By Leo Hohmann
Islam is a “religion of peace,” its advocates in Western nations claim, and they’re willing to go to extraordinary lengths to protest, intimidate, and smear anyone who presents facts that would indicate otherwise.
There are new indications that forces on the left are building coalitions with Muslim Brotherhood fronts and fanning out across the U.S. in search of meetings, conferences, even informal gatherings where Islam might be discussed in a negative light.
When they find them, they pounce.
The latest attempt to shut down a meeting in which a speaker was planning to provide information critical of Islam occurred in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.
Ron Branstner, a researcher based out of St. Cloud, Minnesota, had booked space at the Sioux Falls History Club for Oct. 26. This is a club that has a 100-year history of discussing world events from the perspective of free and open debate.
But while driving to the event Thursday night, Branstner received phone a call from the venue and was told not to come. A powerful Democratic politician with connections to the history club had been contacted by a Muslim lawyer named Taneeza Islam.
Apparently, that’s all it takes in Sioux Falls to shut down the First Amendment, said Branstner, whose presentation was focused, ironically, on Islam and the First Amendment.
“I was going there to speak about the First Amendment, our first right to free speech, and how it is being stolen from us,” Branstner said. “We ended up having to change the venue to another town 27 miles away and so everyone had to drive 27 miles to hear my presentation.”
The female Muslim attorney, Taneeza Islam, has connections to radical Islamist Linda Sarsour and the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR. She is involved with the Islamic Center of Sioux Falls, the same mosque that protested former Muslim Shahram Hadian’s speaking event earlier this year in the city.
Taneeza Islam is a Bush Foundation fellow and civil-rights activist who also works as an immigration attorney, representing Muslim refugees and illegal aliens from Central America. She also pushes the idea that all who object to unlimited refugee resettlement and illegal immigration in America is a “white nationalist.”
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Islam promotes the #CounterACThate meme on Facebook which tries to shut down and destroy ACT For America chapters holding meetings to educate people about Shariah law.
“She’s connected to that mosque in Sioux Falls, and very politically active,” Hadian said.
And that mosque, the Islamic Center of Sioux Falls, is owned lock, stock and barrel by the North American Islamic Trust or NAIT, which has been linked to the extremist Muslim Brotherhood.
Pastor Shahram Hadian grew up Muslim in Iran and later converted to Christianity, after his family defected to Canada and eventually the United States.
“She was there at a protest outside the hotel where I spoke in April, she was with the imam doing the prayers, they had all the interfaith people standing around them with their backs to the Muslims and their faces turned out while the Muslims were doing their prayers, that’s a great picture of how foolish these people are,” Hadian said of the April event.
So let’s take a look at a few of the other recent cases that would indicate First Amendment rights no longer apply to Americans speaking out critically about one religion and one religion only – Islam [remember, criticism of Christianity is perfectly acceptable and not considered the least bit “bigoted” or “Christophobic.”
On Thursday, Oct. 26, in Des Moines, author/scholar Steve Kirby, who has written five books on Islam and has a doctorate’s degree in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia, had his speaking event at a community room inside the Pizza Ranch canceled when the restaurant chain caved to protesters demands and said it didn’t want to risk any incidents that might put the safety of its patrons at risk.
Kirby had to move his event at the last minute to the public library, where he was met by protesters from members of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, or CAIR, and an allied group called Indivisible, which has been financed by George Soros and has ties to former President Barack Obama’s Organizing for Action.
Protesters sat in the front rows and held up newspapers to block people’s view of Kirby’s presentation.
Indivisible has a presence in practically every state with the sole mission of sowing seeds of discord among Republicans and disrupting the flow of free speech wherever the issue of immigration or Islam pops up.
Their stock and trade is in vicious, Saul Alinsky-type ad-hominem attacks, with some of their favorite names for those holding opposing political views being “bigot,” “xenophobe,” “Islamophobe” and “racist.” But the latest smear-of-choice, popularized by the Charlottesville, Virginia, incident is summer, is “white nationalist.”
Since the election of Donald Trump a full convergence is playing out between radical leftists with ties to Indivisible/Antifa and those with Islamist connections such as CAIR, ISNA and the Muslim Student Association.
Anyone who questions whether open borders and “welcoming” Islamic Shariah law into your community is a good thing, gets branded a white nationalist, racist bigot. The town “bigots” are typically announced through social media posts, an article in the local newspaper and even some TV spots. Even if local media allows the accused bigot a chance to defend himself, as the Des Moines Register did for Steve Kirby, the accused comes across as having to defend himself and sounds guilty to the uninformed masses.
Jacob Hall of Sioux Center, a board member of Sioux County Conservatives, strongly rejects the argument that anyone disagreeing with the hardcore left must be a bigoted white nationalist.
“This is just another example of the unhinged left trying to suppress free speech. They don’t want a dialogue,” Hall told the Des Moines Register. “They don’t want the other side to be pointed out,” and they don’t want a scholar who has written books about Islam to discuss the topic, he added.
The Pizza Ranch is a frequent host of Republican and conservative speaking events in the Des Moines, but apparently it only takes a few calls to the restaurant management from leftist protesters to get an event canceled.
Since the protests only seem to role in when conservatives take up the issue of Islam, the message is clear, says Dr. Mark Christian, a former Muslim turned Christian whose Omaha-Nebraska-based Global Faith Institute specializes in educating Christians about the differences between the two faiths.
“The ownership of the Pizza Ranch has now let it be known that if you speak there, you’d better not talk negatively about Islam,” said Dr. Christian.
On Sept. 12, former FBI counter-terrorism agent John Guandolo and journalist Chris Gaubatz spoke at the city-owned community center in tiny Oakland, Iowa, near Council Bluffs in Pottawattamie County. There topic was “Understanding the Threat: The Muslim Brotherhood’s Secret Strategies for the USA.”
Not only did the event get protested and disrupted, again with newspapers held up in the front rows and loud talking, but police had to be called in to restore order.
Weeks after the event the local GOP chairman for Pottawattamie County, Jeff Jorgensen, was removed from office by the GOP when it was discovered he played a role in inviting Guandolo and Gaubatz to the area to speak about Islam.
On Oct. 18, the Sportsman’s Club in Stewartsville, Minnesota, canceled an event where Usama Dakdok, an Egyptian Coptic Christian who travels around speaking about how Christians are treated by Muslims in Muslim-majority countries such as his native Egypt.
The Sportsman’s Club, which is rented out for various community events including those hosted by Muslims, has an eight-person board of directors that voted 6-2 to cancel the contract for Dakdok’s speaking event. The board took this action only after protesters began phoning the club and demanding it not rent space to Dakdok, even though a contract to book the venue had already been signed, according to the Post Bulletin of Stewartsville, which is near Rochester, Minnesota.
One of the Sportsman’s Club’s board members said he was reluctant to cancel the contract because he was “kinda on the side of free speech.”
“And I’m not biased against Muslims whatsoever. I don’t have a problem with them. It’s just the ISIS parts that I have an issue with,” Bunde told the Post Bulletin, referring to the Islamic State.
Regina Mustafa, a 37-year-old native of Philadelphia, announced a run for Congress in Minnesota, where she has lived for the last 12 years and been an activist for interfaith dialogue between Islam, Judaism and Christianity. She recently pulled out of the race.
Regina Mustafa, a Muslim convert and CAIR operative, was one of the ringleaders who helped pressure the Sportsman’s Club to cancel Dakdok’s event. She said she supported the club’s decision, but didn’t discount the possibility that Dakdok might secure another venue around Rochester. So, just to be sure, she said she would forge ahead with plans to hold a counter-event at the Rochester library, which is set for Oct. 29 from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m., the same day Dakdok was set to speak.
“I’d like to still have this event,” said Mustafa, who teaches that Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance. “There’s a great amount of interest in it already.”
In April 2017, a heavily armed Muslim Ehab Jabber infiltrated a Christian conference at a local hotel in Sioux Falls. He entered the ticketed event undetected with a handgun and was told to leave, then livestreamed threats to the Christians from his vehicle in the parking lot, where he had a cache of weapons including an assault rifle and hundreds of rounds of ammunition. Jaber has since pleaded guilty to federal weapons charges but the state charges remain unresolved. “I have a feeling they’re going to drop those charges. Lost his guns and right bear, is now a felon, but the other [local] prosecutor said the guy did nothing wrong.”
Hadian embarked on a four-city tour through Minnesota and Wisconsin in August-September. He was protested at three of the events and at the fourth, the host received calls pressuring him to cancel the event.
At one of the events in Browerville, Minnesota, on Sept. 12, a couple of the protesters got inside and came up and stood in front of Hadian and disrupted the meeting.
“The sheriff was there and one of the two was literally dragged out, and of course he was claiming he was assaulted, but there were too many witnesses to see he would not leave and was disrupting the event, and when the security put hands on him he went limp,” Hadian said.
The next night in Freeport, Minnesota, there were no protesters but the owner of the facility said Muslim activists and their supporters were calling him at home trying to pressure him to cancel the event, saying they were going to boycott his business. He held firm and did not cancel.
Two nights later, on Sept. 14 a group of communists allied with liberal Christians and radical Muslims decided they would take their protest directly to the enemy. This time they would actually protest a group of Christians meeting in the privacy of their own church — the Granite City Baptist Church in St. Cloud, where Hadian was scheduled as a guest speaker on the topic of “The Trojan Horse of Interfaith Dialogue.”
Hadian believes the interfaith movement is geared toward getting Christians to accept the general claims of Islam and ultimately deny the deity of Christ. He was greeted by about 50 protesters, roughly half of them from the interfaith community called UniteCloud, which includes an amalgamation of Christians, Jews and Muslims. Several infiltrated the meeting inside the church.
Hadian said he saw at least two people wearing Black Lives Matter t-shirts and others appeared to be members of local communist and/or antifa-affiliated groups called Expect Resistance and the IWW General Defense Committee Local 17.
These groups had been agitating on Facebook in the days leading up to the meeting. They also put flyers around town calling Hadian, who is a native of Iran with brown skin, a “white supremacist.”
“That was the first time where we saw that element, a communist group, along with BLM and an interfaith group called UniteCloud, which includes people who say they are Christians,” Hadian said.
“And one of their Facebook posts called me a white supremacist, that we were recruiting white people to go kill Muslims,” said Hadian, a former police officer turned Christian pastor whose ministry is called the “Truth in Love Project.
“We hired police officers, we did bag searches for everyone coming into the church,” he said.
Prior to Hadian’s event, the Granite City Baptist Church had been vandalized after hosting another former-Muslim speaker from Pakistan.
“They said on their Facebook posts they were going to disrupt the event during Q & A period. At what point does that become defamation to say I am inciting people to go kill and hurt Muslims?”
Hadian advises others who want to hold meetings or events on Islam to avoid city-owned public properties, such as libraries, schools or community centers, and if that is the only available space then make it a ticketed, private event.
“One, they can cancel you last minute, pull the plug, and number-two it’s public space. Even if you have to charge five bucks for a ticket, it’s worth it, or better yet get a church because now it’s private property and it just looks better. A church service you add the element of infringing upon an entire group’s First Amendment rights, so it looks really bad for the protesters to be protesting a church’s private gathering.”
The last leg of Hadian’s three-city tour was in Milwaukee on Sept. 16. Again, protesters converged on his event.
“About 15 people gathered outside, and they came in to disrupt and also got escorted out by sheriff’s deputies,” Hadian said. “So on that trip I got protested three out of four trips, and the other venue tried to cancel, so this is now the new norm.
“The whole modus operandi is to shut down the event, make it expensive because you have to hire security, anything to stop this information from getting out to Christians who need to hear it.”
The travesty is that the anti-free speech leftists and Muslims conduct their operations against the First Amendment under this faux argument that they want to promote dialogue.
“And yet they don’t even want us to engage in dialogue, they just want to shut us down, so it’s a one-way tolerance, and apostasy on the part of the Christians who are involved in this,” Hadian said.
Engaging in a true dialogue is one thing, but Christians who claim to be “uniting” with Muslims around a religion that denies the deity of Christ, denies the crucifixion, death and resurrection of Christ, are doing nothing if not rallying to the support of a global anti-Christ religious system, he said.
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