‘Mainstream’ American Muslim Council leader won’t denounce Al Qaeda by name

American Muslim Council leader Eric Vickers will not denounce Al Qaeda by name, despite being given several chances on national television.

Vickers’ TV appearances should put more heat on the FBI, which inexplicably calls the AMC a “mainstream” organization. FBI Director Robert Mueller is being urged to cancel his address to the AMC national convention on June 28.

Just hours after a June 19 suicide bomber killed a group of women and children at a Jerusalem bus stop, Brit Hume of Fox News asked Vickers if he would specifically “condemn Al Qaeda by name and Hamas by name.” Vickers would not.

While claiming to “condemn any sort of act of terrorism,” Vickers added, “clearly we support the Palestinian resistance movement.” Hamas is the Arabic abbreviation for the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement. The AMC leader then cloaked himself in the protection of the American justice system, dismissing allegations of his involvement in terrorist support groups and accusing Attorney General John Ashcroft of “excessive racial profiling” that led to the arrest of suspected Al Qaeda member Jose Padilla, a Latino convert to Islam, believed to have plotted to detonate a radiological bomb inside the United States.

Columnist Fred Barns chided groups like the AMC for being “more outraged about being the ‘victims'” of U.S. anti-terrorism efforts than for having terrorism perpetrated in the name of Islam.

Added Roll Call editor Morton Kondracke, “If that guy [Vickers] is truly representative of American Muslims, then God help us. That guy sounds like a Fifth Column.”

Said Hume, in a swipe at the FBI, “This is the most mainstream, we’re told.”

Vickers appeared on Fox News Channel and MSNBC to address what the AMC calls a “smear campaign” against it.

“Memo to the Administration: Don’t Legitimize Groups that Are Soft, or Worse, on Terrorism.”

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