Thursday, April 28, 2011

Profile: Oakland's Imam Alim Musa and the American Islamic Revolution

Oakland's Imam Abdul Alim Musa
and the American Islamic Revolution

Imam Abdul Alim Musa, an African-American convert to Islam, is the head of the Masjid Al Islam mosque in Washington DC and founder of Sabiqun. He advocates for an Islamic revolution in the U.S. and promotes anti-Semitism. Despite his extremist views, Alim Musa is often invited to speak to Muslim student groups, in particular at events organized by the Muslim Student Union (MSU) at the University of California, Irvine.

These events often feature a handful of radical speakers who espouse anti-Semitic rhetoric, including Imam Mohammad al-Asi and Imam Amir Abdul Malik Ali. Though he claims that some of the major Muslim organizations try to avoid him because of his ideology, Alim Musa has participated at events organized by prominent Muslim-American community organizations including the Council on American-Islamic Relations, the Muslim Public Affairs Committee, Muslim American Society, Islamic Circle of North America and the Islamic Society of North America. He also makes regular appearances at the large annual conferences of the Muslim Congress, a Houston-based Shia community group.

At some of these events, Alim Musa has sold copies of an anti-Semitic book written by Imam Mohammad al-Asi. The book, The Ascendant Qur'an, blames Jews for conspiring against Islam.
Alim Musa has also spoken at mass antiwar rallies, including one of the largest pro-Palestinian rallies ever held in this country, which was organized by the ANSWER Coalition on April 20, 2002 in Washington, DC. Musa served as moderator.

In addition, Alim Musa is a founder and former member of the governing body of the Muslim Alliance in North America, a community organization that involves prominent American-born Muslims, mostly African-Americans. In 2004, the San Francisco Bay View described Alim Musa as "one of the highest-ranking Islamic leaders in the Black community, nationwide and specifically in the Islamic movement."

Born Clarence Reams in Arkansas, Alim Musa grew up in Oakland, California. According to his own account, as a young man in the 1960s in Oakland he was dealing with illegal drugs and later fled the country. He claims to have spent time in Algeria where he met fugitive activists in the Black Panther movement and to have also been involved in cocaine trade in Columbia. Alim Musa returned to the U.S. and was jailed in a federal prison in Leavenworth, Kansas, where he converted to Islam, based on his account.

Alim Musa is a "senior" member of the Institute of Contemporary Islamic Thought (ICIT), an international pro-Iranian, pro-Hezbollah Islamist think tank that distributes anti-Semitic propaganda in its magazine, Crescent International. He claims to have travelled several times to Iran, implying in various speeches that he has met with Hezbollah and Hamas representatives in Iran, as well as with groups fighting Indian forces in Kashmir during a visit to that region.

In addition, he maintains contacts with other extremist groups in the U.S. and abroad, including the anti-Semitic and racist New Black Panther Party (NBPP) and Jamaat al-Muslimeen.
Below is a sample of extremist and anti-Semitic statements that Alim Musa has made:
June 4, 2010: During a sermon at a Dallas mosque, Alim Musa argued that "the whole Western world is out against Islam" and that the U.S. government is implementing a policy that targets African-American Muslims because they are not as susceptible to intimidation as immigrant Muslims.

He argued that it was therefore the responsibility of African-American Muslims to establish an authentic "liberation-based" Islamic movement, which he describes as a "re-Africanization" and "de-Israelization of the Islamic movement in America."

January 5, 2010: Alim Musa appeared on Press TV, a state-funded Iranian TV news channel, to discuss the attempt to blow up an American airliner heading for Detroit on Christmas Day 2009. During his appearance, Musa claimed that the Israeli Mossad and the U.S. government were behind 90 percent of the terror attacks in the U.S. and abroad since the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, including the Christmas Day plot.

He argued that this continuous Israeli-American terrorist campaign not only provides an excuse to launch attacks against Muslims but also allows those in power to strengthen their grip in the U.S.

July 4, 2009: Alim Musa spoke at an event organized by the Muslim Congress, a Houston-based Shia community group, in Dearborn, Michigan. At the event, which was reportedly attended by 1,200 people, Alim Musa reportedly distributed fliers that called the U.S. government "Zionist occupied" and the FBI "Gestapo." In his speech, Alim Musa reportedly "accused U.S. leaders of fabricating a Muslim threat to national security so Americans could stop the global spread of Islam."

September 26, 2008: Alim Musa spoke at an anti-Israel event at the Islamic House of Wisdom, a Shiite Muslim mosque in Dearborn, Michigan. At the event, which was held to commemorate Iranian-inspired Al Quds [Jerusalem] Day, Alim Musa sold copies of a book by Mohammad al-Asi, an exegesis of the Quran that interprets much of the Islamic holy text as a warning of a Jewish conspiracy against Islam. During his lecture, Alim Musa expressed his support for Hezbollah, stating:
"The Hezbollah…it stands to the Zionists on behalf of their Palestinian cousins."

May 9, 2007: During his appearance at an anti-Israel event that was organized by MSU at UC Irvine, "Holocaust Memorial Week," Alim Musa said:
"Who ran the slave trade…who funded [it]? You'll study and you will find out: the Jews…It was the Jewish bankers…in Vienna, with pockets full of money, funding and insuring, that's who did it…you can't tell us about no holocaust. Between the African Americans and the Native Americans, everybody else's stuff was small potatoes."

October 5, 2006: Alim Musa spoke at a protest organized by the antiwar group World Can't Wait outside the White House in Washington, DC. Claiming September 11 was a conspiracy by the American government, Alim Musa stated:
"We got to get rid of this new Hitler…Just like Hitler burned the Reichstag…to gain full power over the people…George Bush brings down the World Trade Center, blames it on us [Muslims] and then claims himself dictator over the world. So we're here to say it's all over for George."

January 2004: In an interview in the San Francisco Bay View, Alim Musa talked about September 11 and other issues. In the interview, Alim Musa stated:
"When 9/11 happened, the only people who understood it really was Black people. They know that when you have an election-stealing president that has no credibility, he needs something to make him presidential…."If you remember before 9/11, the big conference they held in Durban, South Africa, Black people was attuned to Zionism is racism—we know that as a people. Amerikkka [original spelling] needed something to take them off of the most-hated list, but it never worked."

April 20, 2002: Alim Musa served as the moderator of an anti-Israel rally, sponsored by ANSWER, during which many speakers called for the destruction of Israel. A large Hezbollah flag was on display from the stage throughout much of the event next to where Alim Musa stood.

March 22, 2002: Alim Musa spoke at an event at the National Press Club in Washington DC that was organized by the NBPP, titled: "National Opposition Town Hall Meeting." At the event, Malik Zulu Shabazz, national chairman of the New Black Panther Party (NBPP), praised Alim Musa as an authentic and courageous leader. During his speech, Alim Musa hailed Hezbollah and Palestinian groups fighting Israel and berated the U.S.:
"A little group like Hezbollah, 'the Party of God'…and in the world there are only two parties: Hezbollah and Hizb-ul-Shaytan [Party of Satan]…you're either in the party of God or Satan—America, the British, the French…You're either in that party or the Party of God, the Hezbollah…

"They have caused so much trouble for the Zionists…they're getting paranoid. Zionists are shooting other Zionists…that's the way the Jews are doing…because they're paranoid…and that's the way they need to feel…because when it come to Islam and peoples' willingness to achieve martyrdom, you can't beat them….

"We don't want to be a part of the American system. We want to see it wrapped up, bundled up like they do in them garbage trucks…take it and dump it into the dust bin of history."

October 31, 2001: Alim Musa joined Shabazz for a news conference at the National Press Club. At the event, Shabazz blamed Jews and Israel for the September 11 terrorist attacks. During his speech, Alim Musa said: "America placed this sword, this cancer, this Zionist state, in the center of the crossroads of the world." He also assailed "Zionists in Hollywood, the Zionists in New York, and the Zionists in D.C." who, he claimed, "all collaborate" to oppress Blacks and Muslims.

October 28, 2000: Alim Musa spoke at a rally in Washington DC that was organized by some of the premier Muslim community organizations in the country and in which speakers expressed support for Hamas and Hezbollah. Referring to Palestinian casualties in the second intifada, which broke out the previous month, Alim Musa said:
"We celebrate our young brothers…those shuhada [martyrs]. They're not dead….The Zionists, when they get hit they're dead. They are dead and gone…But our people, when they leave this world they're headed for jannah [Paradise]."

June 2000: At a gathering in Baltimore organized by Jamaat al-Muslimeen, Alim Musa spoke about Imam Jamil al-Amin, a Muslim activist who has since been convicted for killing an Atlanta, Georgia, deputy sheriff:
"Al-Amin…turned his ideas, his belief in Islam, into practical solutions for society. And they can't stand that….the Zionist are the same today as they was then. In those days [in Arabia before the ascendance of Islam] they controlled the liquor market in Madina… and the Zionists kept the Arab leaders broke and drunk…the yahud [Jews, in Arabic] were seating back and had each one of them [Arab clans] fighting each other because the leaders was both drunken and they was all in owe (sic) to the same Yahud… he was manipulating the Arabs…then Islam came [and abolished riba, or interest]…"We're the pioneers here of Islam in America… Islam went everywhere in the world… so why can't Islam take over America… We are on the right road."

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