The Jihadist Training Camp in Your Back Yard
It seems that for some time now, a group out of Pakistan has become settled into the fabric of the United States and only now am I catching on to this story. Of course now with the events surrounding Faisal Shahzad’s attempt at terror on NYC, the Pakistani angle of GWOT should become more prevalent on the minds of many.
It is yet to be determined just what group may have influenced and perhaps supported Faisal, but, this group kind of would be on my mind were I looking at this picture from a LEO perspective. If not a part in this particular attempt, this group uses some of the same bomb making techniques that Faisal attempted to use as well as more technical means such as mercury switches and C4 (mercury switches siezed in Colorado from one of their sites)
Group name: Jamaat Ul-Fuqra or Ja’maat Al-Fuqra
Based out of: Pakistan, Lahore with sattelite bases in the US
US Name for organization: Muslims of the Americas (MOA) Site: http://www.iqou-moa.org/
Main HQ in the US: http://www.islamberg.org/
I happened across this group after locating a copy of “homegrown jihad” off the internet and it is the product of a Christian group with a bent for going after these guys. Now, I am no Christian, nor am I going to denegrate them for their beliefs, but, I have to take some of what I saw in the film with some skepticism just from the nature of the source. However, when doing the actual looking through the internet, there was a plethora of information governmental and otherwise that point to this group being a terrorist recruitment and action sect. Just the video alone “Soldiers of Allah” is enough to make me see that the Sheikh is training his followers for violent jihad.
In the video provided he speaks about arming the Muslims to become warriors for Allah and is later seen firing the usual AK-47 interspersed with jihadi training sessions on martial arts and bomb making/explosives ordinance training. If this is not a damming piece of contradictory evidence to “we’re just a poor peaceful Muslim group” then I just don’t know what is.
The leader of the MOA is Mubarak Ali Shah Gilani who was a central figure in the murder of Daniel Pearl who was actually on his way to interview the sheikh on his connections to Richard Reid (the shoe bomber) when he was abducted and eventually beheaded by Khalid sheikh Mohammed according to his own testimony at Guantanamo Bay in 2007.
The JF, in its early phase, sought to counter what is perceived as excessive Western influence on Islam. It also concluded that violence was a significant aspect in its quest to purify Islam. In its ideological moorings, the Fuqra regards as enemies of Islam all those who do not follow the tenets of Islam as laid out in the Koran, including those Muslims who they consider as heretics as well as non-Muslims. One of Gilani’s works published by the Quranic Open University in the US and seized in a 1991-investigation instructed his cadres that their foremost duty was to wageJehad against the ‘oppressors of Muslims’. Members of the group are described as Islamist extremists with much hatred toward their ‘enemies’.
The JF is loosely structured with certain elements working openly through social service organisations to recruit members, raise money, organise activities and carry out propaganda. Individuals selected to live on JF premises agree to abide by the law and discipline of the Jamaat ul-Fuqra. Investigations by the Colorado Attorney General’s Office in the 1980s indicated that the JF was composed of approximately 30 different ‘Jamaats’ or communities, more or less mobile in nature. Most of these ‘Jamaats’ are reportedly existent even today along with what investigators discerned to be several covert paramilitary training compounds, one of which had been located in a mountainous area near Buena Vista, Colorado prior to the Colorado prosecutions in the mid-1990s.
Within 10 years of its formation, Fuqra’s communes in the US attracted many Muslim converts-including some of those recruited in prisons. The JF is said to comprise of some 1,000 to 3,000 members in the US. Secrecy is the hallmark of the outfit and cadres are reportedly well versed in the use of aliases. The Fuqra’s structure is well concealed behind front outfits and consists of a network of safe houses and cells. Furthermore, the JF founder as well as cadres consistently maintain that it does not exist. JF members occasionally travel abroad for ‘paramilitary and survivalist training’ under Gilani’s supervision.
Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani, who also calls himself the sixth Sultan Ul Faqr, is the chief of JF.
Jamaat ul-Fuqra is headquartered in Hancock, New York.
Above cited data from satp.org
Muslims of the Americas
Village of Islamberg
2732 Roods Creek Rd. B29
Hancock, NY 13783
Although Gilani, the reclusive chief of Fuqra resides in Lahore, Pakistan, most JF cells are located in North America. Fuqra members have purchased isolated rural properties in North America to live as a community, practice their faith, and insulate themselves from Western culture. The group has set up and funded rural communes that the US authorities allege are linked to murder, bombings and other felonies throughout the US and Canada. Currently, there are half a dozen Fuqra residential compounds in rural hamlets across the US sheltering hundreds of cadres, some of who have reportedly trained in the use of weapons and explosives in Pakistan.
After some Googling, I came up with their site as well as email addresses and phone numbers for the main site in NY
Media/Public Affairs Liason – Muhammad Hasib HaqqSocial Services – Shareen BegumIslamberg General Information ( hours 7-3pm ) Note: no personal information will be given607-467-1982Webmaster – firstname.lastname@example.org
I have done some poking around and thus far the only connections that the email addresses have is to an Angelfire site for the Bengali Youth Foundation Otherwise they have little in the way of links offsite from theirs. If I were the feds though, I would be watching all those accounts online for emails incoming and outgoing… But, that’s me.
Take a look at the video and see what you think, then do some research yourselves. It seems that even as of 2009 the Fuqra were developing and releasing more training videos for jihad. Just how is it we don’t see them in the news more? These guys have basically taken the militia model and started their own little “Waco” style compounds out in the middle of nowhere and have been building their weapons base as well as recruiting perhaps…
More when I get the data.