June 15, 2005
For Immediate Release
Contact: Joe Kaufman (joe4rep@gate.net)



(Coral Springs, FL) On February 20, 2003, the United States government issued a 120-page, 50-count indictment against eight individuals for their roles in a terrorist cell based in Tampa, Florida. According to the indictment, a think tank, a charity and a children's school were being used as fronts for the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ). This "PIJ Enterprise," as the government referred to it, was said to have had conducted multiple acts involving murder, extortion, money laundering and various forms of fraud.

At this point, both the think tank, the World and Islam Studies Enterprise (WISE), and the charity, the Islamic Committee for Palestine (ICP), have been shut down. Yet the school, the Islamic Academy of Florida (IAF), still remains.

Americans Against Hate (AAH) questions how this is possible, given the fact that three of those charged were Directors of IAF, including two of the school's co-founders, Sami Al-Arian and Mazen Al-Najjar. And another of the indicted individuals, Ramadan Abdullah Shallah - who was soon to take over as head of PIJ - was a teacher there.

Also, there was evidence to prove that those wanting to give funds to help Palestinians were told to donate to the school.

Additionally, in July of 2003, in light of the school's ties to terrorist activity, payments to IAF in the form of government provided student tuition vouchers were suspended. Later, after further investigation, the school was cut off completely from the voucher program.

Joe Kaufman, AAH Chairman, stated, "We cannot understand, after all that has come out about the PIJ Tampa cell, that the Islamic Academy of Florida is still in existence. The cloak of silence that has enveloped those associated with the school is proof that IAF still has much to hide. We can only hope, with all of the new testimony presented in court, that the government will act to shut down this threat to American and Israeli society."

Joe Kaufman is available for interview. E-mail: joe4rep@gate.net.


© 2005 Americans Against Hate