Saturday, November 29, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

UPDATED: Muslim group coming to Springfield Country Club

The Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim advocacy organization that has been a lightning rod for local controversy in recent years, is planning to hold its annual dinner and fundraiser at the Springfield Country Club in Delaware County.

UPDATED: Muslim group coming to Springfield Country Club

If history is any guide, I have a feeling you'll be hearing more about this in the coming weeks.

The Philadelphia chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, a Muslim advocacy organization that has been a lightning rod for local controversy in recent years, is planning to hold its annual dinner and fundraiser at the Springfield Country Club in Delaware County next month. That would be the same country club where the Delco GOP holds many of its fundraisers, and where its candidates, including freshman U.S. Rep. Pat Meehan, celebrate their victories.

Then-U.S. Rep. Joe Sestak took a lot of heat in 2007 and last year for even speaking to CAIR in Philadelphia. The group tends to make conservatives and the Jewish community go completely bonkers. CAIR's scheduled banquet at the country club already has Philly's Aaron Proctor stirring the pot.

Here's the CAIR flier with the scheduled speakers.

Update: Meehan has issued the below statement. CAIR says they'll have something to say this afternoon.

"It is my understanding that this event has taken place annually over the past several years. While I would never deny any group their Constitutional right to peacefully assemble, I have major concerns about the meeting’s featured speakers. The event is sponsored by the Philadelphia Chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a group which the FBI severed ties with in 2009 after CAIR was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation trial regarding the funding of terrorist organizations. The FBI also ‘does not view CAIR as an appropriate liaison partner.’

"In addition, CAIR has recently made a series of statements accusing the FBI of falsely entrapping Muslim-Americans and advocating that Muslims not cooperate with law enforcement and the FBI. As recently as last month, CAIR had a poster on its website which encouraged Muslim-Americans not to talk to the FBI. As a former U.S. Attorney, I am extremely concerned about the message that this kind of rhetoric sends to the community.

“I am extremely concerned about one of the event’s featured speakers, Imam Johari Abdul-Malik, who is the Director of Community Outreach for the Dar Al-Hijrah Islamic Center in Falls Church, Virginia. Anwar al-Awlaki, who is now considered to be one of the biggest threats to U.S. national security, was closely associated with the Dar Al-Hijrah Islamic Center before he fled to Yemen. Moreover, 9/11 hijackers Hawaf al-Hazmi and Hani Hanjour worshipped at that center. Mr. Abdul-Malik himself has made a number of inflammatory statements against the nation of Israel, which I condemn in the strongest terms.”

Update 2: CAIR has a lengthy response to Meehan and Proctor. Read it here.

About this blog
In The Daily Delco blog, Daily News reporters William Bender and Stephanie Farr dig up all the dirt - from crazy crimes to political malfeasance and everything in between - in Delaware County.

E-mail tips to Bender at benderw@phillynews.com or call him at 215-964-2099. Follow him on Twitter: @wbender99

E-mail tips to Farr at farrs@phillynews.com or call her at 215-854-4225. Follow her on Twitter: @farfarraway

William Bender and Stephanie Farr
Also on Philly.com
Stay Connected