World

CAIR chief claims Muslims discovered America first

Photo of Neil Munro
Neil Munro
White House Correspondent

In the same TV interview, Awad told his viewers that he had talked with U.S. government officials about a convicted jihadi, Aafia Siddiqui, who is considered a heroine by ardent Islamists.

“I personally intervened in this case, without talking about it in the media,” he said. “I can reassure the brothers and sisters who called this show that I have personally dealt with this case on a high level in the U.S., and even in diplomatic circles,” he claimed.

Siddiqui is a Pakistan-born, U.S.-educated scientist who was arrested in Afghanistan in 2008, and then tried to shoot a U.S. guard. In 2010, she was sentenced to 86 years in jail for two counts of attempted murder.

Siddiqui is one of the relatively few female jihadis in jail. Many of the female terrorists have carried suicide bombs to targets, sometime under severe pressure from jihadis. During her trial in 2010, Siddiqui asked that Jewish lawyers and jurors be excluded.

“In the coming weeks, we will dedicate more attention to her. We will follow the case, and see what we can do,” Awad told the viewers.

Also, Awad told his interviewer that he and his Islamist allies had provided half of the United States’ public libraries with books showing their description of Islam.

“After 9/11, we saw great interest among the American public in becoming better acquainted with Islam by studying and reading about it,” he said. “Very few books on Islam were available in the public libraries …. [and] most of these books were misleading or anti-Islamic.”

“We decided to publish several books on Islam … [and] decided to send them free-of-charge to the American public libraries. … We managed to provide this collection, free-of-charge, to half of the [16,200 U.S.] libraries.”

Awad’s statement that Muslims discovered the Americas is one of many unsupported claims of Muslim accomplishment prior to the European capture of Egypt in 1798.

The claims say that Muslims were the first to fly and to invent the compass, as well as the first to develop technologies that were fundamental to computers, cameras and the Industrial Revolution.

In 2009, President Barack Obama repeated the claim that Muslims invented the compass in his “New Beginning” speech in Cairo, Egypt.