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Jewish World Review
July 14, 2009
/ 22 Tamuz 5769
Welcome to Faisal County
Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.
At this writing, the Board of Supervisors of Fairfax County, Virginia are poised to
make a momentous decision. After a hearing tonight, the Supervisors could well
accede to demands by the House of Saud to change the name of their jurisdiction to
Faisal County, in recognition of the contributions the late Saudi king and the
virulent strain of Islam promoted by his government in Northern Virginia and
Just kidding. No, for the moment at least, the Saudis are only seeking that the
supervisors approve the use of a fraction of the county as a Wahhabi beachhead in
America. They want a prime piece of undeveloped real estate to effect a sizeable
expansion of the kingdom's school here known as the Islamic Saudi Academy (ISA) so
as to enable it to enroll 1,200 students.
Never mind that this school has become notorious in recent years for the association
of a number of its faculty and students with terrorism. As David Stokes has
documented in an excellent article posted over the weekend at Townhall.com, the
perpetrators have run the gamut from those implicated in plots to assassinate a
sitting president of the United States, to casing the structural supports for a
major bridge to trying to smuggle a butcher's knife aboard an airplane.
Such behavior is not exactly surprising, given the Islamic Saudi Academy's
intolerant and violent pedagogy. The problem starts with the textbooks supplied by
the government of Saudi Arabia which have repeatedly been found to be anti-Semitic,
anti-Christian and inciting of hatred against non-Muslims more generally.
The larger problem is the Academy's adherence to the repressive theo-political-legal
program authoritative Islam calls Shariah. For example, the school gained notoriety
a while back when its principal confessed to forcing a female student - in
accordance with Shariah and in violation of Virginia law - to return to the father
she accused of abusing her physically.
Of course, we have no way of knowing how many others associated with the Wahhabis'
school are in one stage or another of the trajectory toward violent jihadism. What
we do know is that they are being inculcated with a Shariah culture and agenda that
requires of its adherents a commitment to jihad, of either the lethal or stealthy
kind. This is not a matter of conjecture or dispute. It is inherent in the Saudi
practice of Islam.
Predictably, Monday night's hearing before the Board of Supervisors will involve
myriad assurances that this is not the case. The school, the elected officials will
be told, has eliminated the offensive textbooks (for, by some estimates, the 40th
time!) They will hear that it promotes tolerance and American patriotism. The
party line will be that the ISA is just doing so in a religious context that few
non-Muslims understand, but that is decidedly peaceable.
Ironically, if past practice is any guide, such statements will be accompanied by an
intimidating show of force, starting with hundreds of Islamists taking over part of
the Government Center to perform a call to prayers. They will then try - sometimes
in an orchestrated way, sometimes spontaneously - to intimidate or drown-out the
voices of county residents who oppose the planned expansion of the Wahhabi school.
The residents courageous enough to withstand such intimidation will oppose the
school's expansion on various grounds. Some worry about the infrastructural and
environmental impact of the massive complex the Saudis seek to build on the new ISA
campus. They note that the county board of supervisors cited such grounds 20 years
ago in refusing a permit for a Christian academy on the same site having less than
half the number of students. And that was at a time when the congestion arising
from development and population density of the area was nothing like what it is
Others - like the formidable Jim Lafferty of the Virginia Anti-Shariah Task Force -
quite rightly, object to the idea of nestling within minutes of our seat of
government an institution that is so problematic, to say the least, from a security
point of view. They appreciate that a school that is explicitly proselytizing Islam
according to the Wahhabi House of Saud is an incubator for jihad.
If one needed any further reason to fear such a vehicle for home-grown terror, check
out the article prominently featured above-the-fold on the front page of Sunday's
New York Times. It describes at great length the evidence that Somalis in Minnesota
have been recruited in this country to jihad - by some accounts in a mosque, by
others through more informal efforts by Shariah-adherent Muslims from Somalia.
Either way, chances are good that Saudi money, teachings and perhaps personnel are
implicated (although that possibility was not raised in the article).
It is astounding, not to say unseemly, that elected officials in Fairfax County are
going to such lengths to accommodate the Saudis. Whether the county supervisors
justify this behavior with professions of religious tolerance, so as to avoid
appearing politically incorrect, in deference to the importunings of the
clientitis-ridden State Department determined never to offend the Saudis or as a
result of lavish Saudi spending, the bottom line is clear: If their county is to
remain known as Fairfax rather than Faisal, a good place to begin drawing the line
is in opposing the proposed expansion of the Islamic Saudi Academy.
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JWR contributor Frank J. Gaffney, Jr., Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear Forces and Arms Control Policy in the Reagan Administration, heads the Center for Security Policy. Comments by clicking here.
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