Yet another fund-raiser from the Boston branch of the Muslim American Society, this time at the Islamic Center of Burlington:
"Tired of the lack of unity among Boston’s Muslims? Finding it hard to get married? Feeling lost and think no one else cares? Teen Troubles?"
"Your local leaders tacke the hot topics facing your community."
Sounds like they'll enjoy some wide-ranging discussions. The national MAS website mentions that it's an offshoot of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood: MAS's "more recent roots, ... can be traced to the Islamic revival movement which evolved at the turn of the twentieth century. This movement brought the call of Islam to Muslims throughout the globe to reestablish Islam as a total way of life."
The current page on "how the MAS got started" is blank. Perhaps they figured out that most Americans don't think an association with the MB is anything to boast about. Nonetheless, we shouldn't forget that link. The Islamic Society of Boston (ISB) arose out of the Boston MAS, and they maintain close organizational ties.
The six local leaders at this MAS fund-raiser are:
- Imam Muhammed Masood -"defrocked" imam from Islamic Center of New England (ICNE), Sharon MA; brother of LeT's Hafiz Saeed; awaiting immigration hearing for religious visa fraud.
- Imam Abdulla Farooq -from the Mosque for the Praising of Allah in Boston; found a very curious mention of Farooq here: "After all, Tirupathi Devasthanam let Farooq Abdullah have a Darshan by making him sign a ledger saying he believed in Balaji. I wonder what will happen to Farooq if a Wahabi mullah comes to know that he believes in a kafir idol!"
- Dr. Mohammed Lazzouni - affiliated with Al-Hamra Academy of Shrewsbury, MA, on the Board of Trustees, as is Salma Kazmi, formerly Assistant Director of the ISB. Ingrid Mattson, President of the Islamic Society of North America, is speaking at a fund raiser in April. She recently spoke at Harvard. Their Links page is fairly interesting, too. Which masjids does Al-Hamra link to? The ISB, and the three masjids with imams who are related to Hafiz Saeed: ICNE, the ISGL and the ISGW. How curious, how bizarre, and what a coincidence!
- Salwa Abdalla -Could it be this Salwa Abdallah, speaker for MeccaCentric Da'wah Group?
- Hossam AlJabri - President, MAS Boston, looks like the MAS rain maker, he is the one calling for Muslims to donate money for religious reason, donations will help them in the afterlife. At a December 2006 fund raiser at the Islamic Society of Greater Lowell, AlJabri said that he met every month with different law enforcement agencies. Yet the explicit message given by the ACLU and MAS at this same fund raiser was, "don't trust the government, don't talk to the FBI." Hope the enforcement agencies have caught on.
The Boston MAS seems to hold a fund-raiser for one reason or another almost every month. Recently, they had a campaign to raise funds for Imam Masood.
The Board of Directors of the MAS includes Sheikh Basyouny Nehela, imam of the Islamic Society of Boston. Nehela is also is also a Program Director at the Islamic Academy of New England (IANE) in Mansfield. As I've mentioned before, the degree of integration and overlap in the Islamic groups in the Boston area is remarkable. Ghazwan Ghazi is on the Board of Directors of the ISB as well as the Islamic Center of New England (ICNE). The ICNE used to have Muhammed Masood as its imam, and Masood was also a teacher at the Nehela's IANE, so we come full circle. MAS to ISB to IANE and ICNE and back again. Really, the head spins at the incestuous nature of the "leadership."
This perhaps explains the ideological rigidity of many of the area Islamic organizations, it's the same folks behind them all. The Muslim Brotherhood-type thinking also extends to the area college Muslim student groups at MIT, BU, Harvard, Wellesley and others.
One wonders how much this leadership and ideology reflects "ordinary" Muslims in Massachusetts. Or are they self-appointed leaders who simply saw the opportunity to take over and implement their conservative brand of Islamic thinking? Pious or power-hungry?