I wonder where the ACLU is on this this one? There is a charter school in Minneapolis that is run by Imams, has a central carpeted prayer space where there are regular prayer services, and serves halal (kind of Muslim Kosher) food in its cafeteria. Well except during Ramadan, when the student body is encouraged to fast from sunrise to sunset. This is not a religious school according to the school’s leaders but a cultural school. But this school, funded by tax payer dollars “walks like a religious school, squawks like a religious school….
The Muslim American Society of Minnesota is also involved in the running of this school. This hate group is also a big fan of Hamas. Last June Joe Kaufman reported about the Minnesota MAS
The Minnesota chapter of MAS, the chapter that Ellison addressed, has striven to uphold the Ikhwan legacy, by propagating materials authored by past Brotherhood leaders, like Hassan Al-Banna (Egypt MB founder), Sayyid Qutb, and Syed Abul Ala Maududi (Pakistan MB founder). Within these works, which are located via the group’s “Online Library,” one finds heated discussions about waging jihad, what MAS-Minnesota terms “holy battle,” against non-Muslims. One reads, “A Muslim must always worship Allah and wage jihad until death in order to reach his ultimate goal, although the goal is invisible and it takes a long time to achieve. Therefore the steadfast Muslim will achieve this goal either through a lifetime of effort or through sudden death as a martyr… Regularly make the intention to go on jihad with the ambition to die as a martyr. You should be ready for this right now, even though its time may not have come yet.” As well as verses about murderous jihad, one discovers on MAS-Minnesota’s website a general obsession the group has with regard to Jews, including an entire section devoted to the “STONING TO DEATH OF JEWS AND OTHER DHIMMIS.” Some anti-Semitic statements on the site [there are too many to repeat] include:
- “The Holy Prophet (and through him the Muslims) has been reassured that he should not mind the enmity, the evil designs and the machinations of the Jews, but continue exerting his utmost to establish the Right Way in accordance with the Guidance of the Quran.”
- “In view of the degenerate moral condition of the Jews and the Christians, the Believers have been warned not to make them their friends and confidants.”
- “If you gain victory over the men of Jews, kill them.”
- “The Hour will not be established until you fight with the Jews, and the stone behind which a Jew will be hiding will say, ‘O Muslim! There is a Jew hiding behind me, so kill him.’”
Additionally, MAS-Minnesota’s website contains laudatory declarations towards Hamas. In an article on the site, entitled ‘Priorities of The Islamic Movement in The Coming Phase,’ Hamas is described as a “steadfast, brave, aware Islamic resistance movement.” It goes on to say, “Hamas is an embodiment of the Palestinian People’s belief in its Muslim and Arab origins, and a testimony that this people is still alive and will never die and that its jihad will be carried on by pure hands and clean hearts until victory is achieved with the will of Allah.” The piece was written by Yusuf al-Qaradawi, an individual that has been banned from the United States, due to his support for suicide bombings
Katherine Kersten tells us more about Minnesota’s tax dollars at works;
Are taxpayers footing bill for Islamic school in Minnesota? By KATHERINE KERSTEN, Star Tribune March 8, 2008Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy (TIZA) — named for the Muslim general who conquered medieval Spain — is a K-8 charter school in Inver Grove Heights. Its approximately 300 students are mostly the children of low-income Muslim immigrant families, many of them Somalis. The school is in huge demand, with a waiting list of 1,500. Last fall, it opened a second campus in Blaine. TIZA uses the language of culture rather than religion to describe its program in public documents. According to its mission statement, the school “recognizes and appreciates the traditions, histories, civilizations and accomplishments of the eastern world (Africa, Asia and Middle East).” But the line between religion and culture is often blurry. There are strong indications that religion plays a central role at TIZA, which is a public school financed by Minnesota taxpayers. Under the U.S. and state constitutions, a public school can accommodate students’ religious beliefs but cannot encourage or endorse religion. TIZA raises troubling issues about taxpayer funding of schools that cross that line. Asad Zaman, TIZA’s principal, declined to allow me to visit the school or grant me an interview. He did not respond to e-mails seeking written replies. TIZA’s strong religious connections date from its founding in 2003. Its co-founders, Zaman and Hesham Hussein, were both imams, or Muslim religious leaders, as well as leaders of the Muslim American Society of Minnesota (MAS-MN). Since then, they have played dual roles: Zaman as TIZA’s principal and the current vice-president of MAS-MN, and Hussein as TIZA’s school board chair and president of MAS-MN until his death in a car accident in Saudi Arabia in January. MAS-MN came to Minnesotans’ attention in 2006, when it issued a “fatwa,” warning Muslim taxi drivers at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport that transporting passengers with alcohol in their baggage is a violation of Islamic law. Journalists whom Zaman has permitted to visit TIZA have described the school’s Islamic atmosphere and practices. “A visitor might well mistake Tarek ibn Ziyad for an Islamic school,” reported Minnesota Monthly in 2007. “Head scarves are voluntary, but virtually all the girls wear them.” The school has a central carpeted prayer space, and “vaguely religious-sounding language” is used. According to the Pioneer Press, TIZA’s student body prays daily and the school’s cafeteria serves halal food (permissible under Islamic law). During Ramadan, all students fast from dawn to dusk, according to a parent quoted in the article. In fact, TIZA was originally envisioned as a private Islamic school. In 2001, MAS-MN negotiated to buy the current TIZA/MAS-MN building for Al-Amal School, a private religious institution in Fridley, according to Bruce Rimstad of the Inver Grove Heights School District. But many immigrant families can’t afford Al-Amal. In 2002, Islamic Relief — headquartered in California — agreed to sponsor a publicly funded charter school, TIZA, at the same location. TIZA claims to be non-sectarian, as Minnesota law requires charters to be. But “after-school Islamic learning” takes place on weekdays in the same building under MAS-MN’s auspices, according to the program for MAS-MN’s 2007 convention. At that convention, a TIZA representative at the school’s booth told me that students go directly to “Islamic studies” classes at 3:30, when TIZA’s day ends. There, they learn “Qur’anic recitation, the Sunnah of the Prophet” and other religious subjects, he said. TIZA’s 2006 Contract Performance Review Report states that students engage in unspecified “electives” after school or do homework.
Publicly, TIZA emphasizes that it uses standard curricular materials like those found in other public schools. But when addressing Muslim audiences, school officials make the link to Islam clear. At MAS-MN’s 2007 convention, for example, the program featured an advertisement for the “Muslim American Society of Minnesota,” superimposed on a picture of a mosque. Under the motto “Establishing Islam in Minnesota,” it asked: “Did you know that MAS-MN … houses a full-time elementary school”? On the adjacent page was an application for TIZA. In addition to the issues raised by TIZA’s religious elements, there are reasons to be concerned about the organizations with which it is connected. Islamic Relief-USA, the school’s sponsor, is compared to the Red Cross in several TIZA documents. In 2006, however, the Israeli government announced that Islamic Relief Worldwide, the organization’s parent group, “provides support and assistance” to Hamas, designated by the U.S. government as a terrorist group. Meanwhile, MAS-MN offers on its web site “beneficial and enlightening information” about Islam, which includes statements like “Regularly make the intention to go on jihad with the ambition to die as a martyr.” At its 2007 convention, MAS-MN featured the notorious Shayk Khalid Yasin, who is well-known in Britain and Australia for teaching that husbands can beat disobedient wives, that gays should be executed and that the United States spreads the AIDS virus in Africa through vaccines for tropical diseases. Yasin’s topic? “Building a Successful Muslim Community in Minnesota.” TIZA has improved the reading and math performance of its mostly low-income students. That’s commendable, but should Minnesota taxpayers be funding an Islamic public school?