"Toting his new book--A Deadly Misunderstanding: A Congressman's Quest to Bridge the Muslim-Christian Divide, Congressman Mark Siljander explained how, according to his studies, the two religions aren't so different after all.
Jerry Dillon, who organized the event, told UTW that the ideas espoused by Siljander are needed to combat the ignorance and Islamophobia he said certain "redneck Oklahoma leaders" recently displayed in "rejecting the gift of the Quran,"
Siljander explained that his "spiritual journey" began 15 years ago at the National Prayer Breakfast, when he was a Republican congressman from Michigan. The self-deprecating former lawmaker recounted, "I was trained as an evangelical Christian; I was a poster boy for Jerry Falwell."
As such, Siljander was incensed when the Quran was read at the Breakfast, prompting him to fire-off an angry letter to the emcee, demanding, "How can you read the book of the devil at a prayer breakfast?"
It was also during this period that he met Nassim Matar, a Lebanese-born, Washington, D.C.-based real estate broker. To further explore what "cultural misunderstandings" he had regarding Christianity and its relationship to Islam, Siljander began to study... Siljander said he also began to study the Quran for the first time.
After days of discussions with Sudan's President Omar al Bashir, Siljander said the ruler introduced him to his religious and political advisors, who then invited him and his delegation to speak at the Khartoum Shari'a Law School."
Of course once in Sudan, Siljander called for lifting those mean sanctions on Bashir's brutal government, which had massacred hundreds of thousands, Christians and non-Christians.
"I believe there is a desire to find middle ground," Siljander told WORLD concerning the purpose of his visit to Darfur. "Did the Sudan government arm the janjaweed? Absolutely. No question they did horrific things. But now they realize it got away from them and they have announced that they aim to disarm the janjaweed. If they say they are willing to disarm them and protect workers, then let's come to some agreement."
Both Siljander and Beasley told WORLD they believe lifting U.S. sanctions would "incentivize" Khartoum to resolve the Darfur crisis and to increase economic development in a way that will benefit more Sudanese. "In the past we promised to remove sanctions but we then didn't. Our credibility is important here, too," said Siljander."
Interestingly enough Nassim Matar, whom Siljander cites as his influence in convincing him that Islam was just great, along with Siljander, was one of the few signatories in praise of a Fatwa issued by the Fiqh Council of North America condemning terrorism. This Fatwa is ironic considering the deep involvement of Fiqh council members in terrorism.
Back in 2005 Steve Emmerson described the Fiqh Fatwa as a lie
"the fatwa is bogus. Nowhere does it condemn the Islamic extremism ideology that has spawned Islamic terrorism. It does not renounce nor even acknowledge the existence of an Islamic jihadist culture that has permeated mosques and young Muslims around the world. It does not renounce Jihad let alone admit that it has been used to justify Islamic terrorist acts. It does not condemn by name any Islamic group or leader. In short, it is a fake fatwa designed merely to deceive the American public into believing that these groups are moderate. In fact, officials of both organizations have been directly linked to and associated with Islamic terrorist groups and Islamic extremist organizations. One of them is an unindicted co-conspirator in a current terrorist case; another previous member was a financier to Al-Qaeda.
Another past trustee of the Fiqh Council, Abdurrahman Alamoudi, is serving a 23-year prison sentence for illegal financial dealings with Libya and immigration fraud, has admitted to his part in a plot to assassinate the Saudi Crown Prince, and has vocally announced his support for the terrorist groups Hamas and Hezbollah. Additionally Alamoudi was just named by Treasury as having been a financier for Al Qaeda."
Suddenly Siljander's Al Queda ties stop being so surprising and it's likely that Nassim Matar was actually Siljander's link to figures in the Islamic pro-terrorist community. Nassim Matar is the Director of Bridges to Common Ground, which published the Thanksgiving Declaration that Siljander signed, which urges Americans to respect the beliefs of the Prophet Mohammed. The website also contains a lecture by Mark Siljander, which I will shortly cite, as well as links to the Islamic Society of North America, A Saudi funded organization which controls virtually all the mosques in America and Canada and promotes Wahhabism
"According to terrorism expert Steven Emerson, ISNA "is a radical group hiding under a false veneer of moderation"; "convenes annual conferences where Islamist militants have been given a platform to incite violence and promote hatred" (for instance, al Qaeda supporter and PLO official Yusuf Al-Qaradhawi was invited to speak at an ISNA conference); has held fundraisers for terrorists (after Hamas leader Mousa Marzook was arrested and eventually deported in 1997, ISNA raised money for his defense); has condemned the U.S. government's post-9/11 seizure of Hamas' and Palestinian Islamic Jihad's financial assets; and publishes a bi-monthly magazine, Islamic Horizons, that "often champions militant Islamist doctrine."
The Bridges website or as the organization is called "International Peace Organization" though the only NGO by that name appears to be based out of Pakistan, has the following in its mission statement;
"People of good will on both sides of the Divide need to come together on "common ground" found in the Qur'an and the original Aramaic Injil."But what is there beneath the surface narrative of an intolerant man becoming tolerant, there is an extensive hidden narrative. What really drove a man who supposedly viewed the Koran as the Book of Satan into a willing tool for the genocidal regime of Omar al Bashir, who was responsible for the torture, rape and murder of hundreds of thousands of Christians?
The answer is likely that it was the same things that drove some prominent Americans to become Soviet apologists, money. The Former Congressman was also the President of Global Strategies Inc, a worldwide multiservice firm that handled imports, exports and a whole lot more.
At some point in time Congressman Siljander transformed himself into a willing prostitute for the Jihad, touring the world in order to build up his business. There are some interesting details to Global Strategies Inc. For starters the bookkeeping and accounting at Global Strategies Inc is handled by one Allison Siljandir, possibly his daughter but likely a family member. And a company that needs a family member to handle the books is often seriously dirty and has things to hide.
Now let's take a look at what else Global Strategies Inc handles. Under Immigration, Siljander's company offers services such as
Strategize immigration categories for workers in; agricultural, high tech, nursing, corporate executives, etc.
Assist prominent individuals in securing visas
Yes one would imagine that terrorists might be interested in such services. There's also an extensive charity section, including a focus on areas of conflict, read Jihadi areas. Under Public Relations, GSI boasts of having advised lobbying teams from Liberia, Eritrea, Nigeria, Benin and Bangladesh. There is also the following cryptic reference;
"Aided a former First Lady (non US) regarding personal financial troubles"
Under Government Services, it only gets creepier.
Document production of driver licenses, passports, national ID’s, marriage and death certificates
Advised organizations with technical and political problems related to the US government
Any terrorist group would consider the above two a major bonanza. Meanwhile Mark Siljander was wandering around the Middle East boasting of his ties to the brutal regime of Al Bashir. Here are key excerpts from his Oxford lecture available on his website.
"Permit me to take you back to a hot night in August 2006. I had the opportunity to meet with the President of Sudan, His Excellency al-Bashir, a person I have courted friendship with over the last nine years. He is a man mostly recently known for saying “No” to a UN Force in Darfur...
The Sheik was flabbergasted. He said, “Do you mean to tell me that the statement of faith that makes us Muslims is both in the Torah and Gospel, and that it also contains a perfect definition of the ‘Religion of Islam’?”
“It seems so, Your Excellency,” I replied.
“Do these same witnesses to the One God also believe in the last days and the prophets of Allah?” The Sheikh wondered.
I told him many if not most (Christians) not only accept the “witness” and the prophets and last days, but moreover would additionally believe in a broad sense, in the other four Pillars of Islam: 1) Salat, regular prayer; 2) Zakah, giving to the poor; 3) Siym, fasting; 4) Hajj, pilgrimage to the Holy Land.
I will never forget his look as he declared, “This is revolutionary.”
The question arises whom Islam considers as “infidels.” The militants argue that non-Muslims are infidels and therefore, worthy of death. Kafers (infidels) are those who do not accept the Shahadah.
Think of it, if those who follow Torah and Gospels would witness and believe in their hearts that God is one, could they be removed from the list of who are considered as “infidels”? This new common ground can help undercut the radical’s message of hate and their view of the glory of martyrdom through killing of infidels."
Or of course it can pave the way for describing Jews and Christians not as Infidels but as Reverts, heretics against Islam. While infidels may not necessarily be killed under Islam for no reason, heresy against Islam is itself justification for murder.
Now former Congressman Mark Siljander may have thought he was rather cleverly proving that Christians, Muslims and Jews believe the same thing, when he was actually making the case that the beliefs were similar enough to be considered a heresy... or he may have known exactly what he was doing, which was creating another theological basis for terrorism. And back in the West, the practical upshot of his argument is essentially a call to Islam.
Siljander becomes more explicit on this point as his Oxford lecture continues;
"This is one of the most painful misunderstandings among Christians. Polls indicate that the vast majority of Christians universally feel that Allah is not the same God as the God of the Hebrews, or Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Ishmael.
Many noted US Christian preachers have reinforced this idea by stating that "The God of Islam is not the same God.” Televangelist Benny Hinn also commented, “This is not a war between Arabs and Jews. It's a war between God and the devil."
I recall speaking to an assembly of seminary students in Lancaster Bible College in PA a few years ago. When questioned, their view, rightly or wrongly, was unanimous that Allah was a false god and in fact, derived from a Moon-god of ancient East.
The Apostle Paul faced similar challenges with the Greek pagans as described in Acts 17. Paul used an idol to reflect the true God. While “some mocked…many followed and surrendered” to God. The point being, that the origins of a name do not always reflect on the later application."
Here Siljander compares himself to Paul preaching a new gospel that fuses Christianity and Judaism into Islam. But his real gospel was likely much more bottom line, an ex-congressman with business interests in the third world who found another profitable venue, promoting and aiding the Jihad. But he is only the tip of a much larger iceberg.