- The Washington Times - Tuesday, August 17, 2010

On Friday night, President Obama gave his full-throated endorsement to a mosque and “cultural center” on private property that has been purchased in Lower Manhattan adjacent to the site where the World Trade Center’s twin towers once stood. By Saturday, however, he wanted the American people to know that he was not commenting on “the wisdom” of putting such a mosque by that hallowed ground - just “the right” of its backers, such as Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, to do it, pursuant to the Constitution’s protection of religious freedom.

Unfortunately for the president - but fortunately for the country - it is too late for such ludicrous contortions and dissembling. However much Mr. Obama and his fellow Democrats regret his original White House statement, it has created a “teachable moment.” Not just about the ground-zero mosque but about the larger enterprise it is intended to serve: bringing the law of Saudi Arabia and Iran, Shariah, to America.

Mr. Rauf makes no bones about that being his purpose. Nor do some of his most prominent backers, such as the Muslim Brotherhood front, the Council on American Islamic Relations, and the Brotherhood’s Palestinian franchise, the designated terrorist group Hamas. In fact, according to the New York Post, on Sunday, Mahmoud al-Zahar, a Hamas co-founder and leader in Gaza, told WABC Radio host Aaron Klein: “We have to build the mosque [at ground zero]. We have to build everywhere. In every area we have [as] Muslim*, we have to pray, and this mosque is the only site of prayer.”

Mr. Al-Zahar also enthused about Shariah, calling it the “tradition of Islam,” which “is controlling every source of our life as regards to marriage, divorce, our commercial relations.” He added ominously, “Even the Islamic people or Muslims in [the United States] are living now in the tradition of Islam.”

What else have we learned so far from Mr. Obama’s teachable Shariah moment? We now know that the president is willing to associate with members of the Muslim Brotherhood (MB), not just in Cairo - where he insisted they be invited to hear his famous paean to Islam last year - but in the White House. For example, leaders of known MB front groups such as Ingrid Mattson of the Islamic Society of North America and Salam al-Marayati of the Muslim Public Affairs Council were in the company at the Iftar dinner Friday when Mr. Obama fervently embraced the ground-zero mosque.

This is an important insight because we know from uncontested evidence submitted by the government in the largest terrorism finance trial in U.S. history - the Holy Land Foundation case - that the Muslim Brotherhood’s mission in America is “destroying Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.”

What on earth is the president of the United States doing fraternizing with, and thereby legitimating, operatives of an organization with such a seditious mission - to say nothing of endorsing its most immediate priority: the ground-zero mosque?

We also have learned that the Obama administration insists Mr. Rauf, another Brotherhood apparatchik, is a “moderate.” Never mind the abundant evidence to the contrary - not least his statement that he wants to bring Shariah to America. Believing him to be a good “ambassador” for the United States, the Obama-Hillary Rodham Clinton State Department has gone so far as to send Mr. Rauf on a taxpayer-funded trip to Arab capitals. While there, he surely will try to parlay the president of the United States‘ explicit endorsement of his ground-zero project and sponsorship of his travels into funding from oil-rich promoters of Shariah to build his 13-story, $100 million mega-mosque within spitting distance of some of America’s most hallowed real estate.

There is much more yet to be learned, of course. For example: Why is the U.S. government promoting the Brotherhood’s effort to penetrate our capital markets via “Shariah-compliant finance,” including its direct ownership of a huge player in that field, AIG? Which other Shariah-adherent Muslims are getting their expenses paid by the State Department as they network around the globe on behalf of their seditious agenda? How much is this outrageous program costing, and what does Foggy Bottom have to show for it? Why did Team Obama co-sponsor a United Nations resolution last fall imposing “Shariah blasphemy” laws that utterly conflict with the First Amendment’s protection of free speech?

As he hosted the Ramadan fast-breaking dinner at the White House on Friday, Mr. Obama showed his true colors on Shariah. Trying to dress up the ground-zero mosque or any other aspect of this brutally repressive, totalitarian and inherently unconstitutional program as a matter of “religious freedom” does not pass the giggle test. Shariah is about power, not faith, and no amount of Obama subsidies, solidarity or spin on behalf of that agenda will persuade the American people to allow the so-called “tradition of Islam” to supplant our civil liberties, form of government and way of life.

Frank J. Gaffney Jr. is president of the Center for Security Policy, a columnist for The Washington Times and host of the nationally syndicated program, “Secure Freedom Radio,” heard in Washington weeknights at 9 p.m. on WTNT 570-AM.