttal:  Rebutting Obsession: Historical Facts Topple Film’s Premise That Violent Muslim Fundamentalists are Nazis’ Heirs, Expose its Fear-mongering by Rabbi Haim Dov Beliak, Eli Clifton, Jane Hunter and Robin Podolsky.


The current mass distribution to 28 million American homes of the DVD “Obsession:  Radical Islam’s War With the West” was timed to be a Ramadan Gift.  We have provided responses to this which are still being updated daily.

Now, the same folks who brought us that outrage are prepared to release another film called “The Third Jihad” at the beginning of October, I guess to say Happy Eid.

The trailer for The Third Jihad can be found at http://www.thethirdjihad.com/  It opens with a scene from 9/11 followed by a series of clips of extremist statements by some alQaeda leader, someone named Abu Uzair identified as the leader of the Saved Sect, an unnamed Arab speaker and someone named Imam Abdul Alim Musa, someone from the Islamic Thinkers Society.  Interspersed there is a clip of Rudy Guliani saying “it’s an entire movement and the idea of it is hatred for our way of life”.  Zuhdi Jasser talking about an FBI document proving that the Muslim Brotherhood is planning a grand jihad aimed at eliminating and destroying the western civilization from within.  There is an interview withNYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly.  A different trailer on the radical Islam site is primarily of the Beslan atrocity with a voice over by Zuhdi Jasser identifying the criminals as Muslims and identifying himself himself as a Muslim who has dedicated his life to fighting radical Islam. 

Who are these extremist Muslims?  According to Wikipedia The Saved Sect (Arabic الفرقة الناجية, al-Firqat un-Naajiyah), formerly and more generally known as The Saviour Sect, is a Muslim organization that operated in the United Kingdom from its formation in November 2005 until the British government banned it on 17 July 2006.  It is widely believed, along with Al Ghurabaa, to be the reformed Al-Muhajiroun which Omar Bakri Muhammad disbanded in 2004.[1] It is believed that Omar Bakri today still heads this organisation.  Obviously these folks are extremists.  There is not much that Americans can do about this except to encourage the Muslim community in Great Britain to get these folks deported or at least to marginalize and isolate them. 

Abdul Alim Musa, is a former black panther who converted to Islam in prison and who appears to still be a political activist, according to Wikipedia.  According to the ADL he is “the head of Masjid Al Islam mosque in Washington DC and founder of Sabiqun (Arabic for “vanguard of Islam), a movement that propagates a radical and anti-Semitic ideology.”    I can’t find anything for a mosque by this name in D.C.  Perhaps it is a storefront operation.  I did find a blogger who listed the address as Benning Road and C Street in Southeast D.C.  He is obviously not a representative of anything but his own small group.

I have written about the Islamic Thinkers Society in June of 2007 when they made a scene at the Muslim Day Parade.  They are a small group of rabble rousers in New York whose extremist banners and flag burning are featured on every anti-Muslim site and in the film Obsession, and now this new film.

Such individuals and groups are marginal at best, they are a “lunatic fringe”, and can be used as “useful idiots” in this well coordinated and well funded campaign of villification of the entire Muslim community.  Local communities need to speak out forcefully and loudly against such individuals and groups and the venom they spread.  They are a threat to everyone.

On September 7th there was a sneak preview of The Third Jihad, a film by the makers of the Obsession film at Ezra Habonim Niles Township Jewish Congregation in Skokie, Illinois.  According to their flier,  To Protect Our Heritage PAC, Ezra Habonim Niles Township Jewish Congregation, and Clarion Fund, Inc.  were the sponsors of this event and:  “The Third Jihad is political jihad, using the freedoms of the West against it.  Radical Islamists support the armed jihad with lawsuits, intimidation, political correctness, and civil rights claims.  With Q and A with Associate Producer Richard Green. Reed Rubinstein will discuss the libel tactics of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (“CAIR”). ”  

In a September 2, 2008 interview with Front Page talking about the Obsession film, Gregory Ross said”...we are just a few weeks from completely [sic] our next documentary, “The Third Jihad” - though it is not a sequel.  This new film will take a look at radical Islam’s activities here in the U.S. We should be releasing the film in early October. So stay tuned.” 

A Christian site called Jesus is Lord has a hysterical article called “America’s Greatest Danger - The Third Jihad”  and includes statements such as:  “We must learn that though all Muslims are not terrorists, all terrorists who pose a threat to us are Muslim. So profiling among them is absolutely necessary if we are to survive at all. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out how and where to find a Muslim terrorist.”  This idea that all terrorists who pose a threat to us are Muslim is a common - though false - talking point.

This is all that we have been able to learn at this point in time.  This article is meant as a heads up for the Muslim community in America that there is a storm coming our way.  These folks seem determined to take us down a dark and dangerous road, and we need to at least know what is coming so that we are prepared to respond to the possible reactions of our fellow Americans to this propoganda blitz.  We will continue to update you as information is available.


UPDATES

In an article on this film, Richard Silverstein said of Zuhdi Jasser, the Muslim narrator of the film who though he professes to be Muslim, seems to detest almost everything about his religion, especially anything that remotely hints of Islam existing in a political context. ...  Jasser makes common cause with Muslim haters like Daniel Pipes and other Jewish neocons.  Years ago, he was active in CAIR but that relationship turned sour.  Now he detests everything to do with the national Muslim organization and takes every chance he can to attack it.  Third Jihad provides him all the opportunity he needs.  TAM has a backgrounder on Jasser (who is the founder of AFDI, and on the board of the Clarion Fund)  here.

Ali Gharib and Eli Clifton have written Bigger, Badder Jihad Plot in ‘Obsession’ Rebooted which includes this

“The Third Jihad” purports to educate U.S. citizens about the threat of a “cultural Jihad” by the country’s own Muslim-American population. The film goes to great lengths to define itself as an expose of radical Muslim elements, not the faith at large.

But a group called the International Free Press Society (IFPS), which attended the Washington premiere of the film and documented the screening on behalf of the production company on a social media website, has some dubious affiliations.

Two months ago, IFPS heavily promoted Dutch parliamentarian Geert Wilders, a widely-known Islamophobe who has been tied to far-right European political parties.

An IPS investigation linked both Wilders and some of his U.S. and international supporters, including members of IFPS, with the Vlaams Belang (VB), or Flemish Interest. Vlaams Belang is a nationalist Flemish party that has demanded amnesty for Nazi collaborators in Belgium.

Wilders is known for campaigning to ban the Koran, Islamic attire and Islamic schools from the Netherlands, and for proclaiming that “moderate Islam does not exist”. His views have even drawn fire from the strongly pro-Israel Anti-Defamation League, which described Wilders’s rhetoric as “inflammatory, divisive and antithetical to American democratic ideals”.

Wilders has been brought up on charges in the Netherlands and banned from Britain on the grounds that he incites hate.

That view doesn’t jibe with the slickly produced “Third Jihad” film.

The movie starts with a disclaimer that it is not an assault on all Muslims: “This is not a film about Islam. It is about the threat of radical Islam. Only a small percentage of the world’s 1.3 billion Muslims are radicals. This film is about them.”

The narrative of the movie is strung together with commentary from a “moderate” Muslim, Zuhdi Jasser, a physician from Arizona who heads the American Islamic Forum for Democracy (AIFD).

AIFD, according to its website, is a non-profit which seeks to “intellectually stand against the religious fanatics who exploit the religion of Islam for a nihilistic, anti-American anti-Western war.”

Unlike most commentators who regularly use the term “Islamofascist”, Jasser is a practicing and devoted Muslim. But he thinks the faith has no role in politics or government. He derides political Islam as part of the subversive, quiet Jihad being waged within the boundaries of the West, a central tenet of the movie.

Radical Muslims, by having children, spreading their faith, and ensuring their ability to practice Islam as they see fit, are working a ‘demographic jihad’ in which they see themselves emerging as a majority and making Islam the dominant religion of the U.S. – eventually to take over the nation altogether - contend Jasser and the films creators.

But that prospect seems unlikely in the U.S., where Muslim Americans are generally regarded as well-assimilated and not radicalised.

The film itself also contains inconsistencies in terms of differentiating between Islam and radical Islam.

For example, the graphic that the film used to demonstrate the spread of an Islamic state across the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe used a tiled picture of a green crescent with a star between its points. The crescent and star are the symbol of Islam in general.

...  “The Third Jihad” is largely based on a document the producers say the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) discovered in 2003. The film’s creators purport the document is a “‘Grand Jihad Manifesto’ authored by the Muslim Brotherhood in North America, according to the promotional materials.

“The 15-page document outlines goals and strategies for the infiltration and domination of America from within,” says the release. “Among the strategies discussed is the establishment of ‘moderate’ groups, mosques and Islamic centers across North America in an effort to strategically position Islam so that it might weaken western culture and promote the implementation of Sharia Law.”

...  “The film disingenuously claims it is only targeting ‘radical Islam,’ yet a Twitter account of the Washington, D.C., screening on Wednesday night stated: …‘The 1400-hundred year war” clash has been going on since the beginning of Islam’,” CAIR wrote.

Indeed, a member of IFPS was authoring the Twitter feed, which allows someone to post short updates to the web in real time.

“Thanks to the Clarion Fund for the opportunity to twitter tonight. Be sure to visit the International Free Press Society online!” said the last post charting the press conference and screening.

“Clarion thanks the International Free Press Society…for their Twitter mastery at last night’s event,” said the next post, from the following morning, which included a shortcut link to IFPS’s website.

Both Tweets, as the short messages are called, came from “No2RadicalIslam”, which is Clarion’s name on Twitter.

Some of Clarion’s supporters, including Jewish groups that have promoted its films as well as “moderate” Muslims like Jasser, appear unaware of IFPS’s association with the nationalist Flemish party Vlaams Belang, which has been deemed neo-Nazi and neo-fascist by critics.

Loonwatch reports that The Third Jihad is

the Clarion Fund’s newest hit job that paints mainstream American Muslim organizations as a fifth column, insidious secret society looking to rule the United States. The Third Jihad is essentially an updated and reconfigured version of Obsession or as some have called it “Obsession on steroids.” Instead of the overt comparisons of Islam with Nazism, or of a cosmic battle between good and evil, the object this time is to warn against a threat they term “Cultural Jihad” carried out from within by American Muslims.

In Third Jihad, just as in Obsession, there is the cliche disclaimer at the start of the film that the movie is not about the vast majority of Muslims who are peaceful, yet in Third Jihad just as in Obsession, the rest of the film quickly and completely trumps what becomes an empty disclaimer.  Both films fail to make consistent distinctions between Islam and Radical Islamism, and at times conflate the two.

...  The central focus of the film is the purported discovery of a document which claims Muslim organizations are seeking to “destroy” the West from within and replace Democracy with Islamic law worldwide. This ploy is similar to the Protocols of the Elders of Zion which is a tract alleging a Jewish and Masonic plot to achieve world domination. Purportedly written by a secret group of Jews known as the Elders of Zion, the document underlies 24 protocols that are supposedly followed by the Jewish people.

The movie also suffers from a lack of credibility with most of the pundits it chooses to interview.  For example one of the pundits is Tawfiq Hamid (!) who is labeled an ex-terrorist. Tawfiq’s story is not corroborated by any independent sources, he has also made blatant statements describing Muslims as terrorists and Islam as evil. On the Orla Barry Show he stated, “the majority of Muslim are all passive terrorists. They believe in this evil. They support it either by money or emotionally they are not against it.” He is also featured on radical Islamophobe Walid Shoebat’s website and has appeared with him on talk shows and other venues.

My article, Muslim Brotherhood document of the Muslim or Islamophobic Lunatic Fringe? discusses this document, its history, and source, at length.  In that article I said If this document was written by Mohammed Akram/Adlouni then I hope that he has been deported.  I don’t know who he is or whether or not he is actually a member of the Muslim Brotherhood.  But, if he (or any one else) believes in the nonsense contained in this document, then they are part of what I call the Muslim lunatic fringe.  This document is reprehensible and the ideas it contains about violent jihad, establishing a Caliphate, etc. are all rejected by everyone I know in the American Muslim community.  I can only speak for myself, but I reject this document, and everything it claims to represent! I don’t know if this document is legitimate or a fake like the “Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion”.  If it is legitimate, then I am ashamed of those who wrote it, if they call themselves American Muslims.  I pray that it will be investigated and shown to be a fake.  I, like Tarek Masoud, would like to find out if there is some information there that some folks like me don’t have?  It is a product either of the Muslim lunatic fringe, or of the Islamophobic lunatic fringe.  Either way, it has done its damage.


Note:  If you type - lunatic fringe - into The American Muslim search engine, many articles about various individuals and organizations in the Muslim lunatic fringe who are used in this film as representative of Muslims will come up.  See our Who’s Who of the Anti-Muslim/Anti-Arab/Islamophobia Industry in which most of the cast of characters in this film are listed. 

 

Originally posted 9/18/2008

 

 


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