The children of one of controversial Muslim activist Linda Sarsour’s mentors have been arrested by law enforcement officers for establishing an Islamic terrorist training camp in New Mexico.
It all happened earlier this month, when police stormed a compound in Taos County in search of a 3-year-old boy who had been kidnapped by his estranged father in December 2017. When they raided the space, officers found what court documents described as a training ground for teaching children how to commit mass school shootings.
— Ryan Laughlin (@RyanLaughlinKOB) August 5, 2018
In the filthy facility, where children dressed in rags, had no shoes, and food was scarce, police found a stockpile of loaded firearms easily accessible to all 11 malnourished children discovered at the compound on Aug. 3.
Siraj Ibn Wahhaj, the leader of the terrorist group, was arrested during the raid alongside his two sisters and his brother-in-law. Taos County Sheriff Jerry Hogrefe described them as “most likely heavily armed and considered extremist of the Muslim belief.”
Wahhaj and his siblings are the children of New York Imam Siraj Wahhaj, who told reporters this week he helped police orchestrate the raid. The imam was once considered a possible co-conspirator in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, according to court documents released Wednesday.
The #NewMexico jihadi training compound where boys were trained to carry out school shootings was run by the son of American radical Islamist Siraj Wahaj who btw was a mentor to Linda @lSarsour, the hijabi who led the infamous Women's March. More here:https://t.co/bHiC6JXegy
— Tarek Fatah (@TarekFatah) August 9, 2018
Despite his sordid past, Imam Wahhaj has remained a prominent figure in the American Muslim community and frequently speaks at conferences arranged by groups like the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR).
He also has served as a key mentor to Sarsour, who is the figurehead of the progressive Women’s March and has frequently praised the radical imam on social media, according to Conservative Review.
— Linda Sarsour (@lsarsour) April 8, 2014
Imam Siraj Wahhaj is Black American and most loved religious leader amongst diverse groups of Muslims. #blackmuslimfuture
— Linda Sarsour (@lsarsour) February 20, 2014
@GMUPatriot13 Imam Siraj is an amazing man. I have prayed at Masjid Taqwa a few times but it's far from where I live.
— Linda Sarsour (@lsarsour) August 15, 2012
And in 2017, during a conference hosted by the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), Sarsour described Imam Wahhaj as “a mentor, a motivator, an encourager of mine” and said he’s “someone who has taught me to speak truth to power and not worry about the consequences.”
But Wahhaj is far from mainstream.
In 1992, he said, according to the Clarion Project, “If only Muslims were clever politically, they could take over the United States and replace its constitutional government with a caliphate.”
“You don’t get involved in politics because it’s the American thing to do. You get involved in politics because politics are a weapon to use in the cause of Islam,” Imam Wahhaj said one year earlier.
As for his son, Imam Wahhaj told KOB-TV there’s “obviously something happening, some mental disorder, something. I don’t know what it is.”
Sarsour, for her part, has not yet commented on the matter.