CNN Repeatedly Cited Groups Accused Of Terror Ties
A number of news articles published by CNN cited groups accused of ties to terror groups, even promoting donations to one group on two occasions.
CNN.com published two separate articles promoting donations to a group called Islamic Relief USA.
One article from 2015 titled, “Help victims of the Nepal earthquake,” promotes donations to a number of charities that CNN claims to have “vetted.”
Among them is Islamic Relief USA, a group that is a sister organization of Islamic Relief Worldwide. As reported by The Daily Caller, Islamic Relief Worldwide has been banned from Israel and the United Arab Emirates for allegedly financially supporting Hamas and other terror organizations. (RELATED: Investigation: Foundations Gave Millions To Groups Accused Of Terror Ties)
Another article from 2013 about helping Syrian refugees promotes donations to Islamic Relief USA, writing that the group, “[provides] food parcels, housing essentials and medical supplies for those displaced inside Syria and the refugees in Jordan and Lebanon.”
Islamic Relief has once accepted tens of thousands of dollars from a charity founded by Sheik Abd-al-Majid al-Zindani, “Charitable Society for Social Welfare.”
Al-Zindani was previously designated as terrorist in 2004 by the U.S. and the United Nations.
In 2008, The Washington Post reported that federal prosecutors in 2005 described Zindani’s organization as “a front organization” “used to support al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.”
Islamic Relief accepted funding from the al-Qaeda-linked group as recently as 2009.
The Gatestone Institute, a think tank focused on Middle East issues, claimed that Islamic Relief Worldwide, a “sister organization” to the CNN-promoted Islamic Relief USA, “appears to be a hub for donations from charities accused of links to Al Qaeda and other terror groups.”
A number of other organizations accused of having questionable ties to terror have been cited by CNN as an authoritative voice, often on Muslim-American issues.
A news article on CNN.com from after Donald Trump’s 2016 election win, titled, “Muslims respond to hate letters: ‘You’re not going to scare us,’” purports that a wave of Islamophobia is currently targeting Muslim Americans.
The article uncritically cites a quote from Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC) president Salam Al-Marayati, who said at a press conference, “You are a coward unless you come here and debate the points that you apparently believe so much in.”
MPAC also has ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, and previously lobbied for Hamas and Hezbollah to be taken off the United States list of terrorist organizations.
CNN.com also published an op-ed titled, “No, ISIS doesn’t represent Islam,” from Al-Marayati in 2015.
Al-Marayati previously inferred that Israel could be responsible for 9/11, saying it should be on a “suspect” list over the attack. (RELATED: Muslim DHS Advisor Called Israel A ‘Suspect’ In September 11 Attacks)
CNN has also uncritically cited the Islamic Circle of North America (ICNA) in an article about Muslim contributions to the United States after Donald Trump’s call for a temporary ban on Muslim immigration.
ICNA supports the creation of an Islamic caliphate, and previously hosted an al-Qaeda recruiter at its 2002 conference. ICNA also has ties to terror on U.S. soil. (RELATED: New York Terrorist’s Mosque Has Ties To Fundamentalist Islamic Umbrella Group)
The Muslim American Society (MAS) was also uncritically cited in a CNN article from August after an apparently targeted explosion at a mosque.
CNN wrote, “The Muslim American Society of Minnesota’s executive director said six groups are offering a reward of $24,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator.”
The article then quotes Imam Asad Zaman, described as the “executive director of the group,” who said, “We are saddened at the unprovoked hate crime. We are thankful to our elected officials and law enforcement who have acted speedily to repudiate such a horrible hate crime. And we are hopeful about our neighbors and about the interfaith community that have come forward in a show of support.”
According to a court filing, federal prosecutors said MAS was “founded as the overt arm of the Muslim Brotherhood in America.”
Both MAS and ICNA, two groups cited by CNN, held a 2009 convention that “served as a forum for religious scholars and political activists to rail against Jews, call for the eradication of the state of Israel and accuse the United States government as waging a war against Muslims at home and abroad,” according to the ADL.
CNN did not respond with a comment by press time.
Follow Justin on Twitter