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Guess who is running for City Council of Irvine (He also tried to squash a book)

Reader comment on item: Extra! Leading New York Publisher Spikes Book Dealing with Islam!

Submitted by gary fouse (United States), Oct 11, 2008 at 15:00

For the past couple of years, I have been writing about the outrageous events and speakers being brought to UC-Irvine by the campus Muslim Student Union. I have posted many of my comments on the Red County blog of Orange County, a center-right blog. This has led many back and forth exchanges with other Red County readers, most agreeing with my posts, some disagreeing.

One of the figures who has occasionally commented in defense of the MSU and accused its critics of being anti-Muslim is none other than the local attorney for CAIR (Council of Islamic American Relations), Todd Gallinger.

Guess who is running for the Irvine City Council.

Not only is Mr Gallinger running for the City Council, he is upset that one of the incumbents running for re-election, Dr Steven Choi, recently spoke to a group of people and warned them about voting for someone who is associated with a "dangerous" organization (Gallinger-CAIR). Gallinger and CAIR are demanding an apology from Choi, which Choi refuses to give.

(CAIR's website today is reporting that Gallinger has just received a telephone death threat from an unidentified person. If that is the case, I certainly condemn it.)

Here's my 2 cents worth. CAIR insists that it is a moderate group which represents mainstream Muslims. It says it condemns terrorism (in all its forms), which, in my view, is a convenient add-on that opens the door to equate Israel with Islamic terrorism. Its Communications Director, Ibrahim Hooper, has refused to condemn Hamas and Hezbollah as terrorist organizations. In addition, CAIR has engaged in lawsuits on behalf of US Muslims alleging discrimination and racial profiling. One example is the case of the "Flying Imams".

Finally, CAIR was listed as an unindicted co-conspirator in the Homeland Foundation charities case.

Gallinger himself has participated in some of CAIR's lawsuits including suits against the Dept of Homeland Security and the FBI over those agency's roles in alleged delays in processing citizenship applications of Muslims due to background checks.

He also was involved in a lawsuit against Yale University Press representing a group called KinderUSA and trying to stop publication of a book entitled; "Hamas:Politics, Charity and Terrorism in the Service of Jihad", by Matthew Levitt, who is director of the Stein Program on Terrorism, Intelligence and Policy at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. This book linked KinderUSA to groups raising money for terrorism under the guise of charity. The case was settled in August 2007. An article from the New Haven Independent dated 5-9-07 by Paul Bass entitled; "Alleged terror front group sues Yale Press" may be found at the below website:

http://newhavenindependent.org/archives/2007/05/hamas_terrorism.php

As for CAIR, it is fair and accurate to say that it is under a great deal of suspicion. Many of its critics charge that CAIR is connected to terrorist organizations overseas, which CAIR denies.

So, is CAIR a "dangerous" organization? I don't know, but I would be very comfortable in saying that CAIR is a suspicious organization.

Which means that I would not be voting for Mr Gallinger. But, of course, I don't live in Irvine anyway.

gary fouse

fousesquawk

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