Georgetown’s Big Tent

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

Tolerance of Catholic tradition may be in short supply at Jesuit Georgetown, but other denominations might find more of a big tent there, even the more extreme elements of these “other faith traditions.” “The Islamic Society of North America and Georgetown University’s Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding are pleased to present a Symposium on Religious Freedom and the Rights of Minorities in Islam,” Georgetown announced in describing the event on May 14, 2012. “American scholars and academics of Islam will discuss the historical legacy of religious minorities in Muslim-majority societies, and how concepts of pluralism and minority rights can be examined in a contemporary context, particularly following the dramatic developments of the Arab Spring.”

“The Islamic Society of North America and Muslim leaders worldwide are currently working to promote a mechanism for developing Islamic standards and protocols on religious freedom and the role of religious minorities in the Muslim world.”  The head of ISNA, Imam Mohamed Magid will be presiding over the day-long symposium with Georgetown’s own John Esposito.

ISNA was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the U. S. Justice Department’s successful prosecution of the HolyLand Foundation terrorist front. As for, Imam Magid, he also directs the Adams Center mosque in Northern Virginia.

Recently, he got an interesting letter from his congressional representative.  “I was disappointed to learn that the ADAMS Center listserv had been used to encourage members of your congregation to sign on to an online petition that features slanderous information about Dr. Zuhdi Jasser, president and founder of the American Islamic Forum for Democracy and a recent appointee to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF),” U. S. Rep. Frank Wolf, R-VA, wrote in a letter to Magid. “Dr. Jasser, a patriotic American Muslim who proudly served his country for 11 years as a medical officer in the U. S. Navy, is a first generation American Muslim whose parents fled the oppressive Baath regime of Syria in the 1960s.”

“ Dr. Jasser is a prolific writer and commentator. He has been a Muslim representative on Arizona’s largest interfaith board of directors. He is routinely called upon to brief Congress. He has lectured on Islam to deploying officers at the Joint Forces Staff College at Fort Benning and was chosen to be part of a select group of Muslim leaders that briefed Admiral Mike Mullen on the ‘Contest of Ideas with the Muslim World.’”

“Sadly, because Dr. Jasser has dared to engage in this ‘contest of ideas,’ he has endured repeated personal attacks.”

Malcolm A. Kline is the Executive Director of Accuracy in Academia.

If you would like to comment on this article, e-mail mal.kline@academia.org.

 

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