Germany Turns a Blind Eye to Radical Islam
And increases its activity with Iran.
5:30 PM, Jun 2, 2010 • By BENJAMIN WEINTHAL
Just as the danger of homegrown political Islam is on display in the United States with the attempted Times Square bombing--the third attempted attack in six months--Germany seems to be recoiling to its pre-9/11 indifference toward growing radical Iranian Islam in its backyard. In late May, the pro-Ahmadinejad Imam Ali Mosque in Hamburg hosted an event with advocates of revolutionary Iranian Islam.
Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, appointed the director of the Islamic Center Hamburg, which is part of the Imam Ali Mosque. The mosque's imam, Ayatollah Reza Ramezani, used his platform to call for participation at the 2009 al Quds Day, an anti-West and anti-Israeli hate festival, whose goal is the “liberation of Jerusalem from the Zionist system,” a standard Iranian battle cry for wiping Israel off the map.
The radical German “Islamic Way” association, which understands its mission as a branch of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC), helped organize the so-called “Peace Congress” in Hamburg. While the European Union (with the exception of a proposed Holland Parliament resolution to ban the IRGC) refuses to place the IRGC on its EU terror list, the Bush administration classified the IRGC as a global terrorist organization as early as 2007. The IRGC was the key instrument in suppressing the the pro-Democracy movement last June, as well as advancing Iran's drive to go nuclear.
That helps to explain why the Hamburg cell could advance their organizational plans to murder Americans years before September 11, 2001. Has Germany really learned the lessons of their fluffy toleration of Islamofascism? A spokesman for the Hamburg Office for the Protection of the Constitution (Verfassungschutz), the domestic intelligence agency, wrote to me that there are “roughly 30 members of pro-Iranian Hezbollah” in Hamburg “who meet in the Islamic Center Hamburg.”
Yet she used her recent visit to Lebanon, where Hezbollah plays a decisive role in shaping Lebanon's policies in the Middle East, to blast Israel for building apartments in an east Jerusalem neighborhood. “Why is Merkel suddenly criticizing Israel so harshly?” asked a Bild newspaper headline during Chancellor Merkel's visit to Lebanon last March.
Benjamin Weinthal is a journalist based in Berlin and currently a fellow at the Iran Energy Project at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.