Almontaser's Resignation Leaves Khalil Gibran's "Intifada-Structure" Intact

By William A. Mayer and Beila Rabinowitz

August 14, 2007 - San Francisco, CA - - In the wreckage of Dhabah Almontaser's forced resignation from the Khalil Gibran International Academy last Friday, a development which these writers had no small role in bringing about, serious questions remain.

Chief among them is that despite the departure of the institution's figurehead, the school's Executive Summary, a template for ideological jihad authored by Almontaser, guarantees that her influence will prevail as long as KGIA exists.

Lena Alhusseini, director of KGIA's lead partnering organization, the American Arab Family Support Center [AAFSC] is an Islamist in the mold of Almontaser, and it is this group that will be a continuous presence "on site" at the Boerum Hills School location where KGIA is scheduled to be housed, thus providing ideological continuity.

This substantiates allegations by critics that KGIA was designed from the ground-up to function as a madrassah. In large measure, Almontaser's resignation was forced by a public recognition of that fact.

Of note, despite KGIA's former principal's dissembling over and apparent initial endorsement of violent jihad, she remains on the DOE payroll, in what capacity remains unclear, since the DOE refuses to return phone calls and email inquiries from journalists. Given Mr. Klein's less than forthright actions regarding the school, the possibility that Almontaser will carry on a stealth advisory role to KGIA is not beyond possibility

Almontaser's resignation letter displays the same self-righteous sense of victimhood and persecution that has marked her public statements since 9/11. That this document is also infused with rage is obvious.

"...Unfortunately, a small group of highly misguided individuals has launched a relentless attack on me because of my religion. They have used my religion as the pretext to undermine the Academy and have taken my words out of context to distort my record and portray me as something that I am not. They have not succeeded, of course. The Academy will open as the face of these unprecedented attacks, and the love of my family, they did not bother me. However, their intolerant and hateful tone has come to frighten some of the parents and incoming students. I have grown increasingly concerned that these few outsiders will disrupt the community of learning when the Academy opens its doors on September 4th...The small group of fear mongers who used hate and prejudice to try to derail the Academy are on the wrong side of history. New York is bigger than that; America is fairer than that."

These parting shots, characterizing opponents of KGIA as being "intolerant" and "hateful" are typical of the way that Islamists brand critics as enemies and Islamophobes, as is her outlandish and unsupportable allegation that the parents of incoming students have something to fear from its critics.

By employing the politics of personal destruction and vilification, Almontaser allies herself with groups such as CAIR, [the Saudi funded Hamas front group, named by federal prosecutors as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foundation Hamas funding trial] which mounts similar campaigns of vilification, usually accompanied by legal intimidation. The goal in these attacks is to force dhimmitude on the part of critics.

How Almontaser dealt with KGIA's critics raises more questions about the nature of the school and in her absence, KGIA will still promote an ideology identical to that of its creator:

  • Teaching Arab supremacism and preaching a sense of victimhood brought on by the "racist" nature of American attitudes towards Muslims and Arabs.
  • Denying that the 9/11 attacks were planned and carried out by Arab Muslims.
  • Discouraging newly trained Arabic speakers from working with national security and counter-terrorism professionals; equating the use of Arabic speakers in breaking up domestic terror plots as "reeking" of "FBI tactics."
  • Denying that Intifada means the killing of innocent Israeli civilians and refusing to deal honestly with jihad and Islamic terrorism.
  • Presenting terror friendly groups as student role models and mandating that students enter internship programs with same.
  • In a recent interview with New York City University Trustee [and formerly employed in the FBI's foreign counter-intelligence division] Jeffrey Wiesenfeld spoke pointedly as to the disingenuousness of the Islamists public statements and highlighted the need to hold all members of society to the same standard.

    "It points to the larger issue, the disingenuousness, sadly of so many Muslims who try to represent their cause in public...they would argue for different definitions of Intifada, different definitions of jihad, much in the same way that Arafat used to do" [source]

    Intifada and its more all-encompassing theological partner - jihad - means exactly what we all think it does, a religious countenancing of the wholesale slaughter of those deemed unbelievers by adherents of a virulent ideology called radical Islam.

    Whereas jihad is global, Intifada is local and because of that it's mistaken to see it as simply a war against the Jews or against Israel because it is part of a larger movement whose ultimate target is the entire Western world "Jews and Crusaders" in al-Qaeda's many declarations of war.

    With Almontaser gone KGIA's "lead partner," the Arab American Family Support Center [AAFSC] will step to the fore, a private organization with ties to radical Islamic groups and individuals. AAFSC's head, Lena Alhusseini a Palestinian activist who holds the same controversial views as those of Almontaser, and who has similar associations with the same radical Islamists as does the former principal, see - Dhabah Almontaser & Lena Alhusseini, Arab American Family Support Center Joins with Khalil Gibran School to Promote Islamism

    Those views will be represented in the classroom via KGIA's internship partner the American Muslim Association of Lawyers [AMAL] whose relationship with New York chapter of CAIR [above described] Executive Director Omar Mohammedi is so close that Mohammedi owns AMAL's web domain. [see - Brooklyn's Khalil Gibran Madrassah Will Function As Jihad Recruitment Center]

    Because of the way Almontaser designed KGIA's pedagogy it no longer requires her presence to fulfill its mission.

    According to the KGIA Executive Summary - A Day in the life of a KGIA student written by Dhabah Almontaser:

    "Although KGIA offers a wide variety of enrichment elective in the arts, sports and technology beginning at 3:30 Fatin [the fictitious Arabic speaking Yemeni student] has chosen an elective on Human Rights. This class is being taught by one of the school's full time teachers along with an Arab American lawyer. She can't wait till the end of the semester , when one of the collaborationg organizations ,the American Muslim Association of Lawyers will offer students internships at their members law offices for a semester." [source p 19 of KGIA Executive Summary]

    Besides having radical Muslim lawyers teaching Islamist activism, questions arise over how Arabic will be taught in the school, we do note that AAFSC will be providing Arab language teachers of possibly questionable merit for at least two years until the DOE can take this function over.

    It seems an unreasonable proposition to assume that the AAFSC, an Islamist organization will refrain from selecting Arab language teachers with a similar agenda involving historical revisionism.

    According to Middle East expert Daniel Pipes, the teaching of Arabic is fraught with political and religious overtones.

    Arabized students show decidedly greater support for the Islamist movement and greater mistrust of the West. Arabized students tend to repeat the same simplistic stories and rumors that abound in the Arabic-language press, particularly Al-Munqidh, the newspaper of the Islamic Salvation Front. They tell about sightings of the word "Allah" written in the afternoon sky, the infiltration into Algeria of Israeli women spies infected with AIDS, the "disproving" of Christianity on a local religious program, and the mass conversion to Islam by millions of Americans. I was not the only one to notice this distinction. When asked if the new, Arabized students differed from the other students, many students and faculty answered an emphatic yes.

    Coffman also find a similar trend in other Arabic-speaking countries:because Arabs draw so close a connection between classical Arabic and the faith of Islam, Arabization invariably leads to an identification with the (supranational) Islamic religious tradition. Even the most secular Arab nationalists (such as the Ba'thist variants in Syria and Iraq) must appeal to Islamic symbolism to bolster sagging legitimacy and to mobilize the masses (as Saddam Husayn did in his wars against Iran and the U.S.-led coalition). Hence, Arab nationalism has, however inadvertently, contributed to the rise of Islamism. Indeed, today's Islamist surge is the natural, perhaps inevitable consequence of the Arab nationalist policies of thirty years ago."

    Of continued concern, all three of the Muslim clerics on KGIA's advisory board desire to see the imposition of shari'a, Islamic law.

  • Imam Shamsi Ali: Runs the Muslim Center of New York in Queens madrassah in which young students forego regular schooling to study only Koran recitation. Because of this he is likely violating state laws governing truancy. [source]
  • Imam Al Hajj Talib Abdur Rashid is the Deputy Amir of the Majlis Ash Shura Council [the Muslim religious council which governs according to shari'a] and is a member of the National Committee to Free Imam Jamil Abdullah Al Amin aka "H. Rap Brown," a convicted cop killer. [source]
  • Imam Khalid Latif: NYU and NYPD chaplain who wrote a letter to the head of the university which was a demand for religiously based censorship accompanied by a thinly disguised threat of violence over the planned showing of the controversial Danish cartoons. [source]
  • Now that Almontaser is gone, the educational architecture she created at KGIA looms menacingly, no longer obscured by the controversy surrounding her extremism and her doublespeak.

    Sectarian schools of this type are problematic at best, however when they are combined with such a clear infrastructure - in this case an Intifada-structure - designed to supplant education with indoctrination they become threats, a clear and present danger.

    In a parallel development, members of Brooklyn's radical Muslim community met last evening at the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge organizing a boycott demanding censorship of the New York Post and the Sun because for their criticism of the school.

    [Note: Aaron "Ari" Halberstam, a 16-year-old rabbinical student was gunned down on the Brooklyn Bridge on March 1, 1994 by Rashid Baz, a congregant at the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge.

    On that day, Baz went to the mosque with a friend where they heard delivered an inflammatory sermon by the then imam Moufaq, who claimed during his sermon that "this takes the mask off of the Jews. It shows them to be racist and fascist as bad as the Nazis. Palestinians are suffering from the occupation and it's time to end it." After the sermon Baz, "took two of the guns that he usually kept in the trunk of his car and moved them to the front seat of his car. The two guns were the weapons that he used in the shooting." [source New York Sun, For Ari Halberstam,]

    Monday evening's meeting at the Bay Ridge mosque was reported by to have been organized by the Arab American Yemeni Association [on whose board sits Dhabah Almontaser and whose VP is Almontaser's husband, Naji], Arab Women Active in Arts and Media [AWAAM, the group which sold the "Intifada NYC" t-shirts] and the Arab American Association. [As noted by Dr. Daniel Pipes, the association between the shirt slogans and violent rebellion is overwhelming, "Awaam is the colloquial Arabic pronunciation for qawwam, which translates as rebels or insurgents. And the word qawwam is written in Arabic script on the T-shirt." [source,]

    Almontaser has a close working relationship with Linda Sarsour, a radical Islamist activist and Hamas sympathizer, with a power base in Bay Ridge. Sarsour is the director of the Arab American Association of New York and she along with Almontaser are board member of the AAA's Dialogue Project and Sarsour is the Co-Chair of the Dialogue Project's Interfaith Events program.

    To view the video detailing Almontaser's connections to the groups which organized the Bay Ridge mosque protest meeting, click here

    Informed sources tell us that an atmosphere of rage over Almontaser's ouster permeated the meeting, which was dominated by Muslim as opposed to Arab, political interests.

    Many of the participants were extremely upset over the actions of Mayor Bloomberg. They also took exception to KGIA's just appointed interim principal, Danielle Salzberg an Orthodox Jew, apparently solely on the basis of her religious affiliation.

    At one point during the meeting, the editor of a local Muslim publication ranted against "Zionists."

    This is the type of intolerance that will be KGIA's stock-in-trade, an agendized "social activism" that will gestate into militant thuggery, taught by elements of the community whose primary loyalty is to shari'a, who reject even such basic American ideas as freedom of the press.

    Joel Klein's appointment of Ms. Salzberg should be seen as an affront to anyone concerned about the opening of this Arab-centric public school, which already has a notorious reputation. Salzberg's appointment must be seen is a blatant effort to deceptively manipulate the public debate in this matter, using Judaism as if it were nothing but an emotion laden public relations device.

    The DOE's actions in this case have been disingenuous in the extreme and along with Chancellor Klein's extremely poor judgment, add another powerful reason as to why KGIA must never be allowed to open.

    1999-2007 PipeLineNews LLC, William Mayer, Beila Rabinowitz, all rights reserved.