“The government, through the police department, is working privately to destroy the private lives of Muslim citizens,” Professor Bayoumi said. His book is required reading for all students transferring to the school. Dr. Ronald Radosh of the Hudson Institute says it promotes “the view that Americans and New Yorkers in particular are completely Islamophobic.”
Investigations into some of these MSA chapters are justifiable based on information available in the public domain alone. A former Brooklyn College student, Syed Hashmi, pled guilty to providing material assistance to Al-Qaeda in 2010. In 1998, a Hamas front called the Islamic Association of Palestine hosted an event at Brooklyn College with the Council on American-Islamic Relations that featured a speaker who implored Muslims to engage in jihad. He even had the audience sing a song with the words, “No to the Jews, descendants of the apes.” The NYPD was looking into “militant paintball trips” by MSA members at Brooklyn College, a practice used by aspiring terrorists in the past. The police were also concerned about a member who had said he wanted to carry out a suicide bombing in Israel.
According to the information in the press, the NYPD was concerned about City College because it ran a website adherent to the Salafi strain of Islam, which is among the most hardline. The Brooklyn and Baruch MSAs frequently brought in Salafist speakers with extremist beliefs, and an agent reported that Baruch MSA members were “politically active and are radicalizing.” The chapter at Queens College was linked to a member of al-Muhajiroun, an Al-Qaeda affiliate. These are all good reasons for the NYPD to investigate these chapters.
Critics of the government’s domestic counter-terrorism efforts are trying to say that the NYPD’s investigation into the Muslim Students Associations chapters is a scandal. It should have been a scandal if the NYPD didn’t investigate them after learning about their extremism, possible involvement in terrorism, and Muslim Brotherhood roots.
College campuses are not somehow immune from the breeding of radical Islam. There are countless stories about how the education system is seen by the Islamists as an ideological battleground. The NYPD was not targeting random Muslim-American students based on their faith alone. It was responding to the realities of the times that we live in and acting on solid intelligence about specific chapters and individuals. The NYPD should be commended.
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