One of the most devastating oppressions against the Middle East region’s civil societies and the Arab spring is not fought by weapons in the Middle East, nor is it led by Gaddafi, Mubarak, Bin Ali, Saleh or Assad. It is led by the powerful Islamist lobby, or should I say lobbies, in Washington DC.
Since the 1990s CAIR and its allies attacked Copts, Southern Sudanese, Lebanese, Syrian reformers, Assyrians and Chaldeans and Muslim dissidents in the United States. The Ikhwan of America demonized any publication, book, article or interview in the national media or local press raising the issue of secular freedoms in the Middle East. The Islamists wanted to eliminate the liberal cause in the Arab world and replace it with the cause of the Islamists. What is also shocking is that CAIR and its allies stood by the oppressive regimes and visited them, claiming they speak on behalf of the peoples. CAIR and the Brotherhood fronts in America destroyed systematically every project that would have defended the seculars and liberals originating from the Middle East. No book, documentary or show on the liberals in Arab civil societies was allowed to see the light by the notorious and well funded Islamists of the US.
The Islamist lobbies also severely attacked members of the US Congress such as Democrat Congressman Tom Lantos ( who passed away), Eliot Engel, Howard Berman, Gary Ackerman, Senator Joe Lieberman as well as Republican congressmen Frank Wolfe, Chris Smith, Trent Franks and Republican Senators John McCain, Rick Santorum and Sam Brownback for their efforts in passing legislative acts in support for democracy and liberty in the Middle East. Brotherhood CAIR and pro-Iranian regime NIAC heavily savaged President Bush’s speeches on Freedom Forward in the Middle East deploying all the resources they have to block the US support to liberal democrats in the region. Islamist lobbies in Washington are directly responsible for killing any initiative in the US Government to support Darfur, southern Sudan, Lebanon, the Kurds, liberal women in the Muslim world, and true democrats in the Arab world and Muslim Africa.
In the think tank world, CAIR and its allies aggressively attacked scholars who raised the issue of persecution against seculars or minorities in the Arab world and Iran. Among those attacked were Nina Shea and Paul Marshal from the Hudson Institute and the founder of an anti-Slavery Group, Dr. Charles Jacobs, who was exposing the Sudan regime for its atrocities.
Last but not least is the Islamist relentless campaign to strike at top scholars who advise Government and appear in the media to push for democratic liberation in the region. The vast and vicious attacks leveled against Professor Walid Phares initially by CAIR’s Nihad Awad and then widened by pro-Hezbollah and Muslim Brotherhood operatives on the internet has revealed to Arab and Middle Eastern liberals and seculars how ferocious the battle is for the Middle East in the US. Phares’ books, particularly the latest one “The Coming Revolution: Struggle for Freedom in the Middle East” (published in 2010) hit the Islamist agenda hard by predicting the civil society revolts in the Middle East and then predicting how the Islamists will try to control them. Phares was attacked by an army of Jihadist militia online like no author before him was, after Samuel Huntington in the 1990s. Phares as a freedom activist from the Middle East, Mustafa Geha wrote, is a hero to Muslim liberals. Along with dissidents, lawmakers, experts and human rights activists, Phares is a force driving for a strategic change in US Foreign Policy towards supporting secular democracies in the region. This explains why the Islamists of America are fighting the battle for the forthcoming regimes with all the means they have.
FamilySecurityMatters.org Contributor Dr. Essam Abdallah is an Egyptian liberal intellectual who writes for leading Arab liberal publication Elaph. He also teaches at Ain Shams University.
In a Q&A session, Rep. Joe Pitts asked Egyptian political activist Cynthia Farahat a question about US policy toward her country.