By Beila Rabinowitz and William Mayer
May 15, 2007 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - At an emergency meeting called by parents yesterday to protest the placement of the Khalil Gibran International Academy in their Boerum Hill school, Garth Harries, chief executive of the Office of New Schools at New York's Department of Education assured them that ?the school would be moved out over two years" and ?the entire campus would receive added security" adding that the ?highest levels" at City Hall would make sure that promised building construction would be completed.
Added security of the type that Harries suggests will not address the real threat - radical Islamism - which will originate from within.
Harries? attempt to assuage parent?s fears are unconvincing given that he has resorted to outright fabrication in the past and is now making questionable promises in an attempt to have the school - as parents are claiming - ?shoved down our throats." [source http://www.nysun.com/article/54495]
When this controversy first erupted Dr. Daniel Pipes cited an example given by Garth Harries who made the claim that the Arabic focus of KGIA would involve such things as ?a math lesson plan that would mention that an Arabic mathematician invented the concept of zero."
Unfortunately for Harries, Dr. Pipes? alert readers caught the deception, as he points out in his March 16 weblog, ?no ?Arabic mathematician invented the concept of zero.? Zero was an Indian invention that the Arabs adopted. As a reader puts it, ?Harries really let the cat out of the bag, revealing that the new school with be ethnic cheerleading at its worst.?"
As pointed out in several previous PipeLineNews.org articles, the Khalil Gibran International Academy will be a taxpayer-funded madrassah. The two key players, principal designate Dhabah aka ?Debbie" Almontaser and her main collaborator Lena Alhusseini - who directs the Arab American Family Support Center - which will be providing the Arabic teachers and coordinate the school?s curriculum, have documented ties to an Islamist network and will play a role in the KGIA?s operation.
The parents of students at the Brooklyn?s Boerum Hill school where the school will be housed left a 90 minute meeting with New York Department of Education officials complaining they had been ?ignored," and ?railroaded."
Instead of addressing the parent?s concerns the mayor's top education aide, Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott, attacked them saying that it was "unfortunate that this school is being singled out," noting that ?there are dozens of other specialized language schools in the city."
Once again the blatant prevarication on the part of the officials promoting the project is evident since Walcott fails to note that KGIA is the only ?specialized language school" which has an advisory that is composed entirely of clerics. One of which - Shamsi Ali - is the associate imam of the Jamaica Muslim Center of Queens which was profiled in a BBC interview as an example of an American ?madrassa." Ali has boasted about that religious school saying it is "very much influenced by the traditions back home." [source http://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/16/nyregion/16koran.html?ex=1313380800&en=bfd66b91de7a7870&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss]
[Note: In addition to being the associate imam of the Islamic Cultural Center of New York aka the 96th Street mosque, Shamsi Ali is the director of the Jamaica Muslim Center in Queens which is home to a Koranic recitation school [madrassah] which caters to boys of South Asian backgrounds. According to city and state education officials, his school may be inadvertently running afoul of state law for not providing "substantially equivalent" instruction to that offered in public schools.]
Dhabah Almontaser was brought to the school meeting by the Mayor and DOE?s office in an attempt to exercise damage control after she was repeatedly criticized by the media for not responding to questions being posed about the school and was the subject of an article by these authors about her ?hiding" from public scrutiny. [source https://www.pipelinenews.org/index.cfm?page=jihadschool51407%2Ehtm]
She reportedly spoke briefly at the meeting, stating that the school?s curriculum ?is going to be quite rigorous and challenging," adding insincerely, ?I feel for the parents?I understand what they're going through."
Such a declaration appears rife with calculation, a PR ruse considering that according to the New York Times? coverage of this event Almontaser is pressing on as if the school is already accomplished fact, ?The school appears well on its way to a September opening. Ms. Almontaser has already ordered a library of Arabic-language textbooks from Scholastic mainly Arabic translations of American children?s books."
Less than a week after 9/11 Almontaser wrote that she exploited the event as ?a teachable moment." In that light should KGIA open in September, it will represent the culmination of her Islamist da?wa dream on the sixth anniversary of the day her ideological allies targeted America.
©1999-2007 Beila Rabinowitz, William Mayer, PipeLineNews.org LLC, all rights reserved.