By WILLIAM MAYER and BEILA RABINOWITZ
August 31, 2009 - San Francisco, CA - PipeLineNews.org - The case of Fathima Rifqa Bary, a 17 year old young woman who was raised as a Muslim and lived with her family in Gahanna, Ohio since 2004, revolves around a claim that because of her recent conversion to Christianity she fears for her safety at the hands of her family which is adamantly opposed to her leaving Islam.
To escape from the danger posed especially by her father, Ms. Bary ran away from home to Florida. She has at least temporarily been granted, via court order, the right to remain in Florida while her case is adjudicated.
Today Rifqa's pro-bono attorney, John Stemberger, released two documents:
According to Ms. Bary's affidavit, when she arrived in Ohio:
"...After visiting a couple of other Mosques in the area, including the "Islamic Center" in Columbus, my Father decided that our family would join and become active in the "Noor Islamic Cultural Center" (Noor Center) located in Dublin, Ohio...there were eight other Mosques that were closer to our home in the Columbus area...my father was very intent on making sure that his children and especially me, were raised deeply in the faith of "Original Islam" which was taught at the Noor Center...My father was a committed member of the Noor Center and required our family to attend as much as possible."
Bary dated the time of her conversion to Christianity, which she hid from her family, especially her father:
"I became a Christian on November 18, 2005 at the Korean United Methodist church in Columbus, Ohio."
During June of 2009 Bary's father confronted her. He had previously found a copy of Rick Warren's "A Purpose Driven Life" which she had hidden in her room. Her father told her how important it was for him to maintain "the Islamic bloodline in my family."
Her father told Rifqa he had "received numerous emails and phone calls from the leaders of the Noor Center community who informed him that he needed to deal with this matter immediately."
She continued, "In a fit of anger that I had never seen before in my life, he picked up my laptop, waived it over my head as if to strike me with it and said "If you have this Jesus in your heart you are dead to me! You are no longer my daughter." I continued to remain silent and then he said to me even more angry than before, "I will kill you! Tell me the truth!"
The second document released today by Ms. Bary's attorney refers to alleged terrorist ties of the Noor mosque that she was forced to attend.
Mr. Stemberger states that the mosque, "has been identified as one of the primary sources of Islamic extremism in Central Ohio."
To flesh that claim out he further states:
Regarding the Noor Center's CEO ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, the radical Islamic Egyptian group responsible for creating the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas:
"The leader of the mosque, Dr. Hany Saqr, was previously an imam for anotherarea mosque at the same time the largest known Al-Qaeda cell in the U.S. since9/11 was operating out of the mosque. Additionally, Dr. Saqr was identified inexhibits submitted by the Department of Justice in a recent terrorism finance trial inTexas as being one of the leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood in North America aninternational organization responsible for birthing virtually every Islamic terroristorganization in the world, including Al-Qaeda. One of his subordinates identified inthose trial exhibits was identified in a FBI memorandum as providing $735,000 toHamas while under Dr. Saqr's direction."
Regarding the Noor Center's scholar and his alleged ties to terrorism:
"A former Islamic scholar associated with The Noor Center is Dr. Salah Sultan, acleric that has been photographed with terrorist leaders designated as such bythe U.S. government. Dr. Sultan has recently appeared on television incitingviolence against Jews, and he has previously appeared at events in support ofdesignated terrorist organizations while an active part of the Noor Center community.Following his departure to Bahrain, unconfirmed reports indicate that his UScitizenship application has been denied and that he has been banned from reenteringthe US."
Regarding the Noor Center's hosting of radical Muslim speakers.
"A number of extremist speakers have been featured at recent Noor Centerevents who are on record making statements in support of violence, terrorismand extremism. Evidence also indicates that some of these speakers have been directly involved in fundraising and supporting the mosque since its inception. One regular speaker and fundraiser for the Noor Center was listed by federal prosecutors as an unindicted co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing trial."
Regarding the Noor Center being allegedly tied to a nationwide FBI terror investigation involving Somali American youths linked to al-Qaeda:
"The Noor Center has also been directly tied to the ongoing nationwideinvestigation into Somali-American youths who have left the U.S. to train interror camps operated by the Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Shabaab terror organization.CNN has identified Columbus as one of the main centers of the FBI's investigation.This story was recently the subject of a lengthy front-page New York Times story.One Minneapolis mosque leader who has been named by others in the Somalicommunity as allowing Al-Shabaab recruiters to operate in his mosque was a featuredspeaker at a Noor Center Somali youth conference just last November. And a NoorCenter Somali youth has appeared repeatedly with another Minneapolis imam whohas been questioned by the FBI regarding more than a dozen of mosque attendeeswho have left under such circumstances and been placed by the Department ofHomeland Security on the no-fly list."
If even some of the above allegations are correct, Ms. Bary, after becoming a Christian, was certainly in danger, both from her family as well as members of the Noor Center.
In a fundamentalist interpretation of Islam, leaving the faith is a grave offense called apostasy, which is punishable by death under Shari'a or Islamic law.
Though many counter-terror researchers routinely write about many of the attributes of radical Islam in America and the threat it poses through direct religiously endorsed violence as well as the underground guerilla operation we have called the stealth jihad [the use of America's freedoms and rights to subvert the system from the inside], it isn't often that all of these elements are revealed in a single example.
It is for this reason that should the above allegations be proven, the case of Fathima Rifqa Bary is such a potential watershed, casting light into the inner workings of radical Islam.
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