Memo to the administration: Don’t legitimize groups that are soft, or worse, on terrorism

As the Bush Administration forges ahead on its daunting challenge to protect America from terrorism, groups that are soft to put it lightly on certain terrorist organizations or methods are trying to gain political legitimacy.

Some are building political cover for themselves by arranging for meetings with senior Bush Administration officials.

The American Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), for example, holding its annual convention this weekend in Washington, has attracted senior administration officials and U.S. Senators even though it has a long history of sympathy for terrorists and other radical armed groups and is undermining the presidents anti-terrorism campaign.

ADCs list of convention speakers includes open supporters of Hamas, Hezbollah, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad; Imad Hamad, a reported member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP); Adam Shapiro, the “Jewish Taliban” who calls suicide bombers “noble” and praised the cop-killer Black Panther movement; Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, a longtime champion of violent Marxist-Leninist causes ranging from the FMLN of El Salvador to imprisoned Shining Path terrorists in Peru; and the ADC’s Shouki Kassis, listed as a backer of convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal.

It features a panel by the anti-FBI activist coordinator of the National Coalition to Protect Political Freedom and executive director of the old Communist Party front National Lawyers Guild. The National Coalition has lent support to terrorist groups from around the world since the 1960s.

Other individuals and groups on the ADC convention agenda reportedly have been funded by Northern Virginia entities that federal authorities raided in March during Operation Green Quest as suspected terrorist money-launderers.

ADC has assailed the domestic campaign against terrorism as racist and has demanded a meeting with FBI Director Mueller. The FBI chief is scheduled to address another pro-Hamas/Hezbollah group, the American Muslim Council, on June 28.

The Bush Administration should screen all such requests to ensure that it is not lending political legitimacy to groups that support terrorism.

See our April 3 item, Bush administration needs to screen terrorist supporters from Muslim outreach programs

and our April 8 item, US-based Muslim, Arab groups urged to help unmask terror cells & quit acting like victims

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