Islamic supremacy is advancing from all angles.
Steve Mustapha Elturk is getting his Master of Arts in Social Justice at Marygrove College, a small Catholic liberal arts school located in Detroit. During a class break, he walks down a hallway to a sparse room with a chalk board on the wall.
“This is an interfaith prayer room at Marygrove College,” says Elturk. “We have rugs in the basket for those who would like to pray during our times of prayer.”
As a practicing Muslim, Elturk prays five times a day. A few years back, the college converted the room to offer a space for everyone to pray, but particularly to accommodate its growing Muslim student population. Not long after that, Marygrove created a special social justice cohort exclusively for Muslim students like Elturk.
“Even at a Catholic college, there you go!” says Dr. Brenda Bryant, chair of Marygrove’s Social Justice Program. Bryant says the master’s program trains “scholar activists.” It was started after the September 11th attacks. This is the first time the school has had an all Muslim cohort.
The group is diverse. It’s made up of students who have been living in and around Detroit, but who originally came from the Middle East, Northern Africa, and Europe. They have professional backgrounds in media, art, education and more. Some are Sunni, some are “Shia.”
The idea for the program came from, Achmat Salie, a local Islamic faith leader who thought the program would be popular with Muslims who held high-level degrees from foreign countries that are sometimes less valued in the U.S. Bryant says the college was on board from the start. But she says some community members were a little confused as to why the group was segregated.
“Actually when we announced it we had people say things like ‘Why did they have to meet together?’”
Bryant says the rationale was that, “We figured that as a group if they came together, they would have similar issues. And then they could support each other.”
The President of Marygrove, Dr. Elizabeth Burns, says opening up the program to this particular group has offered a lesson for everyone.
“Having a cohort of Muslim imams did bring readings and teachings from the Quran into the classroom,” says Burns. “You use it to build on where you’re going and make people realize, have people realize, that we are more alike than we are different. And it’s been a very good growth experience for our faculty as well as the students.”
As for this cohort, Elturk, an engineer turned Imam, says he’s excited to take the principles of social justice back to the folks he works with as an imam and president of the Islamic Organization of North America (IONA), headquartered in Warren, Mich.
If Elturk and IONA sound familiar, it’s because we’ve covered them before. Here’s what the media won’t tell you about them: via CAIR lawyer tied to Islamist mosque
IONA is the American arm of Tanzeem-e-Islami (TI), a Nazi-style Islamist movement located in Pakistan, whose website preaches violence and hatred towards non-Muslims. The movement was founded by Israr Ahmad, a religious fanatic who, according to IONA’s website, had broken away from the Muslim Brotherhood affiliate Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) in 1957 because of the group’s “involvement in the electoral politics.”
A couple of Ahmad’s favorite targets are Jews and Christians, whom he chillingly describes as “enemies of Islam.”
Ahmad brought his movement to America in 1993, under the name Tanzeem-e-Islami North America (TINA). In 2003, the organization changed its name to the Islamic Organization of North America (IONA), after Ahmad had appointed Mustapha “Steve” Elturk to be the group’s new leader.
Subsequent to the name change, IONA has made the claim that it is somehow independent from TI. Yet, the web address tanzeem.us is a mirror address of IONA’s official website, ionaonline.org.
IONA became embroiled in its own terrorism controversy, after Canadian TI member Qayyum Abdul Jamal was arrested for his participation in a plot to blow up various structures throughout Ontario. IONA leader Mustapha Elturk disavowed any connection to him.
CAIR’s Melanie Elturk has been involved with IONA since at least the middle of last year.