Muslim terrorist Tsarnaev guilty of all 30 counts in Boston Marathon bombing

tsarnaev-guilty

via Tsarnaev guilty of all 30 counts in Boston bombing – CNN.com.

Boston (CNN)Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, his face a blank, stood with his head bowed and his hands clasped as the guilty verdicts tolled one after another for what seemed like an eternity: Guilty of using weapons of mass destruction, guilty of bombing a place of public use, guilty of conspiracy and aiding and abetting. Guilty, guilty, guilty: The word was spoken 32 times.

Yes, the jury said, Tsarnaev caused the deaths of Krystle Campbell, Martin Richard, Lingzi Lu and Sean Collier. Yes, it was murder. And so, the word “yes” was spoken 63 times, each time making Tsarnaev eligible for the death penalty.

From start to finish, it took 26 minutes for the jury to announce its verdict in the Boston Marathon bombing trial: Tsarnaev didn’t skate on a single charge. He now stands guilty of all 30 counts, 17 of which could send him to death row.

If hearing the verdicts seemed overwhelming, that paled in comparison to seeing and hearing evidence behind them: awful images and sounds. The jury saw bombs explode and tear people apart. They saw streets splashed crimson with blood and littered with severed limbs and body parts. They heard the cries of the injured, and witnesses told them how people tended to the dying and gravely injured, unaware of their own injuries as they tied belts around the mangled limbs of friends and strangers alike.

They heard a prosecutor explain why this was done: Tsarnaev was punishing Americans and sending a message to the holy warriors of radical Islam to rise up.

And they saw surveillance photos of Tsarnaev, who prosecutors described as a callous killer, strolling through the aisles of Whole Foods to buy milk and smiling as he stopped by his college gym shortly after the deadly bombing.

Wednesday’s verdict was a major step in the trial, but the toughest legal battles may be yet to come.

The trial will resume, possibly early next week, for a second phase to determine Tsarnaev’s punishment.

The jury’s next assignment: deciding whether the man responsible for the worst act of terrorism on U.S. soil since September 11, 2001, should pay with his life.


 

Does CNN’s Anne Oneil mean the worst act of Islamic terrorism on U.S. soil since 9/11?

Each of the deaths were tragic, yet the Fort Hood jihadist killed many more than the Tsarnaev jihadists – including an unborn child.

Boston Muslim Leaders Boycott Obama’s Plan to Counter Violent (Islamic) Extremism

 And the media, covering for Obama, did not report this major blow to Obama’s agenda. via As Boston Marathon Bombing Trial Continues, Boston Muslim Leaders Upend Obama’s Plan to Counter Violent Extremism in the City – Breitbart.

by Ilya Feoktistov & Charles Jacobs

Just days before three and a half years of relationship-building between Boston’s Muslim leaders and federal law enforcement were to result in a jointly-agreed-upon framework to be announced at the White House CVE Summit, Yusufi Vali made a surprise announcement. He told U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz that the ISBCC will be boycotting the Summit, denounced Obama’s Countering Violent Extremism program as an Islamophobic attempt by Obama to unfairly target all Muslims, and, in effect, largely scuttled the Boston part of Obama’s CVE initiative. This was reported by only one reporter from the Boston Globe, whose report was predictably slanted toward Vali’s position, and the story never gained traction.  Most of America does not know that the Islamic partner in one of the three cities touted as models of cooperation rejected the president’s path.

Vali wrote:

I cannot sign on to this document due to the premise of “Countering Violent Extremism.” […] A far more appropriate premise to the framework acceptable to the Boston-Muslim community would have been “countering violence”. This term does not single out the American-Muslim community. […] It clearly appears that the CVE initiative is exclusively targeting the American-Muslim community. […] My team and I have never personally come across any individual in our congregation seriously considering any fanatical ideology.

Not a single reporter covering the Summit, or the related and concurrent Boston Marathon Bombing trial, informed the public of this stunning contradiction: One the one hand, the Imam of Obama’s favored Muslim institution in Boston publicly rebuked the President’s theory that the “violent extremists” who’ve been chopping off heads, blowing up marathon spectators, and putting hatchets in the heads of NYC police, had nothing to do with Islam. On the other hand, his boss, the man who runs the ISBCC mosque, thinks Obama’s circumlocutions did not go far enough and instead of protecting his community, the President was defaming it.

Obama and his top officials are unlikely to learn anything from this, as they continue to promote a fantasy where Islamic extremism doesn’t exist. Luckily, there are federal officials who are much more hard-nosed. Based on their record of tough terrorism prosecutions of Islamic Society of Boston worshippers Tarek Mehanna and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, we think Department of Justice prosecutors in Boston, including U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz, are among the realists. What lessons should they learn from being betrayed by their ostensible Islamic of Society of Boston partners in countering violent extremism? Here are some suggestions:

  1. Research the organizations with which you partner. The Islamic Society of Boston is an extremist organization, and the federal government is unlikely to get much assistance in fighting extremism from people who are themselves extremist. The ISB was founded by Abdulrahman Alamoudi, an Al Qaeda supporter who was sentenced to 23 years in prison for plotting with Muammar Qaddafi to assassinate former Saudi King Abdullah. The Muslim American Society, which runs the ISBCC, is considered by federal prosecutors to be an overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in America. Last November, the United Arab Emirates designated the Muslim American Society as a terrorist organization. According to Newsweek, Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev became radicalized after he started attending the Islamic Society of Boston mosque in Cambridge. Yet top federal law enforcement officials seem to be ignorant of these facts. Testifying on Capitol Hill after the Boston Marathon bombing, former FBI Director Robert Mueller admitted to having no idea that ISB Cambridge, the bombers’ mosque, was founded by Alamoudi – a man his own agency had put in prison.

  1. Islamic extremists lie to hide their true nature. From Arafat to the Ayatollahs, there has always been a difference between what they say to Western audiences and what they say to their own supporters. Hence the 180 degree separation between the Imam of the ISBCC telling a Muslim audience that Muslims cannot ignore the problem of their coreligionists wanting to kill Americans, and the Executive Director of the ISBCC telling the federal government that to acknowledge the problem of Islamic extremism is a sign of Islamophobia. It’s why Yusufi Vali can insist, “My team and I have never personally come across any individual in our congregation seriously considering any fanatical ideology,” while Webb admits that, “in our own community … we looked into some of the people that were affected by this. There was a young brother that came to me and said, ‘I believe that Anwar Awlaki is like revelation from the heavens.’” (Anwar Awlaki was the Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula leader behind the Fort Hood massacre, the underwear bomb plot, and the Paris attacks early this year.) For the same reason, Yusufi Vali told Boston’s NPR station that, “as soon as we learned that these two individuals [the Boston Marathon bombers] had attended the Cambridge mosque … we encouraged any community members who had potentially interacted with them to go to the FBI.” Yet in reality, the ISB sent out an email to its congregants telling them NOT to talk to the FBI without getting lawyered up first because, “we don’t want to put ourselves at risk.”
  1. Officials seeking to partner with Muslim organizations need to become aware of the important disagreements and distinctions among American Muslims. Suhaib Webb, despite his candid talk about violent Islamic extremism, is himself far from a moderate. He says animosity toward Jews is understandable. He believes that eye contact between the sexes is a sin. He thinks gays are cursed. He has called secularism a “radical, lunatic ideology.” He accuses the Obama administration of being too pro-Israel. Two days before 9/11, he was raising cash for an Islamic extremist cop-killer together with Anwar Awlaki. Yet there is a vast gulf between his willingness to address Islamic extremism and Yusufi Vali’s mendacious attacks on the CVE program.
  1. There is one more story here that the press has missed. Only two months after Webb warned ISBCC members about their fellow Muslims who want to kill Americans, the wildly popular Imam suddenly announced his resignation and left Boston. Perhaps that is not a coincidence. Unfortunately, it seems that the more actively concerned a Muslim leader is about Islamic extremism, the more he is delegitimized in the Muslim community and the less authentic he’s considered by the Obama administration. Moderate Muslim leaders who oppose the Muslim Brotherhood, such as Zuhdi Jasser of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy, were snubbed and excluded from the White House Countering Violent Extremism Summit, even though leaders like Jasser have been the most active in actually fighting violent extremism. The same seems true geopolitically. The Obama State Department actively supported the Muslim Brotherhood government in Egypt while opposing the overthrow of that extremist government by General Abdel Fatah el-Sisi – who has recently called on Islamic nations to reform themselves and stop antagonizing the rest of the world.

Lastly: a note to the good men and women in law enforcement: You need to realize the benefit of just speaking the truth. You work day and night, sometimes risking your lives, while twisting yourselves into logical and rhetorical pretzels to avoid being called Islamophobes. But even if you use the most emasculated and impracticable strategy in dealing with the threat of Islamic extremism, Islamic extremists like Yusufi Vali will call you Islamophobes anyway. You will never counter Islamic extremism by partnering with Islamic extremists – no matter how much you try to appease them. You did not stop the KKK’s reign of terror in the South by partnering with KKK leaders and kowtowing to their sensitivities. You defeated the KKK through an uncompromising challenge to its ideology and to its activities. Now’s the time to revisit that successful strategy.

Jihadist Lessons at the Boston Marathon Bombers’ Mosque

via Revealed: Jihadist Lessons at the Boston Marathon Bombers’ Mosque – Breitbart. by Ilya Feoktistov & Charles Jacobs

The Boston Marathon bombers’ mosque, the Islamic Society of Boston (ISB), employs an intensive radicalizing program aimed at Boston’s historically moderate Muslim community, especially at its youth. It’s called “Tarbiya,” which is Arabic for “growth and refinement.” It is not something that is practiced as part of classical mainstream Islam.

APT has obtained several curriculum documents created by ISB-affiliated groups, which describe exactly what is taught and when, with assignments detailed down to book and page number. We are making the most detailed and traceable of these documents available here and here. We will focus in this article on a particular Tarbiya program called “Young Muslims,” which was explicitly endorsed by Suhaib Webb, the Imam of the ISB’s mega-mosque in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston. It lists books that all participants must read, and even includes page numbers for specific assignments (the document was formerly available at the program’s website, and can still be accessed through an archived version of the site).

The authors of many of these books are among the “Who’s Who” of radical Islamic ideologues. A lot of the books are available in the Boston Marathon bombers’ mosque’s library. Major focus is given to books by Hassan Al Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood; Said Qutb, the father of modern jihadism; Maulana Maududi, the father of political Islam on the Indian subcontinent; and Yusuf Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, whom the Anti-Defamation League calls the “Theologian of Terror.” Some of the books on the “must read” list have nothing to do with Islam, such as several books written by Howard Zinn, Noam Chomsky, and Michael Moore. Having young Muslims read a curriculum that includes far-left atheist authors of Jewish and Christian backgrounds shows that the goal of Tarbiya is not just to develop a Muslim’s spirituality, but also to develop within him a deep animosity to Western democracy.

The ISB and its political arm, the Muslim American Society (MAS), are very open about the program’s existence and even have websites dedicated to it. MAS teaches Tarbiya at each of its dozens of chapters across the United States, and the entire national Tarbiya program happens to be led by the Imam of the Boston Marathon bombers’ ISB Cambridge mosque, Basyouni Nehela. MAS describes Tarbiya in these terms:

MAS aspires to raise a generation of committed and disciplined Muslims who will spread the message of Islam and implement the Movement’s vision in all fields of Islamic work[.] … MAS delivers a rigorous educational curriculum to its current and potential members … The focus of Tarbiya is to groom members who… are equipped with the necessary knowledge, understanding, and skills to make a difference in the society by taking an active role, both individually and collectively, in the reform process that seeks the betterment of our community, our country, and the whole world.

The description of the program makes it seem like yet another benign new-agey spirituality and growth system. That is because, while it is openly advertised, the extremist and jihadist aspects of its curriculum are not – both for the sake of keeping this radical indoctrination from outside scrutiny and for the sake of keeping it, at first, from the Muslim youths who are thinking about joining it.

Indeed, a “Young Muslim” first entering the program will not be reading any extremist authors for a very long time. The first phase of the program is dedicated to completely legitimate religious learning. Participants read the Quran and other Islamic religious texts. They learn about the life of the Muslim prophet, Muhammad, and they study the importance of the Five Pillars of Islam: declaration of faith, prayer, charity, fasting, and pilgrimage.

But soon, those participants who show a high level of dedication, zeal, and religiosity, of willingness to internalize everything that has been taught to them, are told that simply praying and giving charity are not enough. At this next stage of Tarbiya, they are assigned books, such as Let Us Be Muslims by jihadist ideologue Maulana Maududi, who provides them with the core Islamist idea: Muslims need to be more than pious; they need to rule over all mankind:

Brothers in Islam! The Prayer, Fasting, Almsgiving, and Pilgrimage are so important that they are described as the pillars of Islam. They are not, however, like the worship rites in other religions. […]

These acts of worship have in fact been ordained to prepare us for a greater purpose and to train us for a greater duty… What exactly is that great ultimate purpose? Stated simply: the ultimate objective of Islam is to abolish the lordship of man over man and bring him under the rule of the One God. To stake everything you have – including your lives – to achieve this purpose is called Jihad.

Having thus channeled the zealous young Muslim’s sincere religious devotion into an extremist agenda, the third stage of Tarbiya indoctrination consists entirely of incitement to violent Jihad, hatred for America, and of Western civilization in general. It is in this stage that young Muslims study in detail the Islamist corollary to Mein Kampf or the Communist Manifesto: Said Qutb’s Milestones, which outlines a road map to establishing a global Islamic State ruled by Sharia law. It is Said Qutb who inspired Osama Bin Laden. According to Qutb:

All Jewish and Christian societies today are also ignorant societies… Islam cannot accept any mixing with this ignorance… One should accept the Islamic law without any question and reject all other laws in any shape or form… The abolition of man-made laws cannot be achieved only through preaching… It must employ Jihad.

By the time a young Muslim Tarbiya participant reaches this phase, he has already bought in to all the indoctrination in the previous phases that brought him there. The books he studies in the third phase, such as To Be a Muslim by Lebanese Muslim Brotherhood leader Fathi Yakun tell him:

A Muslim must always worship Allah and wage jihad until death in order to reach his ultimate goal… Obedience for a Muslim means to obey every command and implement it whether in time of happiness or hardship, and whether one likes it or not… He will not act against the leader in agreed matters, and will be loyal to him in every action, regardless of his personal likes or dislikes… Dissociate yourself from every gathering or organization that opposes your ideological standpoint, especially when the Movement asks you to do so.

A key component of Tarbiya is not just the material taught, but the structure of the program, in which recruits are organized into intimate cells called “usras.” MAS is considered by Federal prosecutors to be the overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in America, and the program directly follows the methods developed by the Muslim Brotherhood’s founders in Egypt. Eric Trager, an expert on the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood with the Washington Institute for Near East Policy has lectured about the Brotherhood’s Tarbiya process in Egypt:

At the lowest level of the Brotherhood structure is what’s called an usra, or “family.” You can think of this as a cell. This is a group of five to eight Muslim Brothers. They meet weekly for about three hours. They discuss the Quran, religious texts, the Brotherhood’s curriculum, politics. They share their personal lives. The members of this group become a Muslim Brother’s best friends. The people that you work most closely with are in your usra. The usra is a mechanism through which the Brotherhood embeds your social relationships into the organization so that you’re less likely to disobey it due to peer pressure and you’re less likely to leave it because you’ll be leaving your best friends.

This is exactly how the MAS branch in Boston describes its usras:

The usra is an intensive, spiritually-focused, activism-oriented program that develops the individual and invites him or her to join hands with MAS and work for the sake of Islam as a central priority in life. There are weekly assignments prior to and following each usra. Each member is expected to spend approximately 3-6 hours a week on usra and usra-related activities (usra attendance [~ 2 hours], usra assignments [1-2 hrs], dawah work (example MSA work, MAS Youth work, or other Islamic work, etc) [3 hrs], social activities [2 hours /month].) Each usra generally contains around 5-7 members.

MAS demands that those entering its Tarbiya program be “willing to be committed to the usra and hold working for Islam as a central priority in life.” ISB Roxbury Imam Suhaib Webb defines the usra as: “the usra is you’re in the ocean swimming, you’re lost, your boat sunk and suddenly you see some people on the boat, you get there and they give you a blanket and a cup of soup, that’s the usra.” All of this makes leaving the MAS/ISB program extremely difficult. It also makes it extremely likely that if a young Muslim participant is encouraged by his usra leader to do something terrible for the sake of the movement, he will gladly comply, even if this means prison or death.


Read it all.

Charity raising funds for Islamic State…at Harvard University

Muslim charity? via Harvard officials notify community after report of man seeking contributions for ISIS-connected charity – Metro – The Boston Globe. h/t answeringmuslims

Harvard officials say they have notified members of the university community that an unidentified man came to the Kennedy School of Government on Tuesday who said he was soliciting donations for a charity connected to the Islamic State militant group.

“At this time there does not appear to be a threat to the community, but we felt that it was important to notify members of our community. We have also notified the Harvard University Police Department,” the university said Friday in an e-mailed statement.

“He has not been seen on the campus since that time,” the statement said.

The dean of the Kennedy School sent out an e-mail Thursday to members of the school community, notifying them.

A Harvard spokesman said the school had no comment on security matters.

FBI spokeswoman Kristen Setera said the agency is assessing the incident.

 Why no description of the charity or the person who was soliciting funds for jihad? Don’t Harvard, local police and the FBI want to know more?

Bank Records Reveal Saudi Millions Behind Boston Marathon Bombers’ Mosque

via Bank Records Reveal the Saudi Millions Behind the Boston Marathon Bombers’ Mosque.

by ILYA FEOKTISTOV | 01 Mar 2015

The Islamic Society of Boston (ISB), whose Cambridge mosque the Boston Marathon bombers attended during their increasing radicalization, was in large part established with money from Saudi Arabian elites. Indeed, former Saudi Minister of Petroleum Zaki Yamani gave the keynote speech at the celebration marking the transfer of public City of Boston land to the ISB for less than 10% of its market value to build the ISBCC mega-mosque. Now, for the first time, Americans for Peace and Tolerance is making publicly available the names of wealthy Saudi and Gulf sources who together paid for over $8.6 million of the ISBCC mega-mosque’s $15.6 million price tag.

The Saudi donation records were recovered from the Islamic Society of Boston’s direct bank records, which were turned over to APT under court order during the ISB’s failed attempt to sue its critics for libel. A listing of donor names, donation dates, and dollar amounts, as well as the raw financial records in pdf form are included in this release. There are multiple questionable Saudi and Gulf sources among these documents. We welcome the public’s help in crowdsourcing the ongoing investigation into the backgrounds of the listed individuals.

Among the donors to the ISB and its directors is Saudi Prince Bandar Bin Sultan. Earlier this month, in a lawsuit launched by 9/11 victims’ families against the Saudi government, Zacaraias Moussaoui, the would-be twelfth hijacker in the 9/11 attacks, gave sworn testimony in which he alleged that Prince Bandar was also a donor to Al Qaeda.

Another donation to the ISB came from a Kuwaiti charity called Lajnat al Daawa al Islamiyya, a US Government designated terrorist entity whose Peshawar offices in Pakistan were once run by Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks.

The Saudi government publicly beheads people in the streets, and has put a blogger who was critical of Saudi society on death penalty trial for apostasy. Saudis don’t build Quaker meeting houses. Given the extremist Wahhabi form of Islam that the Saudi ruling elite have imposed on their people, what kind of Islam is being taught in an American mosque built with their money?


More details on the millions in Saudi funding at the link above.

More on Boston’s Brotherhood mosques in our archives. Click here to read some of the headlines, including this:

Obama White House Partners with ISIS-Linked Group in Boston

APT_WashTimes_FP

via Obama White House Partners with ISIS-Linked Group | FrontPage Magazine.

by Matthew Vadum

A Boston-based hub of terrorism associated with a top Islamic State propagandist and producer of hostage-beheading videos will receive the red carpet treatment at an anti-terrorism conference at the Obama White House this Wednesday.

The so-called Summit on Countering Violent Extremism comes as President Obama seeks formal authorization from Congress to wage war against the Islamic State (also known as ISIS or ISIL).

The terrorist-friendly Islamic Society of Boston (ISB), which is a known front for Islamist terrorist groups, operates mosques in and around Boston.

Members of the anti-terrorist community are outraged that officials of ISB will participate in discussions of anti-terrorism best practices on Feb. 18.

In a recent Washington Times op-ed, Charles Jacobs and Ilya Feoktistov of Americans For Peace and Tolerance, warned that ISB “and its political arm, the Muslim American Society, seen as the go-to groups for civic and law enforcement partnerships, have links to many extremists who are either in jail, in flight from federal authorities, or have been killed during terrorist attacks.” The group also ran a full-page ad about ISB’s participation in the summit in the Washington Times under the headline, “Why is Boston a Hub For ‘VIOLENT EXTREMISM?’”

Social media guru Ahmad Abousamra, who is now the chief propagandist for the Islamic State, regularly attended ISB’s Cambridge mosque, according to the New York Post. His father was a vice president of the Muslim American Society of Boston. The FBI suspects Abousamra is in charge of Islamic State’s slick English-language propaganda campaign that produces videos of beheadings and various atrocities. The campaign has succeeded in recruiting at least 300 American jihadists and thousands of volunteers from other Western nations.

Long before the Islamic State arrived on the world scene, the Islamic Society of Boston had already long been a hotbed of terrorist activity, according to DiscoverTheNetworks.

ISB was founded by Hamas and Hezbollah supporter Abdurahman Alamoudi, who in 2004 was sentenced to 23 years in prison on terrorism-related charges. ISB’s Cambridge mosque is run by the Muslim American Society, which federal prosecutors say is a front for the Muslim Brotherhood. Saudi benefactors helped to fund a sister mosque, the Islamic Society of Boston Cultural Center (ISBCC), in Boston’s Roxbury neighborhood.

Boston marathon bombers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev worshiped at ISB’s Cambridge mosque, as did Tarek Mehanna. Mehanna received terrorist training in Yemen and intended to use automatic weapons to inflict mass casualties in a suburban shopping mall near Boston. In 2012 Mahenna received a 17-year prison term for conspiring to aid al-Qaeda. Oussama Ziade, a benefactor of the Boston mosque, was indicted in 2009 for accepting money from al-Qaeda fundraiser Yassin Kadi.

Jacobs and Feoktistov throw some light on other ISB mosque congregants.

Yusuf Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, was a founding trustee  of the ISB. He has urged the elimination of Jews and the murder of homosexuals. An INTERPOL arrest warrant is pending. Aafia Siddiqui, also known as “Lady al Qaeda,” who is serving 86 years in prison for attempted murder after she opened fire on FBI agents, also attended an ISB mosque.

Hafiz Masood, a Muslim American Society religious leader deported for immigration offenses, reportedly raised funds and recruited members in Boston for his brother’s terrorist group, which was responsible the massacre in Mumbai, India. ISB congregant Rezwan Ferdaus, is now serving a 17-year prison term after plotting to fly remote-controlled airplane bombs into the U.S. Capitol.

ISB Iman Abdullah Faaruuq gave the Massachusetts attorney general’s office a $50,000 grant in 2010 for Muslim “sensitivity training” for the police.

“Under the program’s guidelines, law enforcement officers are barred from studying radical Islamist ideology as a motive for the violent extremism that the president’s program is supposed to counter,” Jacobs and Feoktistov note. “Imam Faaruuq was later found on tape urging Boston Muslims to ‘pick up the gun and the sword to defend Aafia ‘Lady al Qaeda’ Siddiqui,’ who was then on trial.”

The Obama White House announced the upcoming summit last month. It will “highlight domestic and international efforts to prevent violent extremists and their supporters from radicalizing, recruiting, or inspiring individuals or groups in the United States and abroad to commit acts of violence, efforts made even more imperative in light of recent, tragic attacks in Ottawa, Sydney, and Paris.”


Translation: The U.S. government will give more taxpayer dollars to Muslims around the world.

Despite the excellent research APT publishes, they cling to the belief that there are “moderate Muslims who can defend America by proactively countering the radicalizing doctrines that reach into their communities.

The “radicalizing doctrines” are central to Islam. So if these folks exist, they’re considered apostates according to Islam and by other Muslims.

Immigration judge denies asylum for Afghan soldier who fled training exercise in Massachusetts

An update on this post, with a surprising ruling. via US judge: No asylum for Afghan soldier who fled training – Olean Times Herald

An immigration judge denied asylum Friday for an Afghan military officer who sneaked away from a U.S. training exercise in Massachusetts to avoid returning to Afghanistan, where he said he had been threatened by the Taliban.

The judge ruled that Maj. Jan Arash did not qualify for certain protections because the Taliban is not a government, his lawyer said, nor had he proven that he would be persecuted, rather than legally prosecuted, by the Afghan government.

“If he gets deported and hung for desertion, that’s OK under the law,” attorney Matthew Borowski said.

“We have no choice but to appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals,” the attorney said. The process could take several months.

In the meantime, Arash will continue to be held at the Buffalo Federal Detention Center, where the asylum case was heard.

Arash is one of three Afghan military officers who were detained in September after being denied entry into Canada, where they had planned to seek refugee status.

One of the soldiers, Capt. Mohammad Nasir Askarzada, was allowed into Canada in December after proving he had relatives there.

The other, Capt. Noorullah Aminyar, is seeking asylum in the United States. His case is pending before the same judge that denied Arash’s claim.

“The cases are essentially the same,” Borowski said. Friday’s ruling “doesn’t bode well for him.”

Borowski, who has been representing the soldiers pro bono, said Arash had hoped to be released on parole so that he could work to send money to his wife and children, who are suffering without Arash’s income.

“His family is starving in Afghanistan,” Borowski said. “They don’t have firewood and they don’t have food, or not enough.”

The three soldiers took a cab more than 500 miles from Massachusetts to the Canadian border in Niagara Falls while in the United States for a training exercise at Joint Base Cape Cod. In interviews with The Associated Press shortly after they were detained, they described being targeted by the Taliban because of their work with U.S. soldiers.


According to the White House, the Taliban is not a terrorist group.

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