|By Ilana Freedman|
On the morning of July 19th 2009, two days after the bloody terror attacks in Jakarta, hundreds of American Muslims gathered at a posh Hilton hotel in a suburb of Chicago to attend a conference with the troubling title, "The Fall of Capitalism and the Rise of Islam.
For those who understand the underlying and openly stated goal of radical Islam - the replacement of Western society with an Islamic society ruled under shariah law - this open statement of purpose was alarming.
The conference was convened by Hizb ut-Tahrir, an Islamic supremacist organization whose extreme teachings have influencedhundreds of thousands of Muslims worldwide. The rhetoric throughout the day was inflamed and disquieting.
Capitalism, said one speaker, is a form of economic "terrorism" that "causes us to be sent to mental hospitals."
Another speaker told the audience, "if they offer us the sun, or the moon, or a nice raise, or a passport, or a house in the suburbs or even a place to pray at the job, on the condition that we stop calling for Islam as a complete way of life - we should never do that, ever do that - unless and until Islam becomes victorious or we die in the attempt."
Although Hizb ut-Tahrir is not on the State Department list of terrorist organizations, its rhetoric is inherently violent and its reach is global. TheHeritage Foundation maintains that the organization is active in some 40 countries around the world with 5,000 to 10,000 "hardcore" members and tens of thousands of followers". Foreign Affairs Journal reports that Hizb ut-Tahrir claims some eight and a half thousand members in the United Kingdom alone.
As organizers of this one day conference, Hizb ut Tahrir commanded the floor. According to theInvestigative Project, "nearly 300 people packed the Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Hotel for its Khalifah Conference [last week] . . . to listen to HT ideologues blame capitalism for World War I and World War II; the U.S. subprime mortgage meltdown; the current violence in Iraq and Afghanistan; world poverty and malnutrition and inner-city drug use."
The stated aim of Hizb ut Tahrir is to revive the Islamic Ummah ("community" or "nation"), and to liberate it from Western thought systems, laws, and influence in non-Muslim states. Ironically, it does not support the return to Muslim countries, where they could live under their own laws, but rather their aim is to impose Islamic law wherever they are, turning their host country into a Muslim state governed by Sharia law.
Hizb ut-Tahir's stated goal is therefore the replacement of American democracy with a "New Caliphate" (supreme Muslim ruler or caliph), and placing the Kuffar (non-Believer) under shariah law. One of their most famous believers is Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, one of the planners of 9/11.
Sheikh Abdul Qadeem Zalloom, the former global leader of Hizb ut-Tahrir, wrote "How the Khilafah Was Destroyed", in which he said that anyone who rules by a non-Islamic form of governance should "either retract or be killed ... even if this led to several years of fighting and even if it led to the killing of millions of Muslims and to the martyrdom of millions of believers."
The most troubling aspect of this conference is that it was promoted so openly and that the repeated calls for the overthrow of American democracy, embodied in the title of the conference itself, was advocated so aggressively.
It demonstrated a blatant disregard for the concerns of Americans who don't share their views (most of us, as it happens) and an outright disdain for the democratic processes that gives them the freedom to speak against democracy in a public forum, even as they wish to deprive the non-Muslim community of their right to speak out against them.
It displays an arrogance that comes from years of using the democratic system against itself. They further their undemocratic agenda, endlessly playing the political correctness card to undermine the very system that gives them license to further their anti-American goals. The fact that their outrageous agenda went virtually unnoticed will no doubt give them greater courage in the future.
America is at a dangerous crossroads. To ignore the danger is to risk the profound loss of liberty that is the American heritage. To confront it brings with it the risk of public attacks and costly litigation in the name of political correctness.
It has long been the pattern of radical Islamic organizations to mask their agenda in peaceful speeches and websites, delivered in English, while spewing hateful anti-Western, anti-Christian, and anti-Semitic rhetoric and propaganda in Arabic to those who followed their brand of Islam. Hizb ut Tahrir represents a developing trend among radical organizations whose leaders have decided that it is time to be more public about there goals.
This conference "The Fall of Capitalism, The Rise of Islam" should stand as a warning to America that we are now considered weak enough to allow such open defiance of democratic principles, by those who would bring this country to its knees and put its people in religious bondage.