Willful blindness, inaugural edition

In 2007 the Islamic Society of North America was identified by the government as one of the unindicted co-conspirators of the Holy Land Foundation. (So was CAIR.) The government identified ISNA as an entity that is or was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood in the United States.

HLF was of course the chief fundraiser for Hamas in the United States. The government closed down HLF in the aftermath of 9/11. This past November it was convicted along with its principals of conspiring to provide material support to a foreign terrorist organization.

Josh Gerstein covered the HLF prosecution for the late New York Sun newspaper. Yesterday afternoon Gerstein reported for Politico that ISNA president Ingrid Mattson is scheduled to join clerics offering prayers for the new president and his family during the Obama inaugural prayer service at the National Cathedral in Washington.

Gerstein quotes the HLF prosecutor stating that exhibits introduced at trial established ISNA’s intimate relationship with the Muslim Brotherhood, the the Muslim Brotherhood’s Palestine Committee that devoted itself to supporting Hamas, and the HLF defendants. The prosecutor advised the court that ISNA was intimately connected with the HLF and its assigned task of providing financial support to Hamas. Winfield Myers has more on Mattson and ISNA.

In a sense, the Obama inaugural’s inclusion of Mattson represents continuity with the Bush administration. While one arm of the government has blown the whistle on leading American Islamic groups including CAIR and ISNA, other arms of the government have treated the groups as respectable members of civil society. This is one area where change is actually called for and the status quo obtains. Mattson’s participation in the prayer service makes out that willful blindness remains the order of the day.

UPDATE: Rick Moran traces the coverage of Mattson’s inaugural appearance to the January 17 report by Winfield Myers for American Thinker. Bill Katz reminds me that Mattson is a Catholic convert to Islam.

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