Recently the mainstream media made much of revelations that the New York City Police Department (NYPD) had been conducting surveillance of Muslims in New York and New Jersey, including members of the Muslim Brotherhood-linked Muslim Students Association. After an investigation cleared the NYPD of any wrongdoing and established the complete legality of the program, an Islamic supremacist group in New Jersey is trying a different tactic to shut this surveillance down: they’ve brought suit trying to ban surveillance based on religion – a lawsuit that only Islamic jihadists could love.
“They don’t have the right to spy and do surveillance on innocent people, on good citizens,” huffed an imam in Newark, Abdul Kareem Muhammad. He added: “This surveillance, this spying, without question, was unjustified. And it was definitely, without doubt, an invasion of our civil, human and our constitutional rights.”
Contrary to Muhammad’s assertions, an investigation actually uncovered no NYPD wrongdoing: New Jersey State Attorney Jeffrey Chiesa undertook a three-month-long investigation of the NYPD for its surveillance of Muslims in New Jersey and cleared the Department of any wrongdoing. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, an energetic proponent of the Ground Zero Mosque, and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly maintain that the program is necessary and falls within legal bounds.
Likewise, when asked about the legality of the program, the NYPD’s Deputy Commissioner of Public Information, Paul Browne responded: “I refer you to the New Jersey AG’s report and to the fact that NYPD activities in New Jersey were lawful, appropriate and in keeping with efforts there, in New York, and around the world to prevent terrorists from returning here to kill more New Yorkers.”
But preventing terrorists from killing more New Yorkers, as well as New Jerseyites, is apparently not a high priority for Muslim Advocates, which describes itself as “a legal resource to promote the full and meaningful participation of Muslims in American public life.” Farhana Khera, the executive director of Muslim Advocates, appears aware of how the group’s suit looks as if Muslims are trying to impede legitimate counterterror efforts, and insists that “all Americans, including American Muslims, care deeply about our safety and security.”
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