Who is behind Relentless, Obsession and The Third Jihad?
28 million copies of a DVD of the film “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West” have been distributed free of cost in newspapers across the country. The film was first released a few years ago and has been shown around the country. I wrote about my impressions and concerns when I viewed the film in 2007 and again in early 2008 when “Fitna” another such film was released. Except for David Horowitz’ use of the film as the centerpiece of his Islamo Fascism Awareness weeks for
|Friday, September 26,2008 21:06|
The venom created by the films “Relentless”, and “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War With the West” has been slowly working its way into the hearts and minds of people across the country for a couple of years. Now the same group that brought us these atrocities is coming out with another film “The Third Jihad”. These films are only part of what Bob Crane has called a Tsunami of Islamophobia that seems to be rushing in ever higher waves towards the Muslim community in America. These films are verbal and visual terrorism.
28 million copies of a DVD of the film “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West” have been distributed free of cost in newspapers across the country. The film was first released a few years ago and has been shown around the country. I wrote about my impressions and concerns when I viewed the film in 2007 and again in early 2008 when “Fitna” another such film was released. Except for David Horowitz’ use of the film as the centerpiece of his Islamo Fascism Awareness weeks for the last couple of years it has mostly been shown by local community venues and on campuses and sponsored primarily by Republican and Jewish groups. It is also sold on the internet.
Now, a DVD of this film has been bundled inside more than 70 newspapers and magazines and delivered nationwide to subscribers. Surprisingly even The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The World Jewish Digest accepted this “advertizing” insert. “There is no greater threat than radical Islam,” said Gregory Ross, spokesman for the Clarion Fund, a New-York based nonprofit organization that is paying newspapers to distribute the DVD. “It needs to be pushed to the forefront of the political discussion.” (Controversial film on Islam delivered nationwide, Yonat Shimron) The newspapers accepted this insert as paid advertizing but it was not labeled as such. I am certain that many people receiving the DVD think that this is the view of the paper delivering it to their doorstep.
Copies of the DVD were distributed free at the DNC, and at the RNC by the recently formed group watch obsession.org headed by Tom Trento. Earlier this year, the Florida Attorney General required employees to watch this video. The Republican Jewish Coalition has also distributed free copies of the film in promotional mailings to U.S. rabbis and other Jewish mailing lists. The stars of the film have lectured at U.S. Military colleges, and the U.S. Navy uses the film.
I know from personal experience over many years of being involved with interfaith dialogue that the views that this film promotes are not the views of all Jewish people, but I also know that those who have been responsible for making this film and for promoting it widely have been primarily Jewish. It truly saddens me that members of a community who should know better and who have experienced a holocaust that resulted at least partially from widespread stereotyping and demonization of Jewish people. I believe that this marginal group within the Jewish community is so blinded by their need to defend the State of Israel at any cost that they do not see the cost of their propoganda to another community. They are a marginal group, but they are making a lot of noise. In fact, they are making so much noise that they are drowning out the voices of those in the mainstream Jewish community who have worked so hard with mainstream Muslims and Christians to build bridges of dialogue and work towards peace and justice in this world.
As Robert Salaam has pointed out ”Tragically today, it appears that the very groups who had taken up the shout of “Never Again!”, seem to have edited the shout to, “Well...maybe just this one more time...”
The film “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War With the West” has been written and produced by Jewish people, and most of the local showings of the film around the country the last couple of years have been sponsored by Jewish groups, although recently Christian groups such as CUFI have also become involved in the promotion of this film. This appears to be part of a concerted effort to marginalize the Muslim community. An ad published by the American Jewish Committee in the New York Times last year called “Israel’s Neighbors Speak” used many of the same questionable quotes and techniques. Obsession has become so much a part of the American Jewish community that it was shown at the Berkshire Jewish film festival in 2007.
And, at a 2006 showing of Obsession in Philadelphia, a Jewish Exponent article said: “In a show of unity in the face of mounting international Arab extremism, as well as anti-Israel sentiment on America’s college campuses, some 800 people turned out for last weekend’s sold-out screening of “Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West” at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Welcoming those to the March 26 event - organized by Aish Philadelphia, the Jewish Community Centers, the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, Hillel of Greater Philadelphia and Akiba Hebrew Academy - Michael Wachs, one of the evening’s sponsors, said that “the true blessing of this event is Jews standing united as one. ‘Obsession’ is a wake-up call.” How does a film supposedly about Radical Islam and terrorism and Jews standing united as one relate? As part of his introduction of the guest speaker, Gary Erlbaum - co-chair of Federation’s Center for Israel and Overseas - noted that “Judaism allows us to make choices.” “Where do we go from here?” he then asked. “The humanitarian gesture is to stand up for ourselves and the people of Israel,” offered Erlbaum. “Tell everyone you can that the world is a dangerous place.” This explains everything, the film has something to do with standing up for Israel.
An early review of Obsession posted on the Jewish Virtual Library site includes the statement: ”A film like this would have been difficult to make a few years ago when it was rare to hear Muslims speaking in their own language.” Exactly what language is the Muslim language? I only speak English and am an American Muslim. The same article also said: ”Jimmy Carter and the Iraq Study Group members should be required to watch the film so they will be disabused of their delusion that Israeli policy is the obstacle to peace. Obsession makes clear the real obstacles are the Islamists’ refusal to recognize Israel, the outright hatred of the Jews by many Muslims and the unwillingness to accept a Jewish state on “Islamic land” or Jewish rule over Muslims.” Once again making clear the connection in the minds of these individuals that demonizing Muslims has something to do with supporting Israel.
This film is most likely seen by these individuals as a way to marginalize Islam and Muslims and put all of the focus strictly on Muslims as the source of all of the problems in the world, particularly as the source of opposition to some Christian and Jewish fundamentalists ideas about the State of Israel and its relation to end times prophecy. An extremist religious belief that should not be the source of policy, and that is at least as dangerous as the confused religious beliefs of extremist Muslims. The fact that the film Obsession and these folks in general do not see any possibility that actual historical events and political policies could have anything at all to do with the motivation of any worldwide disputes involving Muslims in any way is odd. The fact that many in other countries do see such possibilities doesn’t influence their close minded views. For example, a 2006 ICH poll of British citizens shows that 72% believe that foreign policy is feeding terrorism.
What happens when such propoganda is spread through society with no alternative voice? We have seen what happens in the not so distant past in places like Rwanda and Bosnia, and in the last generation in the German attempt at genocide of the Jews, Gypsies, and other peoples deemed to be inferior and/or dangerous.
If the people who are promoting this believe that it is only the Muslims who will be affected, and that is a price they are willing to pay in order to achieve their goals, I believe that they are mistaken, and they are playing with fire, and adding fuel to that fire by bringing religion into the political mix. There are a whole lot more folks out there who believe that America is a Christian nation (including John McCain who said “...the Constitution established the United States of America as a Christian nation.” ) than there are Muslims and Jews combined. They are a fringe group of Christianity worldwide, but may represent as many as 40% of American Christians. That these fringe Christians who believe that they can help bring Armageddon along earlier by helping their interpretation of Biblical prophecy happen would support films like this is not surprising. They don’t care about any possible results to all of those who in their view will be “left behind” to suffer the consequences of a terrible war because they believe that they will be “raptured” to heaven before all hell breaks loose here on earth. For them anyone who doesn’t believe in their particular view of Christianity is uninportant and doomed to eternal damnation. That includes not only Buddhists, Hindus, Mormons, and Catholics, but also Muslims and Jews. Why any of us who are in this fring Christian world view going to be “left behind” would join hands with these folks to promote their agenda is truly a mystery.
That there is a line to be crossed between legitimate discussion of political issues and anti-Semitism is clear even to Robert Wistrich (one of the talking heads in the Obsession film), or at least it is clear when it comes to anti-Semitism. In an article on Qantara.de he said: “Does he or she rely on classic anti-Semitic stereotypes in so doing: for example, by dredging up the alleged Jewish/Zionist “conspiracy” to dominate the world, or by evoking Jewish/Israeli “warmongers” who supposedly run American foreign policy; or through referring to an all-powerful “Jewish Lobby” that prevents justice in the Middle East. If the “anti-Zionist” critic holds Jews to be responsible for the chaos and troubles that currently afflict the world, he is surely an antisemite. If he criminalizes Israeli behaviour, by gratuitously branding it as “Nazi” or intrinsically “racist”, then we are talking anti-Semitism.” What if he or she relies on classic anti-Muslim or anti-Arab stereotypes, or dredging up an alleged Muslim conspiracy to rule the world, or by evoking Muslim “warmongers” (no matter how marginal), or through referring to some all powerful terrorist organization that has the ability to destroy western civilization, or gratuitously branding political groups as Nazi, or attaching the name of the religion with terms like nazi, fascist, and terrorist - would that make the person an Islamophobe, and equally desicable?
Once the demons of religious, racial, or ethnic stereotyping are released, they are impossible to control. What has been the result of the barrage of anti-Muslim propoganda over the last few years? The real fascists are rearing their ugly heads again in Germany where their last incarnation was so devastating to the Jews. Negative feelings towards Muslims, and to a lesser extent Jews, are on the rise in Canada. Anti-Semitism and Islamophobia are surging in Europe. The latest Pew Research Center survey of global attitudes on religion is out and the news is not good for Jews – or Muslims. Once you have convinced people that one form of prejudice is “acceptable” then it is difficult to stop that prejudice from being switched to other “out groups”.
Those behind the production of the Obsession film and those behind the recent distribution of the DVD in newspapers and by mail are attempting to be very secretive about exactly who they are, and who is financing this endeavor.
The Obsession website lists only the filmmakers, Wayne Kopping and Raphael Shore. However, the dvd packaging included with the Times lists the producers as Peter Mier and Raphael Shore, and states that the project was “conceived by” Peter Mier. and the production manager is listed as Brett Halperin. However, an article by Richard Silverstein of Tikun Olam attempting to get to the bottom of this notes that Raphael Shore says that Mier and Halperin are just aliases and that also according to Shore, about 80 percent of the film’s $400,000 budget was provided by Mier (whoever Mier might be).
In an interview on Fox News Raphael Shore said: “At the recommendation of a number of experts we worked with in making the film, many of the individuals and organizations who helped make this film possible requested anonymity. Tragically, we’ve seen numerous times the response of the radicals to those who openly expose or disagree with them.” But of course, they are afraid they will be killed by fanatical Muslims. If that is so, why aren’t Raphael Shore or any of the other folks involved in this afraid.
I think that he Kassandra Project blog asks a very good question about this: “Why all the aliases and secrecy I wonder. Maybe it has something to do with that pesky federal U.S. 501(c)(3) law prohibiting foreign political institutions or foreign organizations from contributing to the Clarion Fund’s operations. Given that both the producer and the director are foreigners (with an anti-Muslim agenda), and the financial backers are anonymous, it all looks very suspicious.” This is a much more likely motivation for all the secrecy.
Jews on First adds even more credence to this interpretation. “Because it was established only recently, the Clarion Fund has not yet filed its first required disclosure (Form 990) with the IRS. It is not disclosing its officers. The address Clarion used to satisfy the New York Times’ requirement that political or opinion advertisements include the advertiser’s contact information—255 West 36th St., Suite 800, in Manhattan—turns out to be Grace Corporate Park Executive Suites, an office-space rental operation which also rents “virtual office identity packages” for as little as $75 a month.” This is just about as shady as it is possible to be.
Erik Ose in an article on The Huffington Post raises an even more pertinent issue: “However, one detail in this report seems mistaken, that “because it was established only recently, the Clarion Fund has not yet filed its first required disclosure (Form 990) with the IRS.” According to the New York Secretary of State’s website, the Clarion Fund was incorporated nearly two years ago, on December 28, 2006. So where are their Form 990’s? Hello, IRS?)”
I have done what I could to collect as much information as possible about the organizations and individuals involved in the production of Obsession and in the promotion and distribution of the film. As I am able to find out more I will update this. If you have any additional information please let me know. I find it very interesting that these groups and individuals are so intertwined. The dubious credentials of most of the “experts” are also interesting. What is most interesting is that an organization that has not filed proper paperwork with the IRS, doesn’t have a legitimate address, and lists aliases on the cover of its “advertising” insert was still accepted as legitimate by so many newspapers (and of course, that doesn’t even touch on the matter of the content of the Obsession insert).
9-23-08 update: According to an article by Tim Townsend in the St. Louis Post Dispatch (who refused to distribute the DVD’s) “Jen Wood, the Post-Dispatch’s vice president of advertising, said her department received the request to include the DVD as an insert at the beginning of the summer. She said the advertiser provided the newspaper only with a trailer, and refused when Wood asked to see a copy of the entire film - something she described as “not an unusual request.”"I didn’t have enough information to make a decision, so I said ‘no thank you,’” said Wood. “It wasn’t clear what exact message they were trying to send.” This makes the Post-Dispatch along with the Greensboro North Carolina News-Record one of only two newspapers to have refused to participate in this campaign.
9/23 update: CAIR has issued a press release saying that they are asking the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to Probe Anti-Muslim DVDs Sent to Swing States http://www.theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/cair_asks_fec_to_
ORGANIZATIONS INVOLVED IN THE PRODUCTION OR PROMOTION OF OBSESSION
When the Israeli Foreign Ministry sought to combat anti-Israel ideas on college campuses, it called on Aish HaTorah to develop the HASBARA FELLOWSHIPS. This program has flown hundreds of student leaders to Israel for intensive training in pro-Israel activism training. In North America, Hasbara Fellowships guides and funds pro-Israel activities on 80 college campuses.
Aish also founded HONEST REPORTING, a web-based operation that monitors the media for ‘anti-Israel bias’. Honest Reporting has claimed to be independent from Aish for several years, but its UK branch, launched earlier this year, boasts an Aish-registered website domain name and contact address. The Aish International site main page says: “Campuses everywhere are deluged with anti-Israel propaganda. Mass media is often strongly biased against Israel. Our efforts through affiliate HonestReporting Campus and Hasbara Fellowships are defending Israel everywhere.”
This is a shadowy group who organized and paid for the distribution of the Obsession DVD to 28 million Americans by newspaper inserts and direct mailing. Clarion was founded by Raphael Shore. Their site does not list any officers, board members, nothing.
CHRISTIANS UNITED FOR ISRAEL
This group headed by Pastor John Hagee helped pay for a mass mailing of the Obsession video some months ago. According to an article on Israel eNews: “At the July 16-18, 2007 Christians United For Israel (CUFI) yearly conference in Washington D.C., Senator Lieberman lavished praise on Christians United For Israel’s founder, Texas megachurch evangelist Pastor John Hagee, likening Hagee to Moses, calling Hagee a “man of God”, and stating that, like Moses, Hagee was the leader of a ‘mighty multitude’. But on July 18, 2007, at the nonprofit 501(c)(3) group’s “A Night To Honor Israel” capstone event of it’s three-day conference, CUFI Regional Director Billye Brim suggested that “God has a plan” for the Dome of The Rock, Islam’s 3rd holiest site on Earth and the spot from which Muslims believe Moses ascended into Heaven. In the eschatolgical, or “End-Time” belief system held by most Christians United For Israel members, The Dome Of The Rock must be removed or destroyed to make way for the construction of a 3rd Jewish temple.” According to that article Brim went on to say:
ENDOWMENT FOR MIDDLE EAST TRUTH
On 9/23 The Detroit Free Press reported that: Endowment for Middle East Truth, is a partner with the Clarion Fund in “The Obsession Project,” which will also include research publications and issue forums.
HonestReporting.com was founded by AISH HATORAH, and now exists as an independent organization. An article on the Israel on Campus Coalition site says that both HONEST REPORTING and HASBARA FELLOWSHIPS are projects of AISH. “HonestReporting.com (HR.com) and Hasbara Fellowships have teamed up to create HonestReporting.com for Campus.” The Honest Reporting site on its history page says: “In early 2001, those first volunteers turned to the Jerusalem Fund of Aish HaTorah to help build a website, develop materials and grow the subscriber base even further. Later that year, the project, having grown to become a major organization in its own right, was established as a US non-profit organization (501c3) with an Independent Board of Directors.” Honest reporting has had some difficulties with honesty. They called the Qana ambulance attack by Israel a hoax, a false rumor which spread all over the internet on far right sites, even though Human Rights Watch debunked their claim.
Honest Reporting, in addition to media watch activities, produced a documentary discussing the Jewish-Muslim conflict in association with The CLARION FUND. This film was entitled “Relentless: The Struggle for Peace in the Middle East”. Interest in the video exceeded expectations and the documentary is now marketed independently of HonestReporting. Recently, the same team produced a film titled Obsession: Radical Islam’s War Against the West.
The translations in the film Obsession were provided by Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) which, according to Source Watch, is connected to Israeli intelligence organizations and Christian evangelicals and is funded in part by the right wing OLIN FOUNDATION. Obsessions production credits include the Middle East Media Research Institute. According to an article in Common Dreams: MEMRI is a translation service founded in 1998 by Col. Yigal Carmon, who spent more than 20 years in Israeli intelligence and later advised two Israeli prime ministers; and the PALESTINIAN MEDIA WATCH, an Israeli group founded by Itimar Marcus, that monitors Palestinian news organizations for alleged anti-Zionist and anti-Semitic propaganda. According to the Jewish Daily Forward: “MEMRI was co-founded by Meyrav Wurmser and Colonel Yigal Carmon, formerly of Israeli military intelligence, “both of whom were early critics of the Oslo accords.”
According to Source Watch “MEMRI’s stance is that it is opposed to Islamic fundamentalism, not Islam itself, although the integrity of this position may be questioned because of links on MEMRI’s website to certain evangelical Christian organizations who take a harder line on Islam. Yigal Carmon, MEMRI’s founder, is a former advisor on terrorism to the Israeli Prime Ministers, Yitzhak Shamir and Yitzhak Rabin, so he actually worked for both Labor and Likud governments. Praise for MEMRI should be taken with a grain of salt since it is almost always motivated by politics, not the quantity or quality of MEMRI’s work.”
The quality of their translations has been challenged over the years, including their famous Mickey Mouse look-alike translation, their translations of the articles of Prof. Halim Barakat of Georgetown University, and their most famous “wiped off the map” mistranslation of what Ahmadinejad actually said.
RADICAL ISLAM.ORG http://www.radicalislam.info/ a site copyrighted by the CLARION FUND.
REPUBLICAN JEWISH COALITION Richard Silverstein on Tikkun Olam has raised the question of whether or not the Republican Jewish Coalition had something to do with this mailing, and he notes in another article that The Republican Jewish Coalition has distributed free copies of the film in promotional mailings to U.S. rabbis and other Jewish mailing lists. This mailing was also documented by Jews on First who added that the Obsession DVD was inserted in a book called “Standing With Israel” by CHRISTIANS UNITED FOR ISRAEL’S (CUFI) executive director David Brog which was then sent out to Rabbis.
TERRORISM AWARENESS PROJECT promotes the film and says on its site: Terrorism Awareness Project is a program of the DAVID HOROWITZ FREEDOM CENTER.
INDIVIDUALS INVOLVED IN THE MAKING AND PROMOTING OF OBSESSION
Sheldon Adelson The press has already reported that Sheldon Adelson personally distributes copies of Obsession to participants in the Taglit-Birthright Israel indoctrination tours he funds. This article makes an educated guess that he is the financier behind this DVD distribution
Nonie Darwish identified in Obsession as the daughter of a Fedayeen terrorist. She is the founder of a group called ARABS FOR ISRAEL.
Alan M. Dershowitz The honesty of his attacks on Prof. Finkelstein of De Paul University has been questioned. At the time of Robert Kennedy’s assassination, Dershowitz said: “It was in some ways the beginning of Islamic terrorism in America. It was the first shot. A lot of us didn’t recognize it at the time.” Obviously he doesn’t know the difference between a Muslim and a Christian, since Sirhan Sirhan is a Palestinian Christian, not a Muslim.
Steven Emerson, Executive Director, THE INVESTIGATIVE PROJECT, produced the critically acclaimed PBS documentary “Jihad in America”. Emerson’s relationship to the truth may also be questionable. Emerson told a reporter shortly after the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing that he believed the perpetrators were likely Islamic terrorists. He has made other unsubstantiated claims including the “fact” that a hit team of Islamic Fundamentalists had been dispatched to kill him. Emerson filed a lawsuit against the journalist who raised doubts about his claims, but a court ruled against him in the lawsuit. Emerson has made claims against CAIR, against MPAC, and against ISNA. Paul Kendall has raised the issue of whether or not he conspired with a foreign government (Israel) to violate the Constitutional rights of American Muslims.
Brigitte Gabriel heads ACT FOR AMERICA. In a recent interview with the New York Times about her anti-Muslim book They Must Be Stopped she said: “The moderate Muslims at this point are truly irrelevant.” As noted in another Times article which called Gabriel a “radical Islamophobe” she has made a number of statements which show that she has a problem with all Muslims. Statements including: “Every practicing Muslim is a radical Muslim.” The author of this article notes: Gabriel believes that Muslims cannot serve loyally in the U.S. military, that interfaith dialogue is “nonsense,” and that the difference between the Arab world and Israel is “barbarism versus civilization.” She was pme pf the speakers at John Hagee’s CITIZENS UNITED FOR ISRAEL convention where she said: “The difference, my dear Christian friends, between Israel and the Arab world is quite simply the difference between civilization and barbarism. It’s the difference between good and evil and this is what we’re witnessing in the Arabic and Islamic world. I am angry. They have no SOUL! They are dead set on killing and destruction. And in the name of something they call “Allah,” which is very different from the God we believe in, because our God is the God of love.” Well, since we poor Arabs and/or Muslims have no soul, it is no wonder that we cannot comprehend this form of love. The Australian Jewish News Agency has also reported on her anti-Muslim statements.
Sir Martin Gilbert is Winston Churchill’s official biographer, a historian, and the author of Holocaust: The Jewish Tragedy (published in the United States as The Holocaust: A History of the Jews of Europe During the Second World War).
Caroline Glick is a Senior Fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at the CENTER FOR SECURITY POLICY, and deputy managing editor of the Jerusalem Post. A former officer in the Israel Defense Forces, she was a core member of Israel’s negotiating team with the Palestinians in the Oslo Negotiations under former Prime Minister Rabin, and later served as an assistant policy advisor to the prime minister. She is also on the advisory board of the ENDOWMENT FOR MIDDLE EAST TRUTH.
Rev. John Hagee leader of CHRISTIANS UNITED FOR ISRAEL, author of Jerusalem Countdown. He preaches an extremist Christian message that “… Muslims—that’s all Muslims—have a “scriptural mandate” to kill Christians and Jews. But don’t worry. America, according to Hagee, is on top of this coming showdown with Islam. He predicts, and seems to pine for, an all-out nuclear war with Iran, as the beginning of a new global war. Writing for the evangelical Pentecostal magazine Charisma, Hagee argues that “The coming nuclear showdown with Iran is a certainty.” In his 2006 book, Jerusalem Countdown, he expanded the first theater of operations for his coming world war to include Russia. This nuclear war, according to Hagee, would eventually end with the second coming of Christ and the whisking away of true believers to the heavens.” He has also been identified as one of John McCain’s religious advisors. According to Douglas Todd, he has also “denounced Catholicism as “The Great Whore,” called for the destruction of Islam, demonizes homosexuals, thinks global warming is a hoax and constantly insists the U.S. should attack Iran because it will help usher in the Second Coming.”
Brett Halperin, alias for unknown individual.
Alfons Heck identified as a Former Hitler Youth Officer. Actually, that is all the information that I need to ignore anything he says.
Glenn Jenvey is identified on the Obsession site as a former spy for several unnamed countries and freelance terrorism investigator - not much else on him anywhere. Even Wikipedia has no more information than to reprint just about word for word what is published on the Obsession site.
Wayne Kopping the director and co-writer - also produced “Relentless”
John Loftus, President of The Intelligence Summit and of the Florida Holocaust Museum. According to Wikipedia “John J. Loftus is the author and co-author of several controversial books on Nazis, espionage, and similar topics including The Belarus Secret (1982), Unholy Trinity: How the Vatican’s Nazi Networks Betrayed Western Intelligence to the Soviets (1992), The Secret War Against the Jews: How Western Espionage Betrayed the Jewish People (1994), Unholy Trinity: The Vatican, the Nazis, and the Swiss Banks (1998). Most historians see his books as non-scientific political pamphlets.” In 2005 In what Fox News officials concede was a mistake, “John Loftus, a former U.S. prosecutor, gave out the address Aug. 7, saying it was the home of a Middle Eastern man, Iyad K. Hilal, who was the leader of a terrorist group with ties to those responsible for the July 7 bombings in London. Hilal, whom Loftus identified by name during the broadcast, had moved out of the house about three years previously. But the consequences were immediate for the Voricks. (the current residents)” An article in a local newspaper pointed out that: ..."statements made by John Loftus, a commentator for Fox News, describing grocery store owner Iyad K. Hilal as a terrorist. Although the article accurately quoted Loftus’ expression of his opinion, The Times wants to make clear that Hilal has not been charged with any illegal activity and The Times is not aware of any law enforcement agency or official that has identified Hilal as a terrorist.” I’m not certain that I would put too much faith in this fellows statements.
Itamar Marcus is director of PALESTINIAN MEDIA WATCH based in Israel. That’s about all that I have been able to turn up about him. He doesn’t even get a page on Wikipedia.
Peter Mier, alias for unknown individual.
Daniel Pipes. This is a fellow that has had so much to say about Islam, Muslims, and Muslim organizations in the U.S. (all of it negative) that there is no point in doing more than pointing out a few of the responses that have listed in the past to his claims. ... Daniel Pipes article attacking Khaled Abou El Fadl , “Identifying Muslim Moderates” , and  (Sheila Musaji) and 4 (Louay Safi), and response to Daniel Pipes attack on The American Muslim logo  (Sheila Musaji) and  (Jeremy Henzell-Thomas), and collection of articles on religion building , on Pipes’ position on Palestinian right of return  (Habib Siddiqui), on Campus Watch  (Valerie Saturen), nomination to USIP by President Bush , Pipes and the Mujahedeen-e Khalq (MEK) , Pipes history [], interview with Andrew Potter  (Sheila Musaji). He is on the advisory board for the ENDOWMENT FOR MIDDLE EAST TRUTH.
Gregory Ross the communications director of the New York based CLARION non-profit group.
Walid Shoebat identified in Obsession as a Former PLO Terrorist. He paints a one sided picture. Claims about his former terrorist background have been disputed by more than one source. I’ve even written about his claims previously. Although he is a born again Christian he has written a book “Why We Want to Kill You”. He is on the advisory board of THE ENDOWMENT FOR MIDDLE EAST TRUTH.
Rabbi Raphael Shore who is the producer/co-writer of the film and founder of the CLARION FUND. He is a Canadian-Israeli living in Jerusalem. He also made the film “Relentless” which he developed from a power point presentation he had created. He was the director of both Aish HaTorah International and the Hasbara Fellowships, a pro-Israel advocacy group. Elliot Mathias, director of the Hasbara Fellowships program which aims to train students to be effective pro-Israel activists on their campuses said: “ ‘Obsession’ is so important because it shows what’s happening in Israel is not happening in a vacuum ... and that it affects all American students on campuses, not just Jewish students.”
Tom Trento, who heads http://www.watchobsession.org, the group that distributed the movie at the Democratic and Republican parties’ nominating conventions. Trento also heads something called the FLORIDA SECURITY COUNCIL http://www.floridasecuritycouncil.org/
Robert Wistrich Chair, Sassoon Center for Anti-Semitism
American Muslim Resources - article collections http://theamericanmuslim.org/tam.php/features/articles/american_