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April 3, 2014

Houston Terror Suspect Allegedly Behind Conspiratorial Facebook Page

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Robert Talbot Jr.

Last week, the FBI arrested Robert Talbot Jr. on charges of planning a violent attack on a Houston-area mosque. A look into Talbot’s history reveals that he not only fosters a deep-seated hatred of Muslims and Islam, but also subscribes to conspiracy theories of an alleged Muslim Brotherhood takeover of the U.S. and the need to combat the so-called “New World Order.” Talbot’s plan to attack the mosque and Muslim institutions is the latest in a recent string of violence directed toward the Muslim-American community.

According to the FBI, Talbot’s plan was to recruit “like-minded” accomplices to “blow up government buildings, rob banks, and kill law enforcement officers.” In addition, Talbot targeted Islamic centers and mosques. Talbot allegedly planned to enter a mosque during Friday prayers and shoot worshippers during services. FBI officials have also stated that it was part of Talbot’s plan to rob an armored car and attack a mosque with a machine gun. To justify these acts of violence, Talbot said that he would be “doing the Will of God.”

Law enforcement officials state that Talbot is behind the conspiratorial anti-Muslim and anti-government Facebook page, American Insurgent Movement (AIM).  In posts attributed to him, Talbot expressed racist and anti-Muslim conspiratorial sentiments that the U.S. has been infiltrated by the Muslim Brotherhood and that he intended to send “that White House worthless piece of dirt and his Muslim Brotherhood a message they will never forget.”

In a November 23, 2013 post, Talbot claimed that he is “not a racist person, but I’m only racist to those cultures whom show it, and this is why I don’t like Chinks, Muslims and a few other…” Talbot has also made threats against Obama administration advisor Valerie Jarrett, who was born in Iran and who Talbot alleged is “a Muslim.”

The ‘About’ section of AIM’s Facebook page states that it is a group intended for individuals seeking to “restore America Pre-Constitutionally and look forward to stopping the Regime with action by bloodshed.” Additionally, many of Talbot’s postings allude to the need to fight “New World Order,” a conspiracy theory typically revolving around claims that the U.S. government is trying to enslave, coerce, intimidate, scare, poison, or kill U.S. citizens on a mass scale.

In a March 1, 2014 post on the Facebook page, Talbot claimed that the NWO seeks “to turn American [sic] into their Marxist Muslim dream,” and that the “NWO can be stop [sic] and will be stopped.” In an earlier post from February 7, Talbot wrote that AIM is “Looking ONLY for ex-military or self-trained men who trained in guerrilla warfare and understand war/battle to the fullest.”

Talbot’s alleged plot is the latest in a series of recent incidents targeting Muslims and Muslim institutions:

  • March 2014: The Prayer Center of Orland Park, located in a Chicago suburb, was fired at during early morning prayer services by an unknown attacker. A bullet allegedly struck the gold metal dome of the mosque.
  • March 2014: Several shots were fired at the Islamic Center of Hattiesburg, Mississippi in the middle of the night. Law enforcement stated that it is considering the incident as a “malicious mischief case.”
  • March 2014: An Iraqi immigrant was gunned down in a shopping center parking lot in Sacramento, California by an assailant who has expressed hatred for people of Middle Eastern descent. Law enforcement is treating the incident as a hate crime.

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August 7, 2013

Extreme Anti-Israel Rhetoric Marks Al Quds Day Protests Across U.S.

In commemoration of Al Quds Day, an annual day of protest typically held on the last Fri­day of Ramadan, large anti-Israel rallies took place in cities across the U.S. on August 2.  The day is used to call for the liberation of Al Quds, which means Jerusalem in Arabic.

These rallies are notorious for their virulent rhetoric against the state of Israel, includ­ing, at times, anti-Semitic allegations about Jews and Israelis. Speakers at this year’s protests in the U.S. accused Israel of perpetrating atrocities against Palestinians comparable to the Nazi Holocaust, rejected Israel’s right to exist and expressed opposition to the renewed peace talks taking place between Israel and the Palestinians.

The following is a summary of some of the Al Quds Day rallies:

Houston, Texas

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Al Quds Day protester at Houston rally

A large rally was held downtown with signs and banners that read, “Children Are Buried Alive, Holocaust Is Revived” and “Stop Palestinian Genocide: End Zionist Apartheid.” Protesters also led chants of “U.S. money is the cause, it’s another Holocaust” and “U.S. weapons go away. Stop the killing right away.”

Washington D.C.

An activist affiliated with CODEPINK, a group that seeks to reduce U.S. support for Israel, named Tighe Barry told those gathered at an Al Quds Day rally that “there’s a Holocaust going on in Palestine.” Barry charged that there is a “Zionist impression” in the American education system and relayed that he had requested that a teacher in his child’s school “teach about all the holocausts” as part of a course on the Nazi Holocaust. When the teacher refused, Barry said he offered to teach the class himself and miss work in order to “talk about these other holocausts that are taking place like the Nakba.”

San Jose, California

The Shia Association of Bay Area (SABA) held an Al Quds Day rally on its premises featuring talks on the conditions various Shiite communities face. A member of the congregation, Zaki Hussain, gave a slideshow presentation titled, “Should Shia Muslims Support Palestine?” in which Israeli policies were likened to Nazi persecutions. Hussain told the audience that as Shia Muslims and followers of the teachings of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini they have a responsibility to defend the Palestinians even though the Palestinians are Sunni Muslims.

New York City

Approximately 200 people gathered at a rally in Times Square where several speakers lambasted the existence of the state of Israel and the renewed peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. Bill Doares from the International Action Center described Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of the Lebanon-based, Iranian-backed terrorist organization Hezbollah, as “the leader of the resistance.” He summed up a recent speech by Nasrallah by saying, “as long as Israel exists, it’ll be the threat to the existence of Lebanon and its neighbors. So it is simple, one state in all of Palestine for all people.”

Ben Becker, a national organizer for Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER), used his time at the podium to condemn the latest peace negotiations, describing them as “nothing but a farce” and claiming that “they’re attempts to get some Palestinians to negotiate away those sovereign and national rights.” Fatin Jarara, an activist with the anti-Israel group Al-Awda NY, expressly rejected Israel’s right to exist: “Palestinians in the diaspora reject unequivocally any compromise over an inch of historic Palestine. Not just Jerusalem, not just the West Bank, not just Gaza.”

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Neteuri Karta member at Times Square Quds Day rally

In addition to these inflammatory speeches, signs at the rally read, “Israel (crossed out), Much Worse Than the Nazis” (with a Swastika on it), Stop Palestinian Genocide: End Zionist Apartheid and “No New Negotiations! Palestine is NOT FOR SALE.”

The protests in the U.S. echoed what was said by international figures at demonstrations in the Middle East, including Iran’s former president, Mahmoud Ahmadinajad, and Nasrallah.

In Iran, where International Al Quds Day was established in 1979 by the founder of the Islamic Republic, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, Ahmadinejad derided peace talks between Israeli and Palestinian leaders, claiming that the Israelis seek the “domination and plundering of the world and humanity” and that “today, all political leaders are Zionists.”

Nasrallah, in a rare appearance at a rally in southern Beirut, said, “Israel’s demise is a national Lebanese interest” and pledged that Hezbollah would never “abandon Palestine.”

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September 24, 2012

“Zionism” Blamed for Anti-Islam Film At Protests in Houston, Los Angeles and Washington D.C.

Protests held in Houston, Los Angeles and Washington D.C. last Friday and Saturday accused Zionists of having a hand in the production of the anti-Islam film, Innocence of Muslims.

The rallies, which were sponsored by the Muslim Congress, a Shi’a organization founded in 2005, also featured placards and slogans accusing the America and other Western nations of harboring double standards regarding what constitutes freedom of speech.

Sign at Muslim Congress protest in Houston

Protesters at the Houston rally, which was co-sponsored by the Islamic Education Center (IEC), a Houston-based Shi’a mosque and private school with a record of employing stereotypical anti-Semitic narratives in its publications, held a banner that read: “Insult of Islam = Freedom of Speech? Inquiry on Holocaust= Antisemitism? Double Standards!” Protesters also chanted slogans blaming Zionists for the film’s production and held posters with “Yes to Moses, Yes To Jesus, Yes to Muhammad, No to Zionism” written on them.

Although they were billed as “peaceful protests” to “honor Divine Prophets, including Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad,” a Muslim Congress press release issued after the events called the film “a by-product of a culture created by … war-profiteers, and the Zionist lobby.”

The same release included a resolution calling for limits on freedom of speech and asked for “all Americans of faith [to] stand together against the plans of the Zionist to disunite us, as the Zionists respect neither Judaism, Christianity or Islam.”

The Muslim Congress has regularly featured anti-Semitic speakers such as Abdul Alim Musa of the extremist As-Sabiqun group and Mohammad al-Asi at its annual conventions.

Similar to the protest in Houston, protesters in front of the Los Angeles Federal Building held up posters denouncing the film and blaming the violence seen in several Middle Eastern countries on Zionism. One poster read, “Yes to Torah, Yes to Bible, Yes to Quran, No to Zionism.”

PressTV, the Iranian government’s primary medium for promoting anti-Semitic conspiracy theories to English-speaking countries, described the Los Angeles protest as a reaction to the anti-Islam film produced “thanks to Jewish donations totaling USD five million.”

The false claim that the film was the work of an “Israeli Jew” initially spread when the filmmaker said in interviews that his project had 100 Jewish backers who had invested $5 million to produce it. It was later revealed that the film was cre­ated, pro­duced and pro­moted by sev­eral Chris­t­ian anti-Muslim activists con­nected to a net­work of anti-Muslim organizations.

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