One key reason why Assaf is so happy with Pascrell is his support for a local imam, Mohammed Qatanani, who is fighting a legal battle to become a permanent resident of the U.S. Yet investigative journalist Daniel Greenfield reports, in connection with earlier attempts to deport the imam, that “despite the fact that Mohammed Qatanani was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood, the organization that is behind both al-Qaeda and Hamas, despite his own guilty plea to being a member of Hamas, and despite the fact that even in the United States, he had defended a charity that provided funds to children of suicide bombers (this is done as an incentive to reassure terrorists that if they die their families will be taken care of), Qatanani was not deported.”
Assaf’s support for the Hamas- and Muslim Brotherhood-linked Qatanani makes it clear that behind much of the Arab and Muslim opposition to Rothman is the same Islamic anti-Semitism that motivates Hamas and Hizballah and makes any peace settlement between the Israelis and the Palestinian Arabs impossible to sustain: the jihad against Israel will ultimately be satisfied with nothing less than the destruction of the Jewish State, as is enunciated in the Hamas Charter via a quotation from Muslim Brotherhood founder Hasan al-Banna: “Israel will exist and will continue to exist until Islam will obliterate it, just as it obliterated others before it.”
The foes of Israel know the stakes are high. Assaf noted that the American Arab Institute’s James Zogby recently raised $50,000 for Pascrell, and that Muslim Brotherhood-linked Muslim Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN) recently appeared at a local mosque to stump for Pascrell. And in yet another op-ed last week, Assaf emphasized the necessity to develop the power of the Muslim voting bloc: “Candidates and political parties will use this information in the 2012 elections to determine which groups of voters are important and which groups are not. The more we vote this year, the more important our community will be in future elections. In New Jersey’s Ninth District race between Pascrell and Rothman, our vote will be of pivotal significance to the outcome.”
It may well be. And it has already introduced an unwelcome new feature into American politics: Islamic anti-Semitism. One may hope that Representative Pascrell will decide to act the statesman and repudiate his unsavory and hateful supporters; but statesmanlike conduct is in unfortunately short supply in American politics these days.